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Words Like Loaded Pistols: Rhetoric from…

Words Like Loaded Pistols: Rhetoric from Aristotle to Obama (2012)

by Sam Leith

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A timely, concise and elegant treatment of perhaps the most undeservedly neglected area of literary criticism of all: the vital interface of form and content, whereof meaning and, more importantly, effect are born.

Read - and have the scales fall from your eyes. ( )
  jtck121166 | Aug 27, 2013 |
Mostly entertaining for the examples it offers up, plus a catalog of terms at the end. There’s nothing but rhetoric in our speeches—high, low, or in-between—and that can be a good thing, as long as you know what to look for. Some goodies: Julian Barnes, analogy: “And does history repeat itself, the first time as tragedy, the second time as farce? No, that’s too grand, too considered a process. History just burps, and we taste again that raw-onion sandwich it swallowed centuries ago.” Isocolon, a balancing of clauses of the same length: “The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons.” Lord Mancroft: “A speech is like a love-affair—any fool can start it, but to end it requires considerable skill.” ( )
  rivkat | Oct 22, 2012 |
Brilliant introduction to rhetoric - funny, informative, and a great read. ( )
  ChristopherBurkett | Oct 30, 2011 |
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Cites rhetoric's ubiquitous presence in virtually all aspects of life, tracing the history of the art of persuasion while revealing how inspirational language has been used by famous individuals.

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