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May 16, 2012 / compassioninpolitics

George Campbell on Aristotle, Persuasion, and Argument

Treatment of ethos:

Good man=character, speaking well .

Speakers must develop sympathy between speaker and hearer by being sincere and showing good will.
Treatment of pathos

The emotions react, even upon logical arguments.

The emotions we associate with a set of like/similar emotions tie listeners into a system of response.

Wit, humor, ridicule are powerful emotional forces.

Treatment of Logical Argument

Scientific proof, as represented by Cartesianism, is outside the proper realm of rhetoric.

Moral reasoning brings one closer to truth than mere probability, but to a degree less than certainty.

Experience, analogy, calculation of choice (probability) and esp. testimony are key supports for logical argument.

Campbell raises testimony to an artistic mode of proof by indicating that sharing others experience is powerful.

Experiential learning based on shared observations is a strong persuader (intersubjectivity and corroberation).

Treatment of style

Use is the sole mistress of language. Standards for style are that it be reputable, national, and present (not faddish and absolute). One should be able to make both direct and indirect speech appeals.



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