Communication And Culture | Public Dialogue in Amer to 1865
C537 | 1175 | Andrews J


This course aims to introduce students to a variety of rhetorical
texts within their historical contexts. As well as studying historically
important rhetorical texts in this period of American history, students
will gain experience and sophistication in careful reading and analysis of
texts, and will critically confront a sample of the kinds of research
being done relevant to American public address both in rhetoric and other
disciplines. The course is organized around the theme of the development
of an "American" identity. Against this background, specific topics to be
covered include: the colonial period and the roots of American identity,
rhetorical perspectives on the coming of the American Revolution, the
making and ratification of the Constitution, radical reform and
reaction-the women's movement and the anti-slavery movement, women and
public speaking in the nineteenth century,  Nationalism, Sectionalism, and
Union in antebellum debates, the Lincoln-Douglas debates, Lincoln and
Civil War rhetoric. Requirements specific to this course are:  Students
serve as leaders for research discussions; students keep a journal in
which they summarize, raise questions, draw conclusions, and make
observations on the assigned texts, noting the principal arguments and
striking rhetorical features, and comment on the supplementary
historical/critical readings; students complete two take-home examinations
(a mid-term and a final); students write two book reviews in which they
briefly summarize the book, point out the ways in which and the extent to
which this work bears on the rhetorical study of American public address,
and offer whatever critical comments and relevant observations.