American Studies | Colloquium in American Studies / Topic: Productive Criticism of Political Rhetoric
G620 | 15313 | Robert Ivie


(4 cr.) Jointly offered with CMCL-C505

Rhetoric is conceptualized and practiced in this course as an act of
engaged cultural critique, focusing on the problem of the scapegoat
or demonized Other and the corresponding challenge of articulating
more inclusive democratic polities.  We draw on Kenneth Burke’s
dramatism as a framework for productive rhetorical critique of
tragic rituals of victimization.  Burke’s treatment of the comic
corrective is complemented by Lewis Hyde’s representation of the
mythic trickster and by Michel de Certeau’s treatment of the
tactical tricks of everyday life, and is extended by Frank
Lentricchia into the realm of political action in a version of what
Michael Walzer characterizes as connected criticism.