BOKE index
The Electonic Word: Democracy, Technology, and the Arts - by Richard A. Lanham [THE ELECTRONIC WORD]


...the orator

creates the reality

in which he acts.

He must be at one with it,

"just" and "good" in its terms,

since it is created

for his purpose.

[165] [quoting Mark Backman's interpretation of Richard McKeon]
"In the curriculum of the schools, rhetoric has been assigned
a much reduced role when the motive has been to establish discrete
disciplines marked by unique subject matters and methods.
CONVERSELY, rhetoric has organized the entire course of study when
the goal has been to bridge the gap between distinct subject matters."

[166] If ... truth is what the judge and jury, after a suitably dramatic
say it is, then rhetoric is architectonic

"The growth of science and communication, the increase of knowledge
and the formulation of a world community, have begun to lay out the
field of systematetic organization both as a system of communication
for a universal audience, mankind, and as a system of operation of an
ongoing development and inquiry, technology.

It is a field which provides grounding for the intersubjectivity of
communications of persons and groups and for the objectivity of
conclusions of inquiry and action.

It is within this field that the possible worlds, which are discussed
in plans and policy, and theses which are posited are stabilized into principles.

Theses and principles have a history which carries back in tradition
to principles that were called eternal and universal but were also
derived from theses that posit being in a context of an agent,
his environment, and his subject.

It is a field of reflexivity and responsibility, which must be explored
in rational action concerning rights and justice, laws and conventions
sanctions and obligations, utilities and values, and opinions and truth.

The field of the new dialectical rhetoric, of debate and dialogue
is being traveled and cultivated by chance and by art.

An architechtonic-productive survey of the field of these activities
could make its beginning by orienting rhetoric from the oppositions
of the past to the understanding and projection of the new processes
and needs of the present