A Time To Speak

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Classroom lecture delivered to students in a senior level persuasion course

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A Time To Speak

  1. 1. A Time to Speak Kairos, Exigence, and the Rhetorical Situation
  2. 2. Ecclesiastes 3.1-8 <ul><li>1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: 2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted; 3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up; 4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance; 5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; 6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away; 7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; 8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Kairos <ul><li>“ kairos [. . .] identifies the combination of the ‘right’ moment to speak and the ‘right’ way (or proportion) to speak” (Rhetorica online) </li></ul><ul><li>Synonyms </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Timely </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Appropriate </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fitting </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. 3 Types of Kairos (Brinton 234) <ul><li>Causal </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ The situation ‘gives rise to’ the rhetorical” utterance </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Meaning-dependence </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The “character [or scope] of the [utterance] as rhetorical depends upon connection to the situation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Normative </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ demands a certain type of response” to be fitting </li></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Exigence <ul><li>“ the imperfection in the environment that calls rhetoric into being” (Hauser 48) </li></ul><ul><li>Brinton explains the exigence as “a genuine objective defect in the world” (242) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>At the very least, all rhetors see the same problem </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Multiplicities of Exigences <ul><li>Controlling </li></ul><ul><ul><li>This is the agreed upon or shared problem </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shapes the overall discourse (all rhetorical acts must address this problem—directly or indirectly) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Contributing </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The subordinating problems that help shape responses </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Often, not agreed upon by various/ multiple rhetors </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. 9 Elements of Rhetorical Situation <ul><li>Exigence: What happens or fails to happen? Why is one compelled to speak out? </li></ul><ul><li>Persons: Who is involved in the exigence and what roles do they play? </li></ul><ul><li>Relations: What are the relationships, especially the differences in power, between the persons involved? </li></ul><ul><li>Location: Where is the site of discourse? e.g. a podium, newspaper, web page, etc. </li></ul><ul><li>Speaker: Who is compelled to speak or write? </li></ul><ul><li>Audience: Who does the speaker address and why? </li></ul><ul><li>Method: How does the speaker choose to address the audience? </li></ul><ul><li>Institutions: What are the rules of the game surrounding/constraining numbers 1 through 7. </li></ul>

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