- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: Waveland Pr Inc; 2 edition (February 1, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1577662210
- ISBN-13: 978-1577662211
- Product Dimensions: 0.8 x 6 x 8.8 inches
- Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 8 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #229,913 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Introduction to Rhetorical Theory 2nd Edition
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To clarify, I am not discounting the practical value of good rhetorical form nor the validity of studying it, but rather the over-inflated value of Dr. Hauser's book in teaching these critical skills of day-to-day interaction with a lay audience. Most people can mount a fairly reasonable argument incorporating the devices outlined in the text without having any knowledge of the academic taxonomy of the devices described, just as one can eat a hamburger in a functional and even elegant fashion without having read a definitive text on the animal husbandry of domesticated ruminants. Hell, they don't even have to know what a domesticated ruminant is.
If you have the misfortune of having to read this book as required course material, I offer my heartfelt condolences. The only consolation will be that, in all likelihood, your brain will purge this gobbledygook from its memory stores shortly after your final exam and free up space for something more useful, such as dryer lint sculptural techniques or anything in the realm of reality TV.
The book is not without its shortcomings. The title is somewhat of a misnomer ("Introduction to Rhetorical Reasoning" or "Introduction to Rhetorical Argumentation" would be a more accurate description). And while Hauser's writing style is mostly clear, he often omits concrete examples that would help to illuminate theoretical points in further detail.
Despite the book's limitations, I recommend it for use in undergraduate rhetorical analysis or argumentation classes. At $25 new, it retails for just a fraction of what other similar textbooks cost.