You may have pondered, “what in the world is rhetoric?” and furthermore, “why in this world is it important?” For some, the answer to these questions is quite simple, yet for others, seemingly more complex than at first meets the eye. In common tongue, rhetoric simply outlines the essence of persuasive communications—some will even go as far as to define it as manipulative discourse, giving the concept negative connotations in most modern contexts.
Yet, if we can gain a fundamental grasp of the history and evolution of rhetorical approaches, impacts and implications in society since the dawn of human beings, to the emergence of script and philosophy in the ancient world, contrasting with degradation, segregation and ultimately the unification of diverse demographics about the chaotic state of current affairs, we will find that rhetoric is in fact a powerful tool if not catalyst for revolutionary and evolutionary digresses and progresses of humanity.
On Friday, February 12, 2010, BUIC Seminar in Communications Course (ICA 429, Section 5431) held a seminar in room 762 of Bangkok University’s city campus at Kluay Naam Thai campus. The guest lecturer was Dr. Raymie E. McKerrow, a Doctoral professor in the School of Communication Studies at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio.
A 2006 Chapter of the Year award winner via National Communication Association (NCA), Dr. McKerrow is distinguished Communications and Rhetoric Scholar with vast experience and accomplishments in his field. As a keystone professor for Bangkok University – Ohio University Doctoral Program collaboration, Dr McKerrow was invited to lecture Junior – Senior undegraduate Communication students at BU International. Following is the introduction to the Seminar report, with a link to the full report.
1. To create an overall understanding of rhetorical approaches
2. To introduce the issues evolving around rhetoric
3. To create an understanding of rhetorical principles
4. To briefly grasp an understanding of postmodern rhetoric
5. To explore critical rhetoric
6. To understand the impact of rhetoric on popular culture
In this seminar, Doctor Raymie E. McKerrow walks us through the foundations of understanding the rhetoric realities in the modern real world exploring contexts and impacts throughout ancient up to contemporary times. To indulge even deeper into discourse of what rhetoric fully entails for Humanity’s sake, amidst an age of Globalization which has enabled a revolutionary manifestation of information exchanges, the only thing that seems certain and consistent is constant and indefinite change—of you, me, and everyone else in between.
What all this means is that in each unique individual there exist an underlying responsibility to and dependency for the greater collective commonly called society, that alike all things of the known universe, is subject to life cycle. Thus, we have come to consider the next rhetorical inquisition of reality:
What makes you, you? And me, me? In other words, what are the variables and factors which define the nature of contemporary existence and function in-of society? Rhetoric is one scope of communication which will help us to interpret our worlds more objectively and just, which will ultimately enable humanity to correct its imperfections, and thus prosper in equilibrium and harmony.