We’ve passed our second month of defining rhetoric in 140 characters or less. Rhetoric’s been defined, re-defined, pre-defined, post-defined, most-defined, more-defined, and less-defined. It’s been a whole lotta defined. It’s an activity, clothing, and like milk. It’s a pun and a mirror and a niece! It’s even in orbit.
Before you go back to defining, enjoy some of the latest definitions we’ve gotten:
- Rhetoric is how you hope to talk your way out of a traffic ticket…HOPE. #DefineRhetoric @TheOriginalRock
- Rhetoric is like the moon. It is, at present, synchronously oriented to the rotation of another body around which it orbits. #DefineRhetoric @Schmeggelz
- Rhetoric is discourse in lingerie. #definerhetoric @soundb0mb3r
- Someone left me a voicemail of just some really impressive coughing. #definerhetoric @donorahillard
- Rhetoric is when “my style’s like a chemical spill/Feasible Rhymes you can vision and feel/conducted in form… V. Ice #definerhetoric @HarlotTweets
- Rhetoric is a pun on causality. #definerhetoric @postsilence
- Rhetoric is a selection and deflection of reality. (Inspired by Burke.) #definerhetoric @cdmandrews
- “Listen to me!” says my niece while holding my face in her hands. #definerhetoric @denisejeannee
There’re 2 ½ months left to #definerhetoric! Keep on definin’ and cure the rhetorical hangover a summer can give ya by tweeting a #definerhetoric.
Much thanks and great work to all those participatin’ in #definerhetoric!
If you’re interested in #DefineRhetoric, you’ll find instructions here: #DefineRhetoric
Here’s the route of today’s discovery: reading about Philosophy Talk‘s recent award at the New York Festivals International Radio Competition => peruse former winners => see that last year’s winner is a piece on how advertising created the “Happy Housewife” image => look into who made it => discover “The Age of Persuasion,” a Canadian news program that “explores the countless ways marketers permeate your life, from media, art, and language, to politics, religion, and fashion.”
A quick survey of past episodes reveals a treasure trove for those interested in the persuasive tactics of marketers, mad and otherwise. The archive dates back to 2008 and lists so many provocative titles (such as “Marketing the Invisible,” “Sun Tzu and the Art of Persuasion,” and “Man Women: The Great Women of Advertising“) that I’m overwhelmed and not sure where to start. A lovely predicament.
Head over to The Age of Persuasion and check it out for yourself!
I recently stumbled across Dotsies, a website promoting a brand new, dot-based font designed (according to the developer) for more optimized, efficient screen reading. At first blush, trying to decipher the mashed-together blips feels very alien, but if you follow the tutorial below the fold, you do tend to pick it up fairly quickly (or I did, at least).
Thought experiment: what do you think might happen to rhetorical practice (written, spoken, or otherwise) if we were to abandon the Latin alphabet we’ve all known and loved for centuries and adopt Dotsies instead? What unintended effects would such a change have on rhetorical style, the way we arrange ideas on the page or screen, on the integration of word and image?
PS–if the idea of communication systems with high signal-to-noise ratios interests you, might I recommend James Gleick’s excellent book The Information: A History, A Theory, A Flood?