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Culture in Rhetoric


Richard Wilkins and Karen Wolf

Richard Wilkins and Karen Wolf present an innovative look at the relationship between rhetoric and the ethnography of communication.
They argue that a situated rhetoric extends beyond the study of public discourse to include moments of identification that are used in a situated, social, and cultural way. The main problem the book addresses is the idea that individuals use situated rhetoric to accomplish communal identification, even at the risk of multiple interpretations from others.
Culture in Rhetoric draws on case studies exploring argumentation through speaking and silence over the use of Native American land; asynchronous communication active in the cultural frames of a CBS 60 Minutes episode; identity and communication at a Jewish havurah; optimal forms of communicative conduct in Britain; and the changes in education communication of a North American college.
Wilkins and Wolf present the position that the context, form, and meaning of these situated instances of rhetoric provide a foundation upon which to analyze the communicative constructions of cultural identity.


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Table of Contents


Preface ix Acknowledgments xi 1 Culture in Rhetoric 1 2 Situating Rhetoric in Cultural Discourses 12 3 Cultural Frames: Loci of Intercultural Communication Asynchrony in a CBS 60 Minutes News Segment 22 4 Rhetoric of Cultural Values 40 5 Meta-commentary: A Cultural Way of Talking in a Jewish Community 59 6 Optimal Forms of Communicative Conduct in Britain 81 7 Taking the Collegial Out of Educational Communication: Tracking Change in Organizational Culture with the Introduction of a New Instrument for Communication 97 8 Conclusion 112 References 127 Author Index 141 Subject Index 145

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