Emotion, Expression, Explanation
Edited By András Benedek and Kristof Nyiri
Expressivity and Emotion in Visionary Rhetoric
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“Teaching must be based on a sense of wonder, or the emotions awakened by the text to be studied.”1
How to craft a well-constructed emotional experience in a speech? You will quickly find a research program available on the internet (worked out for texts exclusively in English) that will tell you. Working with six fundamental feelings rather than the positive–negative dyad it analyzes the meaning and connotations of chosen words and draws a verdict about your text’s impact on audiences. If such innovations exists, any theoretical essays on the emotional contents and expressive capacities of rhetorical speeches may seem superfluous. Now, how did this previous statement sound? What kind of feelings has it given rise to? Did it, by any chance, cause precarious thoughts about the scientific nature of the whole chapter? As for the genre, can irony at all be present in the neutral style of a scholarly text? Even though it sounds the easy way out, I strongly doubt whether the emotional impact of a text (read or heard) can be automatically quantified based solely upon word-meanings by an online program.
Wrong as I may be, I hereby endeavour to give an overview, a conceptual framework of the expressive and emotional features of rhetorical speeches, taking a qualitative perspective, aiming to stress the importance of vision in persuasion. For that reason I propose the term visionary speech in place of the persuasive one as I am prone...
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