The Nation: A Few Words About Rhetoric

The Greeks created the word for it: politikos. They also had plenty of other words to define the various rhetorical ploys that are the very breath of politics. That is the wry message of a new book called that pestilent cosmetic, rhetoric, by Sol Chaneles, a New York University sociologist, and Jerome Snyder, author-illustrator. In it they provide some updated definitions for classical rhetorical terms plus piquant examples from contemporary national politics.

Under categoria ("direct exposure of an adversary's faults") they cite John F. Kennedy's angry outburst against price rises by U.S. Steel: "My...

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