Week / Date

Discussion Topics, Activities, Due Dates, Presentations, etc.

Readings to do for the following week:

Week 1 / September 25

Course Introduction & Orientation, Rhetoric 101, Blog Sign-up, AP Project, NWCA Conference, Using Wordles to tiptoe into the text, Using the Theory Rubric, Presentation Groups Assigned.

Scandalous Rhetorics

Basic Notes on Rhetoric & Rhetorical Devices

Figurative Language in the Electronic Age

Bonus Reading: (for those who want to get ahead!) Black’s Gettysburg & Silence

Week 2 / October 2

Purposes of Rhetorical Criticism; History of the Discipline; The Rhetorical Situation, Elements of Persuasion ppt.

Part 1 (Textbook): Wilchens, Wrage, & Bitzer 

Week 3 / October 9

Neo-Classical / Neo-Aristotelian / Traditional Criticism


Blog 1 DUE

First three weeks: overview


1. Marie Hochmuth Nichols, Lincoln’s First Inaugural (pdf--compressed large file, works on Adobe Reader version 7.0 or later)

2. Michael C. Leff and Gerald P. Mohrmann, Lincoln at Cooper Union:  A Rhetorical Analysis of the Text (1974)

3. Michael Leff, Dimensions of Temporality in Lincoln’s Second Inaugural (1988)

4. Edwin Black’s Gettysburg & Silence

Week 4 / October 16 

Lincoln Night: Lincoln the Rhetorical, Lincoln the Mediated, Lincoln the Controversial, Lincoln the Pop Culture Icon, Lincoln the International American. (Bring popcorn and jujubes.)


Template and Evaluation Form (recently updated.)

Blog 2 NOT DUE UNTIL NEXT WEEK (but MAYBE a *really* good night for one of the 3 surprise quizzes!)

1. Stephen Howard Browne, The Circle of Our Felicities€: Thomas Jefferson’s First Inaugural Address and the Rhetoric of Nationhood (2002)

2. Stephen E. Lucas, The Stylistic Artistry of the Declaration of Independence (1990)

Week 5 / October 23

Post-Modernism & The Rhetorical Presidency

Blog 2 DUE

1. Kenneth Burke, The Rhetoric of Hitler’s Battle (1941)

2. Brian L. Ott and Eric Aoki, The Politics of Negotiating Public Tragedy: Media Framing of the Matthew Shephard Murder (2002)

3. David A. Ling, A Pentadic Analysis of Senator Edward Kennedy’s Address to the People of Massachusetts, July 25, 1969,The Central States Speech Journal, 21 (Summer 1970), 81-86.

Week 6 / October 30

GROUP 1 PRESENTATION: Dramatistic Criticism,

2012 Dramatism handout


Blog 3 [PROPOSAL] DUE (AND a *really* good night for one of the 3 surprise quizzes!)

Walter R. Fisher, Narration as a Human Communication Paradigm: The Case of Public Moral Argument (1984)

William F. Lewis, Telling America’s Story: Narrative Form and the Reagan Presidency (1987)

*Herbert W. Simons, From Post-9/11 Melodrama to Quagmire in Iraq: A Rhetorical History (2007) 

Week 7 / November 6

GROUP 2 PRESENTATION: Narrative Criticism

Blog 4 DUE

Michael Osborn, Archetypal Metaphor in Rhetoric: The Light-Dark Family (1967) (textbooks)

Robert L. Ivie, Metaphor and the Rhetorical Invention of Cold War Idealists (1987) (textbooks)

Chantrill, P. The Legend of the Gulf War: Marine Corps Recruitment and the Metaphor of Chess

Week 8 / November 13

GROUP 3 PRESENTATION:Metaphor and Criticism

2013 handout


PPT for Abstract Prep

cmst 420 survey

1.  Leland M. Griffin, The Rhetorical Structure of the Antimasonic Movement (1958)

2.  Herbert W. Simons, Requirements, Problems, and Strategies: A Theory of Persuasion for  Social Movements (1970)

3.  Susan Zaeske, Signatures of Citizenship: The Rhetoric of Women’s Antislavery Petitions (2002)

4.  Douglas Bevington & Chris Dixon, Movement-relevant Theory: Rethinking Social Movement Scholarship and Activism (2005). (PDF linked; can also be found online here: http://users.resist.ca/~chrisd/reflecting/mrtheory.pdf).

Week 9 / November 20

GROUP 4 PRESENTATION: Social Movement Criticism

Group Presentation Handout on Social Movement Criticism

Blog 6 DUE


Karlyn Kohrs Campbell, The Rhetoric of Women’s Liberation:  An Oxymoron (1973)

*Bonnie J. Dow, Feminism, Miss America, and Media Mythology (2003)


Karlyn Kohrs Campbell and Kathleen Hall Jamieson, Form and Genre in Rhetorical Criticism: An Introduction (1978)

B. L. Ware and Wil A. Linkugel, They Spoke in Defense of Themselves:  On the Generic Criticism of Apologia (1973)

Week 10 / November 27  NO CLASS--HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Week 11 / December 4

GROUP 5 PRESENTATION: Gender & Genre Criticism, QUIZ 3, Jeopardy! Review for Final. [9-10pm: Instructor available to help with paper draft organization & argumentation. Not a proofing/editing session, but a chance to test outlines and evidence.]

Study Guide will be posted online HERE following Jeopardy! Review

Finals week: RHETORICAL CRITICISM (FINAL DRAFT) PAPERS DUE, Our final will be held from 6-8pm Thursday evening, December 11th

CMST 450-40 Fall 2014 Schedule

rhet crit jeop 2 SM