What is rhetoric?

Rhetoric studies the motion of interplanetary bodies in the cryosphere.

You’re funnin’ me, ain’t ya Tom?

Surely I am, Huck. Surely I am.

What is rhetoric, then?

The study of rhetoric aims to clarify how people use language to persuade. As such, it encompasses  or touches on  logic, evidence, emotion, argumentation, propaganda, analysis, motivation, reason and unreason: all the arts of persuasion people have developed since at least the Greeks. Rhetoric does not refer merely to fine talk: what we mean when we say, “That’s just rhetoric.”

Based on this broad definition of rhetoric, what does rhetoric of inquiry mean? That’s a big question, which I won’t try to answer here.

You might venture that Infamy illustrates rhetoric of inquiry through discussion of a couple of controversial political crimes. You’ll see, as you read the book, how rhetoric of inquiry is relevant to Infamy‘s arguments and subject matter.