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.