The Genuine Teachers of This Art
Rhetorical Education in Antiquity
Publication Year: 2012
Published by: University of South Carolina Press
Table of Contents
Series Editor's Preface
In Greek and Roman antiquity, intensive and prolonged study of rhetoric was the key preparation for active civic life. In The Genuine Teachers of This Art,Jeffrey Walker explores, in four extended essays, the practice of rhetorical education from Isocrates to late antiquity, with intensive treatments of Isocrates, Cicero, and Dionysius of Halicarnassus, and the practice of declamation....
I thank the National Endowment for the Humanities and the College of Liberal Arts at the University of Texas at Austin for the fellowships that enabled me to get this book seriously underway during the 2007–2008 academic year. I also thank Jim Denton at the University of South Carolina Press for being extraordinarily patient while I slowly brought the manuscript to completion. ...
Prologue: Rhetoric and/as Rhetorical Pedagogy
One can, of course, define rhetoric in different ways. “Rhetoric” may mean (1) persuasive discourse, as opposed to nonpersuasive, which is a standard popular conception, or practical oratory, discourse delivered in deliberative, judicial, and ceremonial forums, which is a traditional (if outmoded) scholarly conception. One can say, for example, that an issue “generated a lot of rhetoric.” ...
One: Cicero's Antonius
Roughly midway into the second book of Cicero’s great and complex dialogue, De oratore, as the orator Marcus Antonius begins his discussion of the role of “commonplaces” (loci ) in rhetorical invention, Quintus Lutatius Catulus—an enthusiast of Greek high culture—remarks with approval that Antonius seems to be following the theories of Aristotle’s Topics and is less indifferent to Greek ...
Two: On the Technê of Isocrates (I)
This chapter’s epigraphs represent a longstanding tradition, or pair of traditions, in rhetorical scholarship. The first, represented here by Cicero and Quintilian, divides the rhetorical tradition into two main streams: a sophistic stream of rhetorical teaching that flows from Isocrates through “all” subsequent rhetoricians, or those whom Antonius calls “the genuine teachers of this art,” and a ...
Three: On the Technê of Isocrates (II)
This chapter is admittedly speculative, or, if you will, an exercise in probabilistic conjecture. I propose to consider what the Technê of Isocrates may have contained. The main sources of evidence are, on one hand, scattered testimonies by other writers and, on the other, the fragments and traces of preceptive technê that appear in Isocrates’ extant writings. ...
Four: In the Garden of Talking Birds: Declamation and Civic Theater
Rhetoric was discovered and came forward as a safeguard of justice and a bond of human life, so that matters would not be decided by hands, by weapons, by seizure, by numbers and size, or by any other inequality, but that reason should determine justice peacefully. This is the very origin and nature of rhetoric: its purpose is to save all human beings, and by means of ...
Five: Dionysius of Halicarnassus and the Notion of Rhetorical Scholarship
Dionysius of Halicarnassus is often described as one of the leading “literary” critics of antiquity, although he was in fact a rhetorician. More precisely, he was a Greek sophist from Asia Minor. (Ancient Halicarnassus is modern Bodrum, on the western coast of Turkey.) Dionysius lived and worked at Rome between 30 and 7 B.C.E., and probably longer, a period corresponding closely to the reign ...
As I said in the prologue, this book is a sequence of extended, overlapping essays that do not necessarily have to be read in the order presented (with the exception of chapters 2–3). As such they do not quite constitute what Kenneth Burke would call a syllogistic progression,1 though there are reiterated themes and a general stance that has, I hope, held things together. In this epilogue, then, my ...