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Chaim Perelman

Alan G. Gross and Ray D. Dearin

Publication Year: 2002

Published by: Southern Illinois University Press


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pp. 1-2

Rhetoric in the Modern Era Series Statement

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p. 3-3

Book Title

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p. 4-4

Copyright Page

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pp. 5-7


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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-xii

For each of us, Perelman has been a central figure, hovering steadily over our scholarly work, our excursions into rhetorical theory and rhetorical criticism. We hope that this short book helps others also see the inspirational importance of his achievement. ...

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Chapter 1: Perelman’s Life and Influence

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pp. 1-12

Chaim Perelman was born May 20, 1912, in Warsaw, Poland, the son of Abraham and Lea (Garbownik) Perelman.1 His father was a diamond merchant who moved his family to Antwerp, Belgium, in 1925, where the young immigrant entered the secondary school system. ...

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Chapter 2: Philosophical Foundations

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pp. 13-30

Every theory of rhetoric rests upon preconceptions about human behavior. Classical doctrines, markedly influenced by Aristotle, envisaged humans as rational beings, albeit with strong, sometimes decisive emotional proclivities; rhetoric itself was conceived to be an amoral art that could be used for good or ill, depending upon the motives of the persuader. ...

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Chapter 3: A Theory of the Rhetorical Audience

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pp. 31-42

Like all rhetorical theorists, from Gorgias on, Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca believe that audience is at the very center of matters rhetorical “since argumentation aims at securing the adherence of those to whom it is addressed, it is, in its entirety, relative to the audience to be influenced” (19). ...

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Chapter 4: Arguing Quasi-Logically

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pp. 43-52

Now that we have scrutinized the philosophical underpinnings of Perelman’s rhetorical thought and have analyzed the concept of rhetorical audience lying at its core, we are ready to examine the typology of argumentation set forth in The New Rhetoric. After discussing facts, truths, presumptions, and other “starting points” ...

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Chapter 5: Arguing from the Structure of Reality

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pp. 53-64

Unlike quasi-logical arguments, which try to counterfeit logical or mathematical structures, a second kind of associative technique relies upon the audience’s conception of reality in order “to establish a solidarity between accepted judgments and others which one wishes to promote” (The New Rhetoric 261). ...

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Chapter 6: Arguments That Establish the Structure of Reality

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pp. 65-80

In the last two chapters we have considered two species of arguments that derive their plausibility from resemblances they bear to logical or mathematical forms, or to the fact that their conclusions flow inexorably from a notion of reality that is already embedded in the minds of the audience. ...

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Chapter 7: Rhetoric as a Technique and a Mode of Truth

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pp. 81-98

Henry Johnstone and Chaim Perelman were friends, but their friendship did not prevent Johnstone from criticizing Perelman’s work, sometimes severely. Central to Johnstone’s concerns was an issue that has dogged rhetoric since its beginnings in ancient Greece: Is it a technique, or is it a mode of truth? ...

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Chapter 8: Arrangement as Persuasion

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pp. 99-114

Although each of the five faculties that comprise ancient rhetoric—invention, arrangement, style, delivery, and memory—must have a purpose in persuasion, it is by no means clear, with any faculty but invention, how that persuasive purpose is realized. Arrangement is a case in point. ...

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Chapter 9: The Figures as Argument

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pp. 115-134

The conviction of Perelman and Olbrechts-Tyteca that style plays a supporting rather than a leading role in argument leads to their decision to treat the figures,1 not in one place, but only as they become a factor in particular arguments. While correct conceptually, this decision is indefensible as an expository strategy ...

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Chapter 10: Presence as Synergy

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pp. 135-152

We end this book with a chapter on presence, a fitting conclusion, we think, since presence in its most interesting form is not the isolated effect of the elements of arrangement, style, and invention, but the cumulative effect of interactions among these. This form of presence has as its object not the alteration or reinforcement of isolated attitudes or beliefs, ...


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pp. 153-156


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pp. 157-164


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pp. 165-166

Books in the Rhetoric in the Modern Era Series

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p. 180-180

Back Cover

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p. 181-181

E-ISBN-13: 9780809386215
E-ISBN-10: 0809386216
Print-ISBN-13: 9780809330225
Print-ISBN-10: 0809330229

Page Count: 180
Publication Year: 2002

Edition: 1st ed.

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Subject Headings

  • Perelman, Chaïm.
  • Reasoning -- History -- 20th century.
  • Rhetoric -- History -- 20th century.
  • Logic, Modern -- 20th century.
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