Rhetorical Theory: An Introduction by Timothy  Borchers
345 pages, $48.95 list
1-57766-731-X
978-1-57766-731-5
Instructor's Resource Manual available
New edition coming soon!
Rhetorical Theory
An Introduction
Each of us has the need to make sense of our world, make decisions, and learn who we are. Throughout history, rhetorical theorists have provided a comprehensive account of how individuals fulfill each of these needs. Current in its theory and practical in its approach, the book encourages readers to apply rhetorical theory to their personal, professional, and civic worlds.

Borchers organizes theoretical insights topically rather than chronologically, so readers are better able to track the similarities and differences in central ideas. He provides context for understanding why rhetorical theories have been created, how they relate to the real world, and how they influence and are influenced by other ideas associated with human behavior. His writing style is engaging and not overly technical, serving the needs of readers without a specialized background. Gendered, feminist, and non-Western approaches are integrated throughout the book.
Reviews
“This book is very clear and comprehensive. It is an excellent choice for students new to rhetorical theory.” — Sarah Jedd, University of Wisconsin

“Too often lower-division rhetoric courses are light on—or even totally lacking—a strong ground in rhetorical theory, particularly anything beyond Cicero. Rhetorical Theory offers an accessible but still deep path into the true richness of the field.” — Steve Morrison, South Texas College

“Borchers’ textbook is ambitious in scope and provides balanced coverage of classical and contemporary theories. I especially appreciate the book’s coverage of non-Western and gender-based theories of rhetoric, which often gets glossed over in other texts.” — Benjamin Krueger, Northern Arizona University
Table of Contents
Part I: THE NATURE OF RHETORIC

1. Defining Rhetoric and Rhetorical Theory
Defining Rhetoric / Characteristics of Rhetoric / Limiting Rhetoric / Influences and Rhetoric / A Brief History of Rhetorical Theory / The Academic Study of Rhetoric in the United States / Outline of the Book / Summarizing Rhetorical Theory

Part II: IMPORTANT RHETORICAL FUNCTIONS

2. Rhetoric as Persuasion
Characteristics of Classical Rhetoric / The Major Theorists / Conceptions of Rhetoric / The Five Canons of Rhetoric / Summarizing Classical Rhetoric

3. Style, Delivery, and Rhetorical Theory
The Second Sophistic / Christianization of Rhetoric / Rhetoric in the Middle Ages / Humanism and Rhetorical Education / Belletristic Movement / Elocutionary Movement / Summarizing Rhetorical Theory

4. Rhetoric, Science and Argumentation
The Epistemologists / Shaping a "New Rhetoric" / Rhetoric and Argumentation / Richard Whately / Rhetorical Approaches to Argumentation / The Layout of Arguments / Chaim Perelman's "New Rhetoric" / Summarizing Rhetorical Theory

Part III: LINGUISTIC REFLEXIVITY

5. Rhetoric and Meaning
The Cultural Milieu / Linguistic Reflexivity / Meaning / Avoiding Misunderstanding: General Semantics / The Mind, Self, and Society / Broadening Conceptions of Meaning / Rhetoric and Oppression / Weaver: Meaning and Values / Rhetoric as Epistemic / Summarizing Rhetorical Theory

6. Dramatism
The Nature of Rhetoric / Action and Motion / Identification / Framing Symbolic Experiences: The Pentad / Redemption from Guilt / Narrative / Symbolic Convergence Theory / Summarizing Dramatistic Theory

Part IV: RHETORIC, CULTURE, AND POWER

7. Critical Approaches to Rhetoric
Shifting Emphases in Rhetorical Theory / Cultural Influences / The Ideological Turn / Critical Approaches to Rhetorical Theory / Rhetoric and Marxism / Ideology, Power, and Hegemony / Ideographs / The Public Sphere / Critical Rhetoric / Summarizing Approaches to Power and Ideology

8. Gendered Rhetorical Theories
Defining Gender and Feminism / A Short History of Women's Movements / Classifying Gendered Rhetoric / The Public Rhetoric of Women / The Private Rhetoric of Women / Campbell and the Women's Liberation Movement / The Womanization of Rhetoric / Invitational Rhetoric / Feminine Style / Gender Diversity Perspective / Rhetoric and Oppression/Liberation / Summarizing Gendered Rhetorical Theories

9. Non-Western Rhetorical Theories
Culture-Centered Rhetorical Theory / Afrocentric Rhetorical Theories / Chinese Theories of Rhetoric / A Case Study of Native American Rhetoric / Summarizing Alternative Rhetorical Theories

Part V: FRAGMENTS OF RHETORIC

10. Rhetoric, Media, and Technology
New Forms of Communication Media / Marshall McLuhan / Rhetoric, Consciousness, and Culture / Electronic Eloquence / Semiotics / Visual Images and Rhetoric / Visual Arguments / Rhetorical Features of Hypertext / Summarizing Rhetorical Theory

11. Postmodern Approaches to Rhetoric
What Is Postmodernism? / The Postmodern and Rhetoric / Knowledge / Meaning / Identify/The Self / Reality / Politics / Rethinking Rhetoric in the Postmodern Age / Summarizing Postmodern Approaches to Rhetoric

12. Cultural Rhetorical Studies
Reviewing Rhetorical Theory / What Is Cultural Studies? / Relationship between Cultural Studies and Rhetorical Studies / Representation and Signification: The Basis of Cultural Studies / Identity, Ethnicity, Class, and Gender / Articulation / Audience Response / Textuality / Using Both Rhetorical and Cultural Studies / Summarizing Thoughts / Defining Rhetoric