Great Theorists in the Rhetoric of Political and Legal Theory – Great Theorists in Legal and Political Rhetoric
159A 001 | CCN: 31242
Great Theorists in Legal and Political Rhetoric
Instructor: Marianne Constable
Location: Dwinelle 215
Date / Time: Fr 2:00pm - 4:59pm
This course explores the development of one or two theorists on an important theme or issue, with close readings of major texts as well as attention to important commentators.
Who was Mikhail Bakhtin (b. 1895 Russia – d. 1975 Soviet Union)? What does he say about language? How do terms like “polyphony,” “dialogism,” and “heteroglossia” contribute to rhetorical analysis? How do Bakhtin’s approaches to literary texts relate to his accounts of social worlds? How might his work inform our understanding of the plurality of voices in political and legal sites and discourses?
In this advanced undergraduate seminar, we will read some of Bakhtin’s major works in conjunction with a range of supplementary material (including some secondary sources and criticism, Dostoyevsky’s Notes from Underground, and legal and political texts that Bakhtin would not have encountered). Students will not only become familiar with the thinking and writing of this “great theorist” of the 20th century, but will also engage dialogically with the work and with one another, as they develop more advanced reading, research and writing — and participation — skills.
Note: students who are enrolled and do not attend will be dropped in favor of students who do attend.