• Rhetorical Interpretation

    20 | Session D | CCN: 81230

    Instructor: Richard Grijalva

    Date / Time: MWF 10-1230P, 88 DWINELLE

    4 Units

    The term “interpretation” carries several connotations in ordinary usage: the practice of deciphering hidden or obscure meanings, disputed meanings and perspectives, conflicts of understanding regarding some shared object, differences of opinion, language, medium, and culture, statements of questionable veracity, and the role of social factors in producing meaning. With all these connotations circulating in our cultural field, what, then, is rhetorical interpretation? That is to say, what makes rhetorical interpretation distinct from other ways of interpreting? Also, how is interpretation a rhetorical function? In what ways can we say that interpretation is rhetorical?

    This course is an intensive introduction to the way that rhetorical devices such as tropes, figures, and performance generate meaning in various fields of endeavor. Taking the relationship between analysis, interpretation, and discourse as a guiding thread, the course will explore problems and questions regarding the practices, concepts, terminologies, and discourses developed at various points in the history of rhetorical theory. Our work together will combine a study of key theoretical texts (e.g., Gorgias, Plato, Aristotle, Sor Juana, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, Geertz, Foucault, among others) and the practical development of analytic and interpretive skills in writing and discussion.

    Required texts: Course reader available at Instant Copy and Laser Printing, University Ave.