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Figaro rips the innards out of things people say and reveals the rhetorical tricks and pratfalls. For terms and definitions, click here.
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    Where Should You Study Rhetoric?

    We often get asked to name the best places to study rhetoric. Here’s an exchange from Ask Figaro. Rhetoric profs, feel free to weigh in. And we should add York College of Pennsylvania as a great rhetoric school.  It hosted Figaro a few years ago. We also loved a recent visit to historic Hamden-Sydney College, which requires rhetoric of every student.

    Dear Figaro,
    Great site! I love the posts. I’d like to get better at rhetoric/debate/writing. I’ve started both books Thank you for Arguing and Word Hero. Do you have any suggestions on college courses or further higher level education? Thanks!

    Dear Josh,
    Thanks for the kind words. Your best bet for rhetoric at college is at state universities such as Iowa State and Berkeley. Rhetoric education continues to grow at the public colleges, while it lags sadly behind in the elite private colleges. Go online and see what courses the schools offer. You may see courses and programs labeled “rhetoric” that actually have little to do with classical rhetoric. If the program doesn’t offer courses with Aristotle, Cicero and Quintilian, don’t apply. They’re not the sum total of a rhetoric education, but you can’t have an education in rhetoric without these foundational thinkers. 

    Oh, and avoid the Ivy League, which banished rhetoric many years ago and has yet to rediscover it. Does it seem strange that the most elite liberal arts schools fail to teach one of the original liberal arts? Does it seem weird that rhetoric, the art of leadership, remains missing even while Americans are questioning the expense and relevance of a liberal arts degree? It sure does to me.

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    Reader Comments (3)

    May I also suggest you find a local high school speech and debate league. We're always looking for judges, and there's no better place to see it practiced (often spectacularly, often poorly--as with all things).
    May 3, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterDan
    I found your blog after reading your article in Bloomberg Businessweek. Great to see you moving Aristotle back up to where he should be!

    I teach rhetoric as part of persuasive communications on the MBA programs at IESE Business School. I keep it simple and practical... but a lot of participants get hooked. I'll add your blog to my reading lists ;-)

    12 rhetorical tips I give my class: http://www.conorneill.com/2009/08/12-tips-for-public-speaking.html
    May 14, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterConor Neill
    It's actually Hampden-Sydney but most people pronounce it with a silent p. Yeah yeah...silent pee. :)

    My husband was graduated from H-SC. Reading Word Hero now and loving it. So do my Twitter followers and six-word story readers at smithmag.net

    Enjoying your blog as well, found it after reading your book.
    June 21, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterJC

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