What is the discourse about? the mode determines the organization, arrangement, etc. Common modes of discourse include description, exposition, narration, and argumentation. Modes of discourse are dependent on aims and then used a means to achieve that aim.
Cicero's stasis ushered in modes that dealt with legal rhetoric. These include questions of:
- fact -- description
- definition -- classification
- quality -- evaluation
- action -- narration
The modes of discourse: Narration, Description, Evaluation, Classification, all of which are strategies that a writer uses to develop ideas for a specific aim in a specific kind of discourse. Do these modes of discourse account for rhetorical choices and composing processes? The issue of making choices is crucial in invention.
Discourse exists at the level of aims and modes; some aims include persuasion and exposition, and these can be attained through modes such as narration, description, classification, and evaluation. Aims affect the components of the comm triangle so that, for example, persuasion focuses on the decorder who aims to move to action
Aristotle would say that a successful argument uses certain strategies, such as, self=presentation as trustworthy; engage the emotions of the reader in a manner that supports the thesis and presents logical support. A successful essay would contain intro + thesis; refutation of opposing arguments; good reason that support the thesis; and a conclusion.
A mode is a way of viewing the subject as either static, dynamic, abstract, or concrete. Most discourse uses all four modes, however, one mode may be the dominating factor.
- Narration gives prominence to changes taking place in reality
- the description reports on the reality; the unique aspect of what makes a thing a thing...vivid depiction as is
- classification places things in groups, classes...the class to which a thing belongs
- evaluation is a summation that renders judgment
These modes of discourse also grow into the vocabulary of scholarship, with literary history (documenting change) narrative; literary criticism, evaluation; literary theory, classification; and literary analysis, descriptive.
Five Master Terms
Kenneth proposes "the five master terms as a generating principle" (50). Burke deals with motives and so a generating principle allows you to "anticipate" motives that may not be so readily apparent. The master terms are, of course, the components of his pentad: act, scene, agency, agent, purpose. These terms overlap in many respects, create ambiguities, but ultimately reveal motives, that can be evaluated through the ratios. These five terms can even be used to cover a number of philosophies (52). The terms work through a set of dialectical pairings, e.g. agent/scene (people-things); agent/purpose (means-ends).
Which of Kinneavy’s modes best describes each reading and why?
Miller's paper proposes an intellectual tradition for understanding what takes place in technical communication. According to Miller, there are a number of considerations to make; these are:
- kairos--the moment
"what discourses are about explains what is called modes of discourse" (128). He makes reference to issues of stasis, which is the genesis of discourse. When rhetoric starts as a discipline is when something is unknown--hence epistemic rhetoric. rhetoric is a way of knowing; you do rhetoric when you want to know about something. Stasis are heuristic for deciding what the point of adjudication is that needs to be investigated so as to come to new knowledge; discover a new truth, etc.
Stasis--when you have at least two forces compete with each other and come to a point when they create static; unmoving. Stasis theory attempts to find where those things come together. It is intended to be used in order, starting with questions of fact, then definition, then motive/quality.... and lastly forum. There has to be cognitive dissonance; something that violets our sense of what is real to prompt us to get rid of the dissonance...to impose order; to make sense of it
Fact: did Brutus kill Caesar?
Definition: Yes he killed Caesar , but was it murder?...this raises the question: what is murder, etc
Motive: It was murder, but he was justified because Caesar was a tyrant
Forum: time/place appropriate to resolve the issue? right person; evidence, etc.
Kinneavy: modes of discourse are ways of looking in on things so you can understand reality; it's a perspective from which you stand. The modes screate space for the genesis of discourse. Without the modes, rhetoric is impossible. They are ways of constructing reality
Communication needs a sender. receiver and content. When the needs of the sender are at the core, the discouse is expressive; the object is persuasion; the content is informational. In the centeer is a literary. When the sender needs to express, it is romantic; the receiver is affetive in a social constructive way. The truth is subject to the individual.
Kinneavy is interested in narrative as a window into reality. hence narrative is expressing changes over time. Topics that lend themselves to origins of things and how they have changed over time; shifts from one emphasis to another that may involve socio-economical issues..
Narrative modes ( chronological ways of organizing)
- narratives show causality; this happened because of...shows causalities in the narrative.
- narrative explains processes; it lets you theorize....define, explain, narrative imposes structure when theorizing a procedure
- in stasis theory, questions of facts are considered historical; past or future facts--> do this and you will create that
- the narrative mode is a way of becoming
- take the whole (which may be a social network) and break it into parts (interface, technology, users, lurkers, contributors, etc)
- A good descriptive mode has to parallel the concepts..for example, interface and lurkers are not at the same level of generality. There ought to be discreet parts that do not bleed into each other
Clemson--what is Clemson? -->university-->what are the specifications that any university has--> colleges (admission requirement, faculty, students,) lists have to be comprehensive; there has to be a parallelism [colleges is not on the same level as admission]-->demonstrate that all these things are contained in it
Syllogisms--The logic of the classificatory system is a syllogism. Any university has z, x, y, characteristics; Clemson has z, x, y. so Clemson is a university. You have to have a major premise; has to be inclusive;
Popular in teaching writing. Based on epistemologies of science--if you want to know something, if you can understand it as a particle, as a wave, as a fields, you can predict its future. You need to know a thing as a static object--the distinction between being and becoming. E.g when does water start? As a vapour? When does it stop being water? when it becomes ice? To know everything you need to know about a thing:
Particle--static (what a thing is [Static--break it into its parts; what makes up the composition of the thing? ( a whole-to-part analysis)
wave--dynamic (how the thing behaves all the time [historical,
field -- relation (how it relates to others in its field of influence [compare to others, reputation,
Something may be valid, but not necessarily true. If the major premise is negative, the conclusion must also be negative
Evaluation is exactly the same as classificatory with the one difference. when doing evaluation, you render judgment; you attach a value. You always have to classify positively because of the nature of a syllogism (any good social network has c. b.m; MySpace doesn't have c. b.m; MySpace is a bad social network. Everything else obtains (criteria, parallel, generalizations, etc)
Dilemma (di--two/lemma--horns on a bull) a dilemma is two horns on a bull coming at you. Both seem to be true but require a conclusive take. 1st chapter 1 horn of dilemma; 2nd chapter, second horn; 3rd chapter...? You can rid yourself of the dilemma by eliminating one horn. Or you can jump between the horns by introducing a third term that shows there is no dilemma because there is a wholly different perspective unexplored.
A compare and contrast question, e.g. Compare and contrast Burke's and Plato's theory of rhetoric is actually classificatory; classify the theory of rhetoric; the elements of theory of rhetoric. classify what Burke says; what Plato says
Deconstructing What's practical about technical writing? by Carolyn Miller. Additional Miller publications
She defines practical; defines what she means by an art (craft) --she says it's a science of doing something--the high sense of the practical because you can teach it to other people there are a set of procedures. As opposed to knack . there is an Aristotelian sens of techne as opposed to a Platonic sense (which he says is a knack; can't explain how so it's not an art). The low sense of the practical is when you can do but can't explain. A technician has a knack, but no theory. P16 The defense of tech writing in academe--why tech writing belongs in a university and not in a vocational school. She justifies it by explaining that it is used in professional practice...p17 in its eagerness to be useful, tech writing has set a basis ...without the high sense of practical--the art you cannot decide if the thing is being done well (which is theory). Theoria alone is not good; praxis alone is not good as it doesn't give you evaluative tools. She resolves it use techne as the middle term (p.22). Technology isn't just about practical so she introduces phronesis , which she defines as prudence. The Greek, professional judgment.
The Phaedrus evaluates speeches. Sets up a set of criteria. so a speech has to be
- technically correct,
- exhaust a subject and
- speak the truth. These are the criteria for good rhetoric.
p.142 Phaedrus does the speech, Socrates is overcome by the speech
2nd speech is wrong p.147 Phaedrus asks why the speech is dreadful. The speech sinned against love.
3rd criteria his third speech is a lie; not truthful. not a good speech
Then he gives his example of rhetoric, in which he speaks the truth, uses dialectic. So the sophistic rhetorics of Lysias are negatively evaluated against the rhetoric of Socrates, against criteria he sets up.
Hackos and Redish
Descriptive mode of discourse that breaks down the categories of task analysis...physical, social,