Oratory, Rhetoric, and Politics in the Republic

Author: Alexander, Michael C.
Title: Oratory, Rhetoric, and Politics in the Republic
Review/Collection: In : Dominik, William & Hall, Jon (ed.), A Companion to Roman Rhetoric, Oxford/Malden/Carlton, Blackwell Publishing Ltd, 2007, 528 p. [Dominik & Hall 2007]
Year edition: 2007
Pages: 98-108
Keywords: Éloquence - Eloquenza - Eloquence, Politique - Politica - Politics, Rhétorique - Retorica - Rhetorics
Description: Rhetoric, the sometimes controversial art of persuasive speaking, and the pathway to oratory, was taught through formal instruction and written manuals, and also by example through observation of orators and published speeches that were transcribed and circulated. This chapter will seek to clarify the connections between oratory and politics, and also between rhetoric and politics. Although it will argue that the political importance of one form of oratory has been somewhat exaggerated, it recognizes that oratory constituted an essential tool of Roman politics, and that rhetoric was contested precisely because it was the skill that made this tool available. [Author]
Author initials: Alexander 2007