Rhetoric teaches you how to argue directly and indirectly, plainly and with flourish. It teaches you how to construct or deconstruct an argument. It teaches you control. Rhetoric will teach you to appreciate the human capacity for communication. Rhetoric gives you the skills to shape thoughts and feelings; it trains you to how to fight for the reality you want .
In order to grasp rhetoric as an everyday tool, we must believe that:
- rhetoric is a craft available to all people and found in all disciplines;
- acts of persuasion can be appraised and improved, but never perfected;
- efficacy trumps logic and grammar.
Note that the anchor lessons above are targeting a wide range of students in very different courses. Most anchor lessons will only be completely comprehensible (and accurate) in light of the classroom activity which accompanied it. Some definitions are tailored to the audience and the projects encountered in the course.