Histories make men wise; poets, witty; the mathematics, subtle; natural philosophy, deep; moral, grave; logic and rhetoric, able to contend.
Why Learn Rhetoric?
Rhetoric is the art of writing and speaking well. Rhetoric teaches us how to be persuasive and how to compose successful arguments. In an age in which we are bombarded with an increasing amount of words, words, words, rhetoric can guide us as we cut through the clutter of informational noise to get our point across to others. We are more engaged in communication than any other generation before while we are less prepared to process or refute that communication than any generation before. Why does the message from one presidential candidate resonate while another falls flat? Why do certain images or memes or songs go viral while others disappear without a trace? The rhetoric used by public figures actively shapes the our daily conversations. Learning to decode the messages thrown at us daily is essential if we want to participate in shaping that conversation. Rhetoric teaches the essential skills required in higher education and in life. Learning to think logically, to analyze arguments for flaws, to build a good case on any topic under discussion, and to deliver well-prepared speeches are skills that will give students confidence in any situation.
Learn Rhetoric at The Lukeion Project
Because of the unique nature of our focus on the ancient world here at The Lukeion Project, students will engage with classical texts at the same time as contemporary sources. The class will cover the ancient writings while applying them to today’s forms of communication. Our live meetings give plenty of opportunity to practice public speaking skills and receive instant feedback. We use high-quality software, Adobe Connect and Canvas LMS, which allow students to work together in groups synchronously online.
Students should be able to comfortably read around 30 pages per week and have strong grammar skills. Students should be reading and writing at the high school level. They should also have an interest in current affairs or be willing to develop one. Above all, they must be willing to prepare and give speeches in the classroom. 4-5 short analysis or argumentative papers will be assigned. There will be a short quiz each week, but the bulk of the grade will come from the speeches and the papers.
Students will require a microphone.
Classical Rhetoric for the Modern Student 4th edition. Edward P.J. Corbett and Robert J. Connors 978-0195115420 (It’s an older book so please look to buy used.)
Learners must take notes during the live session and while reading assigned passages. Learners should keep an organized notebook and recopy class notes after each session.
Lukeion Rhetoric Students will:
1. Complete weekly reading assignments
2. Take online quizzes
3. Submit short papers as assigned
5. Prepare and deliver speeches as assigned
4. Attend the live session once a week, and participate by asking great questions and offering opinions and answers when asked.
Class meets Autumn semester only, Tuesdays at 4 PM ET.
R. Baty, instructor
Lewis had developed a trademark style, slow enough for note taking, loud enough to rouse the dullest listener, straightforward, abundantly furnished with quotations, and lavish in wit.”
― Philip Zaleski, The Fellowship: The Literary Lives of the Inklings: J.R.R. Tolkien, C.S. Lewis, Owen Barfield, Charles Williams