This study guide gives students a handy reference to the background knowledge of rhetorical terms demanded of them by critical and theoretical texts in the humanities.
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An important part of the vocabulary of cultural criticism and theory today is in the rhetorical terms we read and write, reason and refute by. These are the means by which we tell and receive the stories that explain the world. This book is divided into three sections, the first dealing with classical and traditional figures (such as simile, metaphor and metonomy), the second dealing with non-figures and near-tropes (like signs and symbols), the final section of the book devoted to new figures, and to rhetoric and tropology today. This last section familiarizes the reader with many new rhetorical terms employed in post-structural criticism and theory (terms like bricolage, differend and differance). Through the study of rhetoric "old and new" one learns how meaning is made. It is through that kind of understanding one gets to decide what to mean.
About the author
Christopher (Kit) Kelen is an Associate Professor at the University of Macau in south China, where he has taught Literature and Creative Writing for the last seven years. The most recent of Kelen's seven volumes of poetry, Eight Days in Lhasa was published by VAC in Chicago in 2006. A volume of Macao poems Dredging the Delta is forthcoming from Cinnamon Press in the U.K.
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