A call for papers for a panel at the 2009 meeting of the International Society for the History of Rhetoric, to be held at McGill University in Montreal, Canada (22-26 July 2009).
With the appearance in 2002 of Martin Heidegger’s SS1924 lectures as Grundbegriffe der Aristotelischen Philosophie together with the scholarly essays in Heidegger and Rhetoric edited by Daniel M. Gross and Ansgar Kemmann in 2005, historians of rhetoric have a major new site of investigation. The previously unpublished lectures reveal that Aristotle’s Rhetoric was a crucial resource for Heidegger as the project that in 1927 became Being and Time took shape. The centrality of the Rhetoric for one of the most influential philosophical projects of the twentieth century constitutes a new opportunity to think through the transformation of classical rhetoric in modernity. Moreover, Heidegger’s painstaking gloss of Aristotle was only one of a host of ways in which German intellectuals in the interwar period were engaged in what we might broadly term “rhetorical inquiry.” In this context, the projects of, for example, Raoul Haussmann and Walter Benjamin with their extremely close attention to evolving media ecologies constitute a renovation of rhetorical initiatives. This panel proposes to draw together work from scholars investigating modes of rhetorical inquiry in Weimar Germany. Its goal is to explore a wide range of related phenomena in interwar Germany that include but are not limited to: creative receptions of classical rhetorical texts, investigations of new media and their consequences, the origins of communications theory, the resurgence of public polemic, and the reformulation of political theories in light of new rhetorical parameters. In particular, it is hoped that the strikingly diverse range of intellectual and cultural projects that characterized the Weimar Republic will be mirrored by a wide range of disciplinary approaches by the panelists.
If interested in participating in this panel, please forward a 350-word proposal to David Marshall by May 8 2008.
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