A striking but insufficiently examined feature of the current revival of interest in rhetoric is its positioning primarily as a hermeneutic metadiscourse rather than as a substantive discourse practice. When one invokes metadiscourse to account for a discursive practice, what one hopes to achieve is minimally a “redescription” of the latter. Rhetoric has entered the orbit of general hermeneutics. This essay, divided into three parts, examines the cultural identity of rhetoric, the interpretive turn and rhetorical criticism, the politics of repression and recognition, the rhetoric of science as a discursive formation, communitarian and epistemic strategies, and the inventional strategy and humanist paradigm. The works of Michael Leff Allan G. Gross, John Angus Campbell, and Lawrence J. Prelli are critiqued.
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