Aristotle Ideals and Rhetoric Ideas

Silhouette of a man and woman going through distress while having a dispute.

Within three of the first four chapters’ in Thank You for Arguing, Jay Heinrichs articulates a number of terms and strategies that are liked within rhetoric. Some history of rhetoric is included and its influences, which can include just about anything. Specifically including how it helped create the first Democrats. With this long history and the very meaning of rhetoric being the art of persuasion or manipulation, Heinrichs looks back at some of Aristotle’s beliefs about these persuasions and ideas. Aristotle’s three traits of leadership: virtue, disinterest, and practical wisdom. There is also Aristotle’s three most powerful tools of persuasion, that being, argument by character, argument by emotion, and argument by character. There is a branch with these tools, from specific words defining these three tools, those being logos, pathos, and ethos. From there, there are tactics within these that are explained by Heinrichs. Throughout all this Heinrichs uses first-hand experiences to make it easier and relatable for the reader to understand. A quote that stood out within the chapters, was “you succeed in an argument when you persuade your audience. You win a fight when you dominate the enemy.” The quote does a great job of simplifying a simple thing that everyone has had relevance to. We’ve all been in fights that the other person might assume they’re arguing but in reality, they’re just yelling incoherently. Situations like that are what shows the job that Heinrichs did, being able to relate these beliefs from Aristotle, years and years old relevant to us now.

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