Graduate Program

  • CMA 7.112
  • 2504A Whitis Ave., Austin, TX 78712-0115
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Rhetoric and Language Studies

The Rhetoric and Language Studies area focuses on how human symbols affect social and political change. Although rhetoric has been a popular area of study since antiquity, the Department focuses on such contemporary matters as political campaigning, culture and communication, social movement rhetoric, ethics and persuasion, the nature of public argument, discourse and knowledge, the formation of language communities, cognitive linguistics, etc. These matters are treated in three distinct sub-areas: (1) Rhetorical Theory and Criticism, focusing on how public discourse is conceived and executed, with special attention to the analysis of persuasive and cultural texts; (2) Political Communication, examination of how political leaders and the mass media change public opinion and fashion legislative policy; and (3) Semiotic Studies offers training in the naturalistic study of human symbol systems and consideration of how linguistic and gestural behaviors affect everyday social interaction.

Rhetoric and Language Studies embraces a variety of research methodologies, including historiography, archival studies, textual criticism, conversation analysis, content analysis, etc. Interdisciplinary opportunities to study Rhetoric and Language also abound at U.T., including work with internationally famous scholars in the Departments of English, Linguistics, Anthropology, etc.

Rhetoric and Language Faculty

Dr. Barry Brummett                 Dr. Sharon Jarvis
Dr. Richard Cherwitz               Dr. Jurgen Streeck
Dr. Joshua Gunn                     Dr. Talia Stroud
Dr. Roderick Hart                    Dr. Scott Stroud                  

Rhetoric and Language Courses

Foundations of Rhetorical Theory Rhetoric and Popular Culture Rhetoric and Social Style
Burke and the Symbolic Form Contemporary Rhetorical Theory Basic Rhetorical Criticism
Rhetoric of Film Pragmatism and Rhetoric Major Figures:  Derrida & Lacan
Rhetoric and Psychoanalysis The Subject The Body in Communication
The Object
Media, Politics and Society
Politics, Media and the Individual
Campaign Communication Gesture Language, Mind and Culture
Intercultural Communication
Intercultural Communication
Language, Mind and Culture
Communication and Identity Conversation Analysis