Knowing the elements of rhetoric will help you speak eloquently and persuasively. At the most basic level, expression is defined as “communication” (either spoken or written). The goal of this approach is to engage the audience and change their perspective based on what you say.

One of the most common uses of rhetoric that we see is in politics. Election candidates try to attract people’s opinions and influence their feelings and values to increase their votes by using the principles of expression (both spoken and written).

Due to the manipulations in the use of expression, many consider it fake and far from moral values. Although in many cases, honesty is lost in the use of the expression technique, this does not reduce the importance of the expression technique. Expression is the choice of appropriate language options that will have the greatest impact. The speaker or the author of the presented text is responsible for the correctness of the content and the purpose that lies in its content.

History of expression

Probably the most influential pioneer in presenting the art of rhetoric was the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle, who defined it as “the ability to see the available means of persuasion (in any context).” This definition goes back to the 4th century BC. Cicero and Quintin, two famous Roman teachers of rhetoric, often relied on elements derived from Aristotle’s precepts in their work. In the last few centuries, the definition of “art of expression” has changed and includes almost any situation in which people exchange ideas. Because each of us deals with a unique set of life circumstances, no two people see the world the same. Therefore, rhetoric has become a method not only of persuasion but also a language to create mutual understanding and facilitate consensus.

Five principles of expression from Aristotle’s point of view

1. Logic (Logos)

Logic originally referred to how a speech was organized and what was in it, but now it is more about the content and structural elements of a text.

2. Ethos

Credibility refers to the personality of the speaker or writer. To how they draw themselves through words.

3. Pathos

Emotion is an element of language that is intended to play with the audience’s emotional sensibilities and is designed to use the audience’s attitudes to stimulate agreement or encourage action.

4. Telos

Telos refers to a specific goal that a speaker or writer hopes to achieve; Even if the goals and attitude of the speaker are very different from the goals of his audience.

5. Setting (Kairos)

“Setting” deals with the time and place in which a speech is given and how this setting may affect the outcome of the speech.

Elements of expression

In what situations is the expression technique used? A love letter, a prosecutor’s statement, and an ad introducing something important that you probably can’t live without are all examples of situations involving rhetoric. Although they may differ in content and purpose, they all share five basic principles:

  • Text means actual communication, whether written or spoken
  • A writer or speaker is a person who makes a special connection
  • An audience, who is the recipient of a communication
  • Purpose(s), which are the various reasons for writers, speakers, and audiences to communicate
  • Settings are the time, place, and environment that surround a particular relationship

Each of these elements has an impact on the outcome of the situation. If a speech is poorly written, it may be impossible to convince the audience of its credibility or value, or if the writer lacks credibility or passion, the result may be the same. On the other hand, even the most eloquent speakers cannot guide stubborn audiences who avoid having their opinions challenged. Finally, we come to timing, which is of great importance. Time, place, and mood can greatly affect the final result.

The role of text in expression

While the most common definition for text is a written document; When it comes to technical situations, a text can include any type of communication that a person makes. If you look at communication in terms of a road trip, the text is the vehicle that takes you to your destination; Depending on the driving conditions and whether you have enough fuel or not.

Three basic factors have the greatest influence on the nature of any text: the medium in which it is delivered, the tools used to create it, and the tools necessary to decipher it:

  • Media

Expressive texts can be formed in any type of media that people use to communicate.

A text can be a handwritten poem, a typed letter, or a personal computer dating profile. The text can include works in audio, video, speech, verbal, non-verbal, graphic, visual, and tactile fields. Text can be a magazine ad, a PowerPoint presentation, a comic strip, a movie, a painting, a sculpture, a podcast, or even the latest Facebook post, a Twitter tweet, or a Pinterest pin.

  • Writer’s Toolkit

The tools needed to write any type of text affect its structure and content. From very important anatomical tools that humans use to produce speech (lips, mouth, teeth, tongue, etc.) to the latest technologies. The tools we choose to create our communication can influence its success or failure.

  • Communicating with the audience

Just as a writer or speaker needs to create a tool, the audience needs to be able to receive and understand information, be it reading, seeing, hearing, or other forms of sensory input. These tools can be eyes or ears or more complex tools such as an electron microscope. In addition to physical tools, the audience often needs conceptual or intellectual tools to fully understand the meaning of the text.

2. The role of the writer or speaker in the art of expression

A writer or speaker is a person who creates text to communicate. Each writer is influenced by his background. Factors such as age, gender, geographic location, ethnicity, culture, religion, socioeconomic status, political opinions, parental pressure, peer conflict, education, and personal experience create these hypotheses that writers use to see the world, as well as other things. they are using.

3. The role of the audience in expression

The audience is the recipient of a communication. The same factors that affect the writer and the speaker will also affect the audience. Whether the audience is one person or a crowd in a stadium.

4. The role of purpose in expression

The purpose of writers and speakers in communication is generally to inform, educate, and persuade. The audience’s purpose includes being informed, entertained, or inspired by the speaker or writer. Like the goal, the attitude of the speaker and the audience can have a direct impact on the outcome of any rhetorical situation.

5. The role of settings in expression

Every rhetorical situation happens in a specific time and place. Language is directly influenced by history and assumptions imposed on it by culture.

Also, the specific location in which the writer or speaker engages their audience affects how communication is made and received. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s “I Have a Dream” speech, delivered on August 28, 1963, is considered by many to be one of the most memorable American speeches of the 20th century, but it lacks setting. Intimate settings, where information is exchanged, can be the setting for dynamic communication. In some contexts, the term “community” refers to a specific group that is not limited to a geographic neighborhood, but includes interests and concerns.

Conversation, which often refers to a conversation between a limited number of people, takes on a much broader meaning and refers to a collective conversation that includes understandings, belief systems, or assumptions held by society.

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