Dialogic Confession: Bonhoeffer's Rhetoric of Responsibility / Edition 3

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In this landmark volume of contemporary communication theory, Ronald C. Arnett applies the metaphor of dialogic confession-which enables historical moments to be addressed from a confessed standpoint and through a communicative lens-to the works of German theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer, who pointed to an era of postmodern difference with his notion of "a world come of age." Arnett's interpretations of Bonhoeffer's life and scholarship in contention with Nazi dominance offer implications for a dialogic confession that engages the complexity of postmodern narrative contention.

Dialogic Confession: Bonhoeffer's Rhetoric of Responsibility draws on philosophical hermeneutics to frame a communicative ethic centered on the pragmatic importance of confession in interpersonal discourse. As an example of a communicative ethic, dialogic confession provides the philosophical underpinnings necessary to consider Bonhoeffer as an author of this foretold moment. Uniting dialogue and rhetoric to establish an edifying ethics of communication in the context of modernity, Arnett points to dialogic confession as a responsive rhetoric of discernment that involves the interplay of persons, story, and historical moment.

Rooted in classical theory, the field of communication ethics is abstract and arguably outmoded. In Dialogic Confession: Bonhoeffer's Rhetoric of Responsibility, Arnett locates cross-cultural and comparative anchors that not only bring legitimacy and relevance to the field but also develop a conceptual framework that will advance and inspire future scholarship.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Arnett’s earlier work distinguished him as a premier scholar of the dialogic tradition and this sophisticated volume advances his intellectual leadership to the forefront."—Clifford Christians, from the Foreword
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780809326419
  • Publisher: Southern Illinois University Press
  • Publication date: 5/28/2005
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Edition number: 3
  • Pages: 256
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Ronald C. Arnett is a professor and chair of the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies at Duquesne University and past editor of the Journal of Communication and Religion. He is the author of more than one hundred articles on philosophy and communication, and the author, coauthor, or editor of seven books, including Dialogic Civility in a Cynical Age: Community, Hope, and Interpersonal Relationships; Dialogic Education: Conversations About Ideas and Between Persons; and Communication and Community: Implications of Martin Buber’s Dialogue, a winner of the Religious Speech Communication Association Book Award.

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Table of Contents

1 Confession : pragmatic communicative relevance 4
2 Communicative ground : from dictate to story guidance 26
3 Attentive response : silence, listening, and meeting 50
4 The person as story-formed 71
5 Story-centered trust : confession "between" persons 92
6 A fragile absolute : the faith story in the marketplace 114
7 A dialogic craftsman : hallowing the everyday 135
8 The practice of community : communicative habits of the heart 155
9 Communicative turning : acknowledgment 178
10 Meeting the other : communication ethics in a "world come of age" 200
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