Talking Democracy: Historical Perspectives on Rhetoric and Democracy

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Overview

In their efforts to uncover the principles of a robust conception of democracy, theorists of deliberative democracy place a premium on the role of political expression - public speech and reasoned debate - as the key to democratic processes. They also frequently hark back to historical antecedents (as in the Habermasian invocation of the "public sphere" of eighteenth-century bourgeois society and the Arendtian valorization of the classical Athenian polis) in their quest to establish that deliberative procedures are more than "merely theoretical" and instead have a practical application. But for all this emphasis on the discursive and historical dimensions of democracy, these theorists have generally neglected the rich resources available in the history of rhetorical theory and practice. It is the purpose of Talking Democracy to resurrect this history and show how attention to rhetoric can help lead to a better understanding of both the strengths and limitations of current theories of deliberative democracy.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780271024578
  • Publisher: Penn State University Press
  • Publication date: 9/28/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 344
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.03 (d)

Meet the Author

Benedetto Fontana is Assistant Professor of Political Science at Baruch College of the City University of New York.

Cary J. Nederman is Professor of Political Science and Director of Graduate Studies at Texas A&M University.

Gary Remer is Associate Professor of Political Science at Tulane University.

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Table of Contents

Contents

Acknowledgments

Introduction: Deliberative Democracy and the Rhetorical Turn

Benedetto Fontana, Cary J. Nederman, and Gary Remer

1. Rhetoric and the Roots of Democratic Politics

Benedetto Fontana

2. Democratic Deliberation and the Historian’s Trade: The Case of Thucydides

Arlene W. Saxonhouse

3. Deliberation versus Decision: Platonism in Contemporary Democratic Theory

Gary Shiffman

4. Rhetorical Democracy

Russell Bentley

5. Cicero and the Ethics of Deliberative Rhetoric

Gary Remer

6. Disarming, Simple, and Sweet: Augustine’s Republican Rhetoric

John von Heyking

7. The Road to Heaven Is Paved with Pious Deceptions: Medieval Speech Ethics and Deliberative Democracy

Cary J. Nederman and Tsae Lan Lee Dow

8. Deliberative Democracy and the Public Sphere: Answer or Anachronism?

Thomas Murphy

9. Auditory Democracy: Separation of Powers and the Locations of Listening

John Uhr

10. Reading J. S. Mill’s The Subjection of Women as a Text of Deliberative Rhetoric

Nadia Urbinati

11. Criteria of Rationality for Evaluating Democratic Public Rhetoric

Douglas Walton

Contributors

Index

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