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Rhetorical Theory and the Critique of National Identity Construction

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Abstract:

A striking feature of scholarship on national identity is the relative absence of rhetorical theory, or theory related to the persuasive dimensions of discourse, especially given the fact that rhetorical theorists have been concerned with the manufacturing of public opinion and collective identity for over two millennia. To address this absence, this article discusses how rhetorical theories dealing with narrative theory, the social construction of publics, rhetorical constraints, ideology critique, public memory, political history and post-national identity help both to illuminate and critique emergent patterns of national identification.

Keywords: Ideology; National Identity; Public Memory; Radical Democracy; Rhetorical Theory

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/14608940500201912

Publication date: September 1, 2005

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