Dissertation/Thesis Abstract

A Simplified Analysis of Scapegoating Rhetoric in Political Speeches with Kenneth Burke's Pentad System
by Ripley, Joseph M., M.A., California State University, Long Beach, 2020, 64; 27833750
Abstract (Summary)

The purpose of this thesis is to examine concepts Kenneth Burke developed to find motives within formal political texts and to recognize the manipulation outlined in his concept of Scapegoating in political rhetoric. This examination of Scapegoating is predicated on both verbal and extra-verbal rhetoric produced by bodily impulse.

The method that lays the foundation for Burke’s concept of Scapegoating is the five-part Pentad based on drama: (1) Act, (2) Scene, (3) Agent, (4) Agency, and (5) Purpose. I argue that employing the Pentad as both a rhetorical strategy and a habit of the mind will improve our ability to conceptualize the motives of political actors. This strategy both simplifies and focuses our capacity to critique political speeches so that we may make better judgments when contributing time, money, and votes to politicians and political parties.

Indexing (document details)
Advisor: Williams, Mark
Commitee: Griswold, William Gary, Smith, Jennifer K.
School: California State University, Long Beach
Department: English
School Location: United States -- California
Source: MAI 82/3(E), Masters Abstracts International
Source Type: DISSERTATION
Subjects: Rhetoric, Political science
Keywords: Scapegoating, Political speeches, Burke, Kenneth, Pentad
Publication Number: 27833750
ISBN: 9798664789683
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