Political Argumentation in the United States

Historical and contemporary studies. Selected essays by David Zarefsky

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In the United States, political argumentation occurs in institutionalized settings and the broader public forum, in efforts to resolve conflict and efforts to foster it, in settings with time limits and controversies that extend over centuries. From the ratification of the U.S. Constitution to the presidency of Barack Obama, this book contains twenty studies of U.S. political argumentation, grouped under four themes: early American political discourse, Abraham Lincoln’s political argumentation, argumentation about foreign policy, and public policy argumentation since the 1960s.<br />Deploying methods of rhetorical criticism, argument analysis and evaluation, the studies are rich in contextual grounding and critical perspective. They integrate the European emphasis on politics as an argumentative context with the U.S. tradition of public address studies.<br />Two essays have never before been published. The others are retrieved from journals and books published between 1979 and 2014. The introductory essay is new for this volume.

Subjects: Pragmatics; Communication Studies; Discourse studies; Historical linguistics

  • Affiliations: 1: Northwestern University

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