Aristotle And Hugh Blair 's Interpretation Of Persuasion Essay

Aristotle And Hugh Blair 's Interpretation Of Persuasion Essay

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Even though sophistry is seen as an unethical use of persuasion that uses deceit to attain its goals, it is evident that sophisticated arguments can be made using honesty and power. Sophistry or at least the term, sophist, was not seen as a negative term around the fifth century B.C. because Sophists were seen as wise intellectuals during that era (Corlett, 1996). The Athenian Sophistry comes from the Greek term sophos which came about around seventh century B.C. and means wise or clever. The term sophist was seen throughout Greek literature in 490–420 B.C. and meant “teacher” (MacSuibhne, 2010). However, around 465 B.C., Corax took notice of sophists using persuasion to take advantage of others for their own personal gain. The sophists of that time appeared to be deceitful in the eyes of Corax (Genesis, 2016). In this essay, it will be proven that Aristotle and Hugh Blair’s interpretation of persuasion affected the content of their messages, the channels they chose to deliver their messages through, and how they addressed adversity.
Persuasive theorists, Aristotle and Hugh Blair, had two very different yet similar views on rhetoric and how to apply it. Around the 4th Century B.C., Aristotle developed rhetorical theory, which would be the foundation of education in Europe. According to Aristotle 's rhetorical theory, logic plays a key role in persuading people because it uses a common sense approach (Demırdöğen,2010). Persuading others to do the right thing was Aristotle’s way, and he also believed that while truth could persuade, he also felt that those that are attempting to persuade others should not persuade others to do the wrong thing (Arvanitis & Karampatzos, 2011). Around 1783, Hugh Blair, a Scottish Rhetor...


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...message alluring in the aesthetic sense, he carefully constructed his messages to make sure that the reader fell in love with the composition of it. Blair left his mark in history and was influential to the writing of both Edgar Allen Poe and Mark Twain (Dameron, 2000).
Indeed, while Sophistry may not have always had an unfavorable definition, many have used it for unethical reasons. Aristotle and Hugh Blair’s understanding of persuasion affected their communication behaviors. The way that Aristotle and Blair understood persuasion influenced the content of their messages, the channels that they used to deliver their messages, and the way that they responded to adversity when delivering their messages. Both persuasionists have been influential throughout history and have given invaluable tools to those that desire to gain influence through the use of persuasion.

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