Volume 5, Spring 2014
Welcome to the fifth volume of Relevant Rhetoric: A New Journal of Rhetorical Studies. Each submission is carefully peer reviewed by members of the Editorial Board. We received more submissions than ever for this issue. Thank you for your submissions and for your support. This volume includes a variety of interesting and relevant analyses. For submission information, please visit the relevant tab from the menu above. Enjoy the essays in Volume 5, just click on the title to read the article (it will open in a new window as a .pdf file).
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If you’re looking for previous volumes/articles, please visit the Archives tab above. The other tabs provide information about the journal’s philosophy, submissions for future volumes, and the editorial board.
Index of articles for Volume 5:
- Amber M. Chiang, “Sartorial Scrutiny of First Lady Fashion: Evaluation of Media Coverage Inequities Involving Female Figures in Politics”
–This study looks at disparate standards of media coverage of male and female political figures in an attempt to reveal gender bias in political media discourse. For the purposes of evaluation, media coverage inequities between two political cycles will be reviewed: the 2008 presidential campaign and the 2012 presidential campaign. The media coverage of current first lady Michelle Obama, former first lady and United States Secretary of State lady Hillary Clinton, Ann Romney, and Governor Sarah Palin will be evaluated for occurrences of fashion commentary as part of legitimate political discourse by mainstream news media outlets.
- Mark Meister, “The Corporate Rainmaker Persona“
–Corporate social responsibility literature focuses on economic benefits, stakeholder responses, and legitimacy. This project departs from those traditions and offers a framework for analyzing corporate claims rather than analyzing the outcomes. I present the Corporate Rainmaker Persona (CRP) in relation to Cicero’s republican rhetorical style and conclude that Cicero’s rhetoric is exemplified in corporate social responsibility claims. I discuss the relevance of the CRP and profile its characteristics by referencing 2013 corporate social responsibility reports from Cargill, Ford Motor Company, and IKEA. The implications of CRP discourse as analyzed and discussed include a growing corporate dependency that contributes to both the “death” of environmentalism and citizenship.
- Jeffrey Delbert and William L. Benoit, “Persuasive Attack in Music: A Rhetorical Analysis of ‘Fighting Trousers’ and ‘The Very Model of a Mad Attorney General’“
–This essay analyzes two diss songs, Professor Elemental’s “Fighting Trousers” and A. Barton Hinkle’s “Mad Attorney General.” Utilizing similar form and substance, these persuasive attacks effectively utilize multiple strategies for enhancing the offensiveness of their opponents’ alleged acts and increasing responsibility for their action s. Representing two different musical genres, these songs illustrate how artists direct their appeals both at the targets of their attack, as well as for the public. Both Professor Elemental’s and Hinkle’s songs repeat key ideas, forming motifs that run throughout a majority of diss songs in the music industry. Such songs are well received by the listening public, as they provide an excellent outlet to produce effective attacks on wide range of adversaries.
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