Figuratively Speaking (Paperback)
Although rhetoric is a term often associated with lies, this book takes a polemical look at rhetoric as a purveyor of truth. Its purpose is to focus on one aspect of rhetoric, figurative speech, and to demonstrate how the treatment of figures of speech provides a common denominator among western cultures from Cicero to the present. The central idea is that, in the western tradition, figurative speech - using language to do more than name - provides the fundamental way for language to articulate concerns central to each cultural moment. In this study, Sarah Spence identifies the embedded tropes for four periods in Western culture: Roman antiquity, the High Middle Ages, the Age of Montaigne, and our present, post-9/11 moment. In so doing, she reasserts the fundamental importance of rhetoric, the art of speaking well.