In this chapter we will address the relationship between truth and deliberation in Aristotle from the perspective of Rhetoric. In particular, we will bring out the idea that rhetoric, far from being the discipline that ‘says goodbye to truth’—as Plato claimed—has to do with a specific kind of truth of human deliberation, the rhetorical truth, which corresponds to the Aristotelian notion of eikos (‘plausible’ or ‘probable’), whose specific characteristic is that it is by its very nature debatable and refutable. This is one of the reasons why deliberative processes always have an agonistic dimension. The other reason is the fact that - according to Aristotle—logos, in order to produce deliberation, must always involve the sphere of desire (orexis), and that different orexeis produce potential conflict. In the last section of the chapter, we will relate this inherently agonistic and conflictual dimension of deliberative processes in Aristotle’s framework to the thought of Gorgias, an author who is usually seen, rather, in opposition to Aristotle.

Rhetorical Truth: Aristotle (and Gorgias) on Deliberation and Agonism

Mauro Serra;
2023-01-01

Abstract

In this chapter we will address the relationship between truth and deliberation in Aristotle from the perspective of Rhetoric. In particular, we will bring out the idea that rhetoric, far from being the discipline that ‘says goodbye to truth’—as Plato claimed—has to do with a specific kind of truth of human deliberation, the rhetorical truth, which corresponds to the Aristotelian notion of eikos (‘plausible’ or ‘probable’), whose specific characteristic is that it is by its very nature debatable and refutable. This is one of the reasons why deliberative processes always have an agonistic dimension. The other reason is the fact that - according to Aristotle—logos, in order to produce deliberation, must always involve the sphere of desire (orexis), and that different orexeis produce potential conflict. In the last section of the chapter, we will relate this inherently agonistic and conflictual dimension of deliberative processes in Aristotle’s framework to the thought of Gorgias, an author who is usually seen, rather, in opposition to Aristotle.
2023
978-3-031-45484-4
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11386/4854559
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