ERIC Number: ED151881
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Rhetorical Criticism of Psychotherapeutic Discourse.
Glaser, Susan R.
Rhetorical activity is fundamental to the process of psychotherapy. This paper discusses a study of the consistent use of rhetorical strategies in distinctly different forms of psychotherapy as an initial step in analyzing the effectiveness or failure of therapeutic situations. The data for this two-part study consisted of eleven hours of tape-recorded discourse between three therapists and their clients. For the first analysis, Arnold's nine rhetorical operations were used to examine the dialogue; the paper describes each of these rhetorical operations in detail. In the second analysis, six independent critics tested the reliability of the findings according to four variables: the extent of "ethos" appeals, the extent of logical appeals, the extent of tension release mechanisms, and the extent of stylistic devices. Each of the variables is discussed, and specific segments of therapeutic dialogue are presented to demonstrate how each concept functions as a rhetorical resource. The paper concludes that future research on psychotherapy as a rhetorical process may assist therapists in maximizing the occurrence and maintenance of therapeutic improvement. (MAI)
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Western Speech Communication Association (Phoenix, Arizona, November 1977); See related document CS502030