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ERIC Number: EJ1064706
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Jul
Pages: 14
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 47
ISSN: ISSN-0039-3746
Burke's Pentad as a Guide for Symbol-Using Citizens
Rountree, Clarke; Rountree, John
Studies in Philosophy and Education, v34 n4 p349-362 Jul 2015
Ever since the rhetorical turn in education, education scholars have recognized the importance of rhetoric in constructing and mediating human society. They have turned to rhetorical theory to come to terms with this rhetorically mediated reality and to engage students as critical citizens within it. Much of this work draws on rhetorical theorist Kenneth Burke, but much of Burke's work remains unexplored in this area. We argue that his theories can be part of a user's guide to educate students about rhetoric's function in society, to educate them about the opportunities and pitfalls that rhetoric brings. In this essay, we offer his dramatistic pentad as part of this larger user's guide. The pentad identifies the logical elements of action and provides a model that explains the "grammar of motives". It also provides a method for analyzing statements of motives, which rhetorical critics have long used to describe and explain strategic constructions of motives. Although the pentad is relatively easy to teach and to understand, its application to particular discourses can reveal complex relationships among the elements of action, laying bare their operation within the grammar of motives. We claim that the pentad offers lessons for students to engage with important societal issues, lessons about the limitations of any one construction of motives and how to overcome those limitations.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A