Thursday, July 30, 2015

Umberto Eco on Using Rhetorical Figures

Now, we either use rhetorical figures effectively, or we

do not use them at all. If we use them it is because we pre-

sume our reader is capable of catching them, and because we

believe that we will appear more incisive and convincing. In

this case, we should not be ashamed of them, and we should

not explain them. If we think that our reader is an idiot, we

should not use rhetorical figures, but if we use them and

feel the need to explain them, we are essentially calling the

reader an idiot. In turn, he will take revenge by calling

the author an idiot.

From “How to Write a Thesis (here, 5.1)


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