Explaining pentadic criticism essay

University of Alabama in Huntsville Abstract Kenneth Burke's pentad has been widely applied by rhetorical critics, though its ontological status has not been recognized. This essay argues that Burke conceives of the pentad as a universal heuristic of motives which derives from the very conception of human action. It demonstrates how the terms of the pentad may be exploited by rhetors and analyzed by rhetorical critics, explaining how the grammar of motives underlies the rhetoric of motives. Introduction No rhetorical concept in Kenneth Burke's formidable corpus is used more frequently by rhetorical critics and yet misunderstood more widely than the pentad and pentadic ratios.

Explaining pentadic criticism essay

A Pentadic Analysis of Celebrity Testimony in Congressional Hearings | KB Journal

Strine IV, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania Abstract The existing literature on celebrity testimony in Congress suggests that celebrities are nothing more than pawns of committees who use these witnesses to publicize their hearings.

Our use of Pentadic analysis, which takes the perspective of the witnesses rather than the perspective of the committee, reveals a much different view of celebrities and their purposes for testifying.

We argue that the scene-act ratio dominates the rhetoric of celebrity witnesses: Celebrities portray their testimony as giving voice to the voiceless act and as motivated by significant societal ills scene. They commonly use emotional appeals agency toward the self-professed end of improving the lives of Explaining pentadic criticism essay less fortunate purpose and downplay their own celebrity status agent.

For better or worse, the American people pay deference to celebrities, and celebrities often capitalize on their status to draw attention to issues important to them. For instance, actor Michael J. Other entertainers have used their celebrity status to draw attention to stem cell research Christopher ReeveAIDS Elton Johndiabetes Mary Tyler Mooremusic piracy Lars Ulrichfreedom of religion Isaac Hayesand other medical, social, legal and political issues.

Celebrities are clearly aware of their latent political power and are willing to use it to advance various agendas. Likewise, legislators often use celebrities to draw attention to specific issues and legislation by inviting celebrities to testify before Congressional committees.

Strine points out that despite the large number of celebrity witnesses to appear as experts, their role in the legislative process has been largely ignored by political scientists. Communication scholars have also largely ignored this phenomenon—indeed, committee hearings, with the exception of Supreme Court hearings, have been almost totally neglected by rhetorical critics.

Recent communication studies of Congressional communication have focused on floor speeches given during confirmation debates Bates, ; Darr, and the Supreme Court nomination process Darr, ; Parry-Giles,but to our knowledge no study has yet looked directly at the rhetoric of celebrity witnesses.

Third, we apply the pentad to a sample of celebrity opening statements.

This essay will proceed by explaining relevant aspects of Kenneth Burke's Pentadic Analysis of the Statue of Liberty Essay - Pentadic Analysis of the Statue of Liberty The Statue of Liberty is one of the most well know symbols of the United States, across the world. Sonya K. Rhetorical Criticism: Exploration and Practice. 2nd ed. The “New Criticism,” so designated as to indicate a break with traditional methods, was a product of the American university in the s and 40s. “New Criticism” stressed close reading of the text itself, much like the French pedagogical precept “explication du texte.”. Feminism Criticism Michael Estes Professor Wallace English 17 July Feminist Criticism Literary criticism is an analysis, interpretation, or evaluation of any literary work that can be applied to novels, poetry, essays, and various other forms of literature.

Our pentadic analysis suggests that celebrity testimony functions as persuasion designed to win public and lawmaker support for legislation on the basis of personalized, emotional appeals: Celebrities, Congress and Committees The existing literature on celebrity testimony in congressional committees, sparse as it may be, characterizes celebrities as the pawns of committees: Committees and committee members use celebrities to draw media attention to issues and hearings in order to gain strategic leverage in the legislative process.

Hearings, these authors argue, are political maneuvers as much as they are information-gathering exercises. Strategic moves—including witness selection—are made by committees and their members in order to further or oppose particular policies rather than to gather the information needed to craft quality legislation.

So scholars tend to look at committee hearings as only partly informational if at all —their information-gathering potential is overshadowed by the strategic considerations of committee members. Thus celebrities enter the strategic situation in terms of their potential to garner attention for legislation and issues: Celebrities draw attention to hearings when they testify, and are usually invited specifically for that purpose.

And according to Leyden and Vincentcommittees take great care to select witnesses that will have maximum impact on the hearings, including the generation of media coverage and public attention.

Explaining pentadic criticism essay

But this attention does not always facilitate the passage of legislation or guarantee enlightened debate. So in terms of publicizing an issue or the work of a committee, celebrities attract media attention but may do little in terms of providing information to the committee that alters the legislation being considered.

This literature suggests that celebrities are simple pawns of committees who use them to further their own political goals.

A Burkean approach to this phenomenon, however, encourages a different view of celebrity testimony. What motivations are apparent or are attributed in celebrity testimony?

How do celebrities characterize their own motives or the motives of others? How does celebrity rhetoric portray the activity of celebrities and the purposes of hearings? It therefore makes sense to investigate the questions posed above using pentadic analysis What characterizes the rhetoric of celebrity testimony?

How do celebrities characterize hearings? How do they characterize their own involvement in the legislative process? Motive and terminology are related, and dramatism is concerned with this connection.

The pentad is the centerpiece of such investigations. Burke says that these terms, or some variant of them, will always figure into any statement of motives, and we can explore how a rhetor attributes motives by looking at how he or she uses the five terms.

Act is central—as dramatism is a theory of symbolic action—and refers to how a person describes what was done or what happened. Scene refers to the setting of the act. Agent, of course, is the person or entity that committed the act, and agency refers to how the act was committed means, method, etc.Start studying Rhetorical Criticism Midterm.

Learn vocabulary, terms, and more with flashcards, games, and other study tools. Pentadic criticism is a form of criticism particular to speaking about artefacts. As concerns actions, intentions and attitudes required to influence action, and is interpreted through the text or language by the critic (Burke, ).

Use Burke's Pentad to interpret human events, stories, and movies. In A Grammar of Motives, philosopher and critic Kenneth Burke presents a model for analyzing written and spoken language to better understand and even predict human behavior. His model, the pentad, can be used to understand or.

Explaining Pentadic Criticism Pentadic criticism is a form of criticism particular to speaking about artefacts. As concerns actions, intentions and attitudes required to influence action, and is interpreted through the text or language by the critic (Burke, ). Christopher R. Darr, Indiana University Kokomo Harry C.

Strine IV, Bloomsburg University of Pennsylvania. Abstract. The existing literature on celebrity testimony in Congress suggests that celebrities are nothing more than pawns of committees who use these witnesses to publicize their hearings.

Pentadic criticism is a process in which a rhetor analyzes the rhetorical action of a situation (Bannon, ). It is also termed dramatic criticism due to the rhetors use of the analogy of theatre as a way to analyze human emotion and feeling (Foss, ).