It’s that need that stresses me out. What do you do when you feel strongly about a topic or a figure that few people seem to be talking about? What if you identify with them? If you’ve met them? Respect them? I know I can only do so much in a seminar paper, but given that I am arguing for her consideration and recognition within the vast field of “contemporary rhetoric,” the pressure I feel to make the most compelling argument is high. I’ve got to bring it. Maybe it’s just me. Maybe I’m too passionate. I don’t know. I just know I feel an extra responsibility with this paper.
And here’s where the gluttony comes in. My other course for the semester is Ancient Rhetoric. I looked forward to this class, welcoming the chance to read the ancient texts. It’s been tough though. I’ve struggled with some of these texts. After speaking with my professor, I came up with a potential idea for a paper, and after I spent all night Wednesday night researching it, I’ve decided to research Aeschines and Rhodian rhetoric.
Why would I pick a topic that no one has heard of? Why wouldn’t I just write a paper about Augustine, or Quintillian? I asked myself that as I woke up at 4 am to finish the proposal. Why Tamika? Why do you keep picking these types of projects?
Well, in this case, I found Rich Enos’s Article on Rhodian rhetoric to be one of the most compelling pieces I’ve read so far. My problem is that there are no records about Rhodian rhetoric. Even though there are a few scant references to it, Rhodian rhetoric was overshadowed by Athenian rhetoric. I do know that Aeschines, the sacred orator, opened a school at Rhodes, and I may be able to find information about his life, but other than that I’ve got to look at the one figure that seemed to speak the most about Rhodian rhetoric; Cicero. Isn’t fate cruel?. But, because I think it Rhodian rhetoric might have some kind of influence on our concept of Cultural Rhetoric, I am interested in it enough to try.
When I look at the types of projects I try to undertake, I wonder if my colleagues are as ambitious. Are you? Cause if it’s just me, it will be a long November.
~I have spoken~