Towards a Formulaic Poetics of Contemporary Public Rhetoric: A Politician’s Prosody

By Tom Clark.

Published by The Humanities Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

Building on a ‘formulaic poetics’ framework presented to previous ICH conferences (2006 and 2007), this paper assumes that we may treat public language as a species of poetic performance. It analyses the rhetoric of several recent politicians, asking how relevant it may be to apply concepts of prosody or verse form to this process. If the language of politics is versified in some sense, how does that in turn reflect on its grammatical and ideological potentialities?

Keywords: Rhetoric, Formulaic Poetics, Prosody, Politics, Public Relations

International Journal of the Humanities, Volume 6, Issue 6, pp.37-42. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 774.519KB).

Dr. Tom Clark

Lecturer, School of Communication, Culture, and Languages, Victoria University, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia

Tom Clark has worked in a range of fields, including political advisory roles and studies in medieval Germanic poetry. He completed his PhD in the Department of English at the University of Sydney, awarded in 2003, which comprised a study of irony in the Old English poem ‘Beowulf.’ He is currently developing a comparative international research project to examine improvised and semi-improvised public language in the fields of sport, politics, business, and satire.


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