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Essential Elements of a Workable Theory of Persuasion

The main tenet of a workable theory of persuasion is being able to convey important information. Its main concern is being in a position to influence the population through actions, memories, and feelings. Rhetoric theory faces the following forms: reflection, meditation, and contemplation. It also touches upon political, aesthetic, and scientific matters. For instance, in the ancient Greece rhetoric theory was in the form of narratives. Rhetoric persuasion can be used in irresolvable, imaginative, and scientifically uncertain theories. Hauser points out the elements of dogma: ethos, logos, and pathos. He bases his rhetorical reasoning on the opinion of how to build an argument that shows the key principle. Such principle may be addressing the needs carefully through the forces of nonviolence, insincerity, language management, and argumentation.


Situations are critical in the theory of persuasion. They are normally based on shared perceptions, static and stable products, and subjective and objective components. They are usually used to persuade one of the involved people. Therefore, changes in personal beliefs and attitudes are called for. There is also the aspect of rhetorical judgment. Hauser refers to personal and pubic insincere persons (2002, p. 56). They can also be oppositional or consensual. Contingent thinking in rhetoric persuasion is the ability specifically considered as irrelevant matter. Hauser terms rhetoric competence as not inclusive of active attempts to communicative, or open-minded critical listening (2002, p. 63). In the persuasive theory, invention means a process which creates something new or finds something effective and appropriate. "Sayables" are used primarily to describe a speaker who does any of the two: supports the speaker's persuasiveness or particular persuasiveness.

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While the stasis theory helps to stop an argument from occurring, the tests of ethics is applied. Inductive reasoning, on the other hand, is used to state a general point of view or remove emotion from an argument. Enthymeme refutes overview of an argument. However, it opposes the theory about motion, speech, writing, interaction, and passivity. Instead, it summarizes a complete definition as a means of persuasion in the form of a symbolic means to induce cooperation among people. Many philosophers who are in agreement with Hauser state that the function of primary rhetoric is to act on specifics, which are identified as tools of persuasion (2002, p. 124). It is seen as a mode of tactical action, which is then used to communicate both strategic and practical information. It is assumed that when the speaker works in the listeners' minds, he causes them to become expectant, and, thus, needs those structures. The commonly applied one is persuasive working, which provides good examples of how to use these structures correctly.

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Generally, good examples include correct use of rhetoric with the assistance of structure and order. Aristotle's argument details Toulmin's mode of response through the use of specific critique. For instance, associational clustering, inductive and deductive structuring are seen as either invalid or too difficult to be followed by most people (Hauser, 2002, p. 87). Hauser argues that rhetoric persuasion is an art, while Aristotle tries to show how people use argument (2002, p. 109). Hauser shows beauty, poignancy, and accuracy of facts in the use of language. Thus, it can be argued that in rhetoric persuasion there is the basis for informal and formal arguments, which are all valid. Rhetoric persuasion is believed to start with the identification and a definition of an existence of something. It is then used to solve a problem or to answer a question. When it is used correctly, there is a reaction to the message from the audience. A message that fits the question or argument is then enacted. Afterwards, it shows that the audience has responded to it, and, therefore, a solution has been found.

In essence, three elements are used for the correct order of sending or conveying an effective message. These three elements influence each other and are mutually interdependent. They include are purpose, thesis, and audience. In order for them to work, the speaker's goal should be tangible in a way that the outcome of his message is delivered or expected to be delivered to the right audience. Then the purpose becomes being able to enact the change of behavior. Sometimes the attitude change that is required, while at other times informing the audience is all that is needed.

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In rhetoric persuasion, propaganda is also a way of influencing the audience. This name has a negative connotation, but its initial use was not intended to be negative. Propaganda was intended to influence the audience through the rhetoric persuasion by omitting some selected facts in order to convince the audience to further the speaker's agenda. Propaganda was used in order to encourage a synthesis through the use of messages that convey or enact an emotional reaction from the audience to the message. Thus, it has been termed a commercial warfare or an ideology. Therefore, it can be argued that propaganda has a neutral or even positive influence.

The main pillar of a workable theory of persuasion is the ability to pass the message effectively to the audience. The message must be directed and received by someone so that the speaker's purpose can be manifested through the reaction to his message. Finally, the speaker should include own ideas and form a rhetoric strategy. These ideas may be in the form of a debate. They may also be expressed through advertisements. Forming of a persuasion theory is the bottom line. Cognition, concept, and object form a good rhetoric persuasion.


Hauser, G.A. (2002). Introduction to rhetorical theory. Long Grove, IL: Waveland.

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