"Rhetorical Invention and Religious Inquiry" by Walter Jost

Rhetorical Invention and Religious Inquiry New Perspectives Walter Jost, Wendy Olmsted

Publication date:
11 Aug 2000
Yale University Press
432 pages: 235 x 156mm

This exceptional collection of writings offers for the first time a discussion among leading thinkers about the points at which rhetoric and religion illuminate and challenge each other. The contributors to the volume are eminent theorists and critics in rhetoric, theology, and religion, and they address a variety of problems and periods.

Together these writings shed light on religion as a human quest and rhetoric as the origin and sustainer of that quest. They show that when pursued with intelligence and sensitivity, rhetorical approaches to religion are capable of revitalizing both language and experience. Rhetorical figures, for example, constitute forms of language that say what cannot be said in any other way, and that move individuals toward religious truths that cannot be known in any other way. When firmly placed within religious, social, and literary history, the convergence of rhetoric and religion brings into focus crucial issues in several fields—including philosophy, psychology, history, and art—and interprets relations among self, language, and world that are central to both past and present cultures.

Walter Jost is associate professor of English at the University of Virginia. Wendy Olmsted is associate professor, Humanities Division, Committee on the Ancient Mediterranean World and the College, University of Chicago. Jost coedited, and both he and Olmsted contributed to, Rhetoric and Hermeneutics in Our Time, published by Yale University Press.

"A wonderful and timely work that will appeal to a wide variety of both specialist and non-specialist audiences."?Allen Scult, Drake University

?This is an exciting volume, offering an important overview of the principal issues and positions currently at stake in the encounter of rhetoric and religion.??Richard Harvey Brown, University of Maryland at College Park

?This volume stands on its own as a timely picture of where we are in the post-War rapprochement between rhetorical and religious studies. Anyone wanting a sense of either the broad methodological coherence of this rapprochement or is sometimes bewildering thematic complexity will find resource here. It will prove as helpful an introductory text for upper level academic work as it will an engaging resource to dip in and out of for interested scholars or engaged preachers.??Wes Avram, Anglican Theological Review

?The strengths of this book most certainly lie in the bridging of gaps between rhetoric and religion, Rhetorical Invention and Religious Inquiry makes connections and breaks down the false barrier between rhetoric and ways of coming to faith. In fact, this book revitalizes both rhetoric and rhetorical invention. In so doing, it provides us with answers to a difficult question indeed: how does rhetoric inform or undermine the movement of mind and heart to God???Joseph Wilferth, Christianity & Literature

?This volume is a well organized, interdisciplinary venture that brings together excellent essays by some of the finest scholars in their fields. I highly recommend it as introductory text to contemporary issues in rhetoric and hermeneutics.??James R. Beebe, Philosophy in Review

?The choice of essays make [this book] a rich conversation that scholars of hermeneutics, theology, philosophy, and rhetoric will find of interest.??Religious Studies Review