Karen S. Feldman

11Marxism and the Frankfurt School: Rhetoric as Critique

Abstract: This article examines rhetorical motifs and strategies in Marxism and in the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory. Marx is presented as a brilliant rhetorician who made full use of the toolbox of rhetoric. The Frankfurt School included thinkers who were strictly devoted to argumentation (Pollock, Neumann, Fromm, Elias) as well as literary thinkers (Benjamin, Adorno). Such tropes as synecdoche, antithesis, and syncrisis, among others, were used very frequently in the context of dialectics, critique of ideology, and in the attempt to reveal the catastrophic nature of present-day society. Insofar as rhetoric also produces specific effects on the level of emotions ...

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