Rhetoric "Aristotle"

I'd like you to identify things that resonated with you in Aristotle's Rhetoric, and things that either seemed incorrect or confusing. In the final chapter of the text, ch. 19 of book 3 (your text ends at ch. 13 of book 3, but the introduction refers to this), Aristotle concludes with an asyndeton (which "is appropriate for the end of the discourse, since this is an epilogos, not a logos") he modeled from Lysias: "I have spoken; you have listened; you have [the facts]; you judge." So, judge. 

What do you think of the division of artistic proofs into the three well-known categories of logical, ethical, and pathetic proofs? Are these categories exhaustive, or is something missing? Is this distinction more or less significant than the division between enthymeme and example?


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Obviously the topoi/topics are useful if you are trying to write a speech. What use are they to modern rhetoricians attempting to critique or explain rhetorical speech?

Finally, though Aristotle has neither a theory of figuration nor even a general term for figures of speech, much of Book III is consumed with lexis, or style, and introduces several recognizable figures or tropes, including the metaphor, and then in chapters not included in your text, antithesis, asyndeton, energeia, and simile. Is style principally a matter of ornamentation, or is it something more? By ornamentation, I mean something like this: There are the ideas/arguments that a speaker is advancing, and then there's the way the speaker dresses those ideas up to sound pretty. By this view, figures of speech are basically just "mere rhetoric," style that is distinct from substance at a fundamental level. Do you agree with this view? If not, why not? It would be helpful to bring in an outside example or two to make your point.

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