Modern revolutions in ways of thinking have taken place, and they resemble in substantial ways the revolutions in thinking of the fourth century B.C. These revolutions occur with great pain and difficulty and have made a lot of people angry, including Plato to a limited extent in the ancient era, and literacy hounds such as Allan Bloom to a great extent in the present era.
The belief persists now that visual texts are inherently inferior to written texts, a belief that has gone through many permutations since the invention of the camera and that has resulted in discussions about the nature of "realism." The unexamined belief in the inferiority of visual texts continues to saturate the academy in the United States.
Many people now will routinely acknowledge the idea that film and video are "artistic" media. However, their own responses to these media often indicate that these newer symbol systems are not in fact taken as seriously as symbol systems such as print or painting or music. The most compelling evidence for this marginalization of newer discourse technologies lies in their integration in general education requirements. They are regarded as peripheral concerns, unrelated to the study of print texts. Aristotelianism," as it has been called derives from print culture. The grammar of film and the grammar of video have not been integrated into enough film.
Classical Rhetoric is a discipline that teaches man the rules and principles of fluent expression, knowing and doing good, master certain techniques and familiarizing himself with the good, the True and the Beautiful. It involves the study of fundamental principles of political philosophy, ethics and traditional psychology. It assists the learner to give a political speech and also learn elements of good character (Corbett, 1990)
Beginning at a young age with practice in imitating the writing of others, rhetoric study extends in later years into the specific study of persuasive expression. There is no better place to begin this latter kind of study than with Aristotle's Rhetoric. Aristotle taught that there were three elements of communication: the speaker, the audience, and the speech itself. In fact, his book is broken down into three parts, one on each of these elements of rhetoric. Aristotle adds the three kinds of persuasive speech: political speech, legal speech and ceremonial speech. In political speech, the audience is some body of decision-makers like a political assembly. Its subject is the future, and its object is to move the audience to take some course of action. The end of this kind of speech is suitability, which is a kind of good. Political rhetoric, therefore, is highly moral or ethical in character. (Atwill, 1998)
In a legal speech, the subject is the past, and the object is the determination of what has or has not in fact happened. A lawyer arguing a case in court would be an example of a legal speaker, although anyone who argues to an audience about past events would count as a legal speaker. The end of legal speech is the determination of the truth, making it very logical in nature. A ceremonial speaker would address the present and would concern himself with the present honor or dishonor of someone. He would engage in the praise or blame to achieve his object.
The person giving an eulogy and certain kinds of sermons would engage in this sort of rhetoric. Because of its ceremonial nature (which is why it is often referred to as the rhetoric of display), ceremonial rhetoric is