Location

University of Windsor

Document Type

Paper

Start Date

3-6-2009 9:00 AM

End Date

6-6-2009 5:00 PM

Abstract

The art of “safely” criticizing the powerful through indirect argument was a well-established concept among ancient rhetoricians. It is not difficult to see the usefulness of such indirection in cultures where free speech is limited. What use, however, do these arguments have in a democracy? In exploring an answer to this question, I consider Montaigne’s “Des Cannibales” (1595) and Emerson’s “Montaigne, or, the Skeptic” (1850).

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Jun 3rd, 9:00 AM Jun 6th, 5:00 PM

Indirection in Montaigne’s “Des Cannibales” and Emerson’s “Montaigne; or the Skeptic”

University of Windsor

The art of “safely” criticizing the powerful through indirect argument was a well-established concept among ancient rhetoricians. It is not difficult to see the usefulness of such indirection in cultures where free speech is limited. What use, however, do these arguments have in a democracy? In exploring an answer to this question, I consider Montaigne’s “Des Cannibales” (1595) and Emerson’s “Montaigne, or, the Skeptic” (1850).