This year’s RhetCanada conference theme asks participants to explore how rhetoric, so commonly associated with our present social and political divisions, might also be used to bridge them. We live in an increasingly polarized world, and rhetoric is a word often associated with deepening divisions, whether it is “anti-immigrant rhetoric,” “populist rhetoric,” or simply “the rhetoric of hate.” But framing rhetoric solely as a tool of division neglects rhetoric’s essential role in bridging divides and forging or reinforcing community.
Rhetoric provides strategies to constructively discuss, accommodate, or transcend differences, whether they are personal, social, or political. How then has rhetorical discourse served to negotiate difference, foster reconciliation, and forestall violence, and what role might rhetoric play in remedying the current climate of polarization?
Bruce Dadey, University of Waterloo | Andrew McGillivray, University of Winnipeg | Benoît Sans, Université libre de Bruxelles (GRAL)
For more information, contact the association directly. Please note that conference registration fees are separate from the association's membership fees.