Constructing disparate rhetorics: Reflections on canon, representation, and culture.
AuthorElyazghi Ezzaher, Lahcen.
Committee ChairRaval, Suresh
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractIn this dissertation I propose a revisionary history of rhetoric that emphasizes the influence of Near Eastern cultures in the construction of Western rhetoric. I trace this influence from classical times through the Middle Ages, with particular reference to the Muslim commentaries on the Aristotelian tradition. In the eighteenth- and nineteenth- century period, I demonstrate how orientalist discourse marks a turning point in the relationship between East and West, with the West projecting itself culturally and politically on the Orient. In the modern period, I show how this intimate power relation between the two worlds takes a captivating form with the emergence of an English literary tradition produced by Middle Eastern writers who construct new subjectivities and audiences in the West. Drawing on post-structuralist theories, such as the social construction of discourse, deconstruction, and post-colonial criticism, I conclude that a history of rhetoric must reflect the irregularities, ruptures, and implications that characterize a rich contact zone between East and West.