Words Like Loaded Pistols: The Power of Rhetoric from the Iron Age to the Information Age

Words Like Loaded Pistols: The Power of Rhetoric from the Iron Age to the Information Age - Sam Leith

Words Like Loaded Pistols: The Power of Rhetoric from the Iron Age to the Information Age


"An entertaining history of great oratory" (New Yorker) and a primer to rhetoric's key techniques

Rhetoric gives our words the power to inspire. But it's not just for politicians: it's all around us, whether you're buttering up a key client or persuading your children to eat their vegetables. You have been using rhetoric yourself, all your life. After all, you know what a rhetorical question is, don't you?

In Words Like Loaded Pistols, Sam Leith traces the art of argument from ancient Greece through the present day. He introduces verbal villains from Hitler to Donald Trump--and the three musketeers: ethos, pathos, and logos. He explains how rhetoric works in speeches from Cicero to Zelensky and pays tribute to the rhetorical brilliance of AC/DC's "Back in Black." Before you know it, you'll be confident in chiasmus and proud of your panegyrics--because rhetoric is useful, relevant, and crucial to understanding the world around us.

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"An entertaining history of great oratory" (New Yorker) and a primer to rhetoric's key techniques

Rhetoric gives our words the power to inspire. But it's not just for politicians: it's all around us, whether you're buttering up a key client or persuading your children to eat their vegetables. You have been using rhetoric yourself, all your life. After all, you know what a rhetorical question is, don't you?

In Words Like Loaded Pistols, Sam Leith traces the art of argument from ancient Greece through the present day. He introduces verbal villains from Hitler to Donald Trump--and the three musketeers: ethos, pathos, and logos. He explains how rhetoric works in speeches from Cicero to Zelensky and pays tribute to the rhetorical brilliance of AC/DC's "Back in Black." Before you know it, you'll be confident in chiasmus and proud of your panegyrics--because rhetoric is useful, relevant, and crucial to understanding the world around us.

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