PSA Annual Conference 2014: Manchester

March 28, 2014 § Leave a comment

The Annual PSA Conference will be held in Manchester from 14-16 April 2014. The Rhetoric and Politics group has three very interesting panels. All will be held on the Monday. Here are the details (click on titles for full blurb and participants):


1. Theorising Rhetorical Practice: Monday, 14 April. Session 2, 1100-1230 Rolls Suite

2. Voices of the Left: Monday 14 April. Session 3, 1330-1500 Rolls Suite

3. Rhetoric and Interpretive Political Science: Monday 14 April. Session 5, 1530-1700, Syndicate A


We look forward to seeing you there.


Mary Beard – The Public Voice of Women

March 17, 2014 § Leave a comment

Professor Mary Beard’s lecture for the London Review of Books Winter Lecture Series 2014 is well worth a read/listen/viewing. It’s a great exploration of the link between rhetoric, gender and power – and it demonstrates the continued importance of classical thought (and prejudice) for how we think about and practice speech. You can find the lecture here:

Tony Benn, 1925-2014

March 15, 2014 § Leave a comment

With the recent death of Tony Benn, British politics has lost a marvellous and widely admired orator. Have a look at Prof Alan Finlayson’s comment on Benn’s rhetoric:

And keep an eye out for a post here soon detailing our panels at the upcoming PSA conference in Manchester. One of the panels will be on ‘Voices of the Left’.

PSA Conference 2014: CfP

October 1, 2013 § Leave a comment

It’s time to start to sending in proposals for Rhetoric panels at the PSA Annual Conference in Manchester 2014!

The deadline for submission of all proposals to the PSA is October 27, so please send me (j.martin plus @ plus You know what I mean) any ideas you might have for panels/papers before October 20, if you can. We already have one panel proposed and another being formulated. It would be good to see some more. The conference theme is ‘Rebels and Radicals’, which seems a good theme for the rhetorical imagination.

The conference web site (with all details for registration etc) can be found here:


Protagoras in the Guardian

September 10, 2013 § Leave a comment

Do have a look at the eminent wisdom offered by ‘Protagoras’ in the Guardian this week. Some wise advice for rhetoricians (and everyone else) there:

Here is the link to today’s post.

Rhetoric as Theory and Method in the Study of Politics

November 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

Date: 1 March 2013, UEA, Norwich

A one-day workshop open to postgraduate research students from the University of East Anglia and other universities

Researchers in politics often make use of political speeches, pamphlets, manifestos, policy documents and so on. But how exactly should we use these texts? This one-day workshop will explore the advantages of ‘rhetorical political analysis’, conceiving and analysing all of these as forms of instances of argument and persuasion. The morning session will include discussion of key concepts and terms in rhetorical theory and their relationship to related themes in political theory and analysis including language, discourse and ideology. The afternoon session will concentrate on the practical aspects of analysis with particular focus on recent speeches by David Cameron and Ed Miliband.

This event is organised by the School of Political, Social and International Studies at the University of East Anglia as part of the Consortium for the Humanities and the Arts Southeast England (CHASE). Tea, coffee and lunch will be provided.

Session Leaders
Prof. Alan Finlayson, PSI and Prof. James Martin (Goldsmiths)

See web site for further details and enrolment (click this line): enrol by 30 Jan 2013

Conference: Do Speeches Still Matter?

July 19, 2012 § Leave a comment

Bournemouth University Thursday/Friday 20-21 September 2012

Organised by the UK Speechwriters Guild and the European Speechwriters Network

For full details, tickets and programme, see the web site:



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