Essay about Islamic Rhetoric And Religious Rhetoric

1852 Words Dec 8th, 2016 8 Pages
Arab Islamic rhetoric is a field that, until recent years, has been largely unstudied. However, a recent surge in the interest in this particular kind of rhetoric has yielded much new information in regards to its history and change. One area of specific interest in Islamic rhetoric is its Arabic language equivalent. There are two words in Arabic used to refer to rhetoric: al-khataba and al-balagha. While both options refer to the same thing in the English language, they are used for completely different reasons in the Arabic language. Understanding the two Arabic words for rhetoric, al-khataba and al-balagha, as well as the art of rhetoric present within this culture, is vital to understanding Islamic rhetoric as a whole. Therefore, it is essential to both explore the birth of Arab Islamic rhetoric as its own field, examine how the two words have been used in Arabic culture, and identify the key forms and practices of rhetorical principles in order to truly learn about the history of Islamic rhetoric. The first word used for rhetoric in Arabic is al-khataba. This was, in general, the rhetoric of Islamic philosophers. One point of interest about this form of rhetoric is its close ties to Greek rhetoric. In fact, “The great names of medieval Muslim philosophy all left commentaries on Aristotle’s book on rhetoric, which was translated into Arabic at some point during the first centuries of the Islamic era” (qtd. in Halldén 20-21). Thus, this rhetoric was not solely tied to…

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