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Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasion

Our master’s elective course Rhetoric: The Art of Persuasion introduces students to the classical rhetorical tradition, which for centuries has played a crucial part in the training of politicians, public servants, and businesspeople.  

The course is divided into three modules:

  • The first module presents classical rhetorical theory, focusing on the seminal contributions of Aristotle, Cicero, and similarly influential thinkers.
  • In the second module, students analyze history’s most famous and consequential speeches, dealing with events from the colonization of the Americas and the Protestant Reformation to today’s debates over climate change and globalization.
  • The third module trains students to communicate persuasively, helping them to apply previously acquired insights in the development of their own speeches and texts. This module features several guest lecturers from prominent speech writers and editorial writers, who help students develop in these areas.

The course is offered during the fall semester.