The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America
legal rhetoric


Graphic Novel and Military / Legal Rhetoric: Chelsea Manning

Submitted by syntaxfactory on June 3, 2014 - 4:57am


Clark Stoeckley's graphic account from inside the Chelsea Manning trial is released today, marking its first anniversary. Below: Chelsea Manning's testimony on her treatment in prison. Content warning: state violence, discussion of suicide.


The Ethics of Anonymous Hacktivism

Submitted by Jim Aune on February 3, 2012 - 9:04am

The Anonymous collective hacked the website of A3P, a neo-Nazi group, and claims the information there reveals deep ties to the Ron Paul campaign. A few questions for discussion: 1) Does the information actually reveal reciprocal ties between the two groups, or are things more ambiguous? 2) Anonymous's actions are clearly illegal, but are they in any clear sense ethical? What are the boundaries between investigative journalism and this sort of document dump?


Is "Concealed Carry" a Rhetorical Problem

Submitted by syntaxfactory on November 2, 2011 - 8:32am

Wisconsin passed a Concealed Carry law this week. 400,000 visits to the permit website and 83,000 applications downloaded later, I guess it's a success.



Corpus Linguistics and Legal Rhetoric

Submitted by syntaxfactory on July 21, 2011 - 7:49am

From Language Log:

Corpus linguistics in a legal opinion
July 20, 2011 @ 5:49 am · Filed by Mark Liberman under Language and the law

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Gordon Smith, "A Landmark Opinion: Corpus Linguistics in the Courts", The Conglomerate 7/19/2011:


Marx as Forensic Orator

Submitted by Jim Aune on July 20, 2011 - 8:52pm

An interesting speech to the jury in Marx's trial in 1849. I'd never seen it before.


Jim's Intro to Legal Reasoning

Submitted by Jim Aune on July 13, 2011 - 10:45am

Attached to this post is a pdf file of a handout I use in my legal rhetoric/argumentation classes. I've been working on refining it over the years. Feel free to make use of it as you wish; suggestions for improvement are welcome.

intro to legal reasoning.pdf65.57 KB


LanguageLog on Justice Breyer reading J. L Austin

Submitted by syntaxfactory on July 7, 2011 - 10:51am


In a recent interview, Supreme Court Justice Breyer lists the five books that have influenced his thinking the most. Among them: J.L. Austin's How to Do Things with Words. Breyer says:


Brown v. EMA: The Pervasive and Acceptance of Violence

Submitted by Jeremiah Hickey on June 28, 2011 - 3:58pm

First of all, I would like to thank the members of the Blogora for providing me an opportunity to contribute on the recent First Amendment decisions by the Supreme Court. Since its inception, the Blogora has been one of the most important resources for my reading, research, and teaching. Though I am not the one of the most vocal contributors, I may be one of the most avid readers.


Debate for the Week: Incitement

Submitted by Jim Aune on April 17, 2011 - 9:42pm

Resolved: Bill O'Reilly and Fox News should be held civilly liable for the murder of Dr. George Tiller.


Douche Rhetorician of the Week

Submitted by Jim Aune on March 30, 2011 - 7:55pm

A new Blogora feature. This week: Clarence Thomas.