Chapter

The Rhetorical Functions of Borrowing and the Uses of Disciplinary Prestige

in Borrowed Knowledge

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print December 2008 | ISBN: 9780226429786
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226429809 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226429809.003.0003
The Rhetorical Functions of Borrowing and the Uses of Disciplinary Prestige

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This chapter first sketches a rhetorical perspective, especially as it relates to scientific inquiry, and treats one major source of conflict between rhetoric and philosophy: the question of normative evaluation. Next, it clarifies how the rhetorical functions of borrowing from chaos theory trade on the newness of this field and the disciplinary prestige of the natural sciences. It concludes with some reflections on the problems that can arise when researchers borrow from disciplines as prestigious as the natural sciences. Throughout, the concern is with the persuasive functions served by borrowed knowledge.

Keywords: rhetorical perspective; scientific inquiry; rhetoric; philosophy; normative evaluation; chaos theory; borrowed knowledge

Chapter.  10231 words. 

Subjects: Philosophy of Science

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