Rhetoric, Literature, and Science

I’ve been thinking about this in terms of teaching a course. So while I’m surfing the net, I am going to note some interesting things I’ve found.

A syllabus for a seminar in literature and science

Selzer, Jack (ed). Understanding Scientific Prose. Madison: U of Wisconsin P, 1993. Thirteen critical studies, by separate hands, of a single scientific paper (Stephen Jay Gould & Richard Lewontin, “The Spandrels of San Marco and the Panglossian Paradigm: a Critique of the Adaptationist Programme”). Illustrates a number of approaches to critical study of “the rhetoric of science.”
from a rhetorical analysis syllabus

MIT’s open source syllabus which includes:

We will start with discussions about the nature of science and rhetoric. Then, we will turn our attention to texts written by scientists and use rhetorical theory to analyze those texts. We will look at the professional scientific research articles and other genres of scientific writing. Finally, we’ll investigate the way that rhetoric plays a role in the everyday life of scientists. Throughout the class, we will wrestle with questions, such as:

How is science rhetorical?
What can rhetorical analysis tell us about the ways that scientists use persuasion?
How does rhetorical analysis not help us understand science?

Here are the assignments for the course above and here are the readings.

Found “Strategies for Teaching the Rhetoric of Written English for Science and Technology” but while it’s on JSTOR it’s not on our JSTOR.

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