« AnteriorContinuar »
Eden To 8 84.205
HARVARD COLLEGE LIBRARY
GIFT OF THE
AUG 9 1934
A. S. BARNES & CO,
In presenting to the public a new text-book on Rhetoric, the author asks attention to these features as characteristic:
(1.) It is kept in the foreground throughout, that the fundamental law of rhetoric is adaptation ; that the form of discourse, like the fashion of clothing, has no intrinsic beauty, but is or is not artistic as it does or does not produce the effect designed, at the time and under the circumstances.
(2.) That the student may look on rhetoric as an art, not like trigonometry which he may use, but like arithmetic which he must use, its most important laws are developed in the practical treatment of Conversation and Letter-Writing. The boy who does not care to be taught speech-making and verse-writing may be glad of help to feel at ease among strangers, and to write a business letter.
To this is added instruction in Narration and Description. These are forms of composition in which the essential element is not literary taste but personal experience. Any man may be called upon to tell or to write for the newspaper what he has done or seen, and
every man should be able to do it well.
Because Conversation, Letter-Writing, Narration, and
Description are of immediate interest to every one, they are the essential portion of the subject, and for scholars who do not care for more, this part of the book, including a full treatment of Punctuation, is published in a separate volume, called “The Elements of Practical Rhetoric."
(3.) With the Essay begins what is properly literary work. One must converse, write letters, narrate, describe, ---and the only question is whether one shall do it well or ill. But one need not write for the magazines or deliver orations or publish poems, unless one has a taste that way. Hence this part of the subject has been kept distinct, and for those who so prefer it is published in a separate volume, called " A System of Advanced Rhetoric."
Especial pains has been taken in the treatment of Preparation and Invention. The principles laid down are familiar to practised writers, but are usually reached by experience instead of by instruction. It is believed that these chapters will do much for young authors to make the way easy and definite.
(4.) The mechanism of composition, instead of being scattered throughout the book, is gathered into Part I., serving as an introduction. The treatment differs from that usually found in so-called “Composition Books," in that it treats the sentence from a point of view purely rhetorical. Hence arrangement of words, phrases, and clauses is made prominent, the principles under this head being distinguished from the rest under the title of “ Observations.” These will be found to occupy more than half the space given, and their importance cannot be too strongly insisted upon.
For those who desire, Part I. is published by itself, in a volume called “Outlines of Sentence-Making."
(5.) Throughout the book there is a profusion of illus