About me
Why Rhetoric?

I believe that Rhetoric is a verbal martial art concerned with the manipulation of the way members of an audience perceive their worlds.       

Like other martial arts rhetoric is ultimately a peaceful discipline. Empowering people and spreading their ability to defend themselves, test positions critically, and interact more efficiently, leads to less unproductive conflict.   

A society with many competent fighters will see less random brawls, because people who know how to fight do not need to prove themselves and the bullies who formerly could abuse their powers are now kept in check by responsible observers.   

Teaching rhetorical skills works in a similar manner by creating more critical citizens who have the ability speak up. Those critizens test opposing positions, judge their merits, and engage in a discussion if they feel the need. As rhetoricians we will sometimes train a person with who’s position we fiercely disagree – which is just fine as long as we can make sure that they have an equally well equipped opponent who defends the ‘right’ position.   

I see my main tasks as a rhetorician in attentively observing verbal conflicts, analyzing the structures of its underlying reasoning (Argumentation Theory), learning from the most experienced rhetorical grand masters about human persuasion (Classical Rhetoric) and developing tools for the effective teaching and training of rhetorical skills (Rhetorical Training).       

Short Bio: 

I have studied classical rhetoric and philosophy at the Universities of Tübingen and Barcelona. In 2003 I received my M.A. with highest honors. 

During my undergraduate time I also founded one of Germany’s first debating clubs, won a number of regional and national competitions and went on to write the first German debating textbook and train younger debaters, among them later German champions.   

In 2008 I was awarded a Dr. phil. degree summa cum laude based on my work on modern stasis theory. I have since worked as an Academic employee, Postdoc and Lecturer at the University of Tübingen and Northeastern University.   

My research concerns questions in the intersection of Argumentation Theory, Classical Rhetoric and Rhetorical Training. I am currently most interested in the felicity conditions of argumentation and the systematic weak points of reasoning (Argumentation Schemes and Critical Questions). 

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