History, Theory, and Criticism of Rhetoric

The program of rhetoric at the University of Pittsburgh has enjoyed considerable prominence since the 1920s. Since then it has produced influential scholarship in the theory, the history and the criticism of rhetorical discourse.

Today’s program encourages opening of new areas of study rather than settling into established territories. Informed by the demands of tradition and innovation, the program regards rhetoric as an orientation to the world and a situated practice. As such it promotes a rhetorical understanding of other disciplines and welcomes their contributions to it.

The Department has a long tradition of excellence in the study of rhetorical theory and practice from antiquity to the present day. Courses include rhetorical theory, classical rhetoric, rhetorical criticism, rhetoric and philosophy, critical theory, contemporary rhetoric, and visual rhetoric. Many students also draw from course work in media and cultural studies.

Others take their already strong background in rhetoric to work in other fields such as Bioethics; Latin American Studies; Russian and Eastern European Studies; Classics; Cultural Studies; Philosophy; History and Philosophy of Science; Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies; and Public and International Affairs.

History, Theory & Criticism of Rhetoric [PDF]

Marie Odile Hobeika, Recent Doctoral Candidate - discusses History, Theory & Criticism of Rhetoric

Dr. Caitlin Bruce, Assistant Professor - discusses History, Theory & Criticism of Rhetoric


Charles Athanasopoulos
Georgia Bedford, PhD
Daniel Beresheim
Caitlin Bruce, PhD
Rachel Clancy
David L. Marshall, PhD
Calum Matheson, PhD
Gordon R. Mitchell, PhD
Kelly O'Donnell
Lester C. Olson, PhD
Kory Riemensperger