rhetoric

Rhetoric is speaking or writing that's intended to persuade. If your goal is to write editorial columns for "The New York Times," you should work on your rhetoric.

Rhetoric comes from the Greek meaning "speaker" and is used for the art of persuasive speaking or writing. When people listened eagerly to long speeches and studied them in school, rhetoric was generally used positively; now it is often a negative term, implying artfulness over real content. If someone gives a clever speech but doesn't really address the problem, you might say, "That's just a lot of rhetoric."

Definitions of rhetoric
1

n study of the technique and rules for using language effectively (especially in public speaking)

Type of:
literary study
the humanistic study of literature

n using language effectively to please or persuade

Type of:
expressive style, style
a way of expressing something (in language or art or music etc.) that is characteristic of a particular person or group of people or period

n high-flown style; excessive use of verbal ornamentation

Synonyms:
grandiloquence, grandiosity, magniloquence, ornateness
Types:
flourish
a display of ornamental speech or language
blah, bombast, claptrap, fustian, rant
pompous or pretentious talk or writing
Type of:
expressive style, style
a way of expressing something (in language or art or music etc.) that is characteristic of a particular person or group of people or period

n loud and confused and empty talk

“mere rhetoric
Synonyms:
empty talk, empty words, hot air, palaver
Type of:
bunk, hokum, meaninglessness, nonsense, nonsensicality
a message that seems to convey no meaning

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