“Speech is a powerful master” said Gorgias. We shape who we are and how we live by the ways we speak and express ourselves – publicly and privately. Since ancient Greece the theory and practice of “speaking well” has been at the heart of European culture and public life and of our ideals of free speech and human dignity. As communication cultures change, our rhetoric changes as well. This course provides a unique opportunity in the UK to study an exciting and rich field of intellectual and practical relevance and a unique preparation for a wide field of professional careers.
Full time and Part time
Full-time: Three Semesters over 12 months, Part-time: Three Semesters over 24 months
School of Journalism and Digital Communication
No Partner College
Seminars, lectures, self-study, tutorials, workshops, online learning activities
Assessment is by coursework and a dissertation (MA only)
Upper second class BA/BSc in a relevant discipline (e.g. Languages or other Humanities disciplines, Philosophy, Sociology, Psychology, Law, Politics, Media and Communication related disciplines)
The new MA in Rhetoric at UCLan is unique in the UK. It provides you with the opportunity to study the rich history and theory of the practice of speaking, or more broadly, communicating, well – and to master that practice yourself. For the rhetorical tradition, human expression and meaning are a unity of action, emotion and reason. Expression reflects the life we live, and it helps to sustain, change and improve it; Rhetorical ideas are at the heart of what it means to be human. Rhetoric has been at the centre of European culture since its beginning and is a fascinating and intellectually serious and challenging topic in its own right, as well as a unique preparation for a career in many fields of professional activity or in research and education. The ability to express your thoughts and motivations, reason convincingly, speak persuasively and deliberate with others constructively is crucial in politics, art, science and business – in all fields of public life. But also in the personal sphere it is in language that we shape who we are and how we live. Everywhere where language is used to investigate, express, influence, shape and contest identities and truths, to relate people to each other, to overcome, respect or indeed create differences and to create and disseminate knowledge and understanding, rhetoric is working.
In today’s society, communicative practice and competence is more important than ever before and changing faster than ever before. Understanding the rhetorical dimension and mastering it is enriching for anyone and significant to the world you live in. In the words of the Roman rhetoricians: “speaking well means living well”. Become human, study rhetoric!
The course consist of the following modules:
1. History and Theory of Rhetoric 1 (antiquity to 19th Century)
2. History and Theory of Rhetoric 2 (20th Century and contemporary developments)
3. Political Rhetoric
4. Rhetoric of Narrative and Image
5. Power in Talk
6. Research Seminar – Guided Research Topic
Links with academic societies across the world are being developed; conference participation by students is encouraged and supported
Progression routes (Tags)
If you are interested in applying for this course, our comprehensive How to Apply pages will guide you through the process. Here at UCLan, our aim is to encourage you to develop your potential and we offer a flexible approach to admissions, which reflects our commitment to all those who would benefit from our courses.