Dialogical Rhetoric

An Essay on Truth and Normativity After Postmodernism

  • Wouter H. Slob

Part of the Argumentation Library book series (ARGA, volume 7)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-ix
  2. Wouter H. Slob
    Pages 1-4
  3. Wouter H. Slob
    Pages 5-32
  4. Wouter H. Slob
    Pages 67-99
  5. Wouter H. Slob
    Pages 101-134
  6. Wouter H. Slob
    Pages 135-168
  7. Wouter H. Slob
    Pages 169-179
  8. Back Matter
    Pages 181-224

About this book


Contemporary developments in philosophy have declared truth as such troublesome, and not merely gaining access to it. In a systematic survey this study investigates what is at stake when truth is given up. A historical overview shows how the current problem of truth came about, and suggests ways to overcome rather than to repair the problem.
A key issue resulting from the loss of truth is the lack of normativity. Truth provided an alternative understanding of normativity. Elaborating on the `dialectical shift' in logic, a dialogico-rhetorical understanding of normativity is presented. Rather than requiring truth, agreement, or rationality, dialogico-rhetorical normativity is the result of a balance of particular standards. This type of normativity is shaped within discussions - by advancing and accepting arguments - and is not located in sets of predetermined rules. The result is a `small' but strong form of normativity.
If this understanding of normativity is viable, one of the central problems of contemporary philosophy, the problem of incommensurability, can be seen in a different light. As a result, truth reappears again. Surviving the postmodern criticisms, it is a matter of accountability rather than of description.


Argument dialectic dialogue logic postmodernism rhetoric

Authors and affiliations

  • Wouter H. Slob
    • 1
  1. 1.Rijksuniversiteit GroningenNetherlands

Bibliographic information

  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2002
  • Publisher Name Springer, Dordrecht
  • eBook Packages Springer Book Archive
  • Print ISBN 978-1-4020-0909-9
  • Online ISBN 978-94-010-0476-3
  • Series Print ISSN 1566-7650
  • Buy this book on publisher's site