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5. Politische Rhetorik in Renaissance und Reformation

Haruo Nitta

Abstract

Politics is realized for the most part as political communication through language. In the Early Modern Age in Germany, political settings demanded eloquence, especially at court and in the Reformation movement. At court, people learned and used the appropriate rhetorical forms for panegyric, epistle etc. In the Reformation movement, people adapted the Bible, catechisms, and religious pamphlets for their own rhetorical needs. Texts often used in political settings include sermons, catechisms, open letters, and religious dramas. Figures and tropes often used in political texts include parallelism, period, metaphor, euphemism, rhetorical question, and paralipsis. Differences in social position between Catholics and Protestants as well as confessional practices influenced language use. Catholics preferred distancing devices such as irony, paralipsis, and euphemism. Protestants tended to express themselves more directly, composing compact and clear sentences aimed at simple folk.

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