Logology, Guilt, and the Rhetoric of Religious Discourse: A Burkean Analysis of Religious Language in Contemporary Politics

By David Greene.

Published by The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society

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In “The Rhetoric of Religion” Kenneth Burke developed the concept of “logology” as a way of studying how religious language works, “not from the standpoint of their truth or falsity as statements about the supernatural, but purely for the light they throw upon the forms of language.” Burke’s dramatistic theory of rhetoric as symbolic action, based on his concepts of guilt, terministic screens, and identification through consubstantiality help us to understand how religious language is functioning in the political sphere.

Keywords: Kenneth Burke, Logology, Terministic Screens, Religion in Politics, Symbolic Action, The Rhetoric of Hitler's Battle, Barack Obama on Jeremiah Wright, Rhetoric of Religion

The International Journal of Religion and Spirituality in Society, Volume 1, Issue 1, pp.97-106. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 493.348KB).

Dr. David Greene

Assistant Professor, Department of Professional Communications, Farmingdale State College of New York, Farmingdale, New York, USA