The Rhetorical Turn to Otherness: Otherwise than Humanism


  • Ronald C Arnett Duquesne University
  • Janie Harden Fritz Duquesne University
  • Annette M Holba Plymouth State University


Radical and Moderate Enlightenment, Individualism, Otherness, Rhetorical Turn


While offering a public welcome of communicative participation, a communicative dark side of the moderate Enlightenment project emerged. Moderate Enlightenmentrsquo;s corollary companion to wresting power from a limited few is the staggering sense of confidence in the universal ground of assurance that is ldquo;bad faithrdquo; mdash;we fib to ourselves that we can stand above history and affect the future. Absolute conviction of universal access to truth propels through methodological confidence, undergirding the era of ldquo;the rationalrdquo; pursuit of truth, transporting the individual into an ethereal delusionmdash;that one can stand above the historical moment of engagement and cast judgment. This essay calls into question the common assumption that communication begins with the individual. We offer a critique of this assumption in accordance with radical enlightenment scholarship, calling forth a return to Otherness that renders the construct of individual secondary to that which is /

Author Biographies

Ronald C Arnett, Duquesne University

Dr. Ronald C. Arnett is Chair and Professor of Communication amp; Rhetorical Studiesnbsp;at Duquesne University.

Janie Harden Fritz, Duquesne University

Dr. Janie Harden Fritz is Associate Professor in the Communication amp; Rhetorical Studies Department at Duquesne University.

Annette M Holba, Plymouth State University

Dr. Annette Holba is Assistant Professor in the Communication and Media Studies Department at Plymouth State University.nbsp;




How to Cite

Arnett, R. C., Fritz, J. H., & Holba, A. M. (2007). The Rhetorical Turn to Otherness: Otherwise than Humanism. Cosmos and History: The Journal of Natural and Social Philosophy, 3(1), 115–133. Retrieved from