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The Influence of Religion on Apologetic Rhetoric (Part 2)

In Apologetic rhetoric on September 11, 2009 at 9:57 pm

As I described in my earlier post on religion, religious principles provide the foundation for many of the terms and concepts that shape our understanding of apologetic exchanges. In addition, religion also impacts our understanding through the examples of apologetic rhetoric that are delivered by religious leaders. Those examples ultimately provide us with case studies that provide fruitful opportunities for applying our understanding of the norms and analytical lenses.

Over the last few decades, a number of academic articles have examined the apologetic rhetoric of religious leaders. For example, academic studies have analyzed the apologetic rhetoric of Martin Luther (Ryan, 1982), Pope John Paul II (Lazare, 2004; Marrus, 2008), Jerry Falwell (Brown, 1990), televangelist John Ankerberg (Armstrong, Hallmark, & Williamson, 2005), evangelical thinker Francis Schaeffer (Sullivan, 1998), Father James Tunstead Burthchaell (Blaney, 2001), and Jesus (Blaney & Benoit, 1997).

In addition, Miller (2002) devoted an entire book to analyzing the apologia of religious figures, including the Apostle Paul, Jimmy Swaggart, and others. He concluded that apologia theory constitutes a useful lens for analyzing the rhetoric of faith and religion.

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