Trim: 6¼ x 9½
978-1-4985-7236-1 • Hardback • October 2018 • $105.00 • (£81.00)
978-1-4985-7237-8 • eBook • October 2018 • $95.00 • (£73.00)
Christopher J. Oldenburg is associate professor of rhetoric in the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies at Illinois College.
Introduction: A Sick Church, Space, the Medicine of Mercy, and Conversion
Part 1: Seeing the Holy See Differently Through Papal and Pastoral Conversions: Photographic Applications
Chapter 1: Perspective by Papal Humility: Hierarchal Psychosis and Pope Francis’s
Chapter 2: “Outward Signs”: The Visual-Spatial Rhetoric of Pastoral Conversion, Religious Mimesis, and its Transgressions
Part 2: Rhetorical Works of Mercy Through Political and Spatial Conversions: American Applications
Chapter 3: Francis Before the Pharisees: Interventional/Intercessional Rhetoric, ‘Representative’ Anecdotes/Antidotes, and the Call for Political Conversion
Chapter 4: “Welcome the Stranger”: The Spatial Conversion of “Birthplace,” Religious Freedom, Immigration, and the Lec“turn” of Inter-contextual Synecdoche
Epilogue: The “Francis Affect”
About the Author
This is a tour de force for understanding papal rhetoric in general, and the discourse of Pope Francis in particular. It offers a nuanced account of Francis’ rhetorical techniques when addressing the Church, media, Americans, etc. As such, Oldenburg should be commended for undertaking this monumental, unique, and timely treatise.
— Joseph P. Zompetti, Illinois State University
The Rhetoric of Pope Francis: Critical Mercy and Conversion for the Twenty-First Century is a must have for scholars interested in religious communication and papal rhetoric. It brings to light many of the rhetorical changes Pope Francis has brought to the Catholic Church, while also highlighting the practical implications of these changes on a church devoted in word and deed to mercy. This treatment of a Pope who has made such an impact on the Catholic Church demonstrates why Pope Francis should garner the attention of rhetoricians and communication scholars in much the same way his predecessor, Pope John Paul II, did.
— Joseph M. Valenzano III, University of Dayton
Christopher J. Oldenburg deftly demonstrates the linguistic cunning and competence of the first pope selected for the new century. This book functions in part as apologia on behalf of an unconventional pope and in part as critical analysis of an institution in need of substantial reform. The book reads as a provocative appraisal in which Oldenburg honors the grand narrative of Christian thought while investigating the rhetorical practices of one of the most formidable global orators of our time.
— Daniel S. Brown Jr., Grove City College
Since his election in 2013, Pope Francis has proved himself a master rhetorician of both word and deed, image and gesture. Through careful and informed analysis, Christopher J. Oldenburg explains the rhetorical power behind Francis’s reinvention of the papacy. This book will likely become the standard starting place for future study of Francis’s persuasive style.
— Paul Lynch
Oldenburg offers a rhetorical analysis grounded in a sacramental semiotics of mercy, exploring how Pope Francis makes God’s grace visible in the world through material signs of space, nonverbal actions, and physical artifacts. Both scholarly and accessible, this study makes a refreshingly constructive contribution to religious communication scholarship in the Catholic intellectual tradition.
— Janie Fritz, Duquesne University
• Winner, Religious Communication Assocation Book of the Year Award (2019)