the sense of theoretical considerations, and speaking in the sense of λογίζεσθαι, of “deliberating” (discussed in Book 6, Chapters 1–2 of the Nicomachean Ethics).
§14. The Basic Determination of Rhetoric and λόγος Itself as πίστις
How, from Aristotle himself, can we get the idea that speaking-being was the basic phenomenon of Greek being-there and in what way it was? We are in a favorable situation since we possess a Rhetoric of Aristotle’s, which surveys the phenomena that are assigned to speaking. Here, it must be noted that rhetoric, as a reflection on speaking, is older than the Aristotelian Rhetoric. In Aristotle’s works, there is also handed down to us the rhetoric ad Alexandrum. It does not come from Aristotle. The most likely supposition is that it is p-Aristotelian, and it is attributed to Anaximenes by Spengel.21 Genuine reflection on speaking is traced back to two Sicilian orators, Teisias and Korax. Aristotle was the first to carry out such a reflection. That is no accident, but is grounded in the fact that Aristotle has at his disposal the right concrete view and the cultivated conceptuality for λέγειν itself, and for all phenomena that come to language therewith. The question is: In what way is λέγειν the basic determination of being-there itself in the concrete mode of its being in its everydayness? We will take up a few characteristic chapters of the Rhetoric, and thus inquire back as to what is shown, on this basis, regarding being-there itself insofar as it does not explicitly reside in discourse. For these ways of discourse, which are expounded there, are only determinate possibilities that are already traced out in the everydayness of being-there.
a) The Basic Definition of Rhetoric as the Possibility of Seeing What at Each Moment Speaks for a Matter
What does rhetoric mean, generally speaking? In what sense does rhetoric have to with λέγειν? Aristotle defines rhetoric in Book 1, Chapter 2 as a δύναμις.22 This definition is asserted despite the fact that Aristotle more often designates it as τέχνη. This designation is ungenuine, while δύναμις is the genuine definition. “Ῥητορική is the possibility of seeing what is given at the moment; what speaks for a matter that is the topic of discourse, the possibility of seeing at each moment what can speak for a matter.”23 A δύναμις: I already said that the
21. Cf. Anaximenis Ars rhetorica: quae vulgo fertur Aristotelis ad Alexandrum. Recensuit et illustravit L. Spengel. Turici et Vitoduri 1844; L. Spengel, Die rhetorica (des Anaximenes) ad Alexandrum kein mach werk der spätesten zeit. In: Philologus 18 (1862), pp. 604–646.
22. Rhet. Α 2, 1355 b 25.
23. Rhet. Α 2, 1355 b 25 sq.: ἔστω δὴ ῥητορικὴ δύναμις περὶ ἕκαστον τοῦ θεωρῆσαι το ἐνδεχόμενον πιθανόν.