|"Aristotle" by Francisco Hayez.|
Aristotle starts out defining different types of rhetoric and what they are for. Those guys really liked to get everything categorized very carefully, and while I rather appreciate that, they take it awfully far! For quite a while, he analyzes different feelings or actions--who feels them and why--such as happiness, pity, anger, enmity, and so on. That got pretty old, but then he moved on to much more interesting material about how to argue a court case. Nearly everything he said applied to judicial rhetoric, really, and he didn't say much about the other two categories.
I know this is the foundational rhetorical textbook, and that lots of people still recommend it. I don't really think it's useful for moderns as a book to teach rhetoric, though. Too much of it isn't applicable to us, and the parts that are still relevant are probably easier to learn from some other book. As a primary source about Greek life, though, it's just fine.
So, hooray that I managed to read it, and now on to Plato's Republic. (I should have read that today, since it's Election Day and all. That would have been fitting. But I didn't have time to read anything today, anyway. I did get to the polling place, of course, and I hope you did too.) Then I will work on finishing Herodotus and I think that will finish me off for the year.