The Rhetoric Companion: A Student's Guide to Power in Persuasion

(2 reviews)

Douglas Wilson

For thousands of years, rhetoric—the art of a good man speaking well—was one of the pillars of Western Civilization, and we need it now more than ever.

Look Inside the Book

The Wilsons have written a Christian rhetoric textbook accessible to any high school student, or to the parents who never learned much about the subject themselves. For the Christian student of rhetoric, manipulative sophistry is clearly out of bounds. But putting careful thought into what constitutes eloquent speech and persuasive argument is not. What many people dismiss as a bunch of rhetoric is simply poor rhetoric. There is a Christian approach to the craft of memorable and effective expression, and it is the task of this book to lay out that approach.

Arranged in 31 lively and practical lessons, The Rhetoric Companion covers the following material and more:

• A critical appreciation of the essential ancient rhetoric texts
• The Pauline view of presentation and persuasion
• How to develop copiousness and leave an audience wanting more
• The concept of "stasis theory" and how to grasp the crux of an argument
• How successful proof obligates an audience to believe
• Composition exercises with each lesson

For The Rhetoric Companion Answer Key, click here.

Suggested reading material for each lesson from Artistotle's Rhetoric, the Rhetorica Ad Herennium, or Quintilian's Institutio Oratoria

What People Are Saying:

"As the classical movement matures, teachers and parents need more resources to carry us through rhetoric toward the quadrivium. The Wilsons provide an easy overview for those trying to gain access to rhetorical skills and a great review for those of us already digging in." -Leigh Bortins CEO, Classical Conversations and author of The Core: Teaching Your Child the Foundations of Classical Education

"Rhetoric, the capstone of a classical education, is well-explained and well-taught herein. It is not necessary that a teacher who writes be able to "do" what he teaches—but it is routinely much better if he can. In this text we have authors who have learned, in fact, mastered their subject and then share the wisdom, tools, and techniques they have learned." -Marlin Detweiler President, Veritas Press

Douglas Wilson is a pastor in Moscow, Idaho, a father of three, and grandfather of seventeen. He is the author of numerous books, including Decluttering Your Marriage, Future Men, and How to Exasperate Your Wife.

Nathan Wilson lives and writes in the top of a tall, skinny house only one block from where he was born. But his bestselling novels, including the highly acclaimed 100 Cupboards series, have traveled far and wide and have been translated into dozens of languages. He and his wife have five young storytellers of their own, along with an unreasonable number of pets. You can visit him online at

AUTHORS: Douglas Wilson and Nathan Wilson

PAGE COUNT: 160 pages

SIZE: 8.50x11"

ISBN 10: 1-591280-78-8

ISBN-13: 978-1-591280-78-1

PUB. DATE: May 17, 2011

Customer Reviews

Based on 2 reviews
Chance Nichols, Head of Secondary School
Great Resource

The lessons are brief, punchy, and engaging. The review questions are focused, and the Exercises are fun and effective. My students love it and it's a joy to teach.

R. Robbins
Great for someone new to Rhetoric

The Rhetoric Companion: A Student's Guide to Power in Persuasion is a wonderful book in the overview of Rhetoric. As a transitioning school, this book did a great job, in plain English equipping me to teach Rhetoric.