The chorus’ ambiguous characterization plays a critical role in Aristophanes’ "Clouds". It has been noted that the Clouds communicate doubly: at the same time, they state the Weaker Argument openly and the Stronger Argument secretly. This peculiar style mirrors (and mocks) the verbal traps based on polysemy, which Aristoteles recognized as a prominent manipulative tool of sophistic rhetoric ("Rhet." 1404b37-39). This paper deals with interpreting ll. 412-419, exploring the equivocal use of diachronic and synchronic polysemy and of intertextual reference to the Homeric poems. We will argue that the conditional promise of the Clouds is a deliberately ambivalent one. While superficially requiring eristic intellectual faculties and values, they covertly point rather to traditional moral and civic qualities.

Langella, E., Retorica e ambivalenze lessicali e intertestuali in Ar. "Nu." 412-419, <<PAPERS ON RHETORIC>>, 2022; (16): 111-127 [https://hdl.handle.net/10807/222176]

Retorica e ambivalenze lessicali e intertestuali in Ar. "Nu." 412-419

Langella, Elena
2022

Abstract

The chorus’ ambiguous characterization plays a critical role in Aristophanes’ "Clouds". It has been noted that the Clouds communicate doubly: at the same time, they state the Weaker Argument openly and the Stronger Argument secretly. This peculiar style mirrors (and mocks) the verbal traps based on polysemy, which Aristoteles recognized as a prominent manipulative tool of sophistic rhetoric ("Rhet." 1404b37-39). This paper deals with interpreting ll. 412-419, exploring the equivocal use of diachronic and synchronic polysemy and of intertextual reference to the Homeric poems. We will argue that the conditional promise of the Clouds is a deliberately ambivalent one. While superficially requiring eristic intellectual faculties and values, they covertly point rather to traditional moral and civic qualities.
Italiano
Greco antico
Langella, E., Retorica e ambivalenze lessicali e intertestuali in Ar. "Nu." 412-419, <<PAPERS ON RHETORIC>>, 2022; (16): 111-127 [https://hdl.handle.net/10807/222176]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/10807/222176
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