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Rhetoric and Environmental Politics in America

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M. Jimmie Killingsworth and Jacqueline S. Palmer


Paperback (Other formats: E-book)
328 pages, 6 x 9, 5 illustrations


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About the Book

In this book, M. Jimmie Killingsworth and Jacqueline S. Palmer have a twofold purpose: to analyze the patterns of rhetoric used in written discourse about environmental politics and to make a practical contribution to the art of rhetorical criticism through the study of rhetoric in use.

The language, professional objectivity, and research programs of scientists insulate these best-informed citizens in enclaves of specialization, limiting access to crucial information and hindering effective reformative action. Science, the authors stress, is not merely a database to rely upon but a view of the world that must be broadened in order to affect social morality. Science-based activism must arise to ensure the care and future of the environment.

Killingsworth and Palmer argue that for grassroots activism to be tied to this globally conscious philosophy, a rhetoric of sustainability must be cultivated.


M. Jimmie Killingworth is a professor of English at Texas A&M University.

Jacqueline S. Palmer retired from teaching technical editing and writing at the Texas A & M University Department of English in 2010.


Ecospeak’smind-expanding assessment of the distinctive discourses of environment across a wide range of disciplines and venues has long since established it as the classic, seminal work for the burgeoning field of environmental rhetoric.”—Lawrence Buell, Harvard University, author of The Environmental Imagination, Writing for an Endangered World,and The Future of Environmental Criticism.

Ecospeak continues to be a mainstay in my course on environmental discourse in America. I am as enthusiastic about this book today as I was when I first read it.”—Joe Wilferth, University of Tennessee at Chattanooga