Alumni

The Gujarat carnage of 2002 A rhetorical analysis

View Full Record
Description: In February 2002, a mob of Muslim men in the town of Godhra (India) attacked and set fire to a train carrying Hindu activists. A three-day retaliatory killing spree by Hindus marked India's worst religious bloodletting in a decade. The episode was not an isolated one; its seeds had been sown in several years of rhetorical discourse containing Hindu nationalist ideology. The rhetorical act is a weapon that, in events like the Gujarat carnage, is used to achieve human self-transcendence. This weapon, though nominally aimed at another person or group, is primarily aimed at the finitude and fragility of the human condition. I use the views of Ernest Becker and Kenneth Burke to theoretically explain rhetorical situations of violence---there is something fundamental in the human environment that drives humans to commit acts we define as "evil", and this anxiety better explains why rhetorical discourses appeal to people's sensibilities.
Language: English
Format: Degree Work