deliberative oratory
Branches of oratory:

Sometimes called "legislative" oratory, deliberative oratory originally had to do exclusively with that sort of speaking typical of political legislatures. This sort of oratory was oriented towards policy and thus considered the future and whether given laws would benefit or harm society. Aristotle considered four special topics of invention, grouped in pairs, to pertain to deliberative oratory:

  1. The good and the unworthy
  2. The advantageous, and the disadvantageous.
Deliberative oratory has come to encompass any communication for or against given future action.

Sample Rhetorical Analysis: DELIBERATIVE ORATORY
When Sir Thomas More was faced with the dilemma of deciding whether to sign the oath of loyalty to Henry VIII or to abstain and be charged with treason, he must have considered deeply the effects of either choice. Should he sign, he would save his life and his influential position as Lord Chancellor, thus saving himself to further influence his sovereign and his nation for good. Should he refuse to sign, he would probably die, but his death would serve the purpose of inspiring fidelity to the Church. His martyrdom would have the advantage of increasing piety. More must have so argued within himself, deliberating as though his mind were the parliament house, divided as to the best policy for his country. In the end he persuaded himself to allow himself to be martyred, and we are left to judge whether this did indeed prove to be an advantage or not. His example of moral backbone is generally regarded as his having succeeded in making the right choice. Still, we cannot know what More could have done should he have remained in the king's service longer.
Related Topics of Invention

See Also

  Sources: Aristotle, Rhetoric 1.4-8; Cic. De Inv. 2.52-58

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Gideon O. Burton, Brigham Young University
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