Rhetoric of Evidence. Epistemic Models und Rhetorical Practice in Science, Art, and Culture

Rhetoric of Evidence.
Epistemic Models und Rhetorical Practice in Science, Art, and Culture

March 12-15, 2014

Conference held at:
Curt und Heidemarie Engelhorn Palais
Hauptstraße 120, D-69117 Heidelberg, Germany

How can we convey knowledge in an evident way? Which verbal and visual methods can be used for evident presentation of knowledge? How does modern communication media, such as Powerpoint, influence opportunities to create evidence? Within which tradition does the the struggle for evident presentations stand? Which significance does evidence have in modern natural sciences, in the arts, and in everyday culture? Evidence is not only of rhetorical interest, but is also an important topic for other disciplines. The field ranges from the ancient demand to use a descriptive language via Aristotle to the empiricism of Locke and Hume, and current scientific models and simulations. The strife for clarity and logical evidence shape the current approsach to presentation in the natural sciences, and influences business presentations as well as presentation in school or the humanities. Evidence serves as a method to communicate information and emotion in mass media. Arts and literature can be understood as a competition for evidence, too: these diusciplines developed new strategies to achieve evidence. Evidence can be seen as a culturally well-established presentation technique which proves to be very effective.

Due to the continuous changes within media technology the way in which an evident presentation and a high level of clarity can be achieved has to be continually questioned. Alongside, throughout the history of science, the rules for clarity and acceptability constantly change – in the same way in which the aesthetic principles in art and literature are changing constantly. It is true that diverse methods of visualising knowledge, linguistic features, and even performance optimize the process of conveying knowledge through clarity. This puts rhetorics on the map, because it asks with which kind of instruments clarity and information transfer can be achieved, and how the persuasion of the receiver works.

This conference looks at the concepts of clarity and evidence from different perspectives. While simultaneously including considerations of the epistemology and sociology of knowlegde, the historical and theoretical aspects of evidence will be considered. One focus will be the role of evident presentations in modern sciences and in school. Due to current research in cognitive science, cognitive processes which are activated by evident presentation should be theorised more thoroughly than they currently are. Considerations concerned with the phenomenon of “evidence” wtihin media sciences as well as current research in the field of linguistics, and insights into how evidence is used whitin arts and literary studies will provide a thorough picture of the field. Additional perspectives of the phenomenon of evidence will arise from the turn to visual culture, arts, and literature.

Planned Sections
- Rhetoric (history of rhetoric, figures of rhetoric, rhetoric of science, applied rhetoric)
- Linguistics (pragmatics, accessibility, figures of speech, textlinguistic)
- Philosophy (theory of cognition, epitemology)
- Psychology, pedagogy, didactic methods, esp. of natural science - Liberal Arts, Literary Studies, Cultural Studies
- Science, Technolgy, Mathematics
- Media Sciences (theory of media, design, PowerPoint research etc.)
Conference languages: English and German. The proceedings will be published.

The application inclusivly a short abstract in English or German (max. 880 words) maybe submitted until July, 15th, 2013. Please send your abstract to: olaf.kramer@uni-tuebingen.de.

This scientific conference will be arranged by the research center “Jugend präsentiert” from the Department of Rhetorics (Seminar für Allgemeine Rhetorik) of the Eberhard-Karls-University of Tübingen in cooperation with the Klaus-Tschira-Foundation, Heidelberg, and Wissenschaft im Dialog, Berlin.
Seminar für Allgemeine Rhetorik
Dr. Olaf Kramer
Wilhelmstraße 50
72074 Tübingen