Scholarship in rhetorical political analysis and parliamentary studies devoted little attention to study how politicians employ intellectuals’ authority and theories in their discourses. We offer methodological directions to navigate this territory, combining quantitative and qualitative analyses to investigate the employment of Machiavelli’s figure in the Italian Parliament. We show that Machiavelli is regarded as a contested authority and that appeals to his arguments can perform different rhetorical functions, which are countered with different rhetorical tactics. In particular, we show that the right appropriates the realist Machiavelli, especially in foreign policy, both as a national symbol and as a legitimate source of insights on political affairs, while the left and the centre resist these claims with alternative rhetorical tactics. Finally, we provide an original dataset and a new theoretical framework for future explorations of intellectuals and other authoritative figures’ rhetorical influence on politics.

Appeals to Authority in Political Rhetoric: Machiavelli in the Italian Parliament 1945–1994 / M.C.M. Casiraghi, F. Testini. - In: PARLIAMENTARY AFFAIRS. - ISSN 0031-2290. - Ebook. - 74:2(2021 Apr), pp. 333-353. [10.1093/pa/gsaa005]

Appeals to Authority in Political Rhetoric: Machiavelli in the Italian Parliament 1945–1994

M.C.M. Casiraghi
Primo
;
F. Testini
Ultimo
2021

Abstract

Scholarship in rhetorical political analysis and parliamentary studies devoted little attention to study how politicians employ intellectuals’ authority and theories in their discourses. We offer methodological directions to navigate this territory, combining quantitative and qualitative analyses to investigate the employment of Machiavelli’s figure in the Italian Parliament. We show that Machiavelli is regarded as a contested authority and that appeals to his arguments can perform different rhetorical functions, which are countered with different rhetorical tactics. In particular, we show that the right appropriates the realist Machiavelli, especially in foreign policy, both as a national symbol and as a legitimate source of insights on political affairs, while the left and the centre resist these claims with alternative rhetorical tactics. Finally, we provide an original dataset and a new theoretical framework for future explorations of intellectuals and other authoritative figures’ rhetorical influence on politics.
Intellectuals; Italian Politics; Machiavelli; Parliamentary Debates; Parliamentary Studies; Rhetorical Political Analysis;
Settore SPS/04 - Scienza Politica
4-mar-2020
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/2434/817994
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