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The Rhetoric of Physics

Why would you want to analyze how scientists write… don’t they just report their hypotheses and experimental results? Not at all, argues Alan Gross in The Rhetoric of Science; beneath the the veneer of objectivity resides a fierce struggle to gain followers for a particular viewpoint or to claim precedences for a discovery. How scientists go about convincing their contemporaries, and controlling them via peer review, is an integral part of developing consensus. Many physics instructors in high schools believe that rhetoric ought to be a part of high school science. In this seminar, we shall look at the process of rhetoric in science and how to motivate students to think about science (and how to think), and how they then communicate their convictions into academic arguments.