Is Donald Trump a Rhetorical Virtuoso?

The Incendiary Candidate’s Popularity Isn’t Surprising If You Understand the Art of Persuasion

For thousands of years, rhetoric, the art of persuasion, was a core area of study in our schools. And rightly so. It was widely accepted that speaking and persuasion together constituted an art that must be understood (in its differing appeals to credibility, feeling, or logic—ethos, pathos, logos), and that well-educated individuals must be able to express themselves orally, not just in writing.

Unfortunately, over the last century or so, that changed, and rhetoric and public speaking have all but disappeared from curricula. Why? I’m not a historian, but my …