Amy H. Kastely


In evaluating the constitutive nature of language and of particular texts, rhetorical analysis focuses attention on the nature of the community formed by a text, on its points of coherence and on its potential vulnerabilities. By emphasizing the importance of author, audience, language, and the occasions for discourse, rhetoric provides a way to explore the constitutive power of a text. When applied to the Sales Convention, rhetoric provides a useful analytic tool that allows one to understand theachievements of the Convention and to explore its weaknesses. This Article pursues such a rhetorical analysis of the Convention. Section II discusses the history of the Convention and examines some of the rhetorical goals of its drafters. Section III provides a general description of the rhetorical community established by the Convention. Section IV explores in greater detail some of the rhetorical problems confronted by the Convention's drafters, explains the significance of some of the most controversial issues addressed by the drafters, and evaluates the resolutions reached from the perspective of the Convention's rhetorical purpose.