Jon Viklund, my violent (and biased) supervisor in the institution of Rhetorics at Uppsala University.


Cra- cra- CRA-zy! My supervisor in rhetorics, Jon Viklund: ”so you´re inspired by Victor J Vitanza, well he´s crazy…!” Thats how my my becoming supervisor welcomed me my first day at Uppsala Universitys Master Course in Rhetorics.

I described this ”Vitanza is crazy”-incident in my first draft of my master thesis not remembering it was my supervisor, he didn´t like it [He never asked me how I felt being welcomed like that].

Two months later after a quiet useless master course in rhetorics, totally designed to hide the nucleus of rhetorical tradition (the enthymeme), my supervisor and the professor Mats Rosengren told me ”This is not going to be popular!” when I told them that I was going to write about enthymemes and disciplining in rhetorical tradition (conversion therapy).

He shouldn´t have been my supervisor from the beginning. As one of the three authors of our course litterature (a course litterature I show as totally deceitful in my masters), he was/is 100 % biased. By supervising me (leading me astray), and trying to hinder me from using the most important tool there is at university – other students and teachers critical readings, he later became rewarded by the institutional leaders. He now is the Study Principal at the institution, I suppose the other two authors (Otto Fischer, Patrik Mehrens), of the course litterature took part in this (reward), decision.

Jon Viklund is not totally useless as a rhetorical researcher though, he knows a lot about method (a good way to critisize students, a real power tool!). I did use some of his writings to present my method, this down below is very good I think:

We have now entered the third developing stage, means Jasinski, where rhetorical analyzes succesively on one hand are less driven by method and on the other hand more oriented towards concepts. A study oriented towards concepts do not start from an already established theoretical or methodological frame but search for a way through a material with the starting point in one or several concepts. Jasinski describes this as an abductive process (build on including theories in your reasoning and blend them with observations. This (or those) concepts will be redefined and filled with new meanings and associations. Like this the concepts will ”thicken” as it is called in social anthropology. (Viklund, Jon, 2014, ”Retorisk kritik – en introduktion”, (red Fischer, Mehrens, Viklund,) Retorisk Kritik, Teori och metod i retorisk analys, sid 28.)

After finishing my master thesis I came to understand that this was exact method I had worked with when describing the enthymeme(s).

This is a work in progress, I will write more. Next purputrator is Otto Fischer, a real liar and head off rhetorics at Uppsala University.

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