Aaron Dimock


This paper presents an analysis of stasis as a means for creating common ground between conflicting parties and a guide to judgment in public deliberation. Craig‘s (1989) approach to communication as a ―practical discipline‖ provides the theoretical justification for research that examines the practical communication problems society faces. This paper examines public discourse in the form of arguments before local deliberative bodies, where people are attempting to influence the judgment of the board and the public. Using the methods of a rhetorically informed discourse analysis (see Tracy, 2001 & 2002), this paper examines the formulation, presentation, and reaction to arguments in naturally occurring public deliberation. The analysis focuses on the ways stasis provides a means of understanding, analyzing, and critiquing argument. A fundamental problem in public argument is a lack of common ground for proceeding with deliberation when opposing sides take divergent views of an issue. Stasis as a principle for public deliberation provides a way of conceiving common ground and a guide for effective public deliberation.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License