PLEASE NOTE this page has moved. It is being maintained and updated at


This bibliography is inclusive on Burkean rhetorical theory and criticism in communication and rhetoric.  It includes links to the many pages elsewhere that treat Burke in general and catalog his writings.

Burke's "Definition of Humanity":

-Human beings are the symbol using animals

-Inventors of the negative

-Separated from their natural condition by instruments of their own making

-Goaded by the spirit of hierarchy

-Rotten with perfection


Anderson, Floyd D., and Lawrence J. Prelli. "Pentadic Cartography: Mapping the Universe of Discourse." Quarterly Journal of Speech 87 (2001): 73-95.

Appel, Edward C. "Implications and Importance of the Negative in Burke's Dramatistic Philosophy of Language." Communication Quarterly 41 (1993): 51-65.

---. "The Rhetoric of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.: Comedy and Context in Tragic Collision." Western Journal of Communication 61 (1997): 376-402.

Baxter, Gerald D., and Pat M. Taylor. "Burke's Theory of Consubstantiality and Whitehead's Concept of Concrescence." Communication Monographs 45 (1978): 173-180.

Biesecker, Barbara A. Addressing Postmodernity: Kenneth Burke, Rhetoric, and a Theory of Social Change. Tuscaloosa: U of Alabama P, 2000.

Birdsell, David S. "Kenneth Burke at the Nexus of Argument and Trope." Argumentation and Advocacy 29 (1993): 178-185.

---. "Ronald Reagan on Lebanon and Grenada: Flexibility and Interpretation in the Application of Kenneth Burke's Pentad." Quarterly Journal of Speech 73 (1987): 267-279.

Blain, Michael. "The Politics of Victimage: Power and Subjection in a U.S. Anti-Gay Campaign." Critical Discourse Studies 2 (2005): 31-50.

Blankenship, Jane, et al. "The 1980 Republican Primary Debates: The Transformation of Actor to Scene." Quarterly Journal of Speech 69 (1983): 25-36.

Bobbitt, D. A. (2004). The rhetoric of redemption: Kenneth Burke's redemption drama and Martin Luther King, Jr.'s I have a Dream Speech. New York: Rowman & Littlefield.   Bostdorff, Denise M. "Making Light of James Watt: A Burkean Approach to the Form and Attitude of Political Cartoons. Quarterly Journal of Speech 73 (1987): 43-59.

Brock, Bernard L., ed. Kenneth Burke and Contemporary European Thought: Rhetoric in Transition. Tuscaloosa: U of Alabama P, 1995.

Brock, Bernard L. "Epistemology And Ontology In Kenneth Burke's Dramatism." Communication Quarterly 33.2 (1985): 94-104. Communication & Mass Media Complete. Web. 6 Aug. 2014.

Brummett, Barry. "Burkean Comedy and Tragedy, Illustrated in Reactions to the Arrest of John DeLorean." Central States Speech Journal 35 (1984): 217-227.

---. "Burkean Scapegoating, Mortification, and Transcendence in Presidential Campaign Rhetoric." Central States Speech Journal 32 (1981): 254-264.

---. "Burke's Representative Anecdote as a Method in Media Criticism." Ed. John Louis Lucaites, Celeste Michelle Condit, and Sally Caudill. Contemporary Rhetorical Theory: A Reader. New York, NY : Guilford, 1999. 479-493.

---. "A Pentadic Analysis of Ideologies in Two Gay Rights Controversies." Central States Speech Journal 30 (1979): 250-261.

---. "Symbolic Form, Burkean Scapegoating, and Rhetorical Exigency in Alioto's Response to the 'Zebra' Murders." Western Journal of Speech Communication 44 (1980): 64-73.

Carlson, Cheree A. "Gandhi and the Comic Frame: "Ad bellum purificandum." Quarterly Journal of Speech 72 (1986): 446-455.

---. "Limitations on the Comic Frame: Some Witty American Women of the Nineteenth Century." Quarterly Journal of Speech 74 (1988): 310-322.

---. "You Know It When You See It: The Rhetorical Hierarchy of Race and Gender in Rhinelander v. Rhinelander." Quarterly Journal of Speech 85 (1999): 111-128.

Carmichael, Thomas. "Postmodernism, Symbolicity, and the Rhetoric of the Hyperreal: Kenneth Burke, Fredric Jameson, and Jean Baudrillard." Text and Performance Quarterly 11 (1991): 319-324.

Carter, C. Allen. Kenneth Burke and the Scapegoat Process. Norman: U of Oklahoma P, 1996.

Coe, Richard M. "Defining Rhetoric--and Us: A Meditation on Burke's Definitions." The Kinneavy Papers: Theory and the Study of Discourse. Ed. Lynn Worsham et al. Albany, NY : State U of New York P, 2000. 353-367.

Condit, Celeste. "Framing Kenneth Burke: Sad Tragedy or Comic Dance?" Quarterly Journal of Speech 80 (1994): 77-82.

Condit, Celester Michelle, and J. Ann Selzer. "The Rhetoric of Objectivity in the Newspaper Coverage of a Murder Trial." Critical Studies in Mass Communication 2 (1985): 197-216.

Conrad, Charles. "Phases, Pentads, and Dramatistic Critical Process." Central States Speech Journal 35 (1984): 94-104.

Cooks, Leda, and Descutner, David. "Different Paths from Powerlessness to Empowerment: A Dramatistic Analysis of Two Eating Disorder Therapies." Western Journal of Communication 57 (1993): 494-514.

Copeland, Gary A., and Dan Slater. "Television, Fantasy and Vicarious Catharsis." Critical Studies in Mass Communication 2 (1985): 352-362.

Corcoran, Farrell. "The Bear in the Back Yard: Myth, Ideology, and Victimage Ritual in Soviet Funerals." Communication Monographs 50 (1983): 305-320.

Crable, Bryan. "Burke's Perspectives on Perspectives: Grounding Dramatism in the Representative Anecdote." Quarterly Journal of Speech 86 (2000): 318-333.

---. "Ideology as 'Metabiology': Rereading Burke's Permanence and Change." Quarterly Journal of Speech 84 (1998): 303-319.

---. "Race and A Rhetoric of Motives: Kenneth Burke's Dialogue with Ralph Ellison." Rhetoric Society Quarterly 33 (2003): 5-25.

---. "Rhetoric, Anxiety and Character Armor: Burke's Interactional Rheoric of Identity 1." Western Journal of Communication 70 (2006): 1-22.

Crafton, Jeffrey A. The Agency of the Apostle: A Dramatistic Analysis of Paul's Responses to Conflict in 2 Corinthians. JSNT Supplement Series 51. Sheffield: JSOT P, 1991.

Crusius, Timothy W. Kenneth Burke and the Conversation after Philosophy. Carbondale: Southern Illinois UP, 1999.

Crusius, Timothy W. "Orality in Kenneth Burke's Dialectic." Philosophy & Rhetoric 21/2 (1988): 116-130.

Darr, Christopher R. "Civility as Rhetorical Enactment: The John Ashcroft 'Debates' and Burke's Theory of Form." Southern Communication Journal 70 (2005): 316-328.

Day, Dennis G. "Persuasion and the Concepts of Identification." Quarterly Journal of Speech 46 (1960): 270-273.

Edgar, Amanda Nell. "R&B Rhetoric and Victim-Blaming Discourses: Exploring The Popular Press's Revision of Rihanna's Contextual Agency." Women's Studies in Communication 37, 138-158.  (2014)

Engnell, Richard A. "Materiality, Symbolicity, and the Rhetoric of Order: 'Dialectical Biologism' as Motive in Burke." Western Journal of Communication 62 (1998): 1-25.

Enos, Theresa. "'Verbal Atom Cracking': Burke and a Rhetoric of Reading." Philosophy and Rhetorci 31 (1998): 64-70.

Ewbank, Henry L. "The Constitution: Burkeian, Brandesian and Borkian Perspectives." Southern Communication Journal 61 (1996): 220-232.

Farrel, Corcoran. "The Bear in the Back Yard: Myth, Ideology, and Victimage Ritual in Soviet Funerals." Communication Monographs 50 (1983): 305-320.

Foss, Karen A. "John Lennon and the Advisory Function of Eulogies." Central States Speech Journal 34 (1983): 187-194.

Gaines, Robert N. "Identification and Redemption in Lysias' Against Eratosthenes." Central States Speech Journal 30 (1979): 199-210.

Genter, Robert. "Toward a Theory of Rhetoric: Ralph Ellison, Kenneth Burke, and the Problem of Modernism." Twentieth Century Literature: A Scholarly and Critical Journal 48 (2002: 191-214.

George, Ann, and Jack Selzer. "What Happened at the First American Writers' Congress? Kenneth Burke's 'Revolutionary Symbolism in America'." Rhetoric Society Quarterly 33 (2003): 47-66.

Gudas, Fabian. "The Vitality of Dramatism." Literature in Performance 3.2 (1983): 1-12.

Gronbeck, Bruce E. "John Morley and the Irish Question: Chart-Prayer-Dream." Speech Monographs 40 (1973): 287-295.

Hahn, Dan F., and Anne Morland. "A Burkean Analysis of Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address." Presidential Studies Quarterly 9 (1979): 376-389.

Hansen, Andrew C. "The Stasis in Counter-Statement: 'Applications of the Terminology' as Attempted Reconciliation of the Formal and the Rhetorical." Rhetoric Review 20 (2001): 293-313.

Hawhee, Debra. "Language as Sensuous Action: Sir Richard Paget, Kenneth Burke, and Gesture-Speech Theory." Quarterly Journal of Speech 92/4 (2006): 331-354.

Henderson, Graig E., and David Cratis Williams, eds. Unending Conversations: New Writings By and About Kenneth Burke. Carbondale: Southern Illinois UP, 2001.

Horan, James L. "Solzhenitsyn on Detente: A Study of Perspective by Incongruity." Southern Speech Communication Journal 42 (1976): 163-177.

Hubbard, Bryan. "Reassessing Truman, the Bomb, and Revisionism: The Burlesque Frame and Entelechy in the Decision to Use Atomic Weapons against Japan." Western Journal of Communication 62 (1998): 348-385.

Hassett, Michael. "Sophisticated Burke: Kenneth Burke as a Neosophistic Rhetorician." Rhetoric Review 13 (1995): 371-390.

Hawhee, Debra. "Burke and Nietzsche." Quarterly Journal of Speech 85 (1999): 129-145.

Kelley, Colleen E. "The 1984 Campaign Rhetoric of Representative George Hansen: A Pentadic Analysis." Western Journal of Speech Communication 51 (1987): 204-217.

Kenny, Robert Wade. "The Constitutional Dialectic." Quarterly Journal of Speech 86 (2000): 455-464.

---. "The Rhetoric of Kevorkian's Battle." Quarterly Journal of Speech 86 (2000): 386-401.

---. "Truth as Metaphor: Imaginative Vision and the ethos of Rhetoric." The Ethos of Rhetoric. Ed. Michael J. Hyde. Greenville: U of South Carolina P, 2004. 34-55.

--  “The Glamour of Motives: Applications of Kenneth Burke within the Sociological Field.”  KB Journal, Volume 4, Issue 2, 2008 (no pagination).

-- "A Cycle of Terms Implicit in the Idea of Medicine: Karen Ann Quinlan as Rhetorical Icon and the Transvaluation of the Ethics of Euthanasia," Health Communication. 17, 1, 2005, pages 17-39.

-- "Thinking about Rethinking Life and Death: The Role of Dramatic Irony in Public Discourse," Rhetoric and PublicAffairs, Volume 6, Issue 4, 2003, pages 659-688.

-- “Toward a Better Death: Applying Burkean Principles of Symbolic Action to Interpret Family Adaptation To Karen Ann Quinlan's Coma," Health Communication, Volume13, Issue 4, 2001, pages 363-386.

-- “Body-as-World: Kenneth Burke's Answer to the Post-Modern Challenges to Sociology (With Valerie Bentz)," Sociological Theory, Volume 15, Issue 1, 1997, pages 81-96.

King, Andrew. "Burkean Theory Reborn: How Burkean Studies Assimilated Its Postmodern Critics." Rhetoric Review 20 (2001): 32-37.

King, Robert L. "Transforming Scandal into Tragedy: A Rhetoric of Political Apology." Quarterly Journal of Speech 71 (1985): 289-301.

Klumpp, James F. "A Rapprochement between Dramatism and Argumentation." Argumentation and Advocacy 29 (1993): 164-177.

Klope, David C. "Defusing a Foreign Policy Crisis: Myth and Victimage in Reagan's 1983 Lebanon/Grenada Address." Western Journal of Speech Communication 50 (1986): 336-349.

Kuseski, Brenda. "Kenneth Burke's 'Five Dogs' and Mother Teresa's Love." Quarterly Journal of Speech 74 (1988): 323-333.

Levasseur, David. "Edifying Arguments and Perspective by Incongruity: The Perplexing Argumentation Method of Kenneth Burke." Argumentation and Advocacy 29 (1993): 195-203.

Lindsay, Stan A. "Waco and Andover: An Application of Kenneth Burke's Concept of Psychotic Entelechy." Quarterly Journal of Speech 85 (1999): 268-284.

Ling, David A. "A Pentadic Analysis of Senator Edward Kennedy's Address to the People of Massachusetts, July 25, 1969." Central States Speech Journal 21 (1970): 81-86.

Lule, Jack. "The Political Use of Victims: The Shaping of the Challenger Disaster." Political Communication and Persuasion 7 (1989): 115-128.

---. "Victimage in Times Coverage of the KAL Flight 007 Shooting." Journalism Quarterly 66 (1989): 615-620.

Mackey-Kallis, Susan, and Dan F. Hahn. "Questions of Public Will and Private Action: The Power of the Negative in the Reagans' 'Just Say No' Morality Campaign." Communication Quarterly 39 (1991): 1-17.

---. "Who's To Blame for America's Drug Problem?: The Search for Scapegoats in the 'War on Drugs'." Communication Quarterly 42 (1994): 1-20.

Mackin, James A. "A Trinitarian Logology." Southern Communication Journal 60 (1994): 195-210.

Maddux, Kristy. "Finding Comedy in Theology: A Hopeful Supplement to Burke's Logology." Philosophy & Rhetoric 39 (2006): 208-232.

Madsen, Arnold. "The Comic Frame as a Corrective to Bureaucratization: A Dramatistic Perspective on Argumentation." Argumentation and Advocacy 29 (1993): 164-177.

Marlier, John. "Fifteen Minutes of Glory: A Burkean Analysis of Press Coverage of Oliver North's Testimony." Political Communication and Persuasion 6 (1989): 269-288.

Mehurst, Martin J. "McGovern at Wheaton: A Quest for Redemption." Communication Quarterly 25 (1977): 32-39.

Moore, Mark P. "Constructing Irreconcilable Conflict: The Function of Synecdoche in the Spotted Owl Controversy." Communication Monographs 60 (1993): 258-274.

---. "Rhetorical Subterfuge and 'The Principle of Perfection': Bob Packwood's Response to Sexual Misconduct Charges." Western Journal of Communication 60 (1996): 1-20.

Murray, Jeffrey W. "Kenneth Burke: A Dialogue of Motives." Philosophy & Rhetoric 35 (2002): 22-49. Palczewski, Catherine Helen. "Contesting Pornography: Terministic Catharsis and Definitional Argument." Argumentation & Advocacy 38 (2001): 1-17.

Olson, Kathryn M., and Clark D. Olson. "Beyond Strategy: A Reader-Centered Analysis of Irony's Dual Persuasive Uses." Quarterly Journal of Speech 90 (2004): 24-52.

Parson, Donn W. "Kenneth Burke and Argument?" Argumentation and Advocacy 29 (1993): 145-147.

Quandahl, Ellen. " 'More Than Lessons in How to Read': Burke, Freud, and the Resources of Symbolic Transformation." College English 64 (2001): 633-654.

Rasmussen, Karen. "Transcendence in Leonard Bernstein's Kaddish Symphony." Quarterly Journal of Speech 80 (1994): 150-173.

Rockler, Naomi R. "Rockler, Naomi R: Overcoming 'It's Just Entertainment': Perspective by Incongruity as Strategy for Media Literacy." Journal of Popular Film & Television 30 (2002): 16-22.

Rod, David K. "Kenneth Burke's Concept of Entitlement." Communication Monographs 49 (1982): 20-32.

Rosenfield, Lawrence W. "August 9, 1974: The Victimage of Richard Nixon." Communication Quarterly 24 (1976): 19-23.

---. "Rhetorical Landscapes in America: Variations on a Theme from Kenneth Burke." Philosophy & Rhetoric 39 (2006):172-173.

Rosteck, Thomas, and Michael Leff. "Piety, Propriety, and Perspective: An Interpretation and Application of Key Terms in Kenneth Burke's Permanence and Change." Western Journal of Speech Communication 53 (1989): 327-341.

Rountree, Clarke. "Instantiating 'The Law' and Its Dissents in Korematsu v. United States: A Dramatistic Analysis of Judicial Discourse." Quarterly Journal of Speech 87 (2001): 1-24.

Selzer, Jack. Kenneth Burke in Greenwich Village: Conversing with the Moderns, 1915-1931. Madison: U of Wisconsin P, 1996.

Sheriff, Stacey. "Resituating Kenneth Burke's 'My Approach to Communism'." Rhetorica 23 (2005): 281-295.

Snee, Brian J. "The Spirit and the Flesh: The Rhetorical Nature of The Last Temptation of Christ." Journal of Media and Religion 4 (2005): 45-61.

Stob, Paul. "Kenneth Burke, John Dewey, and the Pursuit of the Public." Philosophy & Rhetoric 38 (2005): 226-247.

Stob, Paul. "'Terministic Screens,' Social Constructionism, and the Language of Experience: Kenneth Burke's Utilization of William James." Philosophy & Rhetoric 41/2 (2008): 130-152.

Stone, William S. "The Southern Baptist Controversy: A Social Drama." Journal of Communication and Religion 15 (1992): 99-115.

Watts, Eric King. "The ethos of a Black Aesthetic: An Exploration of Larry Neal's Visions of a Liberated Future." The Ethos of Rhetoric. Ed. Michael J. Hyde. Greenville: U of South Carolina P, 2004. 98-113.

Weiser, M. Elizabeth. "'As Usual I Fell on the Bias': Kenneth Burke's Situated Dialectic." Philosophy & Rhetoric 42/2 (2009): 134-153.

Weiser, M. Elizabeth. "Burke and War: Rhetoricizing the Theory of Dramatism." Rhetoric Review 26 (2007): 286-302.

Westerfelhaus, Robert, and Ciekawy, Diane. "Cleansing the Social Body: Witchcraft Accusation in an African Community as an Example of Multi-Hierarchical Victimage." Communication Quarterly 46 (1998): 269-283.

Wilkie, Carol. "The Scapegoating of Bruno Richard Hauptmann: The Rhetorical Process in Prejudicial Publicity." Central States Speech Journal 32 (1981): 100-110.

Wolin, Ross. The Rhetorical Imagination of Kenneth Burke. Greenville: U of South Carolina P, 2001. Zulick, Margaret D. "The Agon of Jeremiah: On the Dialogic Invention of Prophetic Ethos." Quarterly Journal of Speech 78 (1992): 125-148.

Wolin, Ross. "The ethos of Invention: The Dialogue of Ethics and Aesthetics in Kenneth Burke and Mikhail Bakhtin." The Ethos of Rhetoric. Ed. Michael J. Hyde. Greenville: U of South Carolina P, 2004. 20-33.

Zappan, James P. " Kenneth Burke on Dialectical-Rhetorical Transcendence." Philosophy & Rhetoric 42/3 (2009): 279-301.

Zulick, Margaret D. “The Agon of Jeremiah: On the Dialogic Invention of Prophetic Ethos." Quarterly Journal of Speech 78 (1992): 125–148.

Zulick, Margaret D. “The Ethos of Invention: The Dialogue of Ethics and Aesthetics in Kenneth Burke and Mikhail Bakhtin." The Ethos of Rhetoric, Ed. Michael J. Hyde. Columbia: U of South Carolina P, 2004.