Abstract: Intertextuality is not only a literary but also a rhetorical phenomenon. Though largely neglected by modem scholarship, rhetorical intertextuality nevertheless looks back on a long tradition in print and communicative practice. Its manifestations are above all the commonplaces (koinoi topoi, loci communes) which represent not only abstract sedes argumentorum but also concrete formulae taken from pre-texts, literary and non-literary ones, that offer themselves for reemployment in texts of a derivative kind, in “littérature au second degré” (Genette) or, metaphorically speaking, in secondhand literature. The following aspects of the commonplaces deserve closer attention: their place (of publication), their re-cognition, their disposition, their genres, their multi- and intermediality, and their normativity. These facets constitute a complex spectrum of an intertextual rhetoric leading up to an “interrhetoric” which makes possible the recognition and analysis of such rhetorical phenomena as transcend the limits of a single text and of a single (e.g. verbal) sign-system.
- Copyright 1999, The International Society for the History of Rhetoric