Wilson, Douglas, and Nathan D. Wilson. The Rhetoric Companion: A Student's Guide to Power in Persuasion. Moscow, Idaho: Canon, 2011.
Lesson 17, “The Poetry of Argument” pp. 83-87.
Wilson illustrates expression of an idea using different means. In his view much of our modernist society expects scientific description - degree temperature at a particular location - as opposed to poetic description, which gives a vivid image based on the temperature (Wilson 2011, 83). The qualifiers and personification involved in poetic speech can be very helpful in expressing the importance of a concept (Wilson 2011, 84). The poetic expression can be very accurate, but would not be appropriate in describing a numeric formula. This is the difference between the disciplines of the Trivium (grammar, logic, rhetoric) and the Quadrivium (arithmetic, astronomy, geometry, and music), the seven liberal arts (Wilson 2011, 84). Wilson goes on to illustrate that different concepts in different settings are discussed and analyzed in very different ways. On p. 86 Wilson makes a sharp distinction between Hellenistic and Hebraic thought. In his view, Hellenistic thought, like scientific expression, divides form and substance. Hebraic thought, like poetic expression, communicates by adding characteristics together. They are different forms of expression.