Frida Buhre

Senior lecturer/Associate Professor at Department of Literature

Email:
Frida.Buhre[AT-sign]littvet.uu.se
Visiting address:
Engelska parken, Thunbergsvägen 3 P

Postal address:
Box 632
751 26 UPPSALA

Short presentation

My research explores how contemporary rhetoric of climate change use imaginaries of time. In a current book project, I argue for the importance of anachronisms in political rhetoric. In my disseration, I discuss the politics of memory, eternal principles, progress and the actuality of the present, in dialogue with Hannah Arendt. I am Co-Founder and Chair of International Rhetoric Workshop (IRW). During a number of years, I participated in the TV and Radio gameshow Retorikmatchen.

Keywords: arendt climate change justice temporality political theory rhetorical theory indigenous rhetoric

My courses

Biography

Short CV

  • Ph.D., Rhetoric, 2019-10-04.
  • Buhre, F. (2019). Speaking Other Times: Hannah Arendt and The Temporality of Politics." Diss. Uppsala University.
  • Founder and Chair of International Rhetoric Workshop (IRW).
  • Buhre, F. (2016). “Hannah Arendt och framtidens dilemma”, in Fronesis, vol. 52-53, pp. 210-220.
  • Bengtson, E. & Buhre, F. (eds.) Beguiled and Charmed: Perspectives from a Second Generation of Rhetoricians. Södertörn Rhetorical Studies 3. Södertörns University Press.
  • Buhre, F. (2016, 11 november). ”Hannah Arendt and the Plurality of Beginnings”, National Communication Association 102:a konferens, Philadelphia, USA.
  • Pris: “Best Graduate Paper in Rhetoric and Political Theory”, Rhetoric Society of Europe, 2017.
  • Gästforskare, Rhetoric and Public Culture, Northwestern University, sep-dec 2013.

For further information, please see CV.

Research

Current research projects

Against Hope: The Rhetoric of the Climate Justice Movement and the Temporalities of Despair

When climate activist Greta Thunberg spoke in Davos, her rhetoric offered no imaginary of a better future-to-come to her audience: “I don't want you to be hopeful. I want you to panic.” For good reasons, a coming end to the future has become a common topos in the Environmental Justice Movement (EJM). In this planned project, I explore and theorize how Fridaysforfuture, Extinction Rebellion, and other transnational environmental groups address the role of the future and a possible collapse of the political order as it now stands.

Anachronisms: The Temporalities of Rhetoric

Political rhetoric frequently utilizes imaginaries of time. Ideas of an eternally sanctioned principle, a historical tradition, a future to come, or a radical change in the present are all part of the temporal toolkit of political rhetoric. The role of these imaginaries has provoked growing interest in rhetorical and political theory, and this proposed book contributes to this line of scholarship by arguing for the importance of the anachronism in political rhetoric.

Previous research projects

Speaking Other Times: Hannah Arendt and the Temporality of Politics (Diss.)

Political rhetoric frequently utilizes imaginaries of time. Ideas of an eternally sanctioned principle, a historical tradition, a future to come, or a radical change in the present are all part of the temporal toolkit of political rhetoric. The role of these imaginaries has provoked growing interest in rhetorical and political theory, and this thesis contributes to this line of scholarship by offering the first comprehensive examination of political temporalities in the works of Hannah Arendt.

In Arendt’s political thought, the temporal imaginaries differ depending on forms of government, and each chapter of the thesis addresses, in turn: tyranny as depending on an eternal principle introduced into contingent worldly time; authority as legitimized by reiterations of tradition; totalitarianism as justified by a trans-historical and ever-changing future; and finally, politics as empowered by the present’s antagonistic negotiations with past memories and future anticipations. Important observations are that the temporal imaginaries of tyranny, authority, and totalitarianism facilitate rhetorical practices that utilize force, violence, hierarchy, and domination. And, in contrast, that the temporalities of politics enable antagonistic speech, action, and formation of public opinion through judgment. The thesis thus provides a systematic account of the political imaginary of eternity, past, future, and present in the thought of Arendt, and contributes to conceptual development in the field of Arendtian scholarship, rhetorical theory, and the study of political temporalities.

The study concludes that each examined temporal imaginary is comprised of plural and intersecting temporal logics where, for example, eternal principles can utilize the futurity of threat, memories of the past can spark revolutions, and anticipations of the future can stabilize the present. By mobilizing the concept of anachronism, the thesis argues that these conflicting temporal intersections carry persuasive and performative potential. In Arendt’s discussions of temporality, power, and modes of rhetorical expression, certain anachronistic imaginaries take form that carry freedom-enabling potential: by speaking other times, politics receives the power to realize freedom.

Publications

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