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Persuasion in Adrian Bratkowic’s “Spiritual Conversation” (Kraków 1633)

Katarzyna Kaczor-Scheitler

Pages 163 - 189


The aim of this article is to discuss persuasion strategies in Rozmowa duchowna i nabożne uważanie o siedmi słowach Pana Jezusowych (Spiritual conversation and pious consideration of the seven words of the Lord Jesus) by Adrian Bratkowic (Kraków 1633). The starting point is the presentation of the devotion of the seven last sayings of Christ, the Fraternity of the Passion of the Lord in Krakow, and the profile of Adrian Bratkowic, who performed the duties of a prefect there. The matter under discussion is the structure of Rozmowa duchowna and its preceding address to Dorota Kątska, the abbess of the Norbertines in Zwierzyniec in Krakow. The article also focuses on the author’s rhetorical style and persuasive methods, as well as persuasive aspects of the communication between the writer and the reader. It becomes apparent that Rozmowa duchowna follows the patterns of seventeenth-century communication, and numerous quotations, biblical allusions, and rhetorical figures are important elements of the author’s persuasive strategy. Another matter under discussion is Bratkowic’s deep conviction in the meaningfulness of the sermons he preached and later published, his frequent emphasis on the value of teaching and benefits for the audience, and his personal attitude towards his listeners, whom he treats with respect. The research shows that the text does not lack exponents of the traditional religious style, and the rhetoric was already popularized in the Counter-Reformation era.


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