Covering a wide range of public discourse from 2003 to 2010 about CIA agent Valerie Plame,this essay contributes a novel rhetorical theory of secrets. By contrast to other critiques of the Bush-era secrecy that focus on policies the administration kept concealed from the public, I suggest that rhetoric is the means by which subjects figure the secret, to be understood as knowledge in the fact that the subject cannot know. To make this argument, I draw on the theoretical tools of psychoanalysis and the rhetorical tropes of repetition, caesura, and synecdoche.
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©2015,National Communication Association.
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- Valerie Plame