An Axiological Reinterpretation of I. A. Richards's Theory of Communication and its Application to the Study of Compliance‐Gaining

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This article examines the thinking of I. A. Richards concerning the relationship between communication and values. It is argued that Richards should not be viewed simply as a narrow positivist, but as an axiologically oriented theorist of rhetoric and communication. The analysis reveals how the concept of “choice” unites the elements within Richards's theory of value, and integrates his theory of value with his theory of communication. This axiological perspective on Richards is then applied to contemporary research on compliance‐gaining. As a result, compliance‐gaining is seen as a value‐laden, symbolic, communication process. A number of productive directions for future compliance‐gaining research are outlined.

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Southern Speech Communication Journal, v. 53, issue 2, p. 121-139