Aristotle’s Concept of Communication

The first known scholar who wrote about communication, though not directly, is Aristotle (384-322 BC). In his famous books, ‘Rhetoric’, Aristotle called the study of communication as ‘rhetoric’ and elaborated three elements within the process. According to him, communication process composed of a speaker, a message and a listener. Person at the end of the communication process holds the key to whether or not communication takes place.
In Aristotle’s point of view,
• Communication is purposive;
• It is based on the intention of affecting others;
• Its effects can be evaluated and measured in terms of effect, and also in terms of the truth;
• Rhetoric considers not only what is or was, but also what might be.
To his communicators need to develop five skills:
• Invention - ability to generate ideas;
• Disposition - ability to organize ideas;
Style - use of appropriate language;
• Memory - ability to recall facts & ideas;
• Delivery - use of voice and gestures.
From his observations, later scholars developed a model of communication using the elements he mentioned.
Aristole’s Model of Communication
The model consists of four visible elements: Speaker or receiver, speech or message, audience or receiver(s) and effect of communication. And, context or occasion of the communication covers all the elements indicating that it has influence on other four elements.