The article is now available in the current issue special issue of Flusser Studies. In it, I argue for the value of examining Flusser’s rhetorical devices, or patterns, the ways he characteristically sets about persuading his reader. I’ve focussed on “The Gesture of Smoking a Pipe” as an example, and proposed that it exhibits the characteristic features of protreptic writing, “protreptic” being a term I first came across in Lambert Wiesing’s book The Philosophy of Perception (London: Bloomsbury 2014). It isn’t really a a genre or form — more like an intention, but it includes its reader in a kind of tacit dialogue with the author.
This approach to Flusser’s writing opens questions about the continuity of such patterns across his very diverse work, ranging from expository essays to autobiography, lecures and fiction — and letters. it also gives a basis for comparison to other acknowledged protreptic writers, such as Plato, Aristotle or Augustine.