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Derridean notions of rhetoric’s pharmacological influence in writing and the Nietzschean description of poetic’s creative and rhetorical power have not been traditionally acknowledged in the field of composition. This dissertation shows that under Derridean and Nietzschean paradigms, rhetoric and poetics are theoretically inseparable. Viewing rhetoric and poetics as one fluid process holds value for first-year writing: a revised conception of poetic rhetoric challenges traditional humanistic distinctions that offer limited understandings of the roles that rhetoric and poetics play in the formation of meaning. I argue further for a new genre of writing, the poetically rhetorical essay, which would operate paralogically and resist humanist approaches to writing. Poetic rhetoric is best envisioned in the electronic writing environment where the potential within posthumanism and hypertexts provides an ideal framework for the qualities in writing that are at once full of possible meaning and empty of coherent truth.