Lloyd Bitzer (born 1931, Wapakoneta, Ohio, died October 13, 2016, Verona, Wisconsin) was an American rhetorician. In 1962, Lloyd Bitzer received his doctorate from the University of Iowa. He held the title of Associate Professor of speech at the University of Wisconsin-Madison in the early 1960s. He continued to be a professor at the institution in the school of Rhetoric, Politics, and Culture until 1994, when he retired. Bitzer was involved with many organizations including the National Communications Association and the National Development Project in Rhetoric. In 1968, Bitzer published his famous theory of situational rhetoric.
Bitzer's Rhetorical Situation is an extremely influential concept in the field of rhetoric. It made a lot of foreground for the field of study and it is still taught in college classrooms today. Marilyn Young has characterized him as "one of the most respected rhetoricians of the latter half of the twentieth century."
Bitzer's theoretical model of the rhetorical situation is made up of three elements: an exigence, an audience, and constraints.