edited by Christine Farris & Chris M. Anson Utah State University Press, 1998 Library of Congress PE1404.U53 1998 | Dewey Decimal 808.04207
Few composition scholars two decades ago would have imagined the rate at which their field is now developing, expanding beyond its boundaries, creating new alliances, and locating new sites for research and generation of knowledge. In their introduction to this volume, Farris and Anson argue that, faced with a welter of competing models, compositionists too quickly dichotomize and dismiss.
The contributors to Under Construction, therefore, address themselves to the need for commerce among competing visions of the field. They represent diverse settings and distinct points of view, but their over-riding interest is in promoting a view of the field that values interaction and mutual development above dogmatics and isolation.
Understanding Scientific Prose
Edited by Jack Selzer University of Wisconsin Press, 1993 Library of Congress QH371.G6843U53 1993 | Dewey Decimal 808.0665
Examining science as a rhetorical enterprise, this book seizes upon one scientific essay—"The Spandrels of San Marco and the Panglossian Paradigm: A Critique of the Adaptationist Programme"—and probes it from many angles. Written by prominent evolutionary theorists Stephen Jay Gould and Richard C. Lewontin and first published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society of London in 1979, the "Spandrels" article is both serious science and vivid prose. Applying methods inspired by Louis Althusser, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Ferdinand de Saussure, and others, the contributors employ a range of interpretive strategies. Stephen Jay Gould adds his own comments, and the full text of the essay "Spandrels" is reproduced as an appendix. Applying methods inspired by Louis Althusser, Michel Foucault, Jacques Derrida, Ferdinand de Saussure, and others, the contributors employ a range of interpretive strategies. Stephen Jay Gould adds his own comments, and the full text of the essay "Spandrels" is reproduced as an appendix.
Previously unpublished writings by and about Kenneth Burke plus essays by such Burkean luminaries as Wayne C. Booth, William H. Rueckert, Robert Wess, Thomas Carmichael, and Michael Feehan make the publication of Unending Conversations a significant event in the field of Burke studies and in the wider field of literary criticism and theory.
Editors Greig Henderson and David Cratis Williams have divided their material into three parts: “Dialectics of Expression, Communication, and Transcendence,” “Criticism, Symbolicity, and Tropology,” and “Transcendence and the Theological Motive.”
In the first part, Williams’s textual introduction and Rueckert’s essay analyze the genesis and composition of Burke’s A Symbolic of Motives and Poetics, Dramatistically Considered. Henderson opens part two by showing how these two essays’ concerns with literary form hearken back to Burke’s first book of criticism, Counter-Statement.
Thomas Carmichael discusses Burke’s relationship to thinkers such as Paul de Man, Jacques Derrida, Stanley Fish, Fredric Jameson, Jean-François Lyotard, and Richard Rorty. Wess analyzes the relation between Burke’s dramatistic pentad of act, agent, scene, agency, and purpose and his four master tropes—metaphor, metonymy, synecdoche, and irony.
In the third part, Booth mines his unpublished correspondence with Burke to demonstrate that Burke is a coy theologian. Michael Feehan discusses Burke’s revelation in a 1983 interview that rather than rebounding from a naive kind of Marxism in Permanence and Change, he was rebounding from what he had “learned as a Christian Scientist.”
Until quite recently, Asian American literary criticism had little to do with form. Instead, the tendency was to bind the literary tradition to identity formation. For Elda Tsou, however, the distinctions of ethnic writing extend beyond such facile referential practices to incorporate form and aesthetics.
In Unquiet Tropes, Tsou reconceptualizes the literature as a set of highly particular classical rhetorical tropes including antanaclasis, rhetorical question, apophasis, catachresis, and allegory. Looking at five canonical works—Aiiieeeee!, No-No Boy, China Men, Blu’s Hanging, and Native Speaker—Tsou shows how these texts use figurative means to confront the problem of race. She also explores how traces of Asian American history live on through these figures.
Each case study in Unquiet Tropes considers a different scenario—defiance, coercion, necessity, error, and deceit—to show how literary representation from the 1950s through 1997 has responded to a specific political condition.
What forces bring ordinary people together in public to make their voices heard? What means do they use to break through impediments to democratic participation? Unruly Rhetorics is a collection of essays from scholars in rhetoric, communication, and writing studies inquiring into conditions for activism, political protest, and public assembly. An introduction drawing on Jacques Rancière and Judith Butler explores the conditions under which civil discourse cannot adequately redress suffering or injustice. The essays offer analyses of “unruliness” in case studies from both twenty-first-century and historical sites of social-justice protest. The collection concludes with an afterword highlighting and inviting further exploration of the ethical, political, and pedagogical questions unruly rhetorics raise. Examining multiple modes of expression – embodied, print, digital, and sonic – Unruly Rhetorics points to the possibility that unruliness, more than just one of many rhetorical strategies within political activity, is constitutive of the political itself.
In our talkative Western culture, speech is synonymous with authority and influence while silence is frequently misheard as passive agreement when it often signifies much more. In her groundbreaking exploration of silence as a significant rhetorical art, Cheryl Glenn articulates the ways in which tactical silence can be as expressive and strategic an instrument of human communication as speech itself.
Drawing from linguistics, phenomenology, feminist studies, anthropology, ethnic studies, and literary analysis, Unspoken: A Rhetoric of Silence theorizes both a cartography and grammar of silence. By mapping the range of spaces silence inhabits, Glenn offers a new interpretation of its complex variations and uses.
Glenn contextualizes the rhetoric of silence by focusing on selected contemporary examples. Listening to silence and voice as gendered positions, she analyzes the highly politicized silences and words of a procession of figures she refers to as “all the President’s women,” including Anita Hill, Lani Guiner, Gennifer Flowers, and Chelsea Clinton. She also turns an investigative ear to the cultural taciturnity attributed to various Native American groups—Navajo, Apache, Hopi, and Pueblo—and its true meaning. Through these examples, Glenn reinforces the rhetorical contributions of the unspoken, codifying silence as a rhetorical device with the potential to deploy, defer, and defeat power.
Unspoken concludes by suggesting opportunities for further research into silence and silencing, including music, religion, deaf communities, cross-cultural communication, and the circulation of silence as a creative resource within the college classroom and for college writers.
As atrocity has become characteristic of modern history, testimonial writing has become a major twentieth-century genre. Untimely Interventions relates testimonial writing, or witnessing, to the cultural situation of aftermath, exploring ways in which a culture can be haunted by its own history.
Ross Chambers argues that culture produces itself as civilized by denying the forms of collective violence and other traumatic experience that it cannot control. In the context of such denial, personal accounts of collective disaster can function as a form of counter-denial. By investigating a range of writing on AIDS, the First World War, and the Holocaust, Chambers shows how such writing produces a rhetorical effect of haunting, as it seeks to describe the reality of those experiences culture renders unspeakable.
Ross Chambers is Professor of Romance Languages at the University of Michigan. His other books includeFacing It: AIDS Diaries and the Death of the Author.
Update Culture and the Afterlife of Digital Writing explores “neglected circulatory writing processes” to better understand why and how digital writers compose, revise, and deliver arguments that undergo sometimes constant revision. John R. Gallagher also looks at how digital writers respond to comments, develop a brand, and evolve their arguments—all post-publication.
With the advent of easy-to-use websites, ordinary people have become internet writers, disseminating their texts to large audiences. Social media sites enable writers’ audiences to communicate back to the them, instantly and often. Even professional writers work within interfaces that place comments adjacent to their text, privileging the audience’s voice. Thus, writers face the prospect of attending to their writing after they deliver their initial arguments. Update Culture and the Afterlife of Digital Writing describes the conditions that encourage “published” texts to be revisited. It demonstrates—through forty case studies of Amazon reviewers, redditors, and established journalists—how writers consider the timing, attention, and management of their writing under these ever-evolving conditions.
Online culture, from social media to blog posts, requires a responsiveness to readers that is rarely duplicated in print and requires writers to consistently reread, edit, and update texts, a process often invisible to readers. This book takes questions of circulation online and shows, via interviews with both writers and participatory audience members, that writing studies must contend with writing’s afterlife. It will be of interest to researchers, scholars, and students of writing studies and the fields of rhetoric, communication, education, technical communication, digital writing, and social media, as well as all content creators interested in learning how to create more effective posts, comments, replies, and reviews.
In Upsetting Composition Commonplaces, Ian Barnard argues that composition still retains the bulk of instructional practices that were used in the decades before poststructuralist theory discredited them. While acknowledging that some of the foundational insights of poststructuralist theory can be difficult to translate to the classroom, Barnard upends several especially intransigent tenets that continue to influence the teaching of writing and how students are encouraged to understand writing.
Using six major principles of writing classrooms and textbooks—clarity, intent, voice, ethnography, audience, and objectivity—Barnard looks at the implications of poststructuralist theory for pedagogy. While suggesting some evocative poststructuralist pedagogical practices, the author focuses on diagnosing the fault lines of composition's refusal of poststructuralism rather than on providing "solutions” in the form of teaching templates.
Upsetting Composition Commonplaces addresses the need to more effectively engage in poststructuralist concepts in composition in an accessible and engaging voice that will advance the conversation about relations between the theory and teaching of writing.