College Composition and Communication

Published by National Council of Teachers of English
Print ISSN: 0010-096X
Introduction: don't we still have to prove our humanity? 1. Literacy, language, composition, rhetoric and (not) the African American student: sick and tired of being sick and tired 2. the literacies of African American-centered rhetoric and composition: freestylin' or lookin' for a style that's free 3. "To protect and serve": African American female literacies 4. African American-centered rhetoric, composition, and literacy: theory and research 5. Composition in a fifth key: rhetorics and discourses in an African American-centered writing classroom 6. Dukin' it out with "the powers that be": centering African American-centered studies and students in the traditional curriculum
An aid and reference for writing instructors who need to read or write empirical research studies but lack extensive training in social science methodology, "Composition Research" explains eight of the most common empirical designs—case studies, ethnographies, sampling and surveys, quantitative descriptive studies, prediction and classification, true and quasi-experiments, and meta-analyses—clarifying technical issues and outlining pitfalls. For each design, the authors offer two or three composition studies as concrete illustrations and provide a full bibliography of writing studies that use it. In addition, they indicate which designs require more empirical training, providing a foundation for further work. By showing how to discriminate between strong and weak empirical studies so that conclusions are neither hastily dismissed nor blindly accepted, "Composition Research" helps writing instructors read empirical studies with more confidence and make better use of empirical studies in their own composition research and teaching. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
this document (and you had better believe it), the geometry itself is only the humblest rst entry in a hierarchical structure of acts and subsets of actions and processes and reciprocal relations within a specialized system of information processing and the relation of knowledge to the processes of human growth and psycho-social developmentto the instruction of individuals and groups. There. Then there's the business of translating geometry into those appropriate meanings, and transforming it ditto, and organizing it ditto. Now you can understand why the teacher of geometry in your local high school may be a little weak in the geometry itself and why that unfortunate girl in Pennsylvania can't punctuate. They have spent most of their time in college not actually studying things like geometry and punctuation. They have been occupied with the solemn contemplation of all the subsets of actions and processes, in all of which they were aught" by gurus to whom naked geometry and mere punctuation, of which they may well have known nothing at all, were nothing more than convenient starting places for an exercise in transcendental elaboration. The study of education isn't like the study of plants or history; it's like the study of angels.
Intended to help composition teachers take advantage of current advances in word processing technology, this booklet demonstrates how teachers can create computer lesson files for students that incorporate findings from research on effective writing instruction and allow students to develop, shape, and revise their own writing at the computer monitor. The first section of the booklet presents a brief review of current knowledge about how writing may best be taught and how the computer can be used to teach it. The second part of the booklet explores some assumptions about teaching writing with word processors, and then provides practical suggestions for selecting software, teaching word processing while teaching writing, developing computer/writing lesson files, journal writing on the computer, collaborative writing, and using the computer to search databases for research papers. The appendix includes sample lesson files. (HTH)
Designed for teachers, this collection of essays describes successful, practical, classroom-tested ideas for use with students of all ages. The collection presents contributions from 18 teaching creative writers who describe their single best writing assignment that never fails to inspire their students to tell stories, write autobiographical pieces, fiction, poetry, plays, or to become interested in wordplay and oral history. The essays in the collection offer a variety of approaches, among these: a dictation and dramatization method; the role of memory in writing; and fiction writing in English classes and across the curriculum. The collection's contributors come from all over the country and work with all types of students. Most of the essays contain examples of student work. The variety of approaches outlined in the collection is unified by the respectful, engaged, and sympathetic attitude of these writing teachers and the enthusiastic response of their students. (CR)
Nan Johnson demonstrates that after the Civil War, nonacademic or “parlor” traditions of rhetorical performance helped to sustain the icon of the white middle class woman as queen of her domestic sphere by promoting a code of rhetorical behavior for women that required the performance of conventional femininity. Through a lucid examination of the boundaries of that gendered rhetorical space—and the debate about who should occupy that space—Johnson explores the codes governing and challenging the American woman’s proper rhetorical sphere in the postbellum years. While men were learning to preach, practice law, and set political policies, women were reading elocution manuals, letter-writing handbooks, and other conduct literature. These texts reinforced the conservative message that women’s words mattered, but mattered mostly in the home. Postbellum pedagogical materials were designed to educate Americans in rhetorical skills, but they also persistently directed the American woman to the domestic sphere as her proper rhetorical space. Even though these materials appeared to urge the white middle class women to become effective speakers and writers, convention dictated that a woman’s place was at the hearthside where her rhetorical talents were to be used in counseling and instructing as a mother and wife. Aided by twenty-one illustrations, Johnson has meticulously compiled materials from historical texts no longer readily available to the general public and, in so doing, has illuminated this intersection of rhetoric and feminism in the nineteenth century. The rhetorical pedagogies designed for a postbellum popular audience represent the cultural sites where a rethinking of women’s roles becomes open controversy about how to value their words. Johnson argues this era of uneasiness about shifting gender roles and the icon of the “quiet woman” must be considered as evidence of the need for a more complete revaluing of women’s space in historical discourse.
This article examines Yale's "Awkward Squad" of basic writers between 1920 and 1960. Using archival materials that illustrate the socioeconomic conditions of this early, "pre-Shaughnessy" site of remedial writing instruction, I argue for a re-definition of basic in composition studies using local, institutional values rather than generic standards of correctness applied uniformly to all colleges and universities. Copyright © 2008 by the National Council of Teachers of English. All rights reserved.
Cites and annotates 79 scholarly articles in composition and rhetoric drawn from books, monographs, and periodicals published in 1985-86. Excludes reviews of individual books, textbooks, teaching guides (unless theoretically focused), historical surveys, and elementary-secondary education studies. Emphasizes writings on new approaches, theories, and conceptual schema. (JG)
Provides a selected, annotated bibliography of articles from books, monographs, and periodicals. Emphasizes new theories and approaches. Excludes book reviews, textbooks, classroom activities, and studies of writing in elementary or middle schools. (MM)
This piece continues the work of scholars in the field who look to uncover the ideological and textual practices of our dependence on the construct of "race" through racialized metaphors. Analyzing the rhetoric of race in "College Composition and Communication" and "College English" since 1990, I assert that our categorization of what "race" is has grown increasingly vague, despite its use as a commonplace from which to begin scholarly discussions. I argue that we must rearticulate our own racial ideologies in order to become more aware of how we use "race" persuasively for our own purposes. (Contains 1 table and 3 notes.)
Discussing the profound changes and possibilities for writing and writing instruction that are evident at this stage of the computer revolution, this book contains 17 articles which focus on implications for teaching, learning, and teacher education and highlight questions that teachers and researchers must address to realize the potential of the new technology. The book's four main sections deal with the profound influence of the new electronic age on teachers' lives, the ways computers change the responsibilities of students and teachers, the significance of hypertext for writers and teachers, and the political implications of the computer revolution for education. The articles and their authors are as follows: "Ideology, Technology, and the Future of Writing Instruction" (Nancy Kaplan); "Taking Control of the Page: Electronic Writing and Word Publishing" (Patricia Sullivan); "Computing and Collaborative Writing" (Janis Forman); "Prospects for Writers' Workstations in the Coming Decade" (Donald Ross); "Computers and Teacher Education in the 1990s and Beyond" (Kathleen Kiefer); "Computers and Instructional Strategies in the Teaching of Writing" (Elizabeth Klem and Charles Moran); "Evaluating Computer-Supported Writing" (Andrea W. Herrmann); "Hypertext and Composition Studies" (Henrietta Nickels Shirk); "Toward an Ecology of Hypermedia" (John McDaid); "Reconceiving Hypertext" (Catherine F. Smith); "The Politics of Hypertext" (Stuart Moulthrop); "Technology and Authority" (Ruth Ray and Ellen Barton); "The Politics of Writing Programs" (James Strickland); "The Equitable Teaching of Composition with Computers: A Case for Change" (Mary Louise Gomez); and "Feminism and Computers in Composition Instruction" (Emily Jessup). (SR)
This article presents the text of the author's address at the fifty-ninth annual convention of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (CCCC) in March 2008. In her address, the author picks up strands of previous Chairs' addresses and weaves them through the fabric of her remarks. What she hopes will give sheen to the fabric is her entreaty that writing teachers conceive of new ways of working together across differences in order to represent their professional selves strategically. (Contains 25 notes.)
Each chapter of this volume consists of problem-solving exercises aimed at drawing the student's attention to those thought processes that help most in judging cause and effect. Exercises offer students practice in categorizing and sequencing, making comparisons and contrasts, and forming conclusions. These skills help the student writer comprehend and analyze research and organize it into a lucid presentation
In Professional Academic Writing in the Humanities and Social Sciences, Susan Peck MacDonald tackles important and often controversial contemporary questions regarding the rhetoric of inquiry, the social construction of knowledge, and the professionalization of the academy. MacDonald argues that the academy has devoted more effort to analyzing theory and method than to analyzing its own texts. Professional texts need further attention because they not only create but are also shaped by the knowledge that is special to each discipline. Her assumption is that knowledge-making is the distinctive activity of the academy at the professional level; for that reason, it is important to examine differences in the ways the professional texts of subdisciplinary communities focus on and consolidate knowledge within their fields. Throughout the book, MacDonald stresses her conviction that academics need to do a better job of explaining their text-making axioms, clarifying their expectations of students at all levels, and monitoring their own professional practices. MacDonald’s proposals for both textual and sentence-level analysis will help academic professionals better understand how they might improve communication within their professional communities and with their students.
Student Writing presents an accessible and thought-provoking study of academic writing practices. Informed by 'composition' research from the US and 'academic literacies studies'from the UK, the book challenges current official discourse on writing as a 'skill'. Lillis argues for an approach which sees student writing as social practice. The book draws extensively on a three-year study with ten non-traditional students in higher education and their experience of academic writing. Using case-study material - including literacy history interviews, extended discussions with students about their writing of discipline specific essays, and extracts from essays - Lillis identifies the following as three significant dimensions to academic writing: Access to higher education and to its language and literacy representational resources Regulation of meaning making in academic writing rrent Desire for participation in higher education and for choices over ways of meaning in academic writing. Student Writing: access, regulation, desire raises questions about why academics write as they do, who benefits from such writing, which meanings are valued and how, on what terms 'outsiders' get to be 'insiders' and at what costs. Theresa M. Lillis is Lecturer in language and education at the Centre for Language and Communications at the Open University.
Bringing in a newspaper article to the Freshman Composition class every Monday has had positive results. A short paragraph telling why the article is significant must accompany the article. (MF)
Intended for use by college and university educators, this book contains theoretical ideas and practical activities designed to enhance and promote writing across the curriculum programs. Topics discussed in the 12 major chapters are (1) conceptual frameworks of the cross writing program; (2) journal writing across the curriculum; (3) writing and problem solving; (4) assigning and evaluating transactional writing; (5) audience and purpose in writing; (6) the poetic function of language; (7) using narration to shape experience; (8) readers and expressive language; (9) what every educator should know about reading research; (10) reconciling readers and texts; (11) peer critiques, teacher student conferences, and essay evaluation as a means of responding to student writing; and (12) the role of the writing laboratory. A concluding chapter provides a select bibliography on language and learning across the curriculum. (FL)
Brenton D. Faber’s spirited account of an academic consultant’s journey through banks, ghost towns, cemeteries, schools, and political campaigns explores the tenuous relationships between cultural narratives and organizational change. Blending Faber’s firsthand experiences in the study and implementation of change with theoretical discussions of identity, agency, structure, and resistance within contexts of change, this innovative book is among the first such communications studies to profile a scholar who is also a full participant in the projects. Drawing on theories of Michel Foucault, Anthony Giddens, and Pierre Bourdieu, Faber notes that change takes place in the realm of narrative, in the stories people tell. Faber argues that an organization’s identity is created through internal stories. When the organization’s internal stories are consistent with its external stories, the organization’s identity is consistent and productive. When internal stories contradict the external stories, however, the organization’s identity becomes discordant. Change is the process of realigning an organization’s discordant narratives. Faber discusses the case studies of a change management plan he wrote for a city-owned cemetery, a cultural change project he created for a downtown trade school, and a political campaign he assisted that focused on creating social change. He also includes detailed reflections on practical ways academics can become more involved in their communities as agents of progressive social change. Featuring six illustrations, Faber’s unique study demonstrates in both style and substance how stories work as agents of change.
This article presents the concept of heritage literacy, a decision-making process by which people adopt, adapt, or alienate themselves from tools and literacies passed on between generations of people. In an auto-ethnographic study, four generations of a single family and Amish participants from the surrounding community were interviewed to explore the concept.
The 12 essays in this collection address the concerns of basic writing teachers and those who teach basic writing teachers. The first essay discusses the characteristics of the low achieving college students who require basic writing instruction and argues for basic writing courses that are based upon a thorough understanding of students' nature and needs, while the second essay focuses on the composing process used by some basic writers and on the differences between this process and the composing process of more skilled writers. The following four essays contain descriptions of a basic writing program at a community college, the programs designed for use by the member schools of the Western North Carolina Consortium, a writing laboratory, and an interdisciplinary writing program at Boston University. The seventh essay discusses writing assessment and recommends the use of a carefully constructed objective test of students' knowledge of writing skills, while the eighth essay reviews the types of tests basic writing teachers and administrators may use and the purposes of each. The ninth essay discusses the training of teachers of basic writing and the tenth addresses staffing and operating peer-tutoring writing centers. The eleventh essay reviews research in the area of writing and the final essay provides a selected bibliography of composition and basic writing. (FL)
This book, which is a revised version of a book first published in 1962, examines the present state of the field of adult education (AE) by examining its origins and patterns of growth. Part 1, which traces the emergence of institutions for the education of adults, covers the following topics: colonial foundations and antecedents in 1600-1779 (social setting and early beginnings of education); the nation's growth and its quest for diffusion of knowledge in 1780-1865 (social setting, education of democratic citizens, growth/diffusion of knowledge, shaping of the national education system, evening schools, colleges/universities); the maturation of a nation and multiplication of its AE institutions in 1866-1920; and development of institutions for education of adults, 1921-1961. Discussed in part 2 are the development of coordinative organizations within segments of the field and efforts to establish a national organization for AE, 1924-1961. Part 3 reviews the characteristics and dynamics of AE as a field and speculates on its future. Presented in part 4 are observations on developments in the following aspects of AE from 1961-1976: institutional developments; national organization and coordination; characteristics of the field; and the future of AE. Three bibliographies contain 634 references. (MN)
This book discusses various approaches to the teaching of composition from classical and contemporary sources. It is intended to give a comprehensive coverage of the various kinds of oral and written themes students are expected to create in college and high school. The book can be used as a basic text in college composition and rhetoric, for in-service courses for college freshmen composition teaching assistants, and for training student teachers at the secondary and primary levels. Each chapter considers the nature, logic, organization, and style of the type of discourse involved. The first chapter discusses discourse in general and its relation to English; subsequent chapters discuss the aims of discourse, reference discourse, persuasive discourse, literary discourse, and expressive discourse. Each chapter contains a bibliography and selections of discourse which are analyzed in detail. An appendix is devoted to an example of reference discourse, and an index is also provided. (Author/DI)
Defining a rhetoric as a social invention arising out of a particular time, place, and set of circumstances, Berlin notes that “no rhetoric—not Plato’s or Aris­totle’s or Quintilian’s or Perelman’s—is permanent.” At any given time several rhetorics vie for supremacy, with each attracting adherents representing vari­ous views of reality expressed through a rhetoric. Traditionally rhetoric has been seen as based on four interacting elements: “re­ality, writer or speaker, audience, and language.” As emphasis shifts from one element to another, or as the interaction between elements changes, or as the def­initions of the elements change, rhetoric changes. This alters prevailing views on such important questions as what is ap­pearance, what is reality. In this interpretive study Berlin classi­fies the three 19th-century rhetorics as classical, psychological-epistemological, and romantic, a uniquely American development growing out of the transcen­dental movement. In each case studying the rhetoric provides insight into society and the beliefs of the people.
A study of the Ph.D., financed by the Danforth Foundation and conducted by the Modern Language Association's Advisory Committee for the Ph.D., is based on responses to 3,623 questionnaires sent to department chairmen, directors of graduate study, graduate teachers, and recent recipients of the Ph.D. in English and American literature. Two chapters discuss both the history of graduate departments of English before 1900 and the present problems, related mainly to the increasing shortage of fully trained English teachers. Six chapters based on the data collected describe the present situation--(1) the personnel of English departments, (2) the recruiting and admission of doctoral candidates, (3) the initial training of these candidates, (4) the doctoral dissertation, (5) the professional career and its problems, and (6) the purpose of doctoral training. In conclusion 44 recommendations are made. Appendixes include extensive tables of data and the four questionnaires used. (BN)
This volume, the fourth in a series, brings together the conversations of the profession that were explored during the 1993 and 1994 Summer Institute for Teachers of Literature. This anthology of essays considers what "American literature" is and how definitions of this category affect teaching practices. The essays argue for the recovery of often overlooked writers and works such as slave narratives, works by Native Americans, 19th-century women regionalists, and African-American, Asian-American, Caribbean, and Latino literature. Issues of pedagogy are also explored, i.e., current debates over canon formation, ethnicity, and representation. Essays and their authors are: (1) "Not Born on the Fourth of July: Cultural Differences and American Studies" (Gregory S. Jay); (2) "'Not in the Least American': Nineteenth-Century Literary Regionalism as UnAmerican Literature" (Judith Fetterley); (3) "Transcendentalism Then and Now: Towards a Dialogic Theory and Praxis of Multicultural U.S. Literature" (AnaLouise Keating); (4) "A Fusion of Cultures: The Complexities of the Caribbean Character in Literature" (Elizabeth Nunez); (5) "Teaching and Learning across Cultures: The Literature Classroom as a Site for Cultural Transactions" (Joyce C. Harte); (6) "Remembering as Resistance in the Literature of Women of Color" (Brenda M. Greene); (7) "Crossing Cultural Boundaries with Leslie Marmon Silko's 'Ceremony'" (Robert O'Brien Hokanson); (8) "Mirrors, Windows, and Prisms: Teaching Asian American Literature in the P.R.C. and the U.S.A." (Mary Louise Buley-Meissner); (9) "Father Martinez: Folk Hero or Dangerous Infidel? Rereading Willa Cather's 'Death Comes for the Archbishop'" (Judith Beth Cohen); (10) "Negotiating Difference: Teaching Multicultural Literature" (Patricia Bizzell); (11) "Teaching American Literature as Cultural Encounter: Models for Organizing the Introductory Course" (Marjorie Pryse); (12) "But, Is It Good Enough to Teach?" (Frances Smith Foster); (13) "Teaching the Rhetoric of Race: A Rhetorical Approach to Multicultural Pedagogy" (John Alberti); (14) "Homeless in the Golden Land: Joan Didion's Regionalism" (Louise Z. Smith); (15) "Beyond 'Beyond the Cultural Wars': Students Teaching Themselves the Conflicts" (James S. Laughlin); and (16) "Teaching Others: A Cautionary Tale" (Joseph F. Trimmer). (NKA)
The major aim of this book is to teach present or prospective teachers how to recognize the linguistic and cultural differences of their students. The essays selected for the anthology attempt to show how to make education more meaningful for the student by upgrading teachers' attitudes about minority cultures, developing a sensitivity to behavioral differences, achieving a perspective of praise, and striving to teach by recognizing and getting beyond one's own sense of cultural bias. Articles are grouped in these areas: (1) the problem, (2) cultures in education, (3) language, (4) sociolinguistics, (5) Black English, and (6) applications. An index is provided. (Author/RL)
"Replete with a thick texture of scholarly and literary allusions and corollary information." --Choice This unique collection examines - against a rich historical background - the complex contributions that women have made to composition and rhetoric in American education. Contributors: Evelyn Ashton-Jones, Patricia Bizzell, Lillian Bridwell-Bowles, Robert J. Connors, Mary Kay Crouch, David Franke, Cinthia Gannett, Myrna Harrienger, Janice Hays, Emily Jessup (Decker), Sara Dalmas Jonsberg, Christine Holm Kline, Marion Lardner, Janice M. Lauer, Mitzi Myers, Jacqueline Jones Royster, Edward L. Rocklin, Maria Salgado, Mary M. Salibrici, and Nancy Sommers. Louise Wetherbee Phelps is Professor of Writing and English and former director of the Writing Program at Syracuse University. Janet Emig is Professor Emerita of English Education at Rutgers University.
"Jennifer Sinor articulates complex and intriguing arguments about the 'making of ordinary writing' in a style that is both imminently accessible and yet far from 'ordinary.'The strategies Sinor employs to draw the reader toward an understanding of one text, her great-great-great-aunt's diary, and thus on to a more sophisticated appreciation of a much larger range of ordinary if often ephemeral pieces of writing, are unconventional and convincing."--Margaret Brady, University of Utah ". . . this is quite simply a beautifully written book, powerful and lyrical, the kind of book one reads not to rest easy but to trouble received categories and definitions."--Kathryn T. Flannery, University of Pittsburgh ". . . intimate and intriguing examination of the type of journal usually intended for, and valued solely by, its writer. . . . This unconventional approach to an everyday account should be especially valued by anyone who appreciates a fresh and revealing perspective on the ostensibly commonplace and mundane."--Virginia Quarterly Review Exciting and beautifully crafted, The Extraordinary Work of Ordinary Writing provides an entirely new way of viewing "ordinary writing," the everyday writing we typically ignore or dismiss. It takes as its center the diary of Jennifer Sinor's great-great-great-aunt Annie Ray, a woman who homesteaded in the Dakotas in the late nineteenth century. Diaries such as this have long been ignored by scholars, who prefer instead to focus on diaries with literary features. Reading diaries through this lens gives privileged status to those that are coherently crafted and ignores the very diaries that define the form through their relentless inscription of dailiness. Annie Ray's diary is not literary. By considering her ordinary writing as a site of complex and strategic negotiations among the writer, the form of writing, and dominant cultural scripts, Sinor makes visible the extraordinary work of the ordinary writer and the sophistication of these texts. In providing a way to read diaries outside the limits and conventions of literature, she challenges our approaches to other texts as well. Furthermore, because ordinary writing is not crafted for aesthetic reception (in contrast to autobiography proper, memoirs, and literary diaries), it is a productive site for investigating how both writing and culture get made every day. The book is truly original in its form: nontraditional, storied, creative. Sinor, an accomplished creative writer, includes her own memories as extended metaphors in partnership with critical texts along with excerpts from her aunt's diary. The Extraordinary Work of Ordinary Writing will be a fascinating text for students of creative writing as well as of women's studies and diaries. Jennifer Sinor is assistant professor of English at Utah State University.
Presents annotations of materials representing the range of current cross-disciplinary theories and research connecting speaking and writing. Topics range from cognitive psychology, linguistics, and rhetoric to learning theory. (HTH)
This article represents stories of eight former composition students, Appalachian working class women, who move from silence in the academy to voice in their communities to a more self-confident identity without destroying the community from which they came. The author argues that compositionists need to consider the two-edged nature of literacy; how literacy serves first generation, nontraditional learners; the intergenerational effects of literacy; the importance of expressivist writing as a transition into academic literacy; and the importance of region and class in multicultural conversations.
In this article, the author demonstrated how recent histories relied primarily on previous accounts and one textbook to characterize George Pierce Baker's work. This narrow assessment of "The Principles of Argumentation" limits one's understanding of his contribution to argumentation theory and pedagogy. Similarly, one has seen the need for care when quoting and using different editions of his text. In addition, the author has argued that an analysis of any textbook is not enough to understand its potential use in the classroom. (Contains 20 notes.)
This book focuses on how to teach, analyze, and assess arguments. The book merges current thinking on argumentation from the fields of composition, rhetoric, speech, logic, and critical thinking. Noting that teaching students how to argue is largely the responsibility of writing and speech teachers, this book builds the case for teachers' learning argumentation and how to teach it by showing how pervasive arguments are, even in writing that is supposedly expository or descriptive in nature. Drawing on the work of Habermas, Heidegger, Perelman, Dewey, and Toulmin to build a theoretical foundation for its practices, the book nevertheless keeps "theory talk" to a minimum and explains concepts related to logic and argumentation clearly and fully. Designed for preparing writing teachers at both high school and college levels, the book uses an accessible, nontechnical style. It combines a modern version of classical rhetoric's stasis theory with the Toulmin model of argument and the study of argumentative fallacies from informal logic. The book concludes with a pair of appendixes that delve into the more technical material about argument diagramming and the syllogism. Contains seven pages of references. (NKA)
This book has been written for those who would improve their reading of prose argumentation through practice in analyzing essays, speeches, and learned articles. Part I, "Structural Rhetoric," sets forth the structural relationship of the parts of an argument. Part II, "Textural Rhetoric," describes alterations in the interior organization of rhetoric--the ways of manipulating language through figures of speech and various logical devices to give an individual point of view. Part III, "Good and Bad Rhetoric," covers some of the common errors in defective argumentation and analyzes in detail a defective essay. "Reportorial Writing," Part IV, discusses the differences between argumentation and the psuedo-argumentative reporting found in many journals and magazines; samples of reportorial writing are analyzed in detail. A glossary of terms used in argumentative rhetoric is appended. (JM)
Reacting to the tradition which has reduced rhetorics to summaries of rules and principles, this book presupposes that Plato's "Phaedrus," Aristotle's "Rhetoric," and Cicero's "De Oratore" cannot be reduced to summary information or pedagogical advice. The book considers that these works, on the contrary, along with later renegade theories of rhetoric, identify rhetoric with inconclusiveness and ambiguity. Divided into three chapters and an afterword, the book begins with a discussion of the major figures of classical rhetoric--Plato, Aristotle, and Cicero--asserting that they define and demonstrate rhetoric as the elaboration of ambiguity. The second chapter examines the rhetorics of Michel de Montaigne, Giambattista Vico, and David Hume, noting that although they had only slight influence in the history of rhetoric, they continued the spirit of questing and ambiguity by resisting a positivistic epistemology that exalted knowledge-as-information. Finally, the third chapter discusses Hugh Blair's theory of reading and the most radical and controversial 19th century challenges to his "plain style" prescriptions--George Byron's "Don Juan" and Thomas DeQuincey's essays on rhetoric and style. The afterword considers the modern critical theories of Kenneth Burke, Clifford Geertz, Paul Feyerabend, and Jacques Derrida, and presents some general propositions, or "lessons of history," for teachers of rhetoric. (Four pages of notes and 104 references are appended.) (MM)
Berthoff defends her textbook "Forming/Thinking/Writing," stating that is is devoted to providing opportunities for students to discover their own minds in action, without "compartmentalizing" the writing process, as Gebhardt suggests. (HTH)
The product of a course at the University of Pittsburgh, this book offers educators the opportunity to see how the acts of reading, writing, and thinking that characterize work in academia appear to those students who lack adequate preparation for such work--namely, basic writers. The introduction to the book presents an overview of the course and the versions of reading and writing that hold it together. The second part, "Teaching Reading and Writing," includes the course materials, presented in the exact order in which they were designed for distribution to students in the course, and a short chapter on how they are used. The final part of the book, "Discerning Principles," includes essays that bring together some of the writing and collaborative research that has been done with reference to the course. The essays in this part do not defend or explain a curriculum, but examine basic issues and problems in composition, including revision, editing, invention, reading, and interpretation. (JD)
An attempt is made in this book to make teachers aware of some informal techniques which can be used to diagnose strengths and weaknesses in the language arts abilities of students. The techniques are economical in the use of time but are fairly comprehensive in the information gathered. They have been tested and refined by more than 1,000 preservice teachers working with children in a tutorial situation over a period of ten years. Part one begins with a summary of basic information in the language arts. The chapters which follow present comprehensive discussions on oral language, listening, handwriting, spelling, and written language. Part two presents diagnostic techniques in the language arts, with specific diagnostic check sheets in oral language, spelling, handwriting, and written language. Part three deals with instructional techniques in the language arts and includes discussions on managing instruction and on implementation of diagnostic teaching, as well as case studies which provide better understanding of diagnosis, program planning, individualization of instruction, and evaluation of both the program and the teachers. An appendix presents a list of materials and equipment. (LJR)
Intended to promote insights into the composing process as a way of communicating with words, this book proposes ways to increase language sensitivity through a three-stage communication program: evoking visions through speech, fashioning revisions in writing, and sharing visions by reading. The first two chapters explain the stages of the program and offer suggestions for recognizing creativity in students' writing and for organizing time, space, and materials for inclass composition. Chapters 3, 4, and 5 provide a detailed look at the first stage in the program and offer suggestions for starting the composing process, using students' experiences to motivate their speaking and writing, and speaking and writing to shape students' experiences. Chapters 6 through 10 deal with the second stage of the communication program and offer suggestions for moving students from feeling to language and from language to invented form, for introducing different kinds of poetry and prose forms, and for criticizing students' work effectively. Chapter 11 details the third stage of the program and contains ideas for sharing student work with a variety of audiences. Appendixes contain discussions of the nature of composition, the value of composition, and ways to overcome blocks to communication and composition. (FL)
When should I change my mind? What can I believe and what must I doubt? In this new "philosophy of good reasons" Wayne C. Booth exposes five dogmas of modernism that have too often inhibited efforts to answer these questions. Modern dogmas teach that "you cannot reason about values" and that "the job of thought is to doubt whatever can be doubted," and they leave those who accept them crippled in their efforts to think and talk together about whatever concerns them most. They have willed upon us a "befouled rhetorical climate" in which people are driven to two self-destructive extremes—defenders of reason becoming confined to ever narrower notions of logical or experimental proof and defenders of "values" becoming more and more irresponsible in trying to defend the heart, the gut, or the gonads. Booth traces the consequences of modernist assumptions through a wide range of inquiry and action: in politics, art, music, literature, and in personal efforts to find "identity" or a "self." In casting doubt on systematic doubt, the author finds that the dogmas are being questioned in almost every modern discipline. Suggesting that they be replaced with a rhetoric of "systematic assent," Booth discovers a vast, neglected reservoir of "good reasons"—many of them known to classical students of rhetoric, some still to be explored. These "good reasons" are here restored to intellectual respectability, suggesting the possibility of widespread new inquiry, in all fields, into the question, "When should I change my mind?"
This book describes a procedure for scoring writing samples with holistic methods and for analyzing the results with methods from primary trait scoring, analytical scoring, and discourse scoring. Following an introduction, the four chapters in the book focus on (1) the selection of topics to be used in a writing assessment, (2) the format for giving directions to students taking the writing assessment, (3) the scoring of the students' work, and (4) the preparation of the report on the overall assessment. A list of references is included. (RL)
Creative writing workshops typically feature a gag rule and emphasize purported flaws. This structure limits students' meaningful engagement with each other's work; positions the author as inherently flawed; and positions other participants as authority figures, passing judgment without articulating their aesthetic standards. I propose an alternative structure in which authors lead discussion; the work is treated not as inherently flawed but as "in process"; and discussants articulate their expectations about "good" writing rather than allowing them to function as unspoken norms. (Contains 5 notes.)
What happens when teachers share power with students? In this profound book, Ira Shor—the inventor of critical pedagogy in the United States—relates the story of an experiment that nearly went out of control. Shor provides the reader with a reenactment of one semester that shows what really can happen when one applies the theory and democratizes the classroom. This is the story of one class in which Shor tried to fully share with his students control of the curriculum and of the classroom. After twenty years of practicing critical teaching, he unexpectedly found himself faced with a student uprising that threatened the very possibility of learning. How Shor resolves these problems, while remaining true to his commitment to power-sharing and radical pedagogy, is the crux of the book. Unconventional in both form and substance, this deeply personal work weaves together student voices and thick descriptions of classroom experience with pedagogical theory to illuminate the power relations that must be negotiated if true learning is to take place.
This article places responses received from an open-ended survey of graduate students and faculty in dialogue with published commentary on the scope of composition studies as a discipline to explore three interrelated disciplinary dilemmas: the "pedagogical imperative," the "theory-practice split," and the increasingly complicated relationship between "rhetoric" and "composition" as our field's titular terms. (Contains 11 notes.)
Suggests several types of case studies writing teachers can conduct, using their own writing, which provide the materials they need for worthwhile observation. (DD)
Starting a course by asking students to write the worst papers possible alerts them to common faults and weaknesses.
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Linda Flower
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