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September 30, 2009

Engaging Controversies

With this provocative series of discussions, the Center for Writing's Teaching with Writing program offers University of Minnesota faculty members, TAs, and other instructors a venue for discussing controversial issues related to teaching with writing. Here we focus on teasing out tangled and difficult teaching issues rather than providing strategies and solutions. To help frame discussions, we will send registrants one or two short articles in advance.

Friday, October 2: what counts as "writing"?
Friday, November 6: i write, therefore i learn?
Friday, December 4: the erosion of writing skills

Discussions are from 9-10:30am in Nolte 125.

For more information, visit http://writing.umn.edu/tww/engaging/engaging.htm.

September 14, 2009

RSA Call for Proposals due Friday, Sept. 18th

Call for Proposals
14th Biennial Conference
May 28-31, 2010
The Minneapolis Marriott City Center
Minneapolis, Minnesota
Conference Theme

"I have often and seriously debated with myself whether men and communities have received more good or evil from oratory and a consuming devotion to eloquence."

"But put identification and division ambiguously together, so that you cannot know for certain just where one ends and the other begins, and you have the characteristic invitation to rhetoric."
Kenneth Burke

In the de Inventione , Cicero recognizes two opposing dimensions of rhetoric, the one divisive and conflictive, the other irenic and unifying. Kenneth Burke, in characteristic fashion, converts this either/or into a both/and. For him, rhetoric simultaneously divides and unifies, separates as it identifies and dwells most naturally in the in-between space where sameness and difference ambiguously embrace one another. The theme of our conference calls these distinctions and confusions to mind. It asks, among many other things: Does rhetoric civilize? Or does it repress and control? Or both? Does it express the self? Or dissolve it into a cultural miasma? What is the price of community gained through the language of social control? What is the limit of dissent expressed through the language of difference and personal liberation? Where do diversity and sameness meet on the human tongue and in the human condition?

We welcome any and all papers that touch on this theme or that redefine it or reconstruct it or deconstruct it. We also welcome all other papers that deal with any aspect of rhetorical scholarship-historical, theoretical, critical, pedagogical, sophistical or Platonic, Aristotelian or Foucaultian. All are welcome to meet in Minneapolis, a space between the coasts, and a place where nice is the norm, but where nastiness has left it as the only spot in the U.S. where the number of senators has equaled the number of governors for half a year. Celebrate the confusion and the order of Minnesota and of the rhetorical world to which it belongs. Join us at RSA in May.

Proposals for sessions, special events, and individual presentations - due by September 18, 2009 - must be submitted electronically as a Word document. Instruction for submitting abstracts are indicated below. You may also go to http://rhetoricsociety.org for directions. There you will also find information (and regular updates) on housing, special features, and other aspects of RSA 2010.

Follow this link to register online for your RSA 2010 abstract submission: https://rhetoric.conference-services.net/authorlogin.asp?conferenceID=1786&language=en-uk

* Click on "Abstract Submission"

* You must register through the submission system by creating a user name (your email address) and password. This will be your permanent login information.

* Once you have done this, you can log in with your email address and password and begin the process of submitting your conference proposal(s).

* Follow the prompts on the screen by filling in the appropriate information and uploading your proposal.

Shortly after you complete the abstract submission, you will receive a confirmation email with the details that you submitted. NOTE: You will be able to edit proposals through your account up until the deadline for submission. To withdraw a proposal, please contact Camisha Smith (clsmith@memphis.edu).

Individual proposals - should be no longer than 350 words.
Panel proposals - should be no longer than 1250 words.
Special Format proposals - should be no longer than 350 words.
Please submit your proposals no later than September 18, 2009.
Questions? Please contact Michael Leff (m_leff@bellsouth.net).

September 11, 2009

2009 Alumni Newsletter Now Available

News for Alumni and Friends of the Department of Writing Studies, 2009 (PDF)

September 10, 2009

New Grad Students Hit the Ground Running

Writing Studies first year Ph.D. students, Jacqueline Schiappa, Joshua Welsh, Andrew Virtue, and Timothy Oleksiak have been accepted to present a panel at this years 4Cs in Atlanta. Their session is titled Writing (in) the Public Sphere: Deliberative Democracy and Computer Mediated Communication. This panel aims to clarify several of the complications that stem from teaching writing with CMC.

Timothy Oleksiak has been accepted to present his paper "Speaking Across the Disciplines: What Speech Pedagogy Can Teach Us about Writing" at the 2009 SAMLA conference in Atlanta.

September 9, 2009

Upcoming Conference Presentations

Joe Weinberg and John Logie have collaborated with Max Haper and Joe Konstan of the Computer Science department to present at the Internet Research 10.0 - Internet: Critical conference for the Association of Internet Researchers in Milwaukee, WI in October. Their paper, The ABCs of DEF is a study of Q&As on websites with an Aristotelian approach.

Mary Jo Wiatrak-Uhlenkott has been accepted to present at two conferences this fall. In October, she is scheduled to present on the identity of the feminist composition community at the 2009 Feminisms and Rhetorics conference at Michigan State University in East Lansing. She is also scheduled to present at the National Women's Studies Association conference in November. The focus of the panel she is on is the politics of memory and the history of domestic violence.