Happy October everyone! The Rhetorical Studies Reading Group is pleased to announce our first session of the fall semester: an RSRG with David Cisneros. Dr. Cisneros is a new addition to the Communication faculty and will be discussing chapters from his upcoming book, The Border Crossed Us: Rhetorics of Borders, Citizenship, and Latina/o Identity.
We will meet October 17 from 11:30-1 in Lincoln Hall 4007.
We hope to see you there!
Here is a description from Dr. Cisneros of the two chapters:
These are two page proof chapters from my forthcoming book entitled The Border Crossed Us: Rhetorics of Borders, Citizenship, and Latina/o Identity, which is forthcoming with the University of Alabama Press late 2013 or early 2014. Basically, it explores rhetorical struggles over borders of nation, belonging, and citizenship. You can find out more about it here: http://uapress.ua.edu/product/Border-Crossed-Us,5763.aspx
I chose two of the case study chapters because I thought they would be more interesting than the intro/conclusion and theoretical/conceptual stuff. These are the first and last case studies, respectively, so they’ll give you a sense of the range of the book and include a variety of different rhetorical methodologies that I employ in the broader project. Though they are part of a larger project, I think they can stand alone for the purposes of this meeting. I think these chapters will give you a sense my broader research interests, and during the meeting I can use them to talk about some of the projects I’m working on now.
We hope you all are surviving the end-of-semester. We write bearing news of news of some upcoming events of interest:
Next RSRG Meeting: Thursday, April 25 from 6-7:30. Join us for a special Rhetorical Studies Reading group with guest Christa J. Olson. We will be discussing two pieces by Dr. Olson and you will find them below (along with with some images for reference).
Dr. Olson will also be delivering a keynote speech the very next day at the Gesa E. Kirsch Graduate Student Symposium, sponsored by the Center for Writing Studies. Her talk will take place at 2pm in GSLIS Building, room 126 and it is entitled “The Persuasions of Travel: Andean Landscapes and U.S. National Vision.”
Here is the description of Dr. Olson’s talk:
The assumption that “America” means “the United States of America” is so ubiquitous—within and beyond the borders of this country—that it hardly occasions comment. And yet, the fact that the U.S. claim to America is unmarked ought to call our attention to the remarkable, long-term, and ongoing rhetorical processes that make that claim possible: the not so hidden work of American exceptionalism. This talk enacts that attention, turning to a relatively early moment in U.S. hemispheric power to track how U.S. publics looking at Latin America learned to see themselves instead of Latin America. It explores how two travelers, the artist Frederic Church and the explorer Hiram Bingham, used visual accounts of their adventures in the Andes to shape U.S. national vision. Church’s spectacular exhibition of his “great painting,” The Heart of the Andes, in 1859 and Bingham’s lavishly illustrated accounts of his 1911 re-discovery of Machu Picchu appeared more than fifty years apart, used quite different media, and circulated through distinct means. Together, however, they speak to how U.S. publics in the first era of U.S. empire came to imagine themselves as [partial] proprietors of the American hemisphere and as the inevitable subjects of inspiring landscapes and impressive cultures. By seeing the Andes through Church and Bingham’s eyes, U.S. audiences learned new national visions appropriate to a period of growing global influence. Ultimately, the talk suggests, examining how those audiences and image makers accomplished the invisibility of Latin America through extensive imagining of it sheds useful light on the subtle, pervasive force of American exceptionalism and the claim to America.
Finally, all rhetoricians of the graduate student variety are invited to attend any or all of the CWS Symposium. The event will last from 8:30 to 4pm in GSLIS Building Room 126 and will feature presentations of graduate student works in progress. RSVP to email@example.com if you are interested in attending!
Hope to see you at any or all of these great events!
Rohini, Jon, Paul, and Katie
On Monday, graduate students from the RSA Chapter at the University of Illinois gathered again in Lincoln Hall to participate in the second session of the RSA Webinar on Archival Research organized by Debra Hawhee and Jack Selzer over at Penn State.
O’Gorman and Jack presented a fascinating way of looking at the archives. Rather than seeing the archive as a repository of information to be mined, O’Gorman and Jack considered what it would mean to think of the archive as a source of invention. Thinking of the archive in this way gets at the ways in which the archive often presents us with surprising artifacts that lead us to more questions. O’Gorman described this as the practice of finding “provocations” within the archives. These provocations present us with fundamental questions that lead to further inquiry.
Sometimes, those artifacts in the archive that provoke us lead us outside of the archive to answer the questions they raise.
Thus, both scholars discussed the ways in which archival research gives us opportunities for “undirected research” and the ability to be surprised by what we find. As researchers, we should be open to these provocations and see where they lead us. Seeing the archive as heuristic keeps us open and ready to embrace these opportunities.
The discussion was lively and fascinating, as always. Thanks to Rohini Singh for reserving the room and the equipment, thanks to Dr. O’Gorman and Dr. Jack for sharing their insights, and thanks to Debra Hawhee and Jack Selzer for bringing all of us into these discussions!
The next “Archival Encounters” webinar will take place on March 25th, and will examine the question of “Reading Archival Documents” with Ann George and Dave Tell.
EDIT March 1st, 2013: Thanks to all who came to the reading group today! Due to copyright, some of the links to this week’s readings have been removed.
Mark your calendars!
Our next Rhetorical Studies Reading Group will be held on Friday, March 1, 2013 from 1pm to 3pm in Lincoln Hall, rm. 4103. For this meeting, we have the pleasure of hearing from three professors from the Center for Writing Studies (Lindsay Rose Russell, Martin Carmargo, Peter Mortensen). They will be discussing the importance of rhetoric to their work as well as helping to map connections between rhetorical studies and the field of Writing Studies / Rhetoric & Composition. Each has supplied a few readings for us to read in preparation for the meeting.
About the Readings:
Martin Camargo - The two essays represent two different ways in which historical rhetoric figures in my scholarship: as a rich source of information about medieval writing pedagogy and as an important context for understanding medieval poetic practice.
Lindsay Rose Russell - Janet Giltrow’s work is helpful for me in as it sets rhetorical genre theory in between what I find value in rhetorical studies approaches (to activity, networks, and/or ecologies) and language studies approaches (which trace traditions of language prescriptivism).
Peter Mortensen - My current book project, Manufacturing Illiteracy in the United States, examines the rhetoric of literacy and its consequences in the early twentieth-century US. I continue to consider how the cultural critique and rhetorical theorizing of Kenneth Burke might be germane to my project. For our meeting on March 1, I’ve assembled some relevant short pieces by Burke and have drafted a two-page overview that suggests how we might approach the readings.
You can access the readings below:
The Rhetorical Studies Reading Group is an IPRH sponsored group of students and faculty from a variety of disciplines and departments who are interested in the study of rhetoric. Several times a semester, the group comes together to discuss issues and research in rhetorical studies. We are often joined by guest scholars from around campus and across the country. Watch this space for updated information and readings.
On January 30, the Rhetorical Studies Reading Group was lucky enough to have some time to chat with Dr. Richard Graff from the University of Minnesota while he was on campus to deliver the Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities lecture. We were joined by several students from the Department of Communication and the Center for Writing Studies as well as faculty from the Department of Communication to discuss several articles related to Dr. Graff’s research (you can check out the pieces we discussed below).
Dr. Graff discussed several issues and questions that animate his research interests in the oratorical spaces of classical Greece and Rome, including visuality and orality, performance, rhetorical style, and what he called a “synesthetic” approach to studying rhetoric (one that encompasses and connects the multiple senses in sometimes contradictory ways). Graff also noted some of the potential challenges associated with the study classical rhetoric, and a key theme throughout the discussion was the ways in which archaeological evidence informs this research. For Graff, studying the oratorical spaces of classical Greece and Rome is like a puzzle–one must put together a coherent picture based on the evidence available from a variety of sources.
Overall, the discussion was an exciting prelude to Dr. Graff’s fascinating talk later that afternoon. We appreciate the time Dr. Graff took to meet with us, and all the students and faculty who joined the conversation.
The Rhetorical Studies Reading Group is an IPRH sponsored group of students and faculty from a variety of disciplines and departments who are interested in the study of rhetoric. Several times a semester, the group comes together to discuss issues and research in rhetorical studies. We are often joined by guest scholars from across the country. Our next RSRG meeting will take place March 1st. Watch this space for updated information and readings.
Tonight, members from the RSA Chapter at the University of Illinois gathered together in Lincoln Hall to watch the first session of the Webinar on Archival Research that has been organized by Dr. Debra Hawhee and Dr. Jack Selzer over at Penn State. Session 1 featured two archivists from the Penn State Burke Archive, who shared some great practical tips about how to engage with an archive, and included some great resources for archival researchers. I’ve included links to these resources as well as some of their tips below.
Archival Research Databases and Directories:
- Archive Grid (www.archivegrid.org) – a database that links to finding aids, archive locations, contact information etc. Type in a variety of search terms (use their search tips for more information) and get connected to material located in archives across the country. Sometimes features direct links to digital material, but these links will occasionally be broken (feel free to email the archivist if the material is unavailable).
- Archive Finder (http://archives.chadwyck.com/home.do#) – A archive directory featuring sources from the US and the UK. Click on “Login through your library or institution” to get access through the U of I library).
- Online Archive of California (www.oac.cdlib.org) - Regional focus, but has great digital material.
Information on Copyright
- WATCH (http://norman.hrc.utexas.edu/watch/) – this site identifies the copyright holders for some authors. The archivists noted that this site is not exhaustive, but is continually updated and can be a good way to check who holds a copyright on a particular author’s material.
- Digital Copyright Slider (http://librarycopyright.net/resources/digitalslider/) – a guide to copyright rules. Answers the basic question “Is it protected by copyright?” for various categories of material.
Glossary of Archival Lingo
- Society of American Archivists (http://www2.archivists.org/glossary)
Four Common Mistakes Made by New Archival Researchers (and how to not make them)
- Not writing down where material comes from in the archive
- How to fix: Document everything! Bring a camera and take pictures of the folder, boxes, etc.
- Not getting in touch with an archive ahead of time
- How to fix: Contact an archive before your visit to make sure that all the materials you need are available and ready for you to use.
- Not checking up on copyright concerns / not crediting copyright appropriately
- How to fix: Always ask an archivist to make sure that you have the proper permission to use archival material in your work, especially when quoting or excerpting archival material.
Not anticipating how long archival research will take
- How to fix: Always double your anticipated timeline, especially when visiting an out-of-state archive.
Thanks to Anita Mixon for reserving a room and organizing our group viewing! Thanks to Professors Hawhee and Selzer for organizing the webinar series!
We hope you all have had a wonderful and relaxing winter break! The RSRG is thrilled to announce our first event of the semester: a reading group meeting with Dr. Richard Graff from the University of Minnesota.
The RSRG will get the chance to meet with Dr. Graff on Wednesday, January 30 from 11:30am-1pm in Lincoln Hall Room 4007. Dr. Graff has requested that we read a few articles in preparation for the discussion (see below).
Linked below is a word document which sets up each of the readings with some thoughts from Dr. Graff. It also presents a few links to websites of interest. Finally, we have also linked to PDFs of the readings Dr. Graff provided.
We are looking forward to seeing you all at our first meeting on January 30th!
As always, please let us know if you have any questions, suggestions, or feedback.