COURSE TEXTS AND WORKS
Kennedy, George. Classical Rhetoric & Its Christian & Secular Tradition from Ancient to Modern Times. University of North Carolina Press, 1999. (Required)
Lunsford, Andrea A. Reclaiming Rhetorica: Women in the Rhetorical Tradition. Univ. of Pittsburgh Press, 1995. (Required)
Kennedy, George. Comparative Rhetoric: a Historical and Cross-Cultural Introduction. Oxford University Press, 1998. (Optional)
Herzberg, Bruce, and Patricia Bizzell. The Rhetorical Tradition: Readings from Classical Times to the Present. Bedford/St. Martin's, 2001. (Optional)
The rest of the course readings will be in the course Google Drive.
In this course, we will complete three major assignments—rhetor chronicles (I and II) and the trace paper—in addition to your weekly rhetoric probes. Rhetoricchronicles will be products of your weekly rhetor probes. In this sense, each week will be an opportunity for you to ask questions and receive feedback as you work towards completing this extended project and the trace paper.
Weekly Rhetor Probes (15%)
Each week, you will engage with primary and secondary texts and prepare 'Rhetor Probe' of the assigned readings (approximately 5 minutes). We will generate class discussions by hearing your rhetor probe. As you prepare your rhetor probe each week, you want to consider 1) your relationship to the texts and 2) the texts' relationship to you (your socio-cultural background and rhetorical practices). These rhetor probes may involve material objects, artwork (either produced by an artist or your work), artifacts, photographs, spaces/places, academic-creative written or visual-digital work, or a combination of multiple elements. You are, of course, not limited to the list provided here. The items included here are examples to give you ideas. I invite you to explore routes, passages, and paths you may want to take, spaces you may wish to explore, and vehicles you may want to use that are creative and reflective of your critical and intellectual thinking.
As you prepared each rhetor probe, you might end up focusing on a particular reading or readings more than others, or your rhetor probe might be informed and shaped by a pattern or a unifying theme that connects these weekly readings for you. In this sense, the rhetor probes are not summaries of the weekly readings; preferably they are representations of how you react and respond to the texts while you also consider the impacts (emotional, logical, ethical) these texts will have over your thinking and being as rhetoricians.
You will share your rhetor probe with the rest of the class during each class meeting. As a class, we will offer insightful responses to one another and engage in an active dialogue about the weekly readings. Please keep a record of the feedback you will receive from the rest of the class. I kindly ask you to make notes after each class session to avoid any unwanted distractions during class. You will use these responses to prepare your extended project: Rhetor Chronicles (I and II).
Attendance and Participation (10%)
As fellow rhetoricians, we will be participating in rigorous reading and studying primary and secondary texts that are intellectually challenging and complex, which is an excellent opportunity for us to grow and explore new and exciting research areas and approaches. Give yourselves enough time and space to study these texts so you can have an active and creative voice in our class conversations as you learn from your fellow rhetoricians while you support their learning experiences. In this sense, for us to create the most effective learning environment, we must be diligent about being active participants and attend all weekly meetings. However, I understand that life happens and there might be personal events or emergencies preventing you from attending a class meeting. In this case, I encourage you to contact me within twenty-four hours. In this way, we can make sure that you will be caught up with our progress in the course.
While I trust your professionalism in this matter, I feel responsible for making a note about excessive absences. You should understand that not attending multiple class meetings will eventually have a negative influence on your overall performance, especially when it comes to completing the major assignments and the weekly rhetor probes successfully. I am very well aware that this will not be an issue we would need to worry about in a doctoral-level class; yet again, it is my responsibility to make this note for your attention as I consider your well-being and success in this class a priority.
Rhetor Chronicles- Chronicle I (25% ) and Chronicle II (30%):
Rhetor Chronicles (I and II) is an extended project that you will be working on throughout the semester. These chronicles will emerge from your weekly rhetor probes and the responses you will receive from the class. Completing each chronicle project necessitates us to keep a thorough record of our weekly explorations (encounters and respond notes) as rhetoricians.
You will archive your weekly rhetoric probes and responses. If you like, you may consider these personal archives as your libraries. For each chronicle project, then, you will conduct archival research in your libraries and compile a chronicle of your most critical and creative works that are representative of your overall growth as rhetoricians. How you will decide what to include in your chronicles is a personal decision that will emerge from your rhetorical re-explorations of your works. Maybe a theme will appear that you want to focus on, or you will realize that there is a repeating image across your archive and your chronicles may map the meaning of this repeating image.
The central idea in creating these chronicles is for you to
1) understand your rhetorical progression and thinking
2) explore how your rhetorical thinking contributes to the broad field of rhetoric(s) studies and your primary research area(s) within the field
3) compose original and innovative arguments that will illustrate how and where you situate your rhetorical thinking and scholarly-creative work in our field
4) explore the most effective and engaging ways to deliver your work to your target audience.
You will select a primary (digital) platform and main tools for you to clearly illustrate what you make of your archives and make sure that this meaning is crystal clear for your target audience. These decisions are best made when you have an idea about who your target audience is and what their main expectations are. In response, you will all select a scholarly journal that you would like to submit the final product of your work for publication. We will discuss different options in class, and you can also meet with me during office hours to brainstorm and explore your options.
I ask you to submit your first chronicle project with a summary of your selected journal’s main information: description of the journal’s vision and trajectory and submission guidelines. In this way, you will be able to receive constructive and productive feedback from the rest of the class and use this feedback to work on your second chronicle project. This will open space for you to make changes and revisions as you add new segments/sections to your final chronicle.
While there are no specific parts you are required to include in your final chronicle, make sure that your final project will
1) Have a strong, clear, and innovative argument
2) Contribute to the existing conversation in your area(s) of research and the broader field of rhetorics studies
3) Have ca lear design-layout that is engaging and easy to navigate for your target audience while it fits your journal’s format.
Overall, your final chronicle project should be able to illustrate your growth and development in this class. You will present your final chronicle project during our last class meeting of the semester. These are informal presentations for you to share the final version of your chronicle project and receive feedback from your peers.
*Note: As part of this extended chronicle project, you are encouraged to conduct research and explore readings/works in your areas of interest as rhetoricians and scholars. Incorporating your research into the trajectory of this class will help you to see how you position your work and identity within the broader spectrum of our discipline.
Trace Paper (20%): Due May 14 by 11:59 p.m. via email to
Throughout the course, we will study various rhetorical concepts across theorists, practitioners, and time. You will write a 4-5-page paper that “traces” or tracks a concept across the work of three people. This assignment will give you insight into the format and content you will be expected to produce for the qualifying exam in Summer 2019.