Claiming the Bicycle: Women, Rhetoric, and Technology in NineteenthCentury America - Studies in Rhetorics and Feminisms (Hardback)Sarah Hallenbeck (author)
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Although the impact of the bicycle craze of the late nineteenth century on women's lives has been well documented, rarely have writers considered the role of women's rhetorical agency in the transformation of bicycle culture and the bicycle itself. In Claiming the Bicycle, Sarah Hallenbeck argues that through their collective rhetorical activities, women who were widely dispersed in space, genre, and intention negotiated proper uses for the bicycle, destabilizing cultural assumptions about femininity and gender difference.
Making a significant contribution to studies of feminist rhetorical historiography, rhetorical agency, and technical communication, Claiming the Bicycle asserts the utility of a distributed or "collected" model of rhetorical agency and accounts for the efforts of widely dispersed actors to harness technology in promoting social change.
Publisher: Southern Illinois University Press
Number of pages: 232
Weight: 825 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm
"Sarah Hallenbeck offers an engaging peek into the past by situating the bicycle within historical feminist rhetoric. Her text examines the evolution of the bicycle from the masculine and risky Ordinary to the feminine and more accessible Tricycle to the modern and popular Safety. As more women began to ride the Safety, Hallenbeck discovers, they answered the call for feminine accommodations to the machine. As women embraced this new technology, they discovered a need to invent bicycle accessories and write patents for those new inventions. The growing popularity of bicycles created a trend for whimsical stories of the "Bicycle Girl" along with a space for new authority and rhetorical agency among women riders and writers. Hallenbeck effectively argues that nineteenth-century women's use of the bicycle creates an intersection of rhetoric, gender, and technology as women participated in both the use of the new technology and the technical communication that surrounded the bicycle. "--Melissa Nivens, Composition Forum
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