Challenging conventional research methodologies and the traditional insularity of higher education, these essays argue that civic engagement as a rhetorical act requires critical attention to our notoriously veiled identity in public life, to our uneasy affiliation with democracy as a public virtue, and to the transcendent powers of discourse and ideology. This can be accomplished, the contributors argue, by building on the compatible traditions of materialist rhetoric and community literacy. The case studies highlight efforts in inner-urban and postindustrial communities where poverty is the overriding concern, in afterschool and extracurricular alternatives that offer new routes to literate achievement, in new media and digital representations of ethnic cultures designed to promote chosen identities, in neighbourhoods and scientific laboratories where race is the dominant value, and in the policy borderlands between universities and the communities they serve. Through these accounts, contributors champion the notion that the public work of rhetoric is the tough labour of gaining access and trust, learning the codes and histories of communities, locating the situations in which rhetorical expertise is most effective, and in many cases jointly defining the terms for gauging social change.
Publisher: University of South Carolina Press
Number of pages: 328
Weight: 481 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 19 mm
work reported in this volume is noble and important not only for rhetoric studies, not only for rhetoric and composition pedagogy, but as a vision of what higher education might aspire to that goes beyond preparing students to earn a living. They are models of how we might prepare them to make a difference."--Gerard A. Hauser, professor of communication and College Professor of Distinction,
University of Colorado at Boulder, from the foreword
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