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Rhetoricity

Rhetoricity is a quasi-academic podcast that draws on rhetoric, theory, weird sound effects, and the insights of a lot of other people. It's something that's a little strange and, with luck, a little interesting. The podcast's description will evolve along with it. Most episodes feature interviews with rhetorically oriented rhetoric and writing scholars.

The podcast is a project of Eric Detweiler, an assistant professor in the Department of English at Middle Tennessee State University. If you are interested in more information, you can get in touch by using the contact information included on his website or sending a direct message to @RhetCast on Twitter.

Transcripts are available for some episodes. Click "Episode Transcript" link at the end of individual episode descriptions to access the corresponding transcript. If you would like a transcript of an episode that doesn't appear to have one, feel free to get in touch.

Rhetoricity has received support from a grant from the Humanities Media Project.

Creative Commons License
This podcast is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
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Now displaying: 2020
Aug 31, 2020

This is a short episode to make a quick announcement: Over the last week, a bunch of rhetorically inclined podcasts have been putting out new episodes as a part of The Big Rhetorical Podcast Carnival 2020. Organized by The Big Rhetorical Podcast’s Charles Woods, the carnival’s theme was "The Digital Future of Rhetoric and Composition," and its multitudinous episodes will be music to the ears of many Rhetoricity listeners. You can find those episodes via The Big Rhetorical Podcast's Anchor page or Twitter account.

In addition to plugging the carnival, this episode features a clip from Rhetoricity's contribution, which is entitled "Futures in the Present Tense" and weaves together reflections on the pandemic, Adventure Time, Afrofuturism, and rhetoric and composition.

Episode Transcript

Jul 14, 2020

This episode of Rhetoricity features contributions from four rhetoric scholars: Kati Fargo Ahern, Ben Harley, Lee Pierce, and Rachel Presley. Their pieces address questions asked by previous guest Damien Smith Pfister: "What juxtapositions in rhetorical studies have you found fruitful, generative, aiding in the process of invention or theorizing, and/or what juxtapositions ought we have? Is there a juxtaposition of two things that we ought to explore but we’re not currently exploring?"

The contributors respond to Pfister's questions from a variety of angles, touching on memoir, sonic rhetorics, everyday life, visual rhetoric, discriminatory design, cartography, and indigeneity. You can find the photos referenced in Pierce's piece here.

This episode features clips from the following songs:

Jun 29, 2020

This episode features an interview with Dr. Ersula J. Ore, recorded at the 2020 Modern Language Association Convention in Seattle, Washington.

Dr. Ore is the Lincoln Professor of Ethics in the School of Social Transformation and associate professor of African and African American Studies at Arizona State University. Her research explores the suasive strategies of Black Americans as they operate within a post-emancipation historical context, giving particular attention to the ways physical and discursive violence influences performances of citizenship. Dr. Ore received the 2018-2019 Outstanding Mentor award from Arizona State’s Center for Global Health, and her book Lynching: Violence, Rhetoric, and American Identity received the 2020 Book Award from the Rhetoric Society of America. Her current research investigates the ways civility discourse masks misogynoir and how such masking reinscribes civility as the racist articulation of a past that expresses the desire for a particular kind of quote-unquote “ordered” present and future. You can check out some of this thinking in her 2019 Organization for Research on Women and Communication keynote entitled “Citizenship, Civility, and the 'Black Looks' of Sandra Bland” as well as “Lynching in Times of Suffocation: Toward a Spatio-Temporal Politics of Breathing,” a co-authored piece with Matthew Houdek that is forthcoming this fall in Women’s Studies in Communication.

In this episode, we discuss Lynching, focusing on the circulation of lynching photographs as a form of epideictic rhetoric, the relation between racism and intention, and experiences that informed Ore's book and her perspective on rhetoric.

A heads-up to listeners that this episode includes extensive discussion of anti-Black violence.

This episode includes a clip from Daniel Birch's "History Repeats Itself."

Mar 19, 2020

Note: The deadline for submissions has passed. But please feel free to get in touch if you have ideas for segments and collaborations, whether related to this call or not!

This is more of an invitation than a regular episode. I'm interested in hearing listeners' responses to the question posed by Damien Smith Pfister and Michele Kennerly at the end of the previous episode. Here is that question:

What juxtapositions in rhetorical studies have you found fruitful, generative, aiding in the process of invention or theorizing, and/or what juxtapositions ought we have? Is there a juxtaposition of two things that we ought to explore but we’re not currently exploring?

I'll be taking proposals for short audio essays responding to that question through April 3. Listen or read the transcript for more details!

Feb 17, 2020

Note: Interested in the intersections of rhetoric and sound? The deadline for submissions to the 2020 Sound Studies, Rhetoric, and Writing Conference is Feb. 21! The CFP and submission instructions are available here.

This episode features Michele Kennerly and Damien Smith Pfister, co-editors of the 2018 collection Ancient Rhetorics and Digital Networks. The interview, recorded at the 2018 Rhetoric Society of America conference, focuses on that collection.

Kennerly and Pfister discuss the important distinction between "ancient" and "classical" rhetoric, the challenges and possibilities of linking ancient rhetorics to digital networks, and the rhetorical and civic power of internet memes.

Michele Kennerly is Associate Professor of Communication Arts and Sciences and Classics and Ancient Mediterranean Studies at Penn State University. In addition to co-editing Ancient Rhetorics and Digital Networks, she is the author of Editorial Bodies: Perfection and Rejection in Ancient Rhetoric and Poetics and co-editor of Information Keywords, which is forthcoming this fall. She is President of the American Society for the History of Rhetoric and serves on the Council of the International Society for the History of Rhetoric.

The interview also features Damien Smith Pfister. He is Associate Professor of Communication at the University of Maryland, co-editor of Ancient Rhetorics and Digital Networks, and author of the book Networked Media, Networked Rhetorics: Attention and Deliberation in the Early Blogosphere. His next book project is tentatively titled Always On: Fashioning Ethos After Wearable Computing, and he is the newly minted book review editor for the journal Rhetoric Society Quarterly.

Along with past guest Casey Boyle, Kennerly and Pfister will be editing a new book series for the University of Alabama Press. Entitled Rhetoric + Digitality, the series will provide a home for the best work emerging at the intersection of rhetorical studies and digital media studies.

This episode includes clips from the following:

Jan 21, 2020

This episode features an interview with Laura Micciche. It was recorded during her visit to Tennessee for the 2019 Peck Research on Writing Symposium. Dr. Micciche was the keynote speaker at the symposium, an annual event hosted by the Department of English at Middle Tennessee State University. Each year, a rhetoric and writing scholar delivers a talk about their research and facilitates a workshop based on that research. This year’s symposium will take place on February 28, and will also host the annual meeting of MidSouth WPA, an affiliate of the Council of Writing Program Administrators.

Laura Micciche is a professor in the English Department at the University of Cincinnati. Her research focuses on writing pedagogy, rhetorical theory, and writing program administration, and she’s the author of the books Doing Emotion: Rhetoric, Writing, Teaching and Acknowledging Writing Partners. The latter is available as an open-access book through WAC Clearinghouse. Dr. Micciche has also written copious articles, including a recent coauthored piece for College English entitled “Editing as Inclusion Activism,” a College Composition and Communication article entitled “Toward Graduate-Level Writing Instruction,” and an article in the journal WPA entitled “For Slow Agency.” She recently completed a six-year tenure as editor of the journal Composition Studies. Her current research is on the mundane aspects of academic writing, which she focused on in her presentation at MTSU.

In this interview, Micciche discusses Acknowledging Writing Partners, the concept of slowness in relation to teaching and WPA work, the importance of methodological inclusiveness, and her interest in the mundane, including the nonhuman animals and objects that populate the places where academics write.

This episode features a clip of the song "Special Place" by Ketsa.

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