The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America
Jim Brown's blog


John Muckelbauer on "Itineration"

Submitted by Jim Brown on October 15, 2012 - 2:05pm

Itineration is a new cross-disciplinary journal of "rhetoric, media, and culture," and they've recently launched their "Big Ideas" series. The first big idea is actually "itineration," which is introduced by John Muckelbauer. This is fitting since Muckelbauer spends a great deal of time with the concept in The Future of Invention.


Protagoras and Open Access Scholarship

Submitted by Jim Brown on October 15, 2012 - 10:50am

Gordon Mitchell at the University of Pittsburgh recently delivered a fascinating presentation about the University of Pittsburgh's efforts with regard to open access publishing and tracking publication impact. As editor of Enculturation (an open access journal), I'm often asked how we measure the "impact" of the journal. Right now, we really only measure that by acceptance rate (15%) and by the number of unique views that particular articles get. Mitchell's talk and Pitt's recent experiments provide some new ways of thinking about these issues.


Rhetorical Distributions and More Experiments in Publishing

Submitted by Jim Brown on April 5, 2012 - 12:08pm

Dale Smith and I have decided to published our essay "The Event and the Archive: Rhetorical Distributions in Civil Society" online, and I wanted to invite the Blogora to provide feedback. This is an essay that's already been cited by one print publication, and we continue to get requests for a manuscript version (we've presented this work at two different conferences). However, we have had some trouble finding the right publication venue. So, we've decided to post what we have and to solicit feedback.


CCCarnival: Geoff Sirc's "Resisting Entropy"

Submitted by Jim Brown on March 1, 2012 - 9:00am

I thought the Blogora might be interested in a distributed blog conversation happening about Geoff Sirc's recently published College Composition and Communication review essay, "Resisting Entropy." This is a CCCarnival (a tradition that I think was started by either Collin Brooke or Derek Mueller...I can't remember which), but the idea is that bloggers respond to a piece in CCC. The organizer typically aggregates entries in one place.


'I think the president's heart is in the right place'

Submitted by Jim Brown on July 10, 2011 - 8:25am

Today's New York Times Magazine has an exit interview with Sheila Bair, former Chair of the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation. I left the story wishing that Bair, and not Geithner, had the reins. And I also learned a great deal about how the Obama administration has, for the most part, continued to protect bondholders moreso than taxpayers:


The Unbearable Slowness of Peer Review

Submitted by Jim Brown on June 10, 2011 - 11:49am

A couple of weeks ago, during the Computers and Writing Conference in Ann Arbor (as an aside, this was a superbly run conference by the folks in Ann Arbor), I was part of a Town Hall discussion entitled "The Future(s) of Computers and Writing."


Jean-Luc Nancy and Alain Badiou on Western Intervention in Libya

Submitted by Jim Brown on April 5, 2011 - 8:38am

This is an interesting exchange between Jean-Luc Nancy and Alain Badiou on Western intervention in Libya.


It is fine for the beautiful souls of the left and the sophisticated operators on the right to sigh or protest; whether in European or in Arab countries: one must know which world we are in. We are no longer just simply in the world of Western arrogance, self-confidence and imperialism. Oh! It is not that the poor old “West” has cleaned up its act: it is simply in the process of melting in the fusion that begets another world, without sunrise or sunset, a world where it is day and night everywhere at the same time and where it is necessary to reinvent the act of living together and, before all else, the act of living itself.


How can you of all people fall into this trap? How can you accept any kind of ‘rescue’ mission being entrusted to those very people for whom the old situation was the good one, and who absolutely want to get back into the game, by forcible means, from motivations of oil and hegemony? Can you simply accept the ‘humanitarian’ umbrella, the obscene blackmailing in the name of victims? But our armies kill more people in more countries than the local boss Gaddafi is capable of doing in his. What is this trust suddenly extended to the major butchers of contemporary humanity, to those in charge of the mutilated world that we are familiar with? Do you believe, can you believe, that they represent ‘civilisation’, that their monstrous armies can be armies of justice? I am stupefied, I must confess. I ask myself what good is philosophy if it is not immediately the radical critique of this kind of unreflecting opinion, moulded by the propaganda of regimes such as our own, which popular uprisings in regions strategic for them have put on the defensive, and which are seeking their revenge.


Gehrke Book Event: Conclusion

Submitted by Jim Brown on December 28, 2010 - 12:38pm

We have come to the end of Gehrke's The Ethics and Politics of Speech and to the end of our first Blogora Book Event. That end comes in the form of Gehrke's conclusion about notions of community and ethics that he has excavated from his archive. As I mentioned in my first post about this book, this is the part of the project that is most interesting to me.


New Blog: The Silver Tongue Times

Submitted by Jim Brown on October 27, 2010 - 4:56pm

A group of graduate students at Carnegie Mellon University have launched a new blog called The Silver Tongue Times. The "about" page explains the inspiration for this project:

Our blog was inspired by a comment made by Kathleen Hall Jamieson in Eloquence in an Electronic Age: The Transformation of Political Speechmaking. She writes that:


Gehrke: Self-Mastery and Platforms

Submitted by Jim Brown on October 27, 2010 - 4:25pm

Chapter 1's discussion of "mental hygiene" also brings us a discussion of "self-mastery":

One of the central themes in the advocacy of mental hygiene and psychiatry in speech training was the need for students to develop self-mastery if they wished to become effective speakers. In being reasonably self sufficient and adopting mental objectivity, the good speaker would develop awareness and control of himself or herself. (28)