The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America
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Does Teaching Matter at Research Universities?

Submitted by Jim Aune on May 18, 2010 - 6:19pm

Crooked Timber continues a discussion that started on Brian Leiter's blog. Thoughts?


Job Market

Submitted by syntaxfactory on May 11, 2010 - 9:34pm

Two thoughts:

1. Why will the MLA issue so many reports on poor placement of PhDs yet do nothing about it?

2. Why will the MLA not differentiate "rhetoric" from literature and linguistics when releasing these statistics?

Bill Eadie, at one point, used to keep job stats in Comm of a limited scope. I wonder if those numbers are still available?

From ADE Bulletin:


IHE, are you only provocateur?

Submitted by syntaxfactory on May 7, 2010 - 8:21am

Today, at Inside Higher Ed, we find:

Context: The last week has seen a stream of email messages of congratulations to the University of Central Florida, where a Department of Writing and Rhetoric has been created and puffy public relations documents calling it a "model" for national innovation have been shared. It looks, to me, like a pulling together of some old ideas (WAC, teaching faculty, and independence from lit studies) in a new configuration, but it is nonetheless notable.



Submitted by syntaxfactory on May 5, 2010 - 1:35am

To the left is a CFP for an anthology about Dr. Who which I post not only because I am a geek but also because the editors prefer contributors fluent in more than one language. The idea is to trace the reception of the Dr. Who text into other cultures, an act that requires that you speak both English and the reception language.


"The History Teacher"

Submitted by Jim Aune on April 4, 2010 - 11:40pm

The History Teacher - Billy Collins

Trying to protect his students' innocence
he told them the Ice Age was really just
the Chilly Age, a period of a million years
when everyone had to wear sweaters.

And the Stone Age became the Gravel Age,
named after the long driveways of the time.

The Spanish Inquisition was nothing more
than an outbreak of questions such as
"How far is it from here to Madrid?"
"What do you call the matador's hat?"

The War of the Roses took place in a garden,
and the Enola Gay dropped one tiny atom on Japan.

The children would leave his classroom


AP and English/Writing?

Submitted by Jim Aune on April 4, 2010 - 12:31pm

I confess I've never quite understood the Advanced Placement program. I graduated from a fairly small high school in northern Minnesota that had no AP courses, and during my freshman year I often wondered if I had somehow lost out on the life-chances-lottery that favors graduates of wealthy suburban school districts. I soon realized that I was able to succeed, probably because of good high school English and, especially, Speech teachers.


It's April, and Time to Renew My NCA Membership

Submitted by Jim Aune on April 1, 2010 - 7:38pm

After years (more than I can to say) about my renewal as a financial burden, it no longer is. But I do not know what I have in common with most NCA members, much less the leadership. The April Communication Currents is out, and, yet again, nothing remotely historical or, well, "rhetorical." Why should I renew? I am now a life member of RSA, my intellectual home. I'm open to hearing arguments.


"The Dumbest Statement on NCA's Webpage"

Submitted by Jim Aune on March 28, 2010 - 1:58pm

"Communication allows us to move through life with self-confidence and accomplishment. We communicate to be in tune with ourselves. We analyze and think critically of past and future events in an exploration of ourselves as we strive to understand how we as individuals fit in the larger society. Understanding yourself and your potential helps you go in the direction that’s best for you. Communication and NCA can help you through the journey."

Other nominations?


Resource: On Mentoring & Junior Faculty

Submitted by syntaxfactory on March 25, 2010 - 11:15am

I agree with this advice, but could not articulate it this well. I have also been blind to some of its problems. --David Beard, UMD

Sponsored by Stanford Center for Teaching and Learning
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