The Blogora: The Rhetoric Society of America



Submitted by syntaxfactory on December 14, 2012 - 3:30pm

Prayers to friends and colleagues in CT.


Randall Collins on Bullying

Submitted by Jim Aune on December 30, 2011 - 3:33am

If you've had me in class recently, you know I'm a big fan of the sociologist Randall Collins. I eagerly await the second (macro-sociological, as opposed to the micro-focus of his first volume) volume on violence. He doesn't update his blog very often, but here's a very lucid and important perspective on bullying, including homophobic bullying and supposed cyber-bullying. Eventually this should add up to something useful for making sense of the vexing problem of "incitement."


Pinker Makes the Case for Social Democracy (Unwittingly)

Submitted by Jim Aune on December 29, 2011 - 7:00pm

Reviewing Pinker's recent (semi-persuasive) book on the decline of violence: "Pinker believes that people are more pacific when they have the time and the occasion to repeat interactions and reconsider their actions. Yet he has trouble ­acknowledging that, according to his own story, the one and only agent that can create that sort of cushioned society with educated minds and spare time has been the functional welfare state. This refusal seems rooted in Pinker's commitment to free-market libertarianism.



Submitted by John W. Pell on September 16, 2011 - 12:21pm

"Horrific: Student Stabbed to Death by Roommate." ( As a teacher devoted to undergraduate education, I read these types of headlines and my heart aches for the members of these campus communities as they try to make sense of such tragic events.


Brown v. EMA: The Pervasive and Acceptance of Violence

Submitted by Jeremiah Hickey on June 28, 2011 - 3:58pm

First of all, I would like to thank the members of the Blogora for providing me an opportunity to contribute on the recent First Amendment decisions by the Supreme Court. Since its inception, the Blogora has been one of the most important resources for my reading, research, and teaching. Though I am not the one of the most vocal contributors, I may be one of the most avid readers.


Symbolic Violence Conference

Submitted by syntaxfactory on April 16, 2011 - 12:17pm

Symbolic Violence Conference
Thursday, March 1, 2012 at 4:00pm - Sunday, March 4, 2012 at 1:00pm

Call for Papers, "Symbolic Violence Conference," Texas A&M University, March 1-4, 2012


"Smelly Little Orthodoxies"

Submitted by Jim Aune on January 17, 2011 - 1:47pm

Andrew Sullivan, who has kept up an unusually high standard in his commentary on Tucson this past week, discusses this passage from Orwell on Dickens today. It says what I've been struggling for in balancing out anger and civic responsibility at the present time: "When one reads any strongly individual piece of writing, one has the impression of seeing a face somewhere behind the page. It is not necessarily the actual face of the writer.


Insurrectionism Timeline

Submitted by Jim Aune on January 15, 2011 - 4:18pm

A useful timeline from the Coalition against Gun Violence. Meanwhile, Tunisia's regime topples without armed republican citizens.


"Imperial Bedrooms" Website

Submitted by Jim Aune on January 15, 2011 - 3:59pm

We're discussing Bret Easton Ellis's American Psycho in my graduate class this week. I just came across this website for his new novel. Oddly, perhaps, I find this more disturbing than the novel, although I'm not sure why. Thoughts?


"The Language of the Gun"

Submitted by Jim Aune on January 15, 2011 - 2:41pm

This book looks worth a read: "Legal and public policies concerning youth gun violence tend to rely heavily on crime reports, survey data, and statistical methods. Rarely is attention given to the young voices belonging to those who carry high-powered semiautomatic handguns. In Language of the Gun, Bernard E.