Intro.Composition & Rhetoric (CR)

This course will introduce graduate students interested in
Rhetoric and Composition to the discussions surrounding what
“rhetoric” and “composition” might be. Given that Rhetoric
and Composition are technically two fields that have nonetheless found themselves
blended in contemporary English studies, students will read from a variety of
key historical texts that will acquaint them with the major theoretical
foundations of contemporary study in Rhetoric and Composition (for example, the
Sophists, Aristotle, Plato, Aspasia, Cicero, Erasmus, Campell, Fell, Fuller, Bain,
Bakhtin, Burke, and others), as well as recent texts that translate and
challenge these theories in discussions of researching rhetorical language use
and classroom practice (Kinneavy, Berlin, Shaughnessy, Rose, Trimbur,
Bartholomae, Elbow, Lu, Cushman, Royster, Powell, and others).


By the end of this course, you should have an understanding of the
framework of Rhetoric and Composition Studies as a study of language as social
action: in terms of a body of scholarship and practice that seeks better ways
to teach writing, and in terms of the ongoing study of how we develop and
deploy cultural, social, and political literacies inside and outside of


addition, because of the shared textual structure of the 625 courses, you will
also have the opportunity to read and analyze a text (TBA) for its rhetorical
elements and compositional strategies as a way to approach and understand a
given text.



Assignments will include two class presentations during the course
of the semester, two shorter (10 pages) essays (one focusing more on
“rhetoric,” and the other on “composition”), a final
research project of 20-25 pages, and weekly response-to-reading postings on



Texts will include pdfs of selected articles posted to Laulima, as
well as readings from

Bizzell, Patricia and Bruce Herzberg, eds. The Rhetorical Tradition,  2nd ed.  Bedford/St.Martin’s,

Villanueva, Victor and Kristin Arola, eds. Cross-Talk in Composition Theory, 3rd ed. NCTE, 2011.