Coauthoring as Place: A Different Ethos
Johnson County Community College
University of Kansas
A place for us: that is all we seek. A place that allows full expression to the “you” and “me, ” the “we” of our commonality, a place where that abstract “we” discloses the traces that lead back to you and me.
— Benjamin R. Barber, A Place for Us
Wreading this essay will most likely recall Anne Ruggles Gere's influential work, Writing Groups: History, Theory, and Implications in which Gere acknowledges that the “writing groups… phenomenon has nearly as many names as people who employ it. The name, of course, matters less than what it describes, which is writers responding to one and other's work” (1). Not surprising to us, Gere includes collaborative writing among the eighteen different terms for writing groups she enumerates. Muriel Harris defines collaborative writing as “involving two or more writers working together to produce a joint product …. Each may take responsibility for a portion of the final text [but each must take] some sort of collective responsibility for the final product” (369). Priscilla Rogers and Marjorie Horton acknowledge the broader definitions of collaborative writing that Gere and Harris speak of, but they extend the discussion to include the possibility of a “fully collaborative enterprise involving coauthors who plan, draft, and revise a document in a face-to-face context” (122). Gere and others acknowledge a wide spectrum of ways writers work together, and we would like to propose that collaborative writers, or coauthors, constitute
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Publication information: Book title: Writing Groups Inside and outside the Classroom. Contributors: Beverly J. Moss - Editor, Nels P. Highberg - Editor, Melissa Nicolas - Editor. Publisher: Lawrence Erlbaum Associates. Place of publication: Mahwah, NJ. Publication year: 2004. Page number: 113.
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