Composing Research: A Contextualist Paradigm for Rhetoric and Composition

Composing Research: A Contextualist Paradigm for Rhetoric and Composition

Composing Research: A Contextualist Paradigm for Rhetoric and Composition

Composing Research: A Contextualist Paradigm for Rhetoric and Composition

Excerpt

The history of composition studies is one of conflict and struggle. As a field relatively new to the academy, we have struggled to be valued, debated our very roots, and created tension among ourselves as researchers and teachers. The current debate between quantitative and qualitative researchers in composition has been discussed before. In that respect, this work is not new because it emerges from the firmly-established rift between humanists and scientists, between ethnographers and experimentalists.

But how we have debated about research methods is of greater concern here than that we have debated: in other words, the rhetoric of our own scholarship forms the foundation for this work. This foundation allows for more than merely another review of tensions among the field’s researchers and allows us to address instead the false distinctions among competing epistemologies as composition scholars have defined them, reasons other than the epistemological for our new attention to personal narrative, the narrative potential of numerical evidence, and the notion of context as it is understood (and misunderstood) by our researchers.

At risk in any work that attempts to dissolve dichotomies is the tendency to create new dichotomies instead. For that reason, context is a pivotal, fluid term on which this work hinges: In what contexts do we construct arguments about our research? In what contexts do we conduct research in the first place? Which contexts demand certain research methods more than other methods? In what ways does the current research debate in composition decontextualize the problems we debate?

Throughout my work on this project, I engaged in conversations about it in various contexts, and I was often confused by reactions to . . .

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.