Making and Unmaking the Prospects for Rhetoric: Selected Papers from the 1996 Rhetoric Society of America Conference

By Theresa Enos; Richard McNabb et al. | Go to book overview

ROLF NORGAARD University of Colorado, Boulder


The Prospect of Rhetoric in Writing across the Curriculum

The Prospect of Rhetoric, the 1971 report on the National Development Project in Rhetoric edited by Lloyd Bitzer and Edwin Black, shares its historical moment with the beginnings of the writing-across-the-curriculum movement, arguably one of the more important developments in composition over the last quarter century. Twenty-five years after the report, and a quartercentury into the WAC movement, it is appropriate to take stock of this historical confluence and to consider how each might enrich the other in the years ahead.

In some respects both the report and the incipient WAC movement shared similar impulses. Seeking a "conception of rhetoric applicable to our own time," the scholars writing in The Prospect of Rhetoric argued that the "scope of rhetorical theory and practice should be greatly widened" (237-38). Indeed, the report calls for nothing less than "major cultural change," initiated by adopting a "'rhetorical stance' in humanistic and social affairs" (244). Writingacross-the-curriculum proponents voiced similar concerns for renewing the relevance of communication in and across disciplines, and for widening both the scope of and avenues for instruction.

I shall argue, however, that the prospect of rhetoric in writing across the curriculum remains largely that: a prospect. To be sure, WAC programs have proliferated, and research on the rhetoric of disciplinary communities has prospered. However, undergraduate classroom instruction in WAC programs has yet to adopt, for the most part, the "rhetorical stance" envisioned in The Prospect of Rhetoric. Specifically, WAC's inclination to accommodate disciplinary concepts of expertise and existing curricular structures -- an inclination that has allowed WAC to develop, even prosper, over several "generations" -- has also diminished its rhetorical prospects.

This paper inquires into these causes and briefly suggests possible remedies. The 1971 report provides a useful place to start, for in its pages we can uncover impulses for reform that WAC proponents shared, even as we identify different rhetorical stances and divergent attitudes on curricular issues and disciplinary expertise. Unlike many earlier reform movements, WAC programs have survived because of accommodations to a "culture of expertise." However, this accommodation has also narrowed students' rhetorical education.

-149-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this book

This book has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this book

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
Making and Unmaking the Prospects for Rhetoric: Selected Papers from the 1996 Rhetoric Society of America Conference
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
/ 215

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    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.