Feb 202015

I started the research really struggling to understand how seemingly good people could say such awful things, and that’s really what I wanted to understand. I think what I found is that people are not all one thing or another. They aren’t as awful as they seem in a particular moment. Our students are struggling I think to make sense of the world. –Jennifer Trainor

The image features The Rock at MSU, spray painted white with black handprints and bold text that reads #DONTSHOOT. There are green trees in the background a pale blue and pick sky at dusk. The text over the image reads, "(anti-)racism in the classroom: an interview with Jennifer Trainor"

The Rock at Michigan State University painted #DONTSHOOT (September 2014)

As educators, we ought to discuss issues of racism and structural inequality in our classes. How do we do this with students who are in the process of forming their identities, beliefs, and values? Episode 27 features an interview with Jennifer Seibel Trainor, author of Rethinking Racism: Emotion, Persuasion, and Literacy Education in an All-White High School. In this episode, Trainor addresses anti-racist pedagogies and how we can talk about racism productively with students in the classroom, particularly when students may feel defensive about these issues. Trainor argues that we need to read deeper into the racist comments students make in the classroom to try to understand why they’re saying what they’re saying. You can read a review of Trainor’s book in Composition Forum here: http://compositionforum.com/issue/19/rethinking-racism-review.php

To access a PDF of the full transcript of this episode, please click here: Episode 27 Transcript.

The songs sampled in this episode are “Biomythos” by Revolution Void and “From Stardust to Sentience” by High Places.

Feb 072014

I didn’t really want people taking a stance of feeling responsible for racism. We were all born into a system where that preexisted all of us, but to what extent are we accountable for the now?

Black and white image of Ratcliffe standing in front of a crowd, reading from a piece of paper and pointing her finger emphatically. Text reads, "Rhetorical Listening with Krista Ratcliffe."

Krista Ratcliffe presents at the Rhetorical Listening Symposium at Syracuse University, November 13, 2014.

Episode 18 features an interview with Krista Ratcliffe who presented her talk, “Rhetorical Listening: What’s Next?” at the Rhetorical Listening & Composition Colloquium and Workshop Series. In this podcast, Ratcliffe focuses on civic discourse, cultural logics, and how rhetorical listening occurs in the classroom.

To read a PDF of the full transcript, please download it here: Transcript for Episode 18

The music sampled in this podcast is “Horizontal Drift” and “Twinkle Toes Delux” by Jared C Balogh and “Tea Top” by ROW.

Dec 042013

[P]eople say things around you all the time that make you feel like you’re not normal, and so even though people probably look at that, “Well how can you say that you loved a pimp?” Or, “How could you even think that a pimp loved you?” Like I said, people put you in a box and label you, and nobody really is normal. How do we know what that is? What does that mean? We’re all human beings. What does that mean that we’re not normal, you know what I mean? We all feel love, pain, hate. We feel all the things that human beings can feel—jealousy, everything! When you consume that abnormality from the people around you, you believe it. It’s complicated.

Image shows Elaine Richardson dancing--arm outstretched and head turned to the side. Her mouth is open as she sings. Behind her is a projected image of her mother with an accompanying news article.

Elaine Richardson dancing and singing during her one-woman show at Syracuse University, October 17, 2013

Episode 16 features a lively interview with Elaine Richardson who performed her one-woman show based on excerpts from her recent memoir—PHD to PhD: How Education Saved My Lifeat Syracuse University on October 17th. In this interview, she and CCR’s Seth Davis discuss the memoir, African American rhetoric and language diversity, the George Zimmerman trial, and even RuPaul (and his rhetorical agility!).

To read a PDF of the full transcript, please download it here: Transcript for Episode 16. Thanks for listening to This Rhetorical Life.

The music sampled in this podcast is “Lost Tape” by Loopez and “ZootSuit” by Tab & Anitek.

Sep 052013

Stories fascinate me. They’re so laden and richly textured with the values and the literate activities of individuals that it makes me happy to think of that as shaping the communities within which they work and live and make change. — Cindy Selfe

If higher education is at least in part about critical thinking, about citizenship, about making sure that the work we do in the world is ethical and moral and matters, I’m not sure that we, in traditional higher education, haven’t done a particularly good job yet of justifying the work that we do in ways that are more palatable in this new climate. — Steve Lamos

This We Believe: Image of young boy at protest with red paint on his face and fingers held up in a peace sign.

Episode 12 is a glimpse into This We Believe, a project from Writing Democracy to record and archive conversations about democracy. This podcast features brief narratives from Cindy Selfe, Paul Feigenbaum, Steve Lamos, and Ellen Cushman who talk about democracy in our classrooms and in the world, in theory and in practice, and through linguistic and social action.

To read a PDF of the full transcript, please download it here: Transcript for Episode 12

The music sampled in this podcast is “As Colorful as Ever,” “Murmur,” and “Note Drop” by Broke for Free and “Namer” by High Places.

Aug 162013

I’m a writing professor, and [my blog is] one of the places that I write. That was part of the motivation initially for me was you become a better writer by writing. I think that you could say the same about focusing or specializing in technology. It doesn’t make sense to me to talk about that stuff without actually doing it.

Black and white picture of Collin Brooke (cgbrooke.net)

Episode 11 features Ben Kuebrich and Allison Hitt interviewing Collin Brooke about digital publishing, the value of new media scholarship, and getting involved with the digital humanities community.

To read a PDF of the full transcript, please download it here: Transcript for Episode 11

The music sampled in this podcast is “Quartz Boy” by Pixie Lord,“Emo Step Show” by Custodian of Records, “Namer” by High Places, and “Be Sweet” by Marco Trovatello.