Category Archives: RTC

RTC Colloquium: Orchestrated Appeals for Vegetarianism

The next RTC Colloquium takes place from noon to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Oct. 23 in the mezzanine in the Rozsa Center for the Performing Arts.

This colloquium employs Jonathan Safran Foer’s bestseller ‘Eating Animals’ as a case study to forward the rhetorical technique of “orchestrated appeals,” as a persuasive strategy for communicating vegetarianism to potentially resistant audiences.

By mapping the web of connections between food and varied life areas, rhetors can identify with values already held by audiences with diverse ideological commitments and explore alignments between existing beliefs and exigencies for change. The speakers are Oren Abeles (HU) and graduate student Emma Lozon.


RTC Alumnus, Dr. Isidore Kafui Dorpenyo, Publishes Book

Dr. Isidore Kafui DorpenyoDr. Isidore Kafui Dorpenyo, 2016 RTC graduate, has published his first book, User Localization Strategies in the Face of Technological Breakdown: Biometric in Ghana’s Elections published by Palgrave Macmillan Press, 2019. The book is an extension of his RTC PhD dissertation work. Dr. Karla Saari Kitalong of the Humanities Department at Michigan Tech wrote the foreword to the book.

“Dorpenyo argues that the success of a technology depends on how it meets the users’ needs and the creative efforts users put into use situations.” He “identifies and advances three user localization strategies: linguistic localization, subversive localization, and user-heuristic experience localization, and considers how biometric systems can become a tool of marginalization”. – Dr. Karla Saari Kitalong

Dorpenyo is currently Assistant Professor of Professional Writing and Rhetoric at George Mason University, USA. His research focuses on election technology, international technical communication, social justice, and localization. He co-edited a special issue of Technical Communication focused on technical communication and election technologies. Dorpenyo has also published in Technical Communication Quarterly, the Journal of Technical Writing and Communication, and Community Literacy journal.


Josh Chase Joins 2019 Bedford New Scholars Advisory Board

Josh ChaseRTC Phd candidate Joshua Chase joins the 2019 Bedford New Scholars advisory board. According to Leah Rang, development editor at Bedford/St. Martin’s, the board advises the publishing company about

“teaching challenges they face and the research in the field that excites them. They also give us feedback on the direction of our new projects. In the process, Bedford New Scholars participants have the opportunity to connect with other graduate students from across the country and to learn a bit about how publishing works”.

She further stated in a blog post that the members of the board are nominated from among the leading programs from across the country. Josh was recommended to the board by Dr. Marika Seigel, the immediate past Director of the Composition program at Michigan Tech


RTC PhD Candidate attends Europe Games Research Summer School

Over the summer of 2019, RTC PhD Candidate, Lyz Renshaw, participated in the Higher Education Video Game Alliance (HEVGA) Europe Games Research Summer School held in The University of Skövde, Sweden from August 21 to 23. The school was attended by PhD students and graduate students who are working in areas connected to digital games — Renshaw’s dissertation falls within this research area.

Lyz shared her experience:

The experience was great, working alongside other graduate students from schools such as University of California Irvine, Wisconsin-Stout, IT Copenhagen and Uppsala University. We had speakers from all over Scandinavia attend, including scholars from University of Skovde, Uppsala, and Gothenburg. I was given the opportunity to present a chapter of my dissertation and receive feedback from senior researchers and peers, including a graduate student who works directly with many of the scholars I base my work on.

Outside of the intended goals of the program, it was also enlightening to see how higher education is different internationally, how curriculum is designed, courses run, expectations of graduate students.

I also left the program with a collaboration project in the works, taking a previous paper I had present at the e-sports conference at UCI last year (and at an RTC colloquium last year) and pairing up with a graduate student from that university who had seen my earlier work.

 



RTC Spring Colloquium #1

The first RTC Colloquium for the spring semester has been rescheduled for Wednesday, 2/6, from 12-1pm in Walker 109 with talks by Nancy Achiaa Frimpong (“Skin Colour on Sale: Advertising and Postfeminism”) and Lyz Renshaw (“League of Legislation: Esports and Global Politics”).

Read the abstracts (PDF).

 


Shelly Galliah publishes article, book review, and conference proceeding

RTC PhD candidate Shelly Galliah has published an article in The Activist History Review in which she shares her experience teaching science fiction at Michigan Tech: “Science fiction, especially on a campus so dedicated to STEM and to research, is one of the few places [art and science] may and should meet.”
In September 2018, Galliah published a review of John H. Evans’ book Recasting the Contemporary U.S. Conflict between Religion and Science (University of California Press, 2018). The review was published by Metapsychology Online Reviews.
Galliah also published in the proceedings of the 6th Iowa State Summer Symposium on Science Communication, 2018. The theme of the symposium was “Understanding the Role of Trust and Credibility in Science Communication”. Galliah’s paper, “Perceptions of Problematic Credibility in John Oliver’s “Statistically Representative Climate Change Debate”” concludes that “by taking the time to ‘read the comments,’ researchers might be able to understand how not only comedians but also other climate change communicators might strengthen the appearance of their credibility and build successful strategies to persuade oppositional audiences.”

RTC Best Conference Paper Award

The RTC program is excited to launch the Graduate Student Best Conference Paper Award. This award seeks to recognize and promote excellence in RTC graduate students’ research and scholarship and is made possible thanks to support from the Humanities department. All current students are eligible for the award, which comes with a $500 fund. The RTC encourages students to submit their recent papers for consideration. A student may submit only one paper per year. To apply, please follow these submission guidelines (PDF).


RTC Colloquium: The Injunction to Forget with Dr. Ramon Fonkoué

The RTC Committee will present the last of the Fall Colloquium Series this Wednesday, 12/05 at 1RTC Colloquium #3:00 pm in Walker 109. Dr Ramon Fonkoué will present a paper entitled “The Injunction to Forget: State Engineering of Collective Memory in Postcolonial Cameroon,” adapted from a chapter in his forthcoming book on nation building in Cameroon.

This paper will address the post-colonial state’s attempts to impose a sanitized version of the history of the country’s anti-colonial struggle, the resulting lack of potent symbols for the nascent nation, and the manifestations of the people’s “dissident knowledge.”

Abstract: Upon gaining independence, the leaders of Cameroon denied the status of martyrs to the nationalists who had paid the ultimate price for their opposition to the colonizer. Deprived of this symbolic capital, the state was condemned to an improbable quest for beacons of the nascent nation. Using Michel Foucault’s concept of “discursive formation,” this presentation investigates the state’s attempts to monopolize historiography in the aftermath of Cameroon’s war of independence. In independent Cameroon, the leaders’ claim to legitimacy was undercut by the people’s “dissident knowledge” about the nation’s “silent” heroes. As a result, political discourse, which is divorced from popular memory about the past, sees its performative power undermined by the impossibility to mourn the nation’s deaths. This paper concludes on artistic expressions of defiance to sanctioned discourse on history. 


RTC Colloquium: Islands of Resistance

RTC colloquium event posterPlease join the Department of Humanities for a Rhetoric, Theory and Culture Colloquium on Wednesday, November 14 titled “Islands of Resistance.” Dana Van Kooy, associate professor of english in transnational literature and literacy theory and culture, will present “Islands of Resistance: Geography as a Configuration of Political Resistance and Atlantic History” (see abstract below). This essay draws attention to Haiti, the Caribbean, and the Atlantic as differently scaled geopolitical literary spaces that represent multiple cultures and histories of resistance.

Please join us 12 p.m. (noon) Wednesday, November 14 in Rozsa Center room 120 (choral room).

Abstract:

Islands of resistance. The phrase commonly refers to isolated pockets of organized and oppositional force. Significantly, when interpreting the phrase, the emphasis falls more on the geographical features of an island than on the refusal to comply. The geographical imagery encircles and confines resistance: limiting its effectiveness to a series of singular actions or to a small, containable  collective movement. In the cultural imaginary, the island represents a point of stasis in the midst of an immensely larger—very fluid and indomitable—natural force. However, the island’s characteristics—its isolation, its remoteness from everywhere else, and its unique ecology—also produce a synecdoche: the world is an island. What I find relevant here is how geographical markers reconfigure the politics of the phrase, both positively and negatively.  Continue reading