3.849 conference: rhetoric and composition (331)

Willard McCarty (MCCARTY@vm.epas.utoronto.ca)
Wed, 13 Dec 89 22:17:24 EST

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 3, No. 849. Wednesday, 13 Dec 1989.

Date: Tue, 12 Dec 89 20:45:00 EST
From: "John T. Harwood (814)865-4764" <JTH@PSUVM.PSU.EDU>
Subject: Penn State Conf. on Rhetoric and Composition

The Penn State Conference on Rhetoric and Composition
July 11-14, 1990

The Penn State Conference on Rhetoric and Composition, a
four-day gathering of teachers and scholars, offers a
generous mixture of plenary and special-interest sessions in
a relaxed atmosphere; a chance for learning, leisure, and
reflection on composition and rhetoric; and an extended
opportunity to discuss professional concerns with nationally
known speakers and interested colleagues.

Our ninth annual conference features plenary sessions, concurrent
sessions, and roundtable discussions on topics of current interest. In
addition, three special sessions led by featured speakers will be
presented on Saturday morning: Computers in Writing, New Ideas for the
Writing Classroom, and Think Tank on Research.

Call for Papers
The program committee invites one-page proposals for papers, workshops,
and roundtables. Multiple submissions are encouraged. Please identify
each proposal as a:

whole session

On each proposal, please include:

the title
your name
your professional affiliation
your home address
your home phone number

If you are willing to chair a session, please let us know, too. If
necessary, include an alternate home address and phone number for
correspondence after June 1. Send your proposals by April 15 to John
Harwood, 117 Burrowes Building, The Pennsylvania State University,
University Park, PA 16802; phone (814) 863-3066 or BITNET to JTH at
PSUVM. Although we receive approximately four hundred proposals, we can
accept only about one hundred papers. We will announce this year's
program in early June.


You may propose a single 20-minute paper or an entire session (typically
consisting of three related papers) on subjects involving rhetoric and
composition. Especially welcome are extensions, applications, and
critiques of the work of our featured speakers. Other possible topics
include: rhetorical theory, research in composition, the composing
process, evaluation, technical or business writing, advanced
composition, ESL, writing across the curriculum, the history of
rhetoric, teaching methods, collaborative learning, tutoring and writing
labs, connections among reading and writing and speaking, computers and
writing, literacy, style and stylistics, basic writing, social
implications of writing, and the administration of writing programs.


Several 60- or 90-minute workshops on the topics listed
above will be scheduled. We strongly prefer proposals that
clearly include hands-on, interactive involvement.


In each roundtable session, speakers representing a wide spectrum of
opinions on a controversial question will briefly present their
positions, after which the chair will moderate the discussion among the
panelists and the audience. To submit a position paper, follow the
guidelines given under Call for Papers. Be sure to give your proposal a
title and indicate which question it addresses.

1. What has been the most significant contribution to rhetoric and
composition in the past five years?

2. What has been the most significant effect, positive or negative, of
computers in composition?

3. What's wrong with freshman composition?

Saturday Morning Sessions

To propose short presentations for these sessions, follow the guidelines
given under Call for Papers. Be sure to give your proposal a title.

New Ideas for the Writing Classroom

Though much of our conference focuses on writing pedagogy, participants
will have a special opportunity to concentrate on classroom tactics for
three hours on Saturday. First, sessions will be built around the
discussion of conferees' specific classroom activities: exercises,
assignments, methods, and so forth. Then, responses to and discussions
of those classroom practices will be directed by Walter Beale, John
Trimbur, and Lee Odell. Finally, the participants, presenters, and our
panel of experts will discuss pedagogical issues in writing that have
emerged from both this workshop and the entire conference.

Think Tank on Research

The first part of this three-hour Saturday session will address two
central questions implicit throughout the conference: what are the
pressing questions that need to be addressed by those who study rhetoric
and the teaching of writing, and how might answers to those questions be
pursued? Linda Flower, Lester Faigley, and Winifred Horner will address
those questions with short position statements, and then participants
will have ample opportunity to respond. In the second half of the
session, the same scholars will lead small-group discussions:
participants will have an opportunity to share informally their own
research projects and to receive specific advice on them from other

Computers in Writing

This three-hour session will consider the uses of computers to improve
both writing and writing instruction. There will be opportunities for
small-group discussions, demonstrations of software and hardware, and
time for participants to share course materials. Since Penn State
offers four writing courses in a computer environment, interested
participants will be able to observe classes, examine our specially
designed classrooms, survey computer lab facilities, and consult with
staff members on everything from how to obtain funding and institutional
support to the particulars of staff development and classroom tactics.

Course for Credit

Graduate students and faculty from other universities are invited to
enroll (as space permits) in a graduate seminar in rhetoric and
composition offered at Penn State from June 20 to August 1.

ENGL 597A Rhetoric and Composition After Post-Structuralism
(Professor Lester Faigley, visiting professor of English)
This course examines the influence on rhetoric and composition of three
strands of post-structuralist theory: the radical relativism of
Foucault, nonessentialist feminism, and neo-Marxism. The focus is on
how post- structuralist theory came to influence current work in
rhetoric and composition (both theory and classroom practice).

For more information about the course, contact John Harwood
at (814) 863-3066 by May 15.

Our keynote speaker, Kathleen Hall Jamieson, is dean of the Annenberg
School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania. Well known
for her distinguished work in political rhetoric, she was the director
of communications for the House Committee on Aging and has created
rhetorical strategies for members of Congress and governmental agencies.
Her long list of publications includes a second edition of The Interplay
of Influence: Mass Media and Their Publics in News, Advertising,
Politics (1988), Packaging the Presidency: A History and Criticism of
Presidential Campaign Advertising (1988), Eloquence in an Electronic
Age: The Transformation of Political Speechmaking (1988), and
Presidential Debates: The Challenge of Creating an Informed Electorate

Walter Beale, professor of English at the University of North Carolina
at Greensboro, is well known for his work in modern argumentation
theory. Much of his work emphasizes persuasive writing and the analysis
of argument. His books include Old and Middle English Poetry to 1500:
A Guide to Information Sources (1976), A Pragmatic Theory of Rhetoric
(1987), and Real Writing: Argumentation, Reflection, Information
(1986), now in its second printing.

Lester Faigley teaches in the graduate rhetoric program at the
University of Texas at Austin. His research and publications cover a
range of topics: the teaching of writing, discourse analysis, research
design, and rhetorical theory. He co-edited Evaluating College Writing
Programs (1983) and Assessing Writers' Knowledge and Processes of
Composing (1985). His work has appeared in College Composition and
Communication, Research in the Teaching of English, Freshman English
News, and Journal of Educational Research.

Linda Flower, well known for her research on student and professional
writers, teaches at Carnegie Mellon University. She has co-authored
many articles on the composing processes, including "Detection,
Diagnosis, and the Strategies of Revision" (College Composition and
Communication, 1986). Her textbook, Problem-Solving Strategies for
Writing (1989), is now in its third edition.

Winifred Bryan Horner of Texas Christian University has worked
extensively on historical and contemporary rhetorical theory as well as
on the connections between composition and literature. She edited
Historical Rhetoric: An Annotated Bibliography of Selected Sources in
English (1980), Composition and Literature: Bridging the Gap (1983), and
The Present State of Scholarship in Historical and Contemporary Rhetoric

Lee Odell, a professor of language and literature at Rensselaer
Polytechnic Institute, was the 1986 chair for CCCC. He has done
extensive work on how writing is taught, evaluated, and researched. His
essays include "Diversity of Change: Toward a Maturing Discipline"
(College Composition and Communication, 1986). He has also edited a
number of important collections of essays, including Research on
Composing: Points of Departure (1978) and Writing in Nonacademic
Settings (1985).

John Trimbur, a veteran writing program administrator, teaches at
Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Massachusetts. He has published
articles on the politics of literacy, peer tutoring, the administration
of writing programs, and contemporary poetry. His chapter,
"Collaborative Learning and Teaching Writing," in Ben W. McClelland and
Timothy R. Donovan's Perspectives on Research and Scholarship in
Composition (1985), challenges traditional definitions of teacher and

Social Events In addition to good papers and good talk, the Penn State
Conference offers various occasions for participants to relax together.
Participants will be invited to a party one evening at Kolln Vineyards
near State College. This event features local wines, tours of the
vineyards and winery, the music of the Allegheny Mountain String Band
and optional square dancing. An afternoon outing and barbecue dinner
are planned for July 12 at Mountain Acres, a rustic retreat not far from
State College; participants can hike, pitch horseshoes, play softball or
volleyball, and enjoy a picnic. And an informal reception and party
will be held on July 13.

The conference is held concurrently with the Central Pennsylvania
Festival of the Arts, one of the largest events of its kind in the
country. More than four hundred jury- selected exhibitions--paintings,
ceramics, etchings, leather work, textiles, photographs, sculpture,
jewelry, and more-- line the streets of State College and the sidewalks
of campus. Jazz bands, rock groups, mime troupes, fiddlers, and string
quartets perform on outdoor stages; indoors are films, plays, and
special art exhibits.

Leisure Activities
For conference participants who want to vacation before, during, or
after the conference, the campus and surrounding Nittany Valley offer
facilities for camping, swimming, fishing, hiking, tennis, and golf.
Within an hour's drive of State College are boating at Stone Valley,
swimming at Whipple Dam State Park, fishing at Black Moshannon State
Park, and hiking at Alan Seeger State Forest. History buffs will enjoy
nearby Bellefonte, a town of fine nineteenth- century houses, and Curtin
Village, a reconstruction of an iron foundry, master's mansion, and
workers? cottages. Additional information about these and other local
activities is included in the conference registration packet, or is
available upon request.

Participants who want to remain in State College for the Sunday
following the conference should make reservations at local hotels early,
because the Arts Festival weekend is a busy one.

Time and Location
This conference will begin at 10:30 a.m. on Wednesday, July 11 and end
at noon on Saturday, July 14. It will be held on Penn State's
University Park Campus in State College, Pennsylvania.

The campus is in the center of the state on Routes 26 and 322, south of
Interstate 80. It is on the main east-west route of both the Greyhound
and Fullington Trailways bus lines. USAir/USAir Express and United
Express serve the University Park Airport, located five miles from
campus; limousine and taxi service between the campus and the airport is
available. Participants can qualify for special rates by staying in
town Saturday night.

You may arrange for housing in one of three ways:

1. You may stay in a University residence hall Wednesday through
Saturday nights or Tuesday through Saturday nights. If you stay
Wednesday through Saturday nights (four nights), the cost is $48 (double
occupancy). Family members are welcome to stay in the residence hall
for the same $48 cost. No charge is made for infants if the participant
provides the bedding. You may list a preferred roommate on the
registration form; otherwise, roommates will be assigned. A limited
number of single rooms are available at $68. If you request a single
and one is not available when your application arrives, you will be
assigned a double room.

If you stay Tuesday through Saturday nights (five nights), the cost is
$60 (double occupancy) or $85 (single occupancy). The rules and
procedures listed above also apply to those staying for five nights.

To register for housing in a University residence hall, complete and
return the attached registration form by June 19. Space may not be
available after the June 19 deadline, so please register early. But do
not send payment: you can pay for oncampus housing by check or with cash
when you arrive. You may purchase meals (on a meal-by-meal basis) at
the residence hall cafeteria; local restaurants, both on and off campus,
are also convenient.

2. You may stay at The Nittany Lion Inn on campus. Special conference
rates for July 10-15 at this attractive hotel range from $55 to $70 for
single rooms and $62 to $80 for doubles. To reserve a room, phone (814)
231-7505 and identify yourself as a Rhetoric and Composition Conference
participant. Call early, since rooms are limited and the Festival of
the Arts brings many visitors.

3. You may arrange your own housing. A list of local hotels and motels
will be sent along with your registration acknowledgment.

Please note: We regret that we cannot offer daily rates for conference
registration or University housing. Fees remain the same for all or any
part of the conference.

Fee and Registration
The $90 fee ($60 for graduate students who provide evidence of student
status) covers registration, materials, and three social events. It may
be paid by check, money order, VISA, MasterCard, or request to bill
employer. To register, complete the attached form and return it to Penn
State by June 19. Those who register in advance will be notified of
program changes. Registrations will be acknowledged by mail.

For More Information
About program content
John Harwood
117 Burrowes Building
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, PA 16802
phone (814) 863-3066

About registration
Chuck Herd
409 Keller Conference Center
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, PA 16802
phone (814) 863-3550