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Western States Rhetoric & Literacy Conference


Friday October 27, 2017

Registration and Coffee

8:15  9:00am
LNCO 3865

Session 1


1.A. (Un)Perceiving Rhetoric
RM 2820

Phantasia and the Ethics of Narrative ‘Rhetrickery’: Making the Other Feel Recognized,” James (Randy) Fromm,

New Mexico State University

“Gaydar as Queer Reponse-ability,” Arthur Tillbrook, New Mexico State University

“This is Rhetoric You Never Yet Saw,” Justine Wells, New Mexico State University

Chair: Patti Wojahn, New Mexico State University

1.B. Embodying the Common Reader: An Approach to Writing Instruction
RM 3840

This presentation will engage participants in a way of reading and responding called “The Common Reader Method.” This method—which was designed to counter the disembodied, disengaged peer responses that our students frequently offer—articulates a way to embody the processes of reading and responding, thereby improving students’ understanding of audience and rhetorical purpose.

Karen Gocsik, University of California, San Diego

Holly Bauer, University of California, San Diego

Sarah Baker, University of California, San Diego

Chair: Alyssa Crow, University of Utah

1.C. On the Mediation of Sensation: Pain as a Site of Productive Rhetorical Inquiry
RM 3870

“Don’t Pretend This Doesn’t Hurt: The Pain of Quilting as a Research Method,” Sonia Arellano, University of Arizona

“Don’t Tell Me How (not) to Feel: Pleasure, Pain, and Popular Culture,” Antonnet Johnson, University of Arizona

“Don’t Touch: Mimesis and the Experience of Pain in Computer Game Players’ Bodies,” Josh Zimmerman

Chair: Nona Brown, University of Utah 

1.D. Technological Voice(s)/Technologies of Voice
RM 3805

“Grain as Punctum: Barthes and the Quasi-Materiality of Voice,” Byron Hawk, University of South Carolina

“Ventriloquizing with Digital Prosopopoeia,” Trisha N. Campbell, University of Utah

“The Voice of the Machine Audience,” Anthony Stagliano, New Mexico State University

“The Field as a Chorus,” Casey Boyle, University of Texas-Austin

Chair: Shauna Edson, University of Utah 

1.E. Tastes Like Rhetoric: Sensory Pedagogy, Food Memoir, and Food Media
RM 3875

“The Taste of Persuasion: Building a Pedagogy of the Senses,” Amy Ratto Parks, University of Montana

“Stories Make the Food Taste Better: Cookbook Memoirs, Domesticity, and Tech Comm,” Jennifer C. Mallette, Boise

State University

“Food Media and Embodied Rhetorics: The Challenge of Absent Presence,” Marsha Maxwell, University of Utah

Chair: Charissa Che, University of Utah

1.F. Roundtable: From Theory to Public Action: Moving Rhetoric Beyond the University
RM 3850

The goal of this 90-minute roundtable is to discuss how scholars can engage in material aspects of rhetorical theory by moving from theory to advocacy. This roundtable will provide attendees with 1) an overview of a Collective Impact approach designed for engaging students, community members, and other research faculty on public advocacy, and 2) a platform for like-minded communication and rhetoric researchers to collaborate on new research nexuses while identifying potential publication venues.

Jessie Lynn Richards, University of Utah

Joshua Lenart, University of Utah

1.G. Roundtable: The Jokes on Us: Theatricality and Body Persuasion
RM 3850

Persuasion as a bodily response is illustrated in the enactment and reception of jokes and via a discussion of theatricality in Aristotle, Plato, and contemporary communication and biology scholarship. The audience will participate by telling jokes, observing physical responses, theorizing about informal theatrical rituals, and offering conclusions.

William W. Wright, Colorado Mesa University


Eccles Auditorium, Carolyn Irish Tanner Building

General Welcome & Keynote Speaker Introduction
Maureen Mathison, University of Utah

Keynote Address
Debra Hawhee, Penn State University
“Reconstituting Rhetorics through the Sensorium”

Lunch Break


Session 2


2.A. Place-Based Pedagogies: Learning About/In/Through Our Lived Spaces
RM 2820

“Rural Literacies and the Nonhuman,” Kim Donehower, University of North Dakota

“Writing in Place: Field Writing as Embodied Learning in Composition,” Rachel Bryson, Weber State University

Chair: Kirk Branch, Montana State University

2.B. Embodied Experiences of the Rhetorical Visceral
RM 3840

 “When Affects Lead to a Revolution: Mohamed Bouazizi’s Self-Immolation as a Start Point to Construct a Theory of

the Sense of Agency,” Kefaya Diab, New Mexico State University

“A study of the sensorial-rhetorical function of objects of protest within the collective activism surrounding Sacred

Stone protest,” Summer Dickinson, Indiana University of PA

“Terminal Aesthetic: Visuality and the Sensible in Salt Lake International Airport,” Karl Haase, University of Utah

Chair: David Hawkins, University of Utah

2.C. Telling Stories about Ourselves and Others: Rhetorics of Affective Relations
RM 3870

“New Materialism, Autobiography, and Affective Relations,” Laurie Gries, University of Colorado, Boulder

“The New Materialism and Rhetoric’s Historical Prowess: Notes toward a More Sensitive Historiography,” Jason

Barrett-Fox, Weber State University

“Being Both/And: Understanding the Practice of Race While Being Biracial and White Passing,” Mat Sillito, University

of Utah

Chair: Jennifer Andrus, University of Utah

2.D.Compassionate Pedagogies: Online, in Writing Centers, and as Undergraduate Research Methodology
RM 3805

“The Online Writing Teacher as Cultural Geographer: Developing a Theory of Place for Online Writing Instruction,”

Felicita Arzu Carmichael, New Mexico State University

“Sensation and Human Dignity in Rhetoric and Writing Studies,” Robyn Tierney, New Mexico State University

“Pedagogy and Practice in Research Methods for Writing Studies,” Joyce Kinkead, Utah State University

“The Careful Balance of Affect, Confidence Building, and Writing Development,” Joshua C. Hilst, Utah Valley


Chair: Joy Pierce, University of Utah

2.E. Environmental Exigencies in the Anthropocene
RM 3875

“Framing the Anthropocene: An Ecolinguistic Approach,” Gerri McNenny, Chapman University

“Digital Tracks and Toxic Trails,” Natasha Seegert, University of Utah

“‘Something for the Lean Years’: On the Phantasmata of Industrial Wind Development,” Noel Thistle Tague,

University of Pittsburgh

Chair: Jay Jordan, University of Utah

2.F. Roundtable: (Dis)Embodies Literacies: Identifying Ways of Being
RM 3850

In this round-table discussion, we will share our literacy studies that examine space, place, cultural tools, and bodies as they relate to (dis)embodiment. Then we will invite participants to explore assumptions about student literacies as they relate to issues of embodiment and disembodiment.

Erin Goldin, University of Nevada Reno

Kathryn Lambrecht, University of Nevada Reno

Merrilyne Lundahl, Southern Oregon University

Maureen McBride, University of Nevada Reno

Meghan Sweeney, Saint Mary’s College of California

Morgan Walker, Saint Mary’s College of California

2.G.Roundtable: Design Literacies and the Teaching of Rhetoric
RM 3850

We propose viewing teaching as a felt, local, user-centered practice that creates enabling conditions for the development of metis (practical knowledge based in materiality and experience). Examples from our teaching will open the discussion with attendees of how we might design our pedagogy to tap into students’ existing craft-based expertise.

Hilary Sarat-St.Peter, Columbia College Chicago

Elizabeth G. Allan, Oakland University

Josephine Walwema, Oakland University

Sarah Perrault, University of California, Davis

Session 3


3.A. Roundtable: Embodied Rhetorics, Ethics, and Social Justice
RM 2820

This roundtable examines how digital and networked technologies influence and produce embodied rhetorics with social justice implications. Through approaches ranging from actor network theory to tactical technical communication, this roundtable investigates body-disciplining rhetorics in environmentalism, Social Security, hormone replacement therapy, wearables, and biopolitics.

“Technological Embodiment, Disability, & Environmentalism,” Beth Shirley, Utah State University

“Deviating Tactics of Dis/abled Bodies in the SSI Application Process,” Sherena Huntsman, Utah State University

“Transgendered Bodily Rhetorics in DIYHRT,” Avery C. Edenfield, Utah State University

“Negative Sensorial Practices & Experiences: Wearables & Ethics in Running Sports,” Normi Coto, George Mason


“Negotiating Gamified Habit Formation as Bio-political Object,” Steve Holmes, George Mason University

Discussion Leader: Jared Colton, Utah State University

3.B. Speculative Animals
RM 3805

This panel explores “speculative animals,” animals that are emerging or may emerge as humans write them into new relationships within the language apparatus of electracy.

Sean Morey, University of Tennessee

Jason Crider, University of Florida

Hayley Zertuche, Clemson University

Chair: Max Werner, University of Utah

3.C. Feeling, Temporality, and Transmodality in the Composition Classroom
RM 3870

“Critical Thinking (And Feeling) in the Composition Classroom,” Rochelle Gold, University of Southern California

“‘Now, I Feel Like I Can Affect the Future’: FYC, Temporal Orientation, & Change,” Daniel Singer, University of


“Transmodal Dispositions: Empathy and Sensory Literacies,” Nina Feng, University of Utah

Chair: Mathew Sillito, University of Utah

3.D. Embodiment and Representation in the Sensorium
RM 3840

“Listening: Playing in the Pause,” Emma Howes, Coastal Carolina University

“Mindfulness as/in an Antiracist Assessment Ecology,” Christian Smith, Coastal Carolina University

“Gendered Narratives Written on Digital Representations of the Body,” Ashley Canter, Coastal Carolina University

Chair: Tracey Daniels-Lerberg, University of Utah

3.E. Memory and Its Objects: War Memorials, War Diaries, Heroism, and Sacredness
RM 3875

“Stop Dancing on My Grave: Affective Discord at Mediated Sites of Public Memory,” Gordon Titchner, Arizona State


“We Can Be Heroes, Or Can We?” Paul Walker, Murray State University

“The Lay, Smells, and Sounds of the Land: Material Place’s Agency in Memory Places,” Elizabethada A. Wright,

University of Minnesota Duluth

Chair: Jessie Richards, University of Utah

3.F. Sensing Our Rhetorical Repertoires: A Multi-Sensory Perspective on Rhetoric and Writing Pedagogies
RM 3850

“Sound A/Effects as Rhetorical Beings,” Matt Hill, University of Denver

“Somatic Stitches: Procedural Rhetorics of Craft,” Libby Catchings, University of Denver

“What’s Old is New: Destabilizing and Reinvigorating Visual Literacy in the Archives,” Rob Gilmore, University of


“Experience-Engineering: Playtesting with/as the Writing Process,” David Riche, University of Denver

Chair: Jonathan Stone, University of Utah

Friday Reception

University Marriott Hotel


Saturday October 28, 2017

Coffee and Registration

LNCO 3850

Session 4


4.A. Reading and Writing Identity In, Through, and After the Military: The Rhetorical and Literacy Practices of Cadets, Student Veterans, and Military Kids
RM 2820

“Cadet Perceptions of the Role of Affect in Military Literacy Practices,” Melody Pugh, United States Air Force


“Identity and Agency in the Rhetorical Choices of Student Veterans,” Corrine Hinton, Texas A&M University

“Literacy Practices in the Lived Experience of Military Kids,” Emily Wilson, University of Michigan

Chair: Christie Toth, University of Utah

4.B. Video Games, Discipline & the Digital Self
RM 3840

“Whose Agency do You Work For?: Digital Alter Egos, Quantified Academics, and Surveillance,” Sarah Young, Arizona

State University

“Disciplining players: Game Controllers and Technological Embodiment,” Victoria Braegger, Utah State University

“Using All Available Means . . . How Computer Games Attune Us to Ambient Rhetoric,” Ryan Moeller, Utah State


Chair: Mitchell Reber, University of Utah

4.C. Disciplinary, Public, and Environmental Affects
RM 3870

“Mathematical Pathos and How We Feel about the Possibilities of Democracy,” Cathy Chaput, University of Nevada,

Reno, and Crystal Colombini, University of Texas at San Antonio

“The Pussyhat and its Constitution of Publics,” Austin Kelly, University of Nevada, Reno

“Embodied Subjectivities and the City,” Phillip Goodwin, University of Nevada, Reno

Chair: Maureen Clark, University of Utah

4.D. Senses of Rhetoric in Moments of Initiation
RM 3805

“Network Sense at Nascency,” Derek Mueller, Eastern Michigan University

“Plant Sense/Plant Seeing: Towards a Heliotropic Rhetoric,” Jennifer Clay-Lemon, University of Winnipeg

“Mediating the Listening Masses: The Politics and Rhetorics of 1930s-era Educational Radio,” Jonathan Stone,

University of Utah

Chair: Maureen Mathison, University of Utah

4.E. Sensory and Materiality in the Second Language Classroom: Perspectives of Administrators, Teachers, and Students
RM 3875

“Multisensory Classroom ‘Observations’ and Reattunement,” Jay Jordan, University of Utah

“Senses in ELT: The Power of Narratives,” Andréa Machado de Almeida Mattos, Federal University of Minas Gerais

and Érika Amâncio Caetano, Federal University of Minas Gerais, Brasil

“Desire as Impetus: Locating Heritage Chinese Voices within ‘Third Place’ Materialities,” Charissa Che, University of


Chair: Justin Whitney, University of Utah

4.F. Roundtable: The (Im)possibilities of Confronting Racial Rhetorics along the Border and in the Classroom
RM 3850

This roundtable will critically center on nonrepresentational rhetoric by providing analyses that counter dominant racial narratives. Within these critical discussions, panelists will address how racial rhetorics continue to fuel injustices along the border and in the classroom, and provide suggestions for critical educators at all levels.

Octavio Pimentel, Texas State University

Charise Pimentel, Texas State University

José Manuel Cortez, University of Utah

Alyssa Crow, University of Utah

Session 5


5.A. Multimodality and the Bodily Arts
RM 2820

“Toward a Non-Dualistic Multimodal Rhetoric,” Zach Warzecka, Arkansas State University

“Musicality, Physicality, and the Sophistic Speech,” Patrick DeSimio, New Mexico State University

“Displays of Rhetorical Potential: Description and Technics in the Stock Image Industry,” Kerry Banazek, University

of Pittsburgh

Chair: Nina Feng, University of Utah

5.B. Relational Embodiment: Changing Understandings of the World
RM 3840

“Scholarship and the Sensorium: A rejection of ocularcentrism and overtextualization in ethnographic

methodology,” Westin Miller, Independent Scholar

“The Shifting Rhetoric of Curanderismo: A Continuing Practice of Attunement,” Sally Said, University of the Incarnate


“A Sensory-Rhetorical Reading of Plants as Persons in Robin Wall Kimmerer’s Braiding Sweetgrass: Valuing

Indigenous Ways of Knowing and Respecting Plants as Subjects,” Kathleen J. Ryan, Montana State University

Chair: Natasha Seegert, University of Utah

5.C. Negotiating the Unknown: Considering the Embodied Needs of Students in Our Classrooms and Universities
RM 3870

Natalie Taylor, New Mexico State University

Karen Trujillo, New Mexico State University

Norma Palomina, New Mexico State University

Chair: Romeo Garcia, University of Utah

5.D. Cultural Values of Affect and Literacy: Creativity in Memoir and Schooled Writing
RM 3805

“Locating and Challenging Cultural Values in Memoir,” Julie Christen, Montana State University

“Student Expectations and Conceptions of Creativity,” Doug Downs, Montana State University

“Creative Domains in the Writing Classroom,” Elaina Juedeman, Montana State University

Chair: Doug Downs, Montana State University

5.E. Relationships Between User and Machine: Embodiment, Ethics, and Presence
RM 3875

“A Good Man Computing Well: A Posthuman Rhetoric for Technical Writing Ethics,” J.A. Rice, Western Kentucky


“Embodied Assessment: How Can Online-Only Classes Use Technology to Create an Atmosphere that Enables

Student Improvement?” Catherine Goodman, University of Utah

“Setting the Tone: Using Teaching Presence to Create Social Presence in Asynchronous Discussion Forums,” Keith

Grant-Davie, Utah State University

Chair: Marsha Maxwell, University of Utah

5.F. Roundtable: Affordances and Challenges of Digital Mapping in Archival Research
RM 3850

Building on the conference theme of Rhetoric and Sensorium, this roundtable explores the intersections of materiality and digital/networked technologies across a range of archival research projects. Participants briefly explore the affordances and challenges of digital mapping for understanding the rhetorical and material actions of historical figures, places, and movements, and invite audience participation.

Brice Nordquist, Syracuse University

Amy J. Lueck, Santa Clara University

Patricia Wilde, Washington State University, Tri-Cities

Gesa Kirsch, Bentley University

Alison Williamson, Chapman University

Jana Remy, Chapman University


The University of Utah Western States Rhetoric & Literacy Conference Committee
Maureen Mathison and Peter Goggin, Co-Chairs
Charissa Che, Jennifer Courtney, Tiffany Kinney, Marsha Maxwell, Jonathan Stone, Justin Whitney

 We would like to thank the College of Humanities and the Department of Writing & Rhetoric Studies
for its generous support of the 2017 conference.

Last Updated: 8/10/17