Silence and Listening as Rhetorical Arts

Overview

In Silence and Listening as Rhetorical Arts, editors Cheryl Glenn and Krista Ratcliffe bring together seventeen essays by new and established scholars that demonstrate the value and importance of silence and listening to the study and practice of rhetoric. Building on the editors? groundbreaking research, which respects the power of the spoken word while challenging the marginalized status of silence and listening, this volume makes a strong case for placing these overlooked concepts, and their intersections, at ...

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Overview

In Silence and Listening as Rhetorical Arts, editors Cheryl Glenn and Krista Ratcliffe bring together seventeen essays by new and established scholars that demonstrate the value and importance of silence and listening to the study and practice of rhetoric. Building on the editors’ groundbreaking research, which respects the power of the spoken word while challenging the marginalized status of silence and listening, this volume makes a strong case for placing these overlooked concepts, and their intersections, at the forefront of rhetorical arts within rhetoric and composition studies.

            Divided into three parts—History, Theory and Criticism, and Praxes—this book reimagines traditional histories and theories of rhetoric and incorporates contemporary interests, such as race, gender, and cross-cultural concerns, into scholarly conversations about rhetorical history, theory, criticism, and praxes. For the editors and the other contributors to this volume, silence is not simply the absence of sound and listening is not a passive act. When used strategically and with purpose—together and separately—silence and listening are powerful rhetorical devices integral to effective communication. The essays cover a wide range of subjects, including women rhetors from ancient Greece and medieval and Renaissance Europe; African philosophy and African American rhetoric; contemporary antiwar protests in the United States; activist conflict resolution in Israel and Palestine; and feminist and second-language pedagogies.  

            Taken together, the essays in this volume advance the argument that silence and listening are as important to rhetoric and composition studies as the more traditionally emphasized arts of reading, writing, and speaking and are particularly effective for theorizing, historicizing, analyzing, and teaching. An extremely valuable resource for instructors and students in rhetoric, composition, and communication studies, Silence and Listening as Rhetorical Arts will also have applications beyond academia, helping individuals, cultural groups, and nations more productively discern and implement appropriate actions when all parties agree to engage in rhetorical situations that include not only respectful speaking, reading, and writing but also productive silence and rhetorical listening.     

             

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Editorial Reviews

CHOICE - B.A. McGowan

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With this edited volume, Glenn (Pennsylvania State Univ.) and Ratcliffe (Marquette Univ.) advance their previous work, which includes Glenn's Unspoken: A Rhetoric of Silence (CH, Apr'05, 42-3875) and Ratcliffe's Rhetorical Listening (2005). Both well-established and emerging scholars are represented. The first section, "History," traces Western culture's disparagement of silence and listening. Here Shevaun Watson's essay, "Trying Silence: The Case of Denmark Vesey and the History of African American Rhetoric," argues that though Vesey's accusers remark on Vesey's soaring rhetoric, they never quote him. The only "word" attributed to Vesey is silence. In response, the book's second section, "Theory and Criticism," complicates the political meanings of silence and listening. Thus Kennan Ferguson's essay "Silence: A Politics" argues that silence may also constitute spiritual restoration, political resistance, or community building. The final section, "Praxes," suggests methods of practicing silence and listening. For example, Sheri Stenberg teaches students to consciously listen to angry text and their own angry responses in her essay "Cultivating Listening: Teaching from a Restored Logos." This superb, thought-provoking collection includes essays that treat history, literature, rhetoric, and pedagogy. Summing Up: Highly recommended. Lower-level undergraduates and above. -- B. A. McGowan, Northern Illinois University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780809330171
  • Publisher: Southern Illinois University Press
  • Publication date: 1/5/2011
  • Edition description: 1st Edition
  • Pages: 332
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Cheryl Glenn is a liberal arts research professor of English and women’s studies at the Pennsylvania State University. Her many publications include Rhetoric Retold: Regendering the Tradition from Antiquity through the Renaissance and Unspoken: A Rhetoric of Silence.

Krista Ratcliffe is a professor and chair of the English department at Marquette University. Her research focuses on the intersections of rhetoric and feminist theory, and her publications include the award-winning Rhetorical Listening: Identification, Gender, Whiteness.

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Table of Contents

Introduction: Why Silence and Listening Are Important Rhetorical Arts Cheryl Glenn Krista Ratcliffe 1

Part 1 History

1 Aspasia's Purloined Letters: Historical Absence, Fictional Presence, and the Rhetoric of Silence Melissa Ianetta 23

2 Out of "Wonderful Silence" Come "Sweet Words": The Rhetorical Authority of St. Catherine of Siena Kristie S. Fleckenstein 37

3 Purposeful Silence and Perceptive Listening: Rhetorical Agency for Women in Christine de Pizan's The Treasure of the City of Ladies Nancy Myers 56

4 Trying Silence: The Case of Denmark Vesey and the History of African American Rhetoric Shevaun E. Watson 75

5 Living Pictures, Living Memory: Women's Rhetorical Silence within the American Delsarte Movement Lisa Suter 94

Part 2 Theory and Criticism

6 Silence: A Politics Kennan Ferguson 113

7 "Down a Road and into an Awful Silence": Graphic Listening in Joe Sacco's Comics Journalism Andrea A. Lunsford Adam Rosenblatt 130

8 The Ideology of African Philosophy: The Silences and Possibilities of African Rhetorical Knowledge Omedi Ochieng 147

9 Finding Democracy in Our Argument Culture: Listening to Spike Lee's Jazz Funeral on the Levees Joyce Irene Middleton 163

10 Gesturing toward Peace: On Silence, the Society of the Spectacle, and the "Women in Black" Antiwar Protests Ashley Elliott Pryor 180

11 Hearing Women's Silence in Transitional South Africa: Achmat Dangor's Bitter Fruit Katherine Mack 195

Part 3 Praxes

12 With Our Ears to the Ground: Compassionate Listening in Israel/Palestine Joy Arbor 217

13 A Repertoire of Discernments: Hearing the Unsaid in Oral History Narratives Frank Farmer Margaret M. Strain 231

14 Cultivating Listening: Teaching from a Restored Logos Shari Stenberg 250

15 Making Ourselves Vulnerable: A Feminist Pedagogy of Listening Wendy Wolters Hinshaw 264

16 Revaluing Silence and Listening with Second-Language English Users Jay Jordan 278

17 Student Silences in the Deep South: Hearing Unfamiliar Dialects Suellyn Duffey 293

Contributors 307

Index 315

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