Labels traditionally ascribed to womenmother, angel of the house, whore, or bitchsuggest character traits that do not encompass the complexities of women’s identities or empower women’s public speaking. Rethinking Ethos: A Feminist Ecological Approach to Rhetoric redefines the concept of ethosclassically thought of as character or credibilityas ecological and feminist, negotiated and renegotiated, and implicated in shifting power dynamics. Building on previous feminist and rhetorical scholarship, this essay collection presents a sustained discussion of the unique methods by which women’s ethos is constructed and transformed.
Editors Kathleen J. Ryan, Nancy Myers, and Rebecca Jones identify three rhetorical maneuvers that characterize ethos in the feminist ecological imaginary: ethe as interruption/interrupting, ethe as advocacy/advocating, and ethe as relation/relating. Each section of the book explores one of these rhetorical maneuvers. An afterword gathers contributors’ thoughts on the collection’s potential impact and influence, possibilities for future scholarship, and the future of feminist rhetorical studies.
With its rich mix of historical examples and contemporary case studies, Rethinking Ethos offers a range of new perspectives, including queer theory, transnational approaches, radical feminism, Chicana feminism, and indigenous points of view, from which to consider a feminist approach to ethos.
About the Author
Kathleen J. Ryan is an assistant professor of rhetoric and composition and the coordinator of the writing major at Montana State University. She is a coeditor of Walking and Talking Feminist Rhetorics: Landmark Essays and Controversies and a coauthor of GenAdmin: Theorizing WPA Identities in the Twenty-First Century.
Nancy Myers is an associate professor of English and the director of college writing at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and a coeditor of The Writing Teacher’s Sourcebook, fourth edition.
Rebecca Jones is a UC Foundation associate professor in the English department at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga. Her coauthored article, “Counter-Coulter: A Story of Craft and Ethos,” originally published in Writing on the Edge, is featured in Parlor Press’s The Best of the Independent Rhetoric and Composition Journals 2013.
Contributors include Risa Applegarth, Sean Barnette, Paige A. Conley, Beth Daniell, Kristie S. Fleckenstein, Lynée Lewis Gaillet, Letizia Guglielmo, Wendy S. Hesford, Kendall Leon, Valerie Palmer-Mehta, Mary Beth Pennington, Stacey Pigg, Stacey Waite, and Christy I. Wenger.
Table of Contents
Introduction: Identifying Feminist Ecological Ethe Kathleen J. Ryan Nancy Myers Rebecca Jones 1
Part 1 Ethe as Interruption-Interrupting 23
1 A Reformer Rides: Radical Photographic Ethos in Frances E. Willard's A Wheel within a Wheel Kristie S. Fleckenstein 26
2 Andrea Dworkin's Radical Ethos Valerie Palmer-Mehta 50
3 The Unavailable Means of Persuasion: A Queer Ethos for Feminist Writers and Teachers Stacey Waite 71
4 Changing Audience, Changing Ethos Beth Daniell Letizia Guglielmo 89
Part 2 Ethe as Advocacy-Advocating 111
5 Ethos as a Social Act: The "Unauthorized" Susanna Wesley Lynée Lewis Gaillet 114
6 Hospitality as Kenosis: Dorothy Day's Voluntary Poverty Sean Barnette 132
7 Powerlessness Repurposed: The Feminist Ethos of Judy Bonds Mary Beth Pennington 150
8 Strategically Negotiating Essence: Zitkala-Ša's Ethos as Activist Paige A. Conley 173
Part 3 Ethe as Relation-Relating 195
9 Ethos Righted: Transnational Feminist Analytics Wendy S. Hesford 198
10 Working With and Working For: Ethos and Power in Women's Writing Risa Applegarth 216
11 Creating Contemplative Spaces: Ethos as Presence and the Rhetorics of Yoga Christy I. Wenger 237
12 Conocimiento as a Path to Ethos: Gloria Anzaldúa's Networked Rhetoric Kendall Leon Stacey Pigg 257