Call for Papers

2nd Biennial International Rhetoric Workshop: “Rhetorical Cultures: Mapping Global Publics and the Crossroads of Democracy.”

When: July 4th-6th 2018.  

Where: Ghent University – Department of Educational Studies. Ghent, Belgium.

As we prepare for the 2nd Biennial International Rhetoric Workshop (IRW), we invite international PhD students and emerging scholars to come together to consider the myriad ways that our contemporary and established traditions of rhetorical theory and criticism inform global flows of meaning-making. This year’s theme, “Rhetorical Cultures: Mapping Global Publics and the Crossroads of Democracy,” encourages broad-based reflection, inquiry, and collaboration, taking stock of the emergent rhetorical practices that shape and undergird the political world today in all of its contingency and heterogeneity.

The IRW is an international workshop that creates space for emerging and early-career rhetorical scholars and critics to participate with one another in an informal setting that facilitates engaging discussion, developing scholarship, and bridging communities. The workshop theme allows for broad interpretation, enabling scholars to pursue pertinent questions related but not limited to the suggested themes below. The central focus on rhetorical studies establishes the common terrain upon which such a cross-pollination of ideas and dialogues can open unique insights into the challenges of democracy in a globalized world.

This year’s workshop will take place at Ghent University in Belgium and will be organized by their Department of Educational Studies.This setting offers a fitting place to reflect on historical and contemporary questions pertaining to international currents and cross-cultural intersections of democratic practice and rhetorical cultures; proposals that speak to the conference theme are encouraged but certainly not required. In all, we invite you to participate in the 2nd IRW and look forward to reading the many exciting proposals that we hope this theme will inspire.

Suggested themes or guiding questions:

  • How to understand geographically structured cultures of rhetorical practices: their regional, national, and international negotiations.
  • How can rhetoric be introduced into educational settings and how can rhetorical analysis help inform educational research?
  • How rhetorical studies can contribute to the theoretical, critical, and conceptual understandings of public cultures and their formation.
  • What rhetorical practices and processes confront, complicate, or help to sustain democratic cultures within an increasingly globalized world.
  • How alternative forms of democratic practice can challenge power structures and build resistant movements.
  • What nascent identity-positions can emerge from transnational flows of bodies, beliefs, and communication practices as they move across borders and boundaries.
  • How rhetoric’s multifaceted, transnational intellectual history has crossed borders in its continuous engagement with democratic, philosophical, and aesthetic thought in and across global political settings.
  • How ideas of race, ethnicity, and otherness are rhetorically constructed and deployed as a political means of securing hegemonic conditions or undermining democratic processes
  • How colonial legacies haunt or complicate nascent rhetorical conceptions of global citizenship and the idea of a global community.
  • How LGBTQ activists’ rhetorical practices centered on queer worldmaking circulates or is contested in an increasingly globalized world.
  • How transnational feminisms impact and contest hegemonic practices within democratic spaces.
  • How physical and digital spaces inform and complicate rhetorical practices in our public cultures.

Please submit abstracts (250 words max) to:

Deadline for submissions: February 2nd, 2018

Applicants will hear back by early March.