Image Ecology

Rapsody’s Rhetorical Interventions: Black Women & the Hip-Hop Imaginary

Rapsody’s Rhetorical Interventions: Black Women & the Hip-Hop Imaginary

by Eric House
“I became a fan of Rapsody after one verse, and a bigger fan once I went back and explored her catalogue, but I was disappointed to learn that I didn’t know her although she’d been steadily releasing music for the past five years and had worked with many artists that I was familiar with. I began to question why Rapsody had been invisible and unknown to me, an avid and active hip-hop fan, until she appeared on a Kendrick Lamar album.”

Stories that Lead to Action: An Exploration of US Political Rhetorics

Stories that Lead to Action: An Exploration of US Political Rhetorics

by Carlee A. Baker, Amber Buck, Angela D. Mack, James Chase Sanchez, and Jennifer Wingard
Moderated by José Luis Cano Jr. and Daisy Levy
“All rhetoric is laden with and influenced by power, but the stakes feel higher and the power feels heavier when dealing with political rhetoric in particular. I think that political rhetoric looks and behaves differently depending on those who engage in it, the power that they wield and the privileges they enjoy.”

Transnational Fissures and Solidarities: International Political Rhetorics Across Borders

Transnational Fissures and Solidarities: International Political Rhetorics Across Borders

by Stephen Dadugblor, Hazel Elif Guler, Gale Franklin, and Sharon Yam. Moderated by Xiqiao Wang and Andrés C. Lopez
“In international relations, love rhetoric is employed to describe relationships between nations, aiming to foster cooperation, peace, and harmony. However, love is not immune to critique and satire in political discourse, where it can be used ironically or sarcastically to highlight gaps between rhetorical constructions and reality.”

“Who is Worthy of Childhood?”: A Review of Wendy Hesford’s  Violent Exceptions: Children’s Human Rights and Humanitarian Rhetorics

“Who is Worthy of Childhood?”: A Review of Wendy Hesford’s Violent Exceptions: Children’s Human Rights and Humanitarian Rhetorics

by Joselyne Tellez-Cardenas
“In Violent Exceptions: Children’s Human Rights and Humanitarian Rhetorics, Hesford identifies and examines various international children’s humanitarian cases, in order to inspect how visual and political rhetorics are employed to mark children as “exceptional,” a process that has violent repercussions for those not considered worthy of exceptionalism.”

How to Spot a Fascist: A Review of  The Rhetoric of Fascism, Edited by Nathan Crick

How to Spot a Fascist: A Review of The Rhetoric of Fascism, Edited by Nathan Crick

by Carlee A. Baker
“Crick’s collection paints a broad historical and social picture, featuring in-depth analyses of the rhetoric of fascism from several regions, including the U.S., China, Italy, Mexico, Russia, and Germany. In this way, the collection of essays, taken together, provides a nuanced picture of the contours and features of fascist rhetoric via the analysis of a series of case studies.”

Building a Better Future for Mothers: A Review of Jessica Clements and Kari Nixon’s Optimal Motherhood and Other Lies Facebook Told Us: Assembling Networked Ethos of Contemporary Maternity Advice

Building a Better Future for Mothers: A Review of Jessica Clements and Kari Nixon’s Optimal Motherhood and Other Lies Facebook Told Us: Assembling Networked Ethos of Contemporary Maternity Advice

by Alexandria Hanson
“Throughout Optimal Motherhood, Clements and Nixon intertwine their parenting experiences with rhetorical analyses of digital media and multimethod research. Their research considers the experiences of mothers and alcohol consumption, labor and delivery, postpartum medical diagnoses, breast and bottle feeding, infant sleep, and interpreting at-home pregnancy tests.”

Migrations, Moves, and Aftermaths: An Introduction to Issue 5 of constellations

Migrations, Moves, and Aftermaths: An Introduction to Issue 5 of constellations

“The work featured in our fifth issue is thematically linked by its meditations on the in-between—the uncomfortable, beautiful, devastating space we navigate as we reach for one thing while keeping our feet planted on another. Our authors move between cultures, cities, states, countries, languages, and friendships. They move between motherhood and chronic illness, between losing a sibling and gaining a deeper understanding of who they are in the aftermath, between disappointment and curiosity as a beloved novelist takes an inexplicable departure in the themes she explores.”

Dancing Danny

Dancing Danny

by Cecilia Rodríguez Milanés
“The family photos and Super 8 footage document the performances of an immigrant, working-class family attempting a higher status. In sharing these, they sought to prove for themselves and, as noted in the video essay, for their/our families back on the island that they were not only surviving but thriving. In using these home movies and photos for ‘Dancing Danny,’ I am telling a story about family, grief, and memory and very much about love.”

Language as a Moving Anchor: Jhumpa Lahiri’s Whereabouts, Asian/American Rhetorics & the Politics of “Linguistic Migration”

Language as a Moving Anchor: Jhumpa Lahiri’s Whereabouts, Asian/American Rhetorics & the Politics of “Linguistic Migration”

by Vani Kannan
“This book made me confront the tension between seductive Eurocentric notions of ‘good’/’beautiful’ writing and the cultural rhetorics frameworks that have deeply reshaped my thinking about writing and knowledge-making over the past five years. Reflecting on Lahiri’s journey as a writer asked me to grapple with the kind of writer I want to be, the kind of writing space I want to co-create with students, and how I want them to understand the relationship between identity, land, and knowledge-making.”

Tenure Under Attack: An Examination of Tenure’s Viability and Value in the Neoliberal Academy

Tenure Under Attack: An Examination of Tenure’s Viability and Value in the Neoliberal Academy

by Carmen Kynard, José Manuel Cortez, Khadeidra Billingsley, José Luis Cano Jr., Alexis McGee, and Ana Milena Ribero
“The recent attacks on tenure illustrate not only the usual US anti-intellectualism, but also the alignment of various strands of the pandemic milieu: conservative attacks against liberal and anti-racist education, panics over the decreasing value of productivity culture, and a changing US demographic.”

A Constellation of Crises: Teaching with Technology During COVID

A Constellation of Crises: Teaching with Technology During COVID

by Laura Gonzales, Alexandria L. Lockett, Dennis Foung, Morgan C. Banville, Sonia Arellano, and Lauren Brentnell
“Many of us already had done work integrating technology or online instruction into our courses, but the shifts in institutional and student expectations, as well as personal losses that affected our lives, made us continue to reflect upon these practices.”

Leigh Gruwell’s Making Matters: Craft, Ethics, and New Materialist Rhetorics

Leigh Gruwell’s Making Matters: Craft, Ethics, and New Materialist Rhetorics

by Shiva Mainaly
“The practice of materialist rhetorics by the indigenous people of North America since time immemorial illustrates how to push back on the oppressive and exclusionary contours of power, with an intent on making it accountable via shifting the very positionality of any actant within a rhetorical assemblage in a manner most ethical and responsible. In point of fact, this is the pith and marrow of Gruwell’s text being reviewed here.”

Black Tech Matters: A Review of Charlton McIlwain’s Black Software

Black Tech Matters: A Review of Charlton McIlwain’s Black Software

by Codi Renee Blackmon
“McIlwain’s archival work illustrates how throughout the history of digital technologies, Black people have always learned how to master technical worlds and make software to help each other, providing more culturally informed narratives to the history of the Internet. Even something as simple as putting their own Blackness and Black interests onto the Web in the 1990s and the 2000s was a radical act.”

“You Know, Anger Can Be Righteous”: A Review of James Chase Sanchez’s Salt of the Earth and Joel Fendelman’s Man on Fire

“You Know, Anger Can Be Righteous”: A Review of James Chase Sanchez’s Salt of the Earth and Joel Fendelman’s Man on Fire

by Stella Takvoryan
“In Salt of the Earth, Sanchez unpacks how Grand Saline’s storytelling tradition sustains and preserves white supremacy by constellating his most salient memories of Grand Saline (Sanchez, personal interview) and scholarship on the rhetorics of race and racism, protest, silence, cultural rhetorics, and storytelling as methodology.”

Dancing with the Devil Revisited

Dancing with the Devil Revisited

by Marlene Galván
Dancing with the Devil affirms this conception of the stranger as the unfamiliar, the unnatural outsider, enticing women to join him in dance, warning others: this is what happens when you break the seemingly natural boundaries of the community established by traditional religious and cultural institutions. The stranger is a metaphor that becomes real, created to quell the anxiety felt by established norms and institutions during the Chicanx Movement of the 1960s and 1970s. But, the story lives on even today.”

Digital Writing and Cultural Rhetorics Pedagogies

Digital Writing and Cultural Rhetorics Pedagogies

by Kimberly Williams, T. Allen Thomas, Alexander Slotkin, Ivette Rodrigues, Claudia Mitchell, Nicole Green, Laken Brooks, and Laura Gonzales
“At a time of so much chaos and change, we posit that bridging digital writing and cultural rhetorics pedagogies can help teachers and students alike envision new futures and interventions within and beyond the university, as pedagogy can help bring healing and reflection in both classroom and community contexts.”

A Response to Cushman, Baca, and García’s College English Introduction

A Response to Cushman, Baca, and García’s College English Introduction

by Alexandra Hidalgo
“We have indeed sought to publish work by and about BIPOC and diverse populations, and we will continue to do so, not because we think we are going to single-handedly take down the chains that bind us with this kind of scholarship, but because those diverse voices are rich and engaging and gift us with new territories to explore and transformative ideas to ponder.”

Send My Love to the Family: A Review of Glasby, Gradin, and Ryerson’s Storytelling in Queer Appalachia: Imagining and Writing the Unspeakable Other

Send My Love to the Family: A Review of Glasby, Gradin, and Ryerson’s Storytelling in Queer Appalachia: Imagining and Writing the Unspeakable Other

by Vee Lawson
“This collection of eleven essays looks through singular narratives of a homogenous Appalachia—white, cisgendered or heteronormative, solely masculine, repressive, or backwards—to see many experiences of Appalachian queer identity, engaging narratives of exile, return, and liminality as the writers demonstrate that Appalachia itself is ‘a little bit quare.'”

Online Learning in a Time of Crisis: Using Physical Distance and Digital Space to Develop Learning Communities

Online Learning in a Time of Crisis: Using Physical Distance and Digital Space to Develop Learning Communities

If “cultures are made up of practices that accumulate over time and in relationship to specific places” (Powell, et al.), how do we co-create that culture alongside students in online classes without the “physical geographies” we can re-make together? What happens when we are never in the same physical place/space with each other? When we have no shared past to remember?

Never Forget: Ground Zero, Park51, and Constitutive Rhetorics

Never Forget: Ground Zero, Park51, and Constitutive Rhetorics

by Tamara Issak
“The Park51 uproar had a ripple effect on Muslim communities throughout America with reports of arson, vandalism, and violence at mosques. The shutdown of Park51 was another reminder that the constitutional right to practice religion freely and build houses of worship does not apply to Muslims.”

Care in Times of Crisis: How Faculty Are Managing COVID

Care in Times of Crisis: How Faculty Are Managing COVID

by Garrett Bridger Gilmore, Al Harahap, Jamila Kareem, and Helen Sandoval
“I had a minor breakdown due to all the stress—the panic set in and I just began to cry because it was all too much (being a mother to my children, being a good teacher, colleague, and activist for equity, diversity, and inclusion in my writing program).”

Recognizing New Styles: How Graduate Students Are Coping with COVID

Recognizing New Styles: How Graduate Students Are Coping with COVID

by D’Arcee Charington, Dylan Colvin, and B López
“COVID-19 demonstrates the kind of support—both monetary and emotional support—that is needed to succeed. I feel like there is more exigence now while we are still in this pandemic. I think that graduate students can support one another by advocating for BIPOC students and other folks in the margins who need more from the university.” — B López.

Academic #BlackLivesMatter: Black Faculty and Graduate Students Tell Their Stories

Academic #BlackLivesMatter: Black Faculty and Graduate Students Tell Their Stories

by Sharieka Botex, Michelle Grue, Alicia Hatcher, Eric House, and Sherita Roundtree “How has the university reflected on and named their own issues with systemic racism and oppression? How have they taken a closer look at how much money has been allocated toward campus police in comparison to developing programs and initiatives that actively challenge white supremacy within the campus climate?”

(Re)Composing Our Consent: Critical Digital Literacies as Remixed Terms of Service

(Re)Composing Our Consent: Critical Digital Literacies as Remixed Terms of Service

A small part of a cultural rhetorics approach to critical digital literacies is asking students to remix for target audiences that are vulnerable to the exploitation of their data based on their use. By constellating the ways in which users compose and navigate social media, the ToS remix project recomposes the doctrine of consent, allowing users to reclaim how that information is understood, communicated, and delivered.

Considering the Possibilities of a Cultural Rhetorics Assessment Framework

Considering the Possibilities of a Cultural Rhetorics Assessment Framework

In this particular moment, finding something queerly useful within assessment structures will be painful and frustrating as our institutions push us to keep doing what we have always done. But finding something, anything, in the pain we are feeling, the frustration we are carrying, the work we can/will no longer do illustrates what might be possible in the here and now.

The Historical Work of Cultural Rhetorics: Constellating Indigenous, Deaf, and English-Only Literacies

The Historical Work of Cultural Rhetorics: Constellating Indigenous, Deaf, and English-Only Literacies

by Sarah Klotz

“While off-reservation boarding schools devastated indigenous language and kinship structures, they also generated inter-tribal coalitions that laid the groundwork for new waves of Indigenous activism in the twentieth century. In what follows, I read a series of artifacts from the Carlisle archive to explore how comparative cultural rhetorics work can benefit from the fine-grained inquiry that archival research affords.”

The University of Utah “Utes:” Towards Increased Rhetorical Sovereignty

The University of Utah “Utes:” Towards Increased Rhetorical Sovereignty

by Cassidy Hoff

“The University of Utah Department of Athletics’ (or University of Utah Athletics Department) media guides released from 1990-2016 in the sports of gymnastics, men’s and women’s basketball, and football highlight the way the university utilizes the “Utes” nickname, circle and feathers logo, and Swoop mascot to construct a “Ute” brand. This “Ute” brand encompasses the logo, mascot, and nickname, and also a “Ute” identity that can be assumed and performed by athletes, fans, spectators, and media.”

A Settler Archive:  A Site for a Decolonial Praxis Project

A Settler Archive: A Site for a Decolonial Praxis Project

by Romeo García

“Settler archives haunt us all. In reading its contents, I gain a greater understanding of my brown(ed) body. Settler archives demand a carefully reckoning, to be sure, with erasure, death, terror, trauma, and settler invention practices, all of which affect how and why I speak today from a particular place, out of a particular history, and from a particular community practice.”

Welcome to constellations: a kind of storied introduction

Welcome to constellations: a kind of storied introduction

Malea Powell and Alexandra Hidalgo, Editors-in-Chief

“Our central theory-to-practice tenet has been to value and practice cultural rhetorics orientations in our day-to-day editorial work with one another, with reviewers and mentors, and with authors. We do that in a number of ways but one you’ll notice as you engage the pieces here is a practice of honoring all contributors to a piece, including those whose labor usually goes unseen.”