CALL FOR PROPOSALS:
Asian American Rhetoric: Histories, Theories, Practices
Call for Papers Date:
CALL FOR PROPOSALS
Asian American Rhetoric: Histories, Theories, Practices
LuMing Mao and Morris Young, Editors
In the last decade there has been tremendous growth in attention to and scholarship about Asian Americans and their cultural work, especially with regard to literary production, visual arts, popular and mass culture, community and activist work, among many other forms of expression. While work by scholars and writers such as Kent Ono, Lisa Lowe, and Maxine Hong Kingston has certainly drawn our attention to the importance of language use within the Asian American context, there has been little work that focuses directly on Asian American rhetoric. Asian American Rhetoric: Histories, Theories, Practices aims to address this need.
We define Asian American rhetoric as the systematic, effective use by Asians and Asian Americans of symbolic resources in social, cultural, and political contexts. Such rhetoric may challenge, disrupt, and transform the dominant European American rhetoric. In doing so, Asian American rhetoric commands a sense of unity or collective identity. On the other hand, such rhetoric cannot help but embody internal differences and even contradictions as each and every specific communicative situation-where Asian American rhetoric gets invoked, deployed, or developed-is informed and inflected by particularizing contexts, by different relations of asymmetry, and, most simply put, by heterogeneous voices. As a productive mode of discourse, Asian American rhetoric not only reflects and responds to existing social and cultural conditions and practices, but also interacts with and impacts upon such conditions and practices. To the extent it does, it becomes a rhetoric of becoming-a rhetoric that is always in the process of negotiating with, adjusting to, and yielding an imagined identity and agency that is Asian American.
We are interested in work that studies, for example, the influences (traditional or current) for Asian American rhetoric, the texts of Asian American rhetoric, and the cultural work that Asian American rhetoric performs. Our interest reflects our desire to examine the histories, theories, and practices of Asian American rhetoric. In so doing, we want to align ourselves broadly with projects that have focused on identifying “lost” or unknown histories, texts, and practices and then moving to theorize and build knowledge about these materials. Further, by situating our work across the disciplines where critical study of Asian Americans occurs, we build on and critique work in Asian American studies, Rhetoric and Composition, Communication Studies, and English Studies, to name a few disciplinary areas.
We encourage and look for projects that specifically can address (but are not limited to) the following:
• How do Asian or American rhetorical traditions inform and influence the formation and practice of Asian American rhetoric?
• Is Asian American rhetoric an example of hybridity or hybrid rhetoric-one that draws upon discursive practices from European American tradition and other Asian traditions? What is the history behind such hybrid rhetoric? To what extent is its emergence tied to and/or generative of socio-cultural conditions and imperatives?
• What is the relationship between Asian American rhetoric and identity formation and construction? How does the articulation and deployment of Asian American rhetoric contribute to individual identity construction? And how does it disrupt and transform the construction of Asian American identity by the dominant culture?
• How do intersections of identity categories (e.g., race, gender, social class, sexuality, region, etc.) affect the development and use of Asian American rhetoric?
• Is it possible to represent Asian American rhetoric as both conveying a sense of unified identity and allowing for internal differences and divergences? How can we address this paradox both in theory and in practice?
• What is the relationship between Asian American rhetoric and local politics? To what extent does Asian American rhetoric help build community and mobilize Asians and Asian Americans to combat racism, to fight against social and economic inequity, and to take back agency and authority from the dominant culture? What is the relationship between Asian American rhetoric and protest rhetoric?
• Where/What are the sites of Asian American rhetoric? Do material spaces such as Chinatowns, Japanese American internment camps, or other sites of “containment,” community, or cultural collectivity function specifically as places of rhetorical production?
• What are exactly the forms and meanings of Asian American rhetoric? Does Asian American rhetoric employ or require innovative textual or oral forms?
• How can the practice of Asian American rhetoric contribute to multiculturalism? How can such practice facilitate and promote the study of 2nd language writing and multilingual discourses?
• What are the differences in attending to the rhetorics and languages of Asian America rather than to the literature or other creative or expressive texts of Asian America?
We are eager to receive chapter proposals by March 1, 2006. Please submit proposals by e-mail (in Microsoft Word or Rich Text Format if by attachment) to firstname.lastname@example.org and email@example.com.
Proposals should be brief—no more than 750 words—and should state clearly the argument and evidence the chapter will feature. Also helpful, if appropriate, would be a brief statement that situates the proposal to other critical work or to a larger project of your own. We hope to respond to proposals within a month, and those to be developed for inclusion will be due by August 1, 2006. In the interim, we will seek a publisher for the collection. If all deadlines are met and a publication contract (based on favorable peer review of the manuscript) is secured in a timely manner, we hope the collection will be available in the fall of 2007 or spring of 2008.
About the Editors
LuMing Mao is an Associate Professor of English at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. He is author of Reading Chinese Fortune Cookie: The Making of Chinese American Rhetoric (Utah State University Press, 2006) and co-editor, with Robert Hariman, Susan Jarratt, Andrea Lunsford, and Jacqueline Jones Royster, of The Norton Anthology of Rhetoric and Writing (under contract). His work has also appeared in book chapters and in journals like College Composition and Communication, Journal of Asian Pacific Communication, Journal of Pragmatics, Rhetoric Review, and Rhetoric Society Quarterly.
Morris Young is an Associate Professor of English and faculty affiliate in American Studies at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio. His essays and reviews have appeared in College English, Journal of Asian American Studies, Journal of Basic Writing, Amerasia, and Composition Forum. His book, Minor Re/Visions: Asian American Literacy Narratives as a Rhetoric of Citizenship (Southern Illinois UP, 2004) received the 2004 W. Ross Winterowd Award from JAC: A Journal of Composition Theory and the Association of Teachers of Advanced Composition
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