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College Composition and Communication, Vol. 62, No. 1, September 2010

Issue Theme: Special Issue: The Future of Rhetoric and Composition

Franchising the Future, by Gregory G. Colomb

Abstract: Central to the future of rhetoric and composition (or writing studies or whatever label we use) is the service mission of composition: to teach students to write. But that term service has not and will not serve us well. This essay examines the limitations and dangers of a service mission and explores a different model, that of a franchise, a public trust that licenses us to control the largest block of classes on most campuses but also makes us responsible for the nation’s ability to write. The franchise model carries its own limitations,but it may also point to possibilities of great new promise and familiar danger.

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The Place of Creative Writing in Composition Studies, by Douglas Hesse

Abstract: For different reasons, composition studies and creative writing have resisted one another. Despite a historically thin discourse about creative writing within College Compositionand Communication, the relationship now merits attention. The two fields’ common interest should link them in a richer, more coherent view of writing for each other, forstudents, and for policymakers. As digital tools and media expand the nature and circulation of texts, composition studies should pay more attention to craft and to composingtexts not created in response to rhetorical situations or for scholars.

  • Ben Miller
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Disciplinarity, Divorce, and the Displacement of Labor Issues: Rereading Histories of Composition and Literature, by Melissa Ianetta

Abstract: This essay argues that a trend in histories of literary and writing studies is to bifurcate the origins of the fields and so engage in those modernist narrative fallacies describedby Jean-François Lyotard. Such works limit our understanding of past practices and the longstanding connections between disciplinarity and labor.

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Responsibility and Composition’s Future in the Twenty-first Century: Reframing “Accountability”, by Linda Adler-Kassner and Susanmarie Harrington

Abstract: “Accountability” is widely used in discussions about what should be happening in school, but it is not an appropriate guiding concept for assessments designed to improveteaching and learning. This article examines discussions about assessment for internal and external purposes; it then outlines an alternative frame for assessment that has “responsibility” as its core.

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Composition 2.0: Toward a Multilingual and Multimodal Framework, by Steven Fraiberg

Abstract: This article argues that tracing multimodal-multilingual literacy practices across official and unofficial spaces is key to moving composition into the twenty-first century. Key tothis remixing of the field is a situated framework that locates multimodal-multilingual activities in wider genre, cultural, national, and global ecologies.

  • Amanda Licastro

Seeking New Worlds: The Study of Writing beyond Our Classrooms, by Bronwyn T. Williams

Abstract: As new ways of creating and interpreting texts complicate ideas of how and why writing happens, the field of rhetoric and composition needs to be more conscious of how ourinstitutional responsibilities and scholarly attention to college writing have limited its vision of writing and literacy. It is time to move beyond consolidating our identity asa field focused on college writing, reach out to other literacy-related fields, and form a broader, more comprehensive, and more flexible identity as part of a larger field ofliteracy and rhetorical studies.

  • Lisa Vaia


Writing in High School/Writing in College: Research Trends and Future Directions, by Joanne Addison and Sharon James McGee

Abstract: This article synthesizes and extends data from some of the most prominent and promising large-scale research projects in writing studies while also presenting results fromthe authors’ own research. By juxtaposing these studies, the authors offer a complex understanding of writing practices at the high school and college level. Future directionsare suggested in light of these research findings.

  • Dominique Zino

Making the Case for Disciplinarity in Rhetoric, Composition, and Writing Studies: The Visibility Project, by Louise Wetherbee Phelps and John M. Ackerman

Abstract: In the Visibility Project, professional organizations have worked to gain recognition for the disciplinarity of writing and rhetoric studies through representation of the fieldin the information codes and databases of higher education. We report success in two important cases: recognition as an “emerging field” in the National Research Council’staxonomy of research disciplines; and the assignment of a code series to rhetoric and composition/writing studies in the federal Classification of Instructional Programs(CIP). We analyze the rhetorical strategies and implications of each case and call for continuing efforts to develop and implement a “digital strategy” for handling data aboutthe field and its representation in information networks.

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Review Essay: A Field at Sixty-Something, by Chris M. Anson
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