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Reading and Writing the Social Swirls of The French Chef: Social Circulation and the Fan Mail of Julia Child

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 3, Spring 2021

Author(s): Lindy E. Briggette

Abstract: This article uses social circulation to consider fan mail written to Julia Child during her time on public television’s The French Chef. Analyzing a selection of fan letters written between 1963 and 1967, I explore how Child’s performances circulated rhetorical opportunity into the homes of fans, thus motivating their own rhetorical action. By highlighting letters that include commentary on the fan letter genre as well as letters that illustrate writers’ material literacy practices, I argue that fans and fan letters contribute to the complex rhetorical ecology that shapes the social circulation of Julia Child.

Tributes to Kate Ronald

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Compiled by Charlotte Hogg and Meredith Love


Review of Lives, Letters, and Quilts: Women and Everyday Rhetorics of Resistance

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Rebecca Jones


From Isolated Stories to a Collective: Speaking Out About Misogyny in English Departments

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Amy Robillard

Abstract: Preliminary findings from a study of misogyny in U.S. English departments reveal that participants’ understanding of the power of story persuaded them to push past their fears of misogynistic punishments to confidentially share their stories with the author. This article identifies the most persuasive aspects of story and the punishments most anticipated by participants when sharing their experiences of breaking patriarchal norms in a space where storytelling is otherwise encouraged.

“On Display Eight Hours a Day”: Gendering and Racializing Clerical Work During the Early Cold War

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Jennifer Keohane

Abstract: Just Between Office Girls, a bi-monthly pamphlet for the clerical worker, offered advice for women laboring in offices in the early Cold War. Clerical work, as one of the most gender-segregated industries, is an important site to investigate how work is gendered, racialized, compensated, and valued. This essay explores the disciplining of female clerical workers in these pamphlets between the mid-1950s and early 1970s. I identify constitutive rhetoric, a care work frame, and embodiment as rhetorical processes that gendered clerical work in this historical moment. These rhetorics supported the gendered and racialized geopolitics of the Cold War. Through messaging that feminized clerical work, the pamphlets constituted a white, relatively passive labor force disinclined to protest and primed to consume. Such messages served U.S. political interests during the Cold War. I offer this analysis to explore how rhetoric positions labor within social value structures.

Justice for All: The Womanist Labor Rhetoric of Nannie Helen Burroughs

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Veronica Popp and Danielle Phillips-Cunningham

Abstract: We argue that Nannie Helen Burroughs (1870-1961), usually interpreted as purely a missionary and remedial educator, was in fact also a significant labor leader and rhetorican. This argument is significant because it challenges gendered and classed constructions of history and rhetoric that render invisible the work women like Burroughs did during nadir. She believed a women’s labor collective (womanist principle of solidarity) would lead to social, political, and economic rights for Black women, which would result in liberation from racial, class and gender inequities for the entire Black community. We examine how Burroughs developed and employed her audacious, progressive, and forward-thinking labor rhetoric through an analysis of three major texts: “The Colored Woman and Her Relations to the Domestic Service Problem” (1902), “Divide Vote or Go to Socialists” (1919) and “My Dear Friend” (1921). We also argue that her womanist labor rhetoric led to the formation of a historic labor union for African American domestic workers in 1921, the National Association of Wage Earners (NAWE). We intend for our examination of her writings to commence rather than end a discussion about who Burroughs was as a labor organizer and rhetorician. She sought to liberate black women from penury by offering a broad educational focus on labor to her students and the larger black community, instilling racial pride in her students, and placing these women into positions of stable employment through a womanist labor platform.

Works by Kate Ronald

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Compiled by Ann S. Updike


Reprint of “The Making of Available Means,” an Anthology by Joy Ritchie and Kate Ronald

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Lisa Shaver

Abstract: Drawing on interviews with Joy Ritchie and Kate Ronald, this essay shares the story behind the making of Available Means: An Anthology of Women’s Rhetoric(s), published in 2001. This story not only provides valuable historical context for this widely used and referenced anthology, it captures an important early moment in the field of rhetoric and composition, and even gleans a few teaching suggestions from the collection’s creators.

Review of Women’s Professional Lives in Rhetoric and Composition: Choice, Chance, and Serendipity

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 2 Winter/Spring 2021

Author(s): Rebecca Temple


“There’s Just Something About Her”: The Lasting Influence of Anti-Suffrage Rhetoric on American Voter Attitudes

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Chelsea Bock

Abstract: In this article, I pair my original research with recent data on voter attitudes in America to conclude that sexism among the eligible voting population remains a problem in the 21st century. Additionally, my research suggests that women are more likely than men to exhibit sexist attitudes toward women in politics. This article is timely in a critical election year and significant in its focus on women as participants in their own discrimination.

“An American Orphan”: Amelia Simmons, Cookbook Authorship, and the Feminist Ethē

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Elizabeth J. Fleitz

Abstract: This article analyzes the rhetorical moves made by Amelia Simmons, author of American Cookery, the first American cookbook, published in 1796. Simmons identifies herself on the title page as “an American Orphan.” This article discusses that rhetorical move in terms of its historical and rhetorical context. While initially Simmons’ emphasis on her “American orphan” status might seem counterintuitive (or at least irrelevant), a further exploration into her text shows this to be a calculated risk. Simmons is capable of navigating multiple identities (a woman; an uneducated, working-class orphan) simultaneously, and using them to her advantage through her identity statements, morality statements, and her use of sentimental narrative style. From this analysis, I argue that Simmons’ use of ethos in the text demonstrates what might now be interpreted as a modern American feminist ethē emerging in the 18th century.

The Dove Campaign for Real Beauty: An Embodiment of Postracial Rhetoric

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Mary McCall

Abstract: In 2004, Dove launched its Campaign for Real Beauty (CFRB) to promote a more inclusive understanding of beauty based on confidence. Through examining the CFRB advertisements and their construction of “real beauty,” I argue that Dove adopts a postracial rhetoric that normalizes Whiteness, disregards the material realities of race(ism), eschews diversity, and is performative and embodied. By claiming diversity without also acknowledging the history of racialized depictions of bodies of color, Dove homogenizes the racial and ethnic differences of the models in an essentializing discourse, foregrounds White bodies, and reproduces stereotypical imagery of Black bodies across its ads.

Review of Rhetorical Feminism and This Thing Called Hope

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Stacie Klinowski


Review of Queering Romantic Engagement in the Postal Age: A Rhetorical Education

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Patricia Fancher and Amelia Rodriguez


Review of Women at Work: Rhetorics of Gender and Labor

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Jessica McCrary


Review of Culturally Speaking: The Rhetoric of Voice and Identity in Mediated Culture

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Mavis Boatemaa Beckson


Afterword to Queer Rhetorical Listening

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Krista Ratcliffe


A Fullness of Feeling: Queer Rhetorical Listening and Emotional Receptivity

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Timothy Oleksiak


Excerpts from Terms of Play: Poetics on Consent as Method

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Violet Livingston


Métis and Rhetorically Listening to #BlackLivesMatter

Peitho Volume 23 Issue 1 Fall 2020

Author(s): Storm Christine Pilloff


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