One Hypocrisy Charge that Won’t Seem to Stick

Read my latest blog post on the CARP webpage.

Source: One Hypocrisy Charge that Won’t Seem to Stick

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Public Memory, Glamour, and First Ladies

michelle-gownx-large

Michelle Obama with her inaugural gown.

My latest article, which explores the role of glamour in how we remember our first ladies, is now available in Women’s Studies in Communication, volume 40, issue 3. I have free PDFs available, so drop me a line if you’d like me to email you one. It would be a great addition to a course in rhetoric and public memory or even a course in feminist rhetorical theory. It’s also accessible for undergraduates.

NCA Preconference Seminar Call

Still Fighting: Rethinking our Relevance to Discourses of War, Gender, and Militarism

Wednesday, November 15: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Presenters: Jennifer A. Keohane, George Mason University; Kelly Jakes, Wayne State University; Sara L. McKinnon, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Description: War is an eminently discursive phenomenon. Each side marshals persuasive resources to justify their actions, build morale, and model appropriate actions for citizens to undertake. War is also a material phenomenon, one with increasing salience as governments and private industry implement militarization, securitization, and surveillance strategies as techniques of control. As rhetorical and critical cultural scholars have identified, these persuasive attempts and material impacts are deeply intertwined with gender as an organizing unit of social life.

This seminar will attend to the constitutive nature of gender, sex, and sexuality within contexts of war and militarism. We urge researchers to look beyond gender’s ability to prescribe action for individual citizens to its significance as a key signifier of power relations between warring groups. How, we ask, would studies of war, gender, and militarism change if we looked not at individual people but at relationships between larger actors (see, eg. Cloud 2004)? By orienting our critical focus similarly, we hope to prepare and embolden scholars to effect material change in the ways war and militarized action are represented. Given the prevalence of war in our society and the increasingly militarized nature of police patrols and political protests, this conceptual repositioning would draw attention to the ways in which gender offers a seemingly commonsense rationale for victory and defeat, occupation and liberation, resistance and collaboration. From DAPL protests at Standing Rock, to the armed surveillance of black neighborhoods, to the United States’ fight against ISIS, the proliferation of armed conflict in our world demands that we take seriously the ways in which state-sanctioned violence is legitimated and offer alternative discursive resources with which to interpret and resolve conflict. This, we hope, can be part of our discipline’s legacy and relevance.

This seminar invites scholars who are studying gender, war, and militarism or who see the utility of taking on these topics to reflect on questions such as these: How does gender structure overarching power relations between warring entities? How does expanding our understanding of rhetorical texts beyond political speeches (to include things like diaries, memoirs, etc.) provide insight into gender’s use and take up during times of war? How does gender influence militarized encounters (like along border regions)? How do material factors interact with discourse about gender to structure relationships between citizens? How do studies of war and gender help reassert communication’s relevance? In other words, how can rhetorical studies of war help reconstruct more productive discourses?

Requirements: Those interested in the relationship between gender and war or gender and militarism are invited to submit 500-word abstracts that critically reflect on these themes by August 15, 2017. Those interested, may for example, take one of the questions posed above as the basis to develop a position paper that articulates their thoughts about the relationship between gender and war in specific contexts. Those who are accepted to the seminar will be notified by September 1, 2017, and will be asked to elaborate their initial abstract into a 2000-3000 word essay, due October 15, 2017. Seminar participants will also be asked to read and reflect on selected readings before the seminar. PDFs will be circulated. All questions about the seminar and submissions should be directed to Jennifer Keohane at jkeohane@ubalt.edu.

Seminar CFP NCA 2017

Hi NCA-ers! Some friends and I put together a seminar for the National Communication Association’s 2017 conference. We’d love to have you join us! See the call for participants below:

Still Fighting: Rethinking our Relevance to Discourses of War, Gender, and Militarism

2017 National Communication Association Seminar

Dallas, Texas

Wednesday, November 15

9am–5pm

Seminar Leaders:

Kelly Jakes, Assistant Professor, Wayne State University

Jennifer Keohane, Assistant Professor, University of Baltimore

Sara McKinnon, Associate Professor, University of Wisconsin-Madison

War is an eminently discursive phenomenon. Each side marshals persuasive resources to justify their actions, build morale, and model appropriate actions for citizens to undertake. War is also a material phenomenon, one with increasing salience as governments and private industry implement militarization, securitization, and surveillance strategies as techniques of control. As rhetorical and critical cultural scholars have identified, these persuasive attempts and material impacts are deeply intertwined with gender as an organizing unit of social life.

This seminar will attend to the constitutive nature of gender, sex, and sexuality within contexts of war and militarism. We urge researchers to look beyond gender’s ability to prescribe action for individual citizens to its significance as a key signifier of power relations between warring groups. How, we ask, would studies of war, gender, and militarism change if we looked not at individual people but at relationships between larger actors (see, eg. Cloud 2004)? By orienting our critical focus similarly, we hope to prepare and embolden scholars to effect material change in the ways war and militarized action are represented. Given the prevalence of war in our society and the increasingly militarized nature of police patrols and political protests, this conceptual repositioning would draw attention to the ways in which gender offers a seemingly commonsense rationale for victory and defeat, occupation and liberation, resistance and collaboration. From DAPL protests at Standing Rock, to the armed surveillance of black neighborhoods, to the United States’ fight against ISIS, the proliferation of armed conflict in our world demands that we take seriously the ways in which state-sanctioned violence is legitimated and offer alternative discursive resources with which to interpret and resolve conflict. This, we hope, can be part of our discipline’s legacy and relevance.

This seminar invites scholars who are studying gender, war, and militarism or who see the utility of taking on these topics to reflect on questions such as these: How does gender structure overarching power relations between warring entities? How does expanding our understanding of rhetorical texts beyond political speeches (to include things like diaries, memoirs, etc.) provide insight into gender’s use and take up during times of war? How does gender influence militarized encounters (like along border regions)? How do material factors interact with discourse about gender to structure relationships between citizens? How do studies of war and gender help reassert communication’s relevance? In other words, how can rhetorical studies of war help reconstruct more productive discourses?

Submission Requirements:

Those interested in the relationship between gender and war or gender and militarism are invited to submit 500-word abstracts that critically reflect on these themes by August 15, 2017. Those interested, may for example, take one of the questions posed above as the basis to develop a position paper that articulates their thoughts about the relationship between gender and war in specific contexts. Those who are accepted to the seminar will be notified by September 1, 2017, and will be asked to elaborate their initial abstract into a 2000-3000 word essay, due October 15, 2017. Seminar participants will also be asked to read and reflect on selected readings before the seminar. PDFs will be circulated. All questions about the seminar and submissions should be directed to Jennifer Keohane at jkeohane@ubalt.edu.

 

CFP: Routledge Handbook

Time is running out to submit an abstract for a handbook I’m editing with my CARP colleagues. I’ve pasted the CFP below or you can read about the project on our website.

The Routledge Handbook of Character Assassination and Reputation Management

Call for Papers

Themes and aims of the volume

The Routledge Handbook of Character Assassination and Reputation Management is due to appear in 2018. It will consist of 28-30 chapters from a wide variety of disciplines, including political science, history, psychology, communication, and legal studies.

This handbook responds to the demand for a creative collection of recent scholarship that transcends disciplinary boundaries. The book consists of the most recent original essays to satisfy the growing interest in this area. It is intended to be both engaging and relevant to scholars, practitioners, and students focusing on issues of character assassination and reputation management in the aforementioned fields.

We define character assassination (CA) as the deliberate destruction of an individual’s reputation or credibility through character attacks. The term may refer to the process as well as the result. Character attacks are by definition intentional and public in nature. They can take place in the context of a political campaign, national or religious propaganda, rivalry between scientists or celebrities, etc. Character assassination can even occur posthumously, for instance in the case of overthrown regimes or political or religious icons (Karl Marx and the Prophet Muhammad are prominent examples). Reputation management entails the building and maintaining of a positive public image, including the defense against character attacks and damage control in case of a bruised reputation.

We invite all contributors to approach character assassination and/or reputation management from their personal expertise. Chapters may discuss a particular phenomenon (e.g. CA in political cartoons), culture, region or period, or focus on relevant case studies. However, it’s important that each author reflects on the relevance of their specific topic for the broader themes of the volume.

Proposals

If you are interested in contributing to this volume, please submit a 500-word abstract of your proposed chapter and a 50-word biography to Sergei Samoilenko at  ssamoyle@gmu.edu by April 1. Accepted authors will be notified in May and have until October 16 to write their 7,000-word contribution.

Questions and inquiries

The editors are available to answer any questions.

Sergei Samoilenko (George Mason University), Eric Shiraev (George Mason University), Martijn Icks (University of Amsterdam), Jennifer Keohane (George Mason University)