One of the analytical and political goals of the field of rhetoric is to describe the power relations of the social text—to explain the rhetorical and linguistic nature of power relations—with the goal of constituting change. As such, this course intends to provide students with a broad theoretical foundation for thinking and writing about challenges to power relations. Informed by readings in rhetoric and critical theory, the course will offer not only an examination of categories like identity, subjectivity, and resistance but will also provide an analytic for accounting for political resistance. To this end, students will be introduced to a variety of critical theoretical approaches frequently used to study representation and political change including hegemony theory, postcolonialism, queer theory, and feminism.
Literary Theory/Criticism courses teach academic and rigorous media comprehension, the major modes and schools of criticism and theory, and theories and techniques of reasoning, rational discourse, and argumentation.
Theory/Rhetoric courses teach media theory, the major modes and schools of criticism and theory, and theories and techniques of reasoning, rational discourse, and argumentation.
The interdisciplinary minor in Writing, Public Speaking, and Critical Reasoning offers students a coherent program of courses that strengthen students' abilities to write well, to speak effectively in public, and to think critically. This minor is built on courses in English, Writing, and Philosophy and is taught by professors from English, Philosophy, and the Honors College.