Symposium Program

We are pleased to announce the program for the 2024 “Rhetoric & Uncertainty” Symposium, which will be held prior to the Rhetoric Society of America convention in Denver, CO from May 22-24, 2024. Please see below for additional details.

A copy of the official “Rhetoric & Uncertainty” Symposium program is available here.

Wednesday, May 22

12:30 pm – 1:00 pm — Welcome and Introduction
Location: Director’s H

Jordan Loveridge, Mount St. Mary’s University
President, American Society for the History of Rhetoric

1:15 pm – 3:00 pm — Panel #1: Uncertainty in Ancient Rhetorics and Contemporary Media
Location: Director’s H

Mari Ramler, Tennessee Tech University
“Ruining Sex for the Western World and Other Sins of Rhetorical Invention: St. Augustine and Me (and You and Everyone We Know)”

Michael Young, The Pennsylvania State University
“Charisma’s Sophistic History and the Rhetorical Criticism of Fascist Speech”

Amy Anderson, West Chester University
“The Madonna of Kyiv: Using Digital Media and Religious Iconography to Protest Russia’s War in the Ukraine”

Charles Woods, Texas A&M University-Commerce
“Towards A Theory of Rhetorical Privacy”

3:15 pm – 5:00 pm — Panel #2: Contingency in Logic, Dialectic, and Argumentation
Location: Director’s H

David Frank, University of Oregon
“Certainty and Ambiguity in Chaïm Perelman and Lucie Olbrechts-Tyteca’s New Rhetoric Project”

Jeanne Fahnestock, University of Maryland
“Need Not Be: Contingency in 16th-Century Dialectic”

Ben Wetherbee, Northern Michigan University
“Toward Logological Skepticism: Or, Bowing at the Altar of Metonymy”

Xiaobo Belle Wang, Sam Houston State University
“Embracing the Beauty of Uncertainty: Chan Rhetoric in the Blue Cliff Record”

Thursday, May 23

9:15 am – 11:00 am — Panel #3: Uncertainty and Doubt in Modern Politics
Location: Director’s H

Craig Rood, Iowa State University
“Strategic Certainty in Rhetorics of Gun Reform”

Brandon Johnson, The Pennsylvania State University
“Carter’s Coalition: Race, Ambiguity, and Strategic Character in Jimmy Carter’s Political Rhetoric”

Thomas Dunn, Colorado State University
“Homosexuality, Henchmen, and Hitler: Rhetorical Permutations of Facts in the Aftermath of the Roehm Purge”

T. Kenny Fountain, The University of Virginia
“Strategically Equivocal: The OK Hand Gesture as White Nationalist ‘Figured Speech'”

11:00 am – 12:45 pm — Lunch on Your Own

1:00 pm – 2:30 pm — Panel #4: Uncertainty and Media Across Time
Location: Director’s H

Alireza Eshraghi, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
“Prosecuted for Unintended Puns: Dissenting Press and Judicial Revenge under Iran’s Islamic Regime”

Heidi Nobles, The University of Virginia
“Editing Texts to Edit Culture: Stakes of Revisionist Editing as Seen in the Ancient Religious Texts of Philo of Alexandria and Paul of Tarsus”

Iklim Goksel, Independent Scholar
“Apology, Ambiguity, and Satire in 16th Century Turkish Shadow Plays

Friday, May 24

9:00 am – 10:15 am — Panel #5: Uncertainty and the Rhetorical Situation
Location: Director’s H

Caddie Alford, Virginia Commonwealth University
“Rhetorical Restoration: A Paradigm of Repair”

Jeremy Cox, University of Texas-Permian Basin
“The Rhetorical Situation: Myth, Uncertainty, and Significance”

Rebecca Ottman, Texas A&M University-Galveston
“Ambiguous Eloquence: Asignification as Rhetorical Resistance”

Jennifer Buchan, The Pennsylvania State University
“Rhetorical Speculation in Ancient Greek Elpis and Today’s Artificial Intelligence”

11:00 am – 12:30 pm — Keynote Lecture

Martin Camper, Loyola University Maryland
“Certainty from an Uncertain Text: The American Methodist Debate over Women’s Preaching”

A PDF of the Symposium program is also available.