ERIC Number: ED224024
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1982-Nov
Reference Count: 0
Writing "In" and "Across" the Disciplines: The Historical Background.
Ruszkiewicz, John J.
The forebears of writing "in" and "across" the disciplines are such historical figures as Aristotle and Cicero. They believed that rhetoric contained within itself all other disciplines. Renaissance rhetoricians also insisted upon assigning a moral cross-disciplinary dimension to rhetoric while at the same time the intellectual reforms and principles of Peter Ramus were stripping invention and arrangement away from rhetoric, leaving it master only of florid and obfuscated style. Sir Francis Bacon preferred not to have the arts and sciences separated, but would have them nourish and inform one another. He drew upon Aristotle's term "invention" to show how the "across the disciplines" character of rhetoric can teach the arts and sciences how to speak to each other. Thus it is appropriate to speak of both writing "in" the disciplines and writing "across" the disciplines, for it is neither the practical character of these courses nor their interdisciplinary nature that are their strengths, but only the two taken together, engendering inevitably the ethical, moral, and political questions and imperatives that should be at the core of any education. Three principles should guide current cross-disciplinary writing programs: (1) that writing promotes learning; (2) that writing is a complex developmental process; and (3) that a full universe of discourse must include a broad range of writing functions and audiences. (HTH)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Writing across the Curriculum; Writing Programs
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National Council of Teachers of English (72nd, Washington, DC, November 19-24, 1982).