ERIC Number: ED369102
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1994-Mar
Reference Count: N/A
Rhetoric and Composition: A Necessary Tension.
Chestek, Virginia L.
Writing in Western culture requires mastery of both rhetorical theory and the expressive writing often promoted in composition studies, however great the conflict between them might be. The tension between these two poles can even be a source of excitement and motivation. Landmark composition studies such as those of James Britton and Janet Emig stress that expressive writing is typically the first stage of the writing process since it is least demanding and most freely accomplished by inexperienced writers. While students are becoming accustomed to the ways in which content, persona and audience play into all forms of writing, they might be asked to write for a range of readers, beginning with those less threatening, such as a group of 10-year-olds or high school students or a close friend or relative. Peter Elbow proposes that teachers of writing familiarize students with the characteristics of academic discourse as an appropriate way of showing them how to write for a particular audience. He further suggests that teachers make students aware that different disciplines may represent different audiences. Rhetoric is a means of explaining the difference between expressive writing, academic writing, and writing done outside the university, while admitting the legitimacy of all these types of writing in appropriate situations. (TB)
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Classical Rhetoric; Composition Theory; Expressive Writing
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the Conference on College Composition and Communication (45th, Nashville, TN, March 16-19, 1994).