Bad Ideas About Writing counters major myths about writing instruction. Inspired by the provocative science- and social-science-focused book This Idea Must Die and written for a general audience, the collection offers opinionated, research-based statements intended to spark debate and to offer a better way of teaching writing. Contributors, as scholars of rhetoric and composition, provide a snapshot of and antidotes to major myths in writing instruction. This collection is published in whole by the Digital Publishing Institute at WVU Libraries and in part by Inside Higher Ed.
Derek Mueller advocates for a methodology to visualize and understand disciplinarity through what he calls network sense. Mueller’s methodology combines distant reading with thin description in a way that allows academics to avoid the obsessive depth of thick description. Distant reading and thin description complement networks of association in a way that affords inquiry and discovery for newcomers and seasoned scholars alike. Using word clouds, citation frequency graphs, and maps of scholarly activity as visual models, he presents ways we can visualize the field of rhetoric and composition/writing studies and its so-called turns, or widespread attention events, such as the global turn, visual turn, multimodal turn, and so on. This book is published by the WAC Clearinghouse/Colorado State University Open Press #writing book series and co-presented by the Digital Publishing Institute at WVU Libraries.
Kevin Barksdale (Marshall University) and Ken Fones-Wolf (West Virginia University) assembled this collection of essays, mostly from the journal they edit, West Virginia History, to serve as a reader for courses on the Mountain State’s history. In selecting essays, they emphasized pieces that addressed themes from differing perspectives. For example, the first two essays examine the eighteenth-century frontier and Indian-white relations, one from the perspective of Europeans seeking to destroy Native Americans and the other from the vantage of the Cherokee hoping for some security. Among the other topics highlighted in these essays are: the coming of the Civil War, the efforts of women and blacks to negotiate citizenship during Reconstruction, the struggles of immigrants and African Americans during industrialization, the impact of the Cold War, and episodes that might be grouped as part of the culture wars. As such, they offer multiple opportunities for students to compare and contrast the experiences of varying groups of West Virginians throughout the state’s history.