Current VPA News

Sixteen faculty and graduate students from the Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies (CRS) in the College of Visual and Performing Arts will be participating in the 102nd Annual Convention of the National Communication Association (NCA) in Philadelphia Nov. 10-13. The NCA convention is attended each year by 5,000 communication scholars, teachers and students from around the world. The theme of this year’s convention is “Communication’s Civic Callings.”

Given the competitive submission process, CRS’ strong presence in the convention program is impressive; perhaps especially noteworthy is that seven CRS master of arts (M.A.) students have work accepted for presentation, a number in league with the best Ph.D. programs in the discipline.

The work being presented by CRS participants in the convention is as diverse as the discipline itself. Among the faculty, Richard Buttny’s paper will analyze the discursive construction of risk in hydrofracking; Rachel Hall will discuss her leading research in critical surveillance studies; Jeffrey Good’s presentation focuses on the impact of office design in doctor-patient interaction; Kendall Phillips will share some of his new book project on horror and the emergence of American cinema; Dana Cloud and Kathleen Feyh both will give papers on materialist theories of rhetoric; Erin Rand will speak about queer intimacy and relationality, while Charles Morris, CRS department chair, responds to the Orlando Pulse massacre with a decade’s worth of reflection on queer public kissing; and Amos Kiewe’s paper explores former President Andrew Jackson’s first inaugural address.

CRS graduate students who will deliver papers include Pamela Barker, Codey Bills, Ryan Bince, Kyle Colglazier, Brandon Daniels, Logan Gomez and Myles Mason. Their work ranges from voter registration strategies for millennials, to Lacanian theory and constitutive rhetoric, to the protest promise of SlutWalks and gay bathhouses, to racial discourses produced by the music, performance and critique of Kanye West and Beyoncé.

At this year’s convention CRS will also celebrate multiple national award winners. Joseph Hatfield G’16, who is now a Ph.D. student at the University of Colorado-Boulder, will receive the Master’s Education Division Thesis of the Year Award for his project “Southerners and the City: Queer Archives, Backward Temporalities and the Emergence of AIDS.” Rand will receive the Karl R. Wallace Memorial Award for Early Career Achievement. Morris will be honored as a Distinguished Scholar by the Rhetorical and Communication Theory Division. Michigan State University Press will be hosting a third birthday party in acknowledgement of the success of “QED: A Journal in GLBTQ Worldmaking,” co-founded and co-edited by Morris.

CRS is the oldest program in communication studies at Syracuse University, dating to 1910. CRS is home to a world-class faculty of prolific researchers and disciplinary leaders, more than 400 undergraduate majors and one of the best master’s programs in the nation.