Kendall Phillips

Department of Communication and Rhetorical Studies


Kendall Phillips portrait.

308 Sims Hall
Syracuse, NY 13244-1230

Kendall R. Phillips' research focuses on controversies and conflicts arising around topics like public memory, popular film, and popular culture. He has published several books, including: A Place of Darkness: The Rhetoric of Horror in Early American Cinema; Controversial Cinema: The Films that Outraged America; and Projected Fears: Horror Films and American Culture. His essays have appeared in such journals as Quarterly Journal of Speech,Communication Monographs, and Philosophy and Rhetoric and he is co-editor for the book series "Horror and Monstrosity Studies" at the University Press of Mississippi and “Rhetoric, Politics, and Society” for Palgrave Macmillan.

Phillips currently serves as founding co-director for the Lender Center for Social Justice at SU, Visiting Professor at York St. John University (UK), and Honorary Fellow in the School of Art Whiti o Rehua, College of Creative Arts, at Massey University (New Zealand). He previously served as President for the Rhetoric Society of America.

View a list of Phillips’ published work, some of which is available for download. Kendall Phillips’ Curriculum Vitae [PDF 140KB]


  • Ph.D., Pennsylvania State University


American film, public discourse, rhetoric, and rhetoric of popular culture

Selected Publications

Awards and Honors

  • 2009 Judith Greenberg Seinfeld Distinguished Fellow
  • 2008 University Teacher/Scholar of the Year, Syracuse University Chancellor’s Award
  • 2007 Bronze Telly Award for “Classic Movie Night,” 28th Annual Telly Awards (national award for local/regional television)
  • 2005 Excellence in Graduate Education Faculty Recognition Award, Syracuse University Graduate School
  • 2002 College Faculty Award, Syracuse University

Lectures, Panel and Workshops

  • 2018 Keynote Speaker, “Frontiers of Public Memory,” First Chinese Conference on Frontiers in Rhetorical Theory, Shanghai University (China).
  • 2018 Workshop Leader, “The Art of Rhetoric and Social Change, American University’s Syrian Initiative to Combat Sexual and Gender-Based Violence, Istanbul (Turkey).
  • 2015 Keynote Speaker, “The Profanity of Memory,” triggering Memory Symposium, Massey University (New Zealand).
  • 2015 Keynote Speaker, “The Absence of Memory,” Memory on Trial Conference, Third Ørecomm Festival, Malmö University (Sweden).