Invention in Rhetoric and Composition examines issues that have surrounded historical and contemporary theories and pedagogies of rhetorical invention, citing a wide array of positions on these issues in both primary rhetorical texts and secondary interpretations. It presents theoretical disagreements over the nature, purpose, and epistemology of invention and pedagogical debates over such issues as the relative importance of art, talent, imitation, and practice in teaching discourse examines issues that have surrounded historical and contemporary theories and pedagogies of rhetorical invention, citing a wide array of positions on these issues in both primary rhetorical texts and secondary interpretations. It presents theoretical disagreements over the nature, purpose, and epistemology of invention and pedagogical debates over such issues as the relative importance of art, talent, imitation, and practice in teaching discourse. After a discussion of treatments of invention from the Sophists to the nineteenth century, Invention in Rhetoric and Composition introduces a range of early twentieth-century multidisciplinary theories and calls for invention's awakening in the field of English studies. It then showcases inventional theories and pedagogies that have emerged in the field of Rhetoric and Composition over the last four decades, including the ensuing research, critiques, and implementations of this inventional work. As a reference guide, the text offers a glossary of terms, an annotated bibliography of selected texts, and an extensive bibliography.
Because invention raises such fundamental problems of theory and practice, its history extends back to the earliest reflections on effective communication in classical rhetoric. Thus this volume ties together some of the most ancient rhetorical wisdom with some of the most contemporary thinking about what it is to compose a text. Because Invention in Rhetoric and Composition ties together some of our most ancient and modern thinking, it is especially fitting that this book initiates the Reference Guides to Rhetoric and Composition series, which will attempt to bring together the wide range of learning applicable to learning to write at all levels of education and in all settings.
—"Foreword," Charles Bazerman
About the Author
Janice M. Lauer is Professor of English, Emerita at Purdue University, where she was the Reece McGee Distinguished Professor of English. She founded and has directed a doctoral program in Rhetoric and Composition. In 1980 she received an honorary doctorate of Humane Letters from St. Edward's University in Austin, Texas. In 1998, she received the College Composition and Communication Conference's Exemplar Award. She has served on the executive committees of CCCC, the National Council of Teachers of English, The Rhetoric Society of America, and the Discussion Group in the History and Theory of Rhetoric of the Modern Language Association, and coordinated the Consortium of Doctoral Programs in Rhetoric and Composition. For thirteen summers she directed a two-week international Rhetoric Seminar. Her publications include Four Worlds of Writing: Inquiry and Action in Context, Composition Research: Empirical Designs, and New Perspectives on Rhetorical Invention, as well as essays on rhetorical invention, disciplinarity, writing as inquiry, composition pedagogy, historical rhetoric, and empirical research.