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Announcing the RSA Book Award for 2009-and Looking Ahead

Announcing the RSA Book Award for 2009 - and Looking Ahead


The Rhetoric Society of America is pleased to announce its 2009 Book Award, recognizing the best work in any branch of rhetorical study in a given year. The winner is Linda Flower's Community Literacy and the Rhetoric of Public Engagement (Southern Illinois University Press).  According to the publisher, Community Literacy "explores the critical practice of intercultural inquiry and rhetorical problem-solving that encourages urban writers and college mentors alike to take literate action."

The RSA Book Award Committee-Thomas Miller, Karlyn Kohrs Campbell, John Brereton, and Cinthia Gannett (Chair)-commended the book for bringing together several broad trends in rhetoric and composition. Community Literacy connects Flower's influential work in community literacy to the expanding emphasis on civic engagement that has evolved out of scholarship on service literacy, critical pedagogy, and studies of political rhetoric and the politics of literacy. Flower expands rhetoric's traditional focus on deliberative discourse by looking to the collaborative decision making of local communities. This accessible and timely work is instructive to all who care about the power and practice of rhetoric as a mode of civic action and a source of individual and collective agency. 

The criteria for the RSA Book Awards are as follows:

  • Originality
  • Strength and persuasiveness of argument
  • Engaging style or readability
  • Potential to promote rhetoric among scholars from other fields
  • Potential to promote the general public's understanding of rhetoric

RSA 2010 Book Award

To be considered for the Book Award, a scholar must be a member of the RSA. The book award subcommittee will consider any book that has a designated author or authors and that meets the eligibility requirements. Generally, edited collections and second editions are not eligible for this award. Translations are eligible. Book Award nominees need to have a letter from the publisher stating the month and year of publication.  

Nominations for the 2010 Book Award Deadline For books published between January, 1 2009  and December 31, 2009, nominations will be due February 28, 2010.

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