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Faculty Notes: Ethical Advocates

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It’s been a banner year for the Department of Rhetoric: Chair David Timmerman earned the College’s McLain-McTurnan-Arnold Prize for Excellence in Teaching, the department hosted a colloquy honoring Wabash legend W. Norwood Brigance, and in November, professors Timmerman, Todd McDorman, and Jennifer Young Abbott organized and spoke on a panel about the Brigance Colloquy at the National Communication Association Annual Convention in Boston.

And commenting on the department’s official name change this academic year, Professor McDorman said that "the change to Rhetoric is a way to make sure the name of the department reflects what we study. When we say rhetoric, we mean our department focuses on the analysis of discourse. To study rhetoric means to learn the responsibilities of being an ethical advocate and to learn methods or means of critiquing types of communication.

"The primary focus of the department has been and will continue to on public speaking," McDorman added. "In fact, this year we’re offering more sections of public speaking than at any point over the past decade, which is a good thing as more than two-thirds of Wabash students take a public speaking course during their college career."


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