About My Work
My research and teaching interests—in rhetorical theory, scientific communication, and visual cultural studies—are motivated by a wish to understand how people come to see according to the discourses and frameworks provided by their professional, disciplinary, and cultural communities. Specifically, I interrogate the role words, images, and embodied performances play in processes of formal training, informal socialization, and personal identification.
As a scholar of rhetorical studies interested in the ways language shapes perception and feeling and induces action, my work is informed by ideas derived from the rhetorical tradition -- from Gorgias, Aristotle, and Isocrates to Cicero, Quintilian, and Kenneth Burke.
In 2014, I published Rhetoric in the Flesh: Trained Vision, Technical Expertise, and the Gross Anatomy Lab, an ethnographic study of the gross anatomy lab, which examined how rhetorical discourses, multimodal displays, and embodied practices facilitate learning and expertise, all the while shaping participants’ perceptions of the human body.
Other Publications and My Teaching
Besides my book, I have published single-authored and co-authored work in the journals Medicine Studies and Journal of Technical Writing and Communication and the books Solving Problems in Technical Communication (eds. Johndan Johnson-Eilola and Stuart A. Selber, The University of Chicago Press, 2013) and Pluralizing Plagiarism (eds. Rebecca Moore Howard and Amy E. Robillard, Heinemann, 2008).
Since coming to CWRU, I have taught undergraduate and graduate courses in rhetorical theory, visual rhetoric, scientific and technical communication, gender and queer studies, rhetoric of science and medicine, and engineering communication as well as science-themed writing courses.
Updated CV: T. Kenny Fountain CV 10.31.2016