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  • Writer's pictureSpencer Bennington

Conferences, Conferences, Hydra Heads!

Thank you for tuning in to my first research update! I've been so busy posting in the Digital Humanities section of this blog that I fear I've neglected some of the other exciting content areas. But, no more!

My last update discussed the exciting publication of the Martial Arts Studies Journal volume 7 and my book review of Udo Moenig's (2016) work. This time around, I'm focusing on a whole SLEW of upcoming conferences.


This weekend, from 2/15-2/17, the first annual conference for the American Society for the History of Rhetoric (ASHR) is taking place in Austin, TX. I submitted a proposal for this conference regarding Tae Kwon Do as practice shaped by historical rhetorics, but, unfortunately, was not selected to present. Honestly, I was a little bummed about that because of the great time I had meeting this group of scholars at the last RSA conference in Minneapolis. While I would love to attend anyway, I'll have to settle with conference reports and Youtube videos seeing as how my conference budget has been thoroughly depleted.


In one month, I will be presenting with a panel (shrimp panel!) of my closest friends at the Association for Teachers of Technical Writing (ATTW) conference in Pittsburgh, PA. The panel will be chaired by my friend and mentor Dr. Lisa Meloncon and features soon to be awesome Dr.'s Tanya P. Zarlengo and Josh Rea. Together we are presenting on the topic of Accountability as Sustainability (whatever that means) and each of us will expand on issues in the field of teaching technical and professional writing (TPC) related to professional development, classroom syllabi, and assignment design. I'll be describing ways in which the principles of palgwe can by operationalized to assist faculty in developing more sustainable habit-practices and contemplative pedagogy.

Why shrimp? Stay tuned for the ATTW conference report and you'll find out...


This one is pretty funny actually. In August I received a rejection email regarding my proposal to present at the 4C's this year (Conference on College Composition and Communication). I took this rejection pretty hard because I thought I had reached a point in my dissertation research where I truly had something to offer a wide audience. Additionally, I really want to attend 4C's in order to network with their Martial Arts Special Interest Group led by Dr. Barry Kroll The good news is that disappointment taught me a valuable lesson about how to write proposals more effectively. The better news is that last week I received an email notifying me that I hadn't yet registered to present at the conference. After some digging, I found out that someone or something made a mistake--I was accepted! So right after ATTW I'll be presenting on how the principles of palgwe are eerily similar to the 8 habits of mind touted by the Council of Writing Program Administrators and the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) in their Framework for Success in Postsecondary Writing. My original proposal suggested I would discuss "invention strategies" related to this principles/habits but I'm not so sure if I'll have time for that. Check back in a month and I'll let you know :)

Somehow not the mental image I had for Pittsburgh...


The Martial Arts Studies Conference!!! May 23-24 I'll be visiting California for the first time and getting to meet some awesome fighting scholars at Chapman University. I'm so so so excited for this opportunity and quite lucky that I was accepted to present--this is the first US conference for this group! I'll be presenting on the political rhetorics Tae Kwon Do has been employed in since its inception in the 50's and the way it functions contemporarily as performative diplomacy.

Thanks for reading--next update will be in regards to my Prospectus which is ALMOST COMPLETE! I'll be defending that, with any luck, right after spring break.

Also, check back for sweet conference reports and fun videos from all the upcoming travels.

As always, thank you for reading-- kamsahamnida!

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