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Analogize This!: The Politics of Scale and the Problem of Substance in Complexity-Based Composition
2012 (English)In: Composition Forum, ISSN 1522-7502, ISSN 1522-7502, Vol. 25Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In light of recent enthusiasm in composition studies (and in the social sciences more broadly) for complexity theory and ecology, this article revisits the debate over how much composition studies can or should align itself with the natural sciences. For many in the discipline, the science debate—which was ignited in the 1970s, both by the development of process theory and also by the popularity of Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions—was put to rest with the anti-positivist sentiment of the 1980s. The author concludes, however, that complexity-based descriptions of the writing act do align the discipline with the sciences. But the author contends that while composition scholars need not reject an alignment with complexity science, they must also be able to critique the neoliberal politics which are often wrapped up in the discourse of complexity. To that end, the author proposes that scholars and teachers of composition take up a project of critical analysis of analogical invention, which addresses the social conditions that underlie the creation and argument of knowledge in a world of complex systems.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Little Rock, Arkansas, USA: Association of Teachers of Advanced Composition , 2012. Vol. 25
Keywords [en]
Rhetoric, composition, complexity theory, ecology, complex systems
National Category
Humanities and the Arts History of Ideas
Research subject
Rhetoric
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-70048OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-70048DiVA, id: diva2:1261376
Available from: 2018-11-07 Created: 2018-11-07 Last updated: 2018-11-15Bibliographically approved

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Analogize This! The Politics of Scale and the Problem of Substance in Complexity-Based Composition

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Roderick, Noah

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  • apa
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  • nn-NB
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