2019 ARWS Conference Guest Speakers


W. Michele Simmons

Keynote Speaker

"Attending to the Epistemological Status of Public Life: Knowledge Building, Sustainable Program Design, and the Rhetoricity of Sticking with It" 

Friday, Nov. 8, 9-10 am

Associate Professor and Director of Professional Writing at Miami University, Simmons is an award-winning industry and academic expert in scientific and technical communication as well as a past president of the Association of Teachers of Technical Writing. Simmons is currently working on a book project entitled, Post-industrial Publics: Rustbelt Revitalization. This research examines the rhetoric that enables and disables long-term civic engagement in more chronic situations including urban renewal. The book aims to offer a framework for building sustainable civic engagement in urban revitalization. Simmons co-authored Lean Technical Communication: Toward Sustainable Program Innovation (Routledge, 2018), which assists technical communication undergraduate and graduate programs in achieving sustainability by offering a theoretically and empirically grounded programmatic model for growing and stewarding professional and technical communication programs under diverse conditions. She also wrote Participation and Power: A Rhetoric for Civic Discourse in Environmental Policy (SUNY, 2007). Simmons has twice been awarded the Nell Ann Picket Award for Best Article in Technical Communication Quarterly.


Cristóbal Martínez

Featured Speaker

"Embodying Unlikely Ideas: Disarming One Another, and Hacking New Ways of Knowing, Being and Believing"

Saturday, Nov. 9, 9-10 am

Chair of Art and Technology at the San Francisco Art Institute, Martínez has been a member of the interdisciplinary artist collective Postcommodity since 2010 and founded the artist-hacker performance ensemble Radio Healer in 2003. In his solo and collaborative work, Martínez takes up sites of dromological, spatial, social, cultural, political, ecological, and economic anxiety to engage publics through generative inquiries and deliberations for recovering, circulating, and connecting knowledge. Martínez describes his work as spreading brujerías and curanderias—transformative experiences that reveal the cognitive dissonances embedded within our places, memories, amnesias, behaviors, knowledge, beliefs, ideologies, assumptions, choices, philosophies, relationships, and worldviews. Martínez has exhibited work in prominent national and international exhibitions and festivals including the 18th Biennale of Sydney, Sundance Film Festival, 2017 Whitney Biennial, documentarian 14, and the historic land art installation Repellent Fence at the U.S./Mexico border near Douglas, AZ, and Agua Prieta, SON. In 2015, Martínez completed his PhD in Rhetoric, Composition, and Linguistics at Arizona State University.


Dylan Dryer 

Plenary Speaker

"Geographies of the Possible: ARWS and (a) Writing Society”

Saturday, Nov. 9, lunch hour (precise time tba)

Associate Professor of Composition Studies at the University of Maine, Dryer is a scholar of rhetorical genre studies. He works with analytical frames including corpus linguistics and institutional ethnography to address questions in teacher development, disciplinarity, sociocognition, and writing assessment. He has published in College Composition and Communication, College English, JACCommunity Literacy Journal, Written Communication, Composition Forum, Writing Program Administration and Journal of Business and Technical Communication, as well as contributed chapters to collections including Naming What We Know, Keywords in Writing Studies, Contemporary Perspectives on Cognition and Writing, and Genre and the Performance of Publics. He delivered the keynote at ARWS 2018, entitled “Undergraduate Rhetoric and Writing Studies and the Hard Problem of Intersubjectivity” and returns for a plenary talk in 2019 to support the organization’s commitments to undergraduate rhetoric and writing studies.