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Grant number like: FT-61247-13

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Stacey Lynn Pigg
University of Central Florida Board of Trustees (Orlando, FL 32816-8005)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2013 – 7/31/2013

Rhetorical Invention, Technology, and Writing in Public Spaces

This project takes up the contemporary presence of writing in informal public spaces like coffeehouses as a foundation for theorizing rhetorical invention. I first argue that sociability is a resource for rhetorical invention -- and always has been. Most existing theories of invention have stressed the importance of public, face-to-face social interactions. This sociability, many theorists suggest, is connected to rhythms of print circulation and culture. However, public sociability is shifting with cultural changes accompanying mobile technologies, Wi-Fi networks, and social media. I argue that information technologies often make social resources ambient -- that is, embedded in virtual environments that surround individuals. Thus, my work contributes to humanities scholarship by theorizing and tracing the inventive paradigm connected to this ambient sociability, resituating its risks (distraction and cognitive overload), while exploring its possibilities.