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A few days back, Clancy posted about the mini-seminars (on China Miéville at Crooked Timber and on Gerald Graff at John & Belle, e.g.) that have been popping up around blogspace lately. And she concludes:

I think we should do something like this. People who study communication and, in particular, communication online, are not yet making the most of the affordances provided by weblogs. So let's do this thing! Would you rather do a seminar or a carnival, or do you have other ideas?

She and I have been bouncing it back and forth, and we've chosen a book. In the next month or so, we're going to read Wayne Booth's new book The Rhetoric of Rhetoric. We're going to read it, and we'd like to invite any of you in the neighborhood to join us. The idea is pretty simple: pick up the book, read it in the next month or so, and we'll put together a conversation about it, either distributed among participants or located at one of our blogs.

Any questions?


I might join in.


I will definitely be there. I'm ordering the book right . . . NOW. I like the idea of hosting it in the form of distributed blogs. Maybe kick off a week of Rhetoric of Rhetoric blog posts?

So if it's in a more distributed fashion, it will be more like a carnival than a seminar. For the seminar, the people at CT just created a new category called "China MiƩville Seminar," and people posted their essays under that category so that everything is contained at CT.

The distributed (carnival) format is fine with me, but I notice that with the History Carnival, you have to use Early Modern Notes as a hub to get to the other posts, and the other posts don't refer back to the hub, so a bit of context is lost. What if each of us pasted the links to the other posts into our posts about The Rhetoric of Rhetoric so that no matter how you find your way to one post in the Carnival, you can find your way to all the others?

Or, if we do have a hub, and it's, say, cgbvb, we could include a link back to his hub post? I don't want to make this whole thing all rule-governed, so perhaps it's best to just put it out there as a suggestion.

To be sure, my intention isn't to lock us into those terms, "carnival" and "seminar." It's just easier than saying "the way the historians did it" and "the way the people at CT did it."

I like the idea of a designated hub--if we manage to get this up and running and continuing, perhaps the hub could rotate amongst the participants. In other words, each of us, at one point or another, would serve as the starting point and/or clearinghouse for one of these discussions...

When I throw my initial post up, I'll put the trackback URL in plain sight as well, and people can just link, ping, or both...

This sounds pretty interesting. I'm in. Gotta get hold of the book though.

This sounds like an interesting time, and I even bought Booth's book at MLA. Actually, it was the only book that even looked remotely interesting. I've had a soft spot for Booth since I was in PhD studies and the first presentation I was supposed to give was on Wayne Booth. Like, everything about Wayne Booth. I didn't manage to do that, but I did read a lot and learn a ton.

I've started in on this new book, but just into the first chapter or so. It ought to be worth while to discuss. So I'll be "in" when I can be, what with all of the other school stuff...

My copy arrived today!

I've been hearing interesting things from a variety of folks about the book, and it just came up in conversation again today (from somebody who pointed out the understated humor in having a 16-page section titled "A Condensed History of Rhetoric"), so I'll take that as a sign: please, count me in. I've just ordered the book.

I just finished reviewing Booth's book for RSQ, so I'd welcome a chance to chat about it.

Hi ...

I read RofR a couple of months ago, would love a chance to hear what people have to say about it ...