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The Megarhetorics of Global Development

edited by Rebecca Dingo and J. Blake Scott

Publication Year: 2012

After World War II, an unprecedented age of global development began. The formation of the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund allowed war torn and poverty stricken nations to become willing debtors in their desire to entice Western investment and trade. New capital, it was foretold, would pave the way to political and economic stability, and the benefits would “trickle down” to even the poorest citizens. The hyperbole of this neocolonialism, however, has left many of these countries with nothing but compounded debt and unfulfilled promises. This volume examines rhetorical strategies used by multinational corporations, NGOs, governments, banks, and others to further their own economic, political, or technological agendas. These wide-ranging case studies employ rhetorical theory, globalization scholarship, and analysis of cultural and historical dynamics to offer in-depth critiques of development practices and their material effects. By deconstructing megarhetorics, at both the local and global level, and following their paths of mobilization and diffusion, the concepts of “progress” and “growth” can be reevaluated, with the end goal of encouraging self-sustaining and ethical outcomes.

Published by: University of Pittsburgh Press

Series: Pittsburgh Series in Composition, Literacy, and Culture

Front Cover

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Title Page, Copyright

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pp. vii-viii

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pp. ix-xii

We would like to acknowledge the participants and leaders from the 2009 CCCC workshop Transnationalizing/Globalizing Rhetoric and Composition Studies; your collaboration helped to shape the purpose and focus of this book, and your excitement and encouragement gave us the vigor to move forward on this project. ...

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Introduction: The “Megarhetorics” of Global Development J. Blake Scott and Rebecca Dingo

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pp. 1-26

Waves crash over a pristine beach; birds sing cheerfully as the camera pans over lush tropical foliage. The serenity of the scene is quickly interrupted, however, by the sound of a helicopter and images of urban decay. Over the echo of chaos and gunshots, a TV reporter’s voice states: ...

Part I. Extending Rhetorical Concepts and Methods

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Chapter 1. Tracking “Transglocal” Risks in Pharmaceutical Development: Novartis’s Challenge of Indian Patent Law

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pp. 29-53

In May 2006 pharmaceutical giant Novartis launched a two-part lawsuit in the Indian courts, challenging the government’s denial of a patent for the blockbuster anticancer drug Glivec.1 The lawsuit drew a quick response from a number of Indian and global NGOs asserting that Novartis’s actions threatened patients ...

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Chapter 2. Meeting the Challenge of Globalization: President Clinton’s “Double Movement” Discourse

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pp. 54-74

In his book The Lexus and the Olive Tree, Thomas Friedman argues that the 1990s saw the age of globalization supplant the Cold War as the dominant international paradigm (3). This new age is largely characterized by the interdependence and integration of economies, institutions, and societies across the globe. ...

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Chapter 3. Ethos in a Bottle: Corporate Social Responsibility and Humanitarian Doxa

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pp. 75-100

The recent trajectory of global humanitarianism bespeaks a vigorous blurring of boundaries between politics, morality, and commerce. Consider a paradigm example. Business ethics—a concept variously lampooned as oxymoronic and dismissed as irrelevant to the rational machinations of advanced capitalism ...

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Chapter 4. Developmental Shifts: Changing Feelings about Compassion in Korea

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pp. 101-120

When I was a child, my family supported a “foreign” child through an organization called Compassion International with a monthly financial commitment that provided food, education, and clothing for him. We even became pen pals with the child until his family managed to send him to his relatives in Canada, ...

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Chapter 5. Staging the Beijing Olympics: Intersecting Human Rights and Economic Development Narratives

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pp. 121-146

The Olympics have long been a host to international spectacle and national pageantry, and the opening and closing ceremonies of the 2008 Olympic Games were no different. Internationally renowned Chinese filmmaker Zhang Yimou, who grew up during the Cultural Revolution ...

Part II. Building Counter-Rhetorics of Resistance

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Chapter 6. Framing the Megarhetorics of Agricultural Development: Industrialized Agriculture and Sustainable Agriculture

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pp. 149-173

In this chapter I juxtapose two contrasting agricultural “development” rhetorics: the rhetoric of industrialized agriculture emerging from multinational agribusiness giant Archer Daniels Midland (ADM), the “supermarket to the world,” and the sustainable agricultural development model of the food democracy movement ...

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Chapter 7. Turning the Tables on the Megarhetoric of Women’s Empowerment

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pp. 174-198

In August 2009 the New York Times Magazine published a special issue devoted to women’s global development and human rights, titled “Saving the World’s Women.” The release of the book Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide, written by humanitarian journalists ...

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Chapter 8. Making the Case: Bamako and the Problem of Anti-Imperial Art

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pp. 199-232

Brecht would be pleased. The crimes of banking stand indicted once again in Abderrahmane Sissako’s remarkable 2006 film, Bamako. Expressing the utopian impulse of radical art, Sissako remarks in an interview that his film stages a “highly improbable trial” between the expansively constituted plaintiff, ..

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Chapter 9. Enfreakment; or, Aliens of Extraordinary Disability

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pp. 233-252

In “Seeing the Disabled: Visual Rhetorics of Disability in Popular Photography,” Rosemarie Garland-Thomson argues for the importance of understanding the role images play in shaping what she terms “rhetorics” of disability. “Genres of disability photography across modernity,” she argues, “have arisen precisely because they are useful devices ...

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pp. 253-256

Bret Benjamin is associate professor and director of graduate studies in the Department of English at the University at Albany, SUNY. He is the author, most recently, of Invested Interests: Capital, Culture, and the World Bank and has published various essays that explore the relationship between culture and economy, ...


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pp. 257-266

E-ISBN-13: 9780822977414
E-ISBN-10: 0822977419
Print-ISBN-13: 9780822961727
Print-ISBN-10: 822961725

Publication Year: 2012

Series Title: Pittsburgh Series in Composition, Literacy, and Culture
Series Editor Byline: David Bartholomae and Jean Ferguson Carr, Editors See more Books in this Series

OCLC Number: 830023839
MUSE Marc Record: Download for The Megarhetorics of Global Development

Research Areas


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Subject Headings

  • Globalization -- Social aspects.
  • Rhetoric -- Social aspects.
  • Economic development -- Social aspects.
  • Communication in economic development -- Social aspects.
  • Rhetorical criticism.
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