The field of writing and rhetoric has, for a long time, been engaged in pedagogical practices that reject the ancient link between mind and body as a matter of legacy; even the terms writing and rhetoric are often, like mind and body, considered separate fields in the academy. This article argues that in composition class, where students are introduced to academic discourse, analysis, and research methods, the body can serve as a starting point for discussing various critical topics relevant to every student in the class. In the curricular space of a first-year composition class, instructors have the freedom to focus more generally on bodies as an analytic category instead of as highly specialized categories of identity, which serves as a less threatening and equally effective approach for many students. Bodies naturally initiate discussions of multiple identities, and a body-focused composition classroom enhances the freshman composition project of preparing students for the critical thinking and writing required by other disciplines.


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pp. 168-187
Launched on MUSE
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