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K-State Today

March 31, 2017



Lecture by Stephanie Kerschbaum on Monday, April 3

By Karin Westman

Stephanie Kerschbaum

On Monday, April 3, Stephanie Kerschbaum, a specialist in disability studies, diversity, pedagogy, and writing from the University of Delaware, will present "Exploring Discomfort Using Markers of Difference: Constructing Anti-Racist and Anti-Ableist Teaching Selves?" at 3:30 p.m. in Town Hall at the Leadership Studies Building. The lecture is free and open to the public.

Kerschbaum's talk will explore the concept of "marking difference," which students and teachers practice as they position themselves and others. The talk is based on her book, "Toward a New Rhetoric of Difference," and current research she is conducting on the narratives that teachers tell about their teaching identities. Students and faculty will gain more awareness about how these identities affect themselves and others.

"Much of Kerschbaum's work is based on this seemingly simple, and yet endlessly complex truth: How teachers understand difference matters to the way they teach writing. More broadly, it matters to the way they teach," explains Abby Knoblauch, associate professor of English and composition and director of the program in expository writing.

"Kerschbaum's talk will help teachers recognize how they and their students 'mark difference,' a process of responding to rhetorical cues that signal the presence of difference," concludes Knoblauch.

While visiting K-State, Kerschbaum also will lead a workshop for cross-campus tutors at the Writing Center's Spring Totally Tutoring workshop on the topic of "Signs of Disability When Tutoring."

"In this interactive workshop, Dr. Kerschbaum will give tutors the tools to recognize when disability might be silently at play in tutoring sessions so that tutors and tutees can productively work together in these sessions in ways that do not erase difference," said Cydney Alexis, assistant professor of English and director of the Writing Center.

Kerschbaum's visit is made possible by the support of the Student Governing Association, the English department and the program in expository writing.

More information about Kerschbaum's work is available at her website

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