Our team is committed to “Creating a distinctive kind of rhetorical community: an intercultural, problem-focused, local public sphere designed for talking about others across differences” (Flower, 2008).
In line with Flower’s work, we aim to:
- Be open to discovery
- Accept discursive conflict
- Reach for resolution, not consensus
- Know such work requires rhetorical confidence
- Build identities as well as arguments
- Transform public interaction
In other words, we argue really well. And we are kind at the same time.
Our PI, Bradley Dilger, emphasizes this in his leadership:
- When project goals and team members’ individual goals conflict, prioritize the individuals, not the project.
- Actively encourage, model, and support multiple types of mentoring: vertical, horizontal, and lateral.
- Rotate project leads across the whole team to offer everyone a chance to develop rhetorical confidence.
- Encourage an ethic of care when working with partners, participants, and each other.
The Transculturation team began when two new officemates, Hadi and Rebekah, talked about teaching so much and for so long that they drove everyone else in the office away. (Many apologies to our other Heavilon Hall officemates. Hopefully your patience with us will be rewarded, someday.)
In Spring 2016, Hadi began to develop the first draft of a writing curriculum that engaged students in multicultural issues, drawing on his experience teaching in multiple cultural contexts. In Fall 2016, Hadi and Rebekah, supported by Bradley, fleshed out an intercultural-competence-focused version of this curriculum and proposed initial implementation in the Purdue ICaP Program for Spring 2017. They were awarded Most Innovative Syllabus Approach by the English department.
Parva and Phuong joined the research in 2017, bringing international teaching experience and expertise in qualitative research to the team. They began to teach the curriculum in 2018.
During Spring and Summer 2018, the team worked intensively on developing analytical methods and further data collection. With additional funding from CWPA, two undergraduate researchers — Ryan and Echo — joined the team in Spring 2019, offering valuable energy and fresh perspectives to the research. All six student researchers are actively analyzing data from the second and third rounds of curriculum implementation.
Flower, L. (2008). Community Literacy and the Rhetoric of Public Engagement. SIU Press.