Listening = Feminist Rhetoric

Kassia Waggoneer, TCU
“Reclaiming Listening as a Feminist Rhetoric in the Composition Classroom”

why interested
what is it
how incorporate?

Bell hooks Talking Back “No longer is it merely the absence of speaking voices but the absence of hearing ears.”
It’s not always silence. Sometimes it is about not listening.

Gendered listening
Example from television shows, cartoonists, movies…
Men are either unwilling or incapable to listen.

Social linguist Deborah Tannen says they see talking as competition.
Gender and Discourse Men “conversations are negotiations in which people try to achieve and maintain the upper hand if they can” (25)
Women “conversations are negotiations for closeness…” (25)

Tannen—Men who are good listeners fall outside norm.

GuyLand author says men who listen are marginalized and listening is seen as feminizing.

Having empathy and patience plays a significant role in conversation.

According to Tannen, idealized way to listen is silence. Silence =/= not listening.
Non-verbal cues can show listening is participatory.

Patience with speaker allows her to finish her thought.

According to Tannen, interruptions = hostile act, intellectual bullying
BUT I think the manner of interrupting makes a difference. If interrupting for clarity or development, this encourages the speaker.

Dialogic Retention



Reflection Papers

Notes from CCTE 2016 Rhetoric 4

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