Contingency, Exploitation, and Solidarity

Labor and Action in English Composition

edited by Seth Kahn, William B. Lalicker, and Amy Lynch-Biniek

Paperback Price $36.95

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Perspectives on Writing Series

Copublished with the WAC Clearinghouse

Winner of the 2019 CWPA Outstanding Book Award

Composition has been a microcosm of the corporatization of higher education for thirty years, with adjuncts often handling the hard work of writing instruction. We've learned enough to know that change is needed. Influenced by the efforts of organizations such as New Faculty Majority, Faculty Forward, PrecariCorps, and national faculty unions, this collection highlights action, describing efforts that have improved adjunct working conditions in English departments. The editors categorize these efforts into five threads: strategies for self-advocacy; organizing within and across ranks; professionalizing in complex contexts; working for local changes to workload, pay, and material conditions; and protecting gains.

Contributors to this collection include contingent and tenure-line faculty from private, public, and community colleges, as well as writing program administrators and writing center faculty. Their voices address contingency, exploitation, and solidarity in activist terms deriving from institutional realities and cases. Collectively, they offer creative and constructive responses that can enact labor justice and champion the disciplinary energies of all members of our collegial community.

Contributors: Janelle Adsit​, ​Jacob Babb​, ​Chris Blankenship​, ​Rebekah Shultz Colby​, ​Richard Colby​, ​Anicca Cox​, ​Sue Doe​, ​Tracy Donhardt​, ​Dawn Fels​, ​Barbara Heiffero​n, ​Desirée M. Holter​, ​Justin Jory​, ​Jeffrey Klausman​, ​Michelle LaFrance​, ​Sarah Layden​, ​Carol Lind​, ​Maria Maist​o, ​Amanda Martin​, ​Mark McBeth​, ​Tim McCormack​, ​Joan Mulli​n, ​Dani Nier-Weber​, ​Glenn Moomau​, ​Michael Murphy​, ​Anna K. Nardo​, ​Rolf Norgaard​, ​Courtney Adams Wooten​, ​Lacey Wootton​, ​Allison Laubach Wright


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Seth Kahn is Professor of English at West Chester University, where he teaches courses primarily in rhetoric and writing. He has served as co-chair of the CCCC Committee on Part-time, Adjunct, and Contingent Labor and currently serves as co-chair of the CWPA Labor Committee. Recent publications include "What Is a Union?" in A Rhetoric for Writing Program Administrators; "'Never Take More Than You Need': Tenured/Tenure-Track Faculty and Contingent Labor Exploitation" in Forum: Issues about Part-Time and Contingent Faculty; and a co-guest-edited special issue of Open Words on "Contingent Labor and Educational Access."

William B. Lalicker is Professor of English at West Chester University. A former co-chair of the Council on Basic Writing, and a veteran of multiple roles in writing program administration frequently over the past two decades, his publications and presentations include research on structural equity and labor justice in writing programs; basic writing; and transnational and intercultural composition pedagogies. His chapter "The Five Equities: How to Build a Progressive Writing Program in a Department of English" appears in Minefield of Dreams: Promises and Perils of Independent Writing Programs (Justin Everett and Cristina Hanganu-Bresch, editors), published by the WAC Clearinghouse and University Press of Colorado.

Amy Lynch-Biniek is Associate Professor of English and the Coordinator of Composition at Kutztown University, where she teaches composition, pedagogy, and research writing. She serves as the editor of the NCTE publication Forum: Issues about Part-Time and Contingent Faculty through January 2018. Her publications include articles in Teaching English in the Two-Year CollegeCCC, and Reflections: Writing, Service-Learning, and Community Literacy. Amy co-guest-edited a special issue of Open Words on "Contingent Labor and Educational Access." A member of the CCCC Labor Caucus since 2009, she has served on its steering committee (since 2010), as chair (2013-2015) and as secretary and archivist (since 2015).

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  • Paperback Price: $36.95
  • Paperback ISBN: 978-1-60732-765-3
  • Publication Month: November
  • Publication Year: 2017
  • Pages: 330
  • Discount Type: Short
  • Author: edited by Seth Kahn, William B. Lalicker, and Amy Lynch-Biniek
  • ECommerce Code: 978-1-60732-765-3

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