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Indiana University Bloomington

Tarez Samra Graban

Tarez Samra Graban

Email | 812-855-4888

Assistant Professor

Ph.D., English, Purdue University 2006
A.B., English & American Literature, Brown University 1993
A.B., Religious Studies, Brown University 1993

I am a Rhetoric and Composition generalist, with a special interest in critical methods and discourse studies. At present, most of my work is in the following areas, often with significant overlap:

  • histories of rhetoric and composition
  • digital archives and historiography
  • multilingual writing and pedagogy
  • feminist rhetorics and rhetorical theory

My main writing project, Irony's Resource,, investigates irony as a critical paradigm for feminist historiography, based on its epistemic functions in women's political discourse. I have recently finished co-authoring GenAdmin: Theorizing WPA Identities in the 21st Century (Parlor Press, 2011), which examines identity formation in a generation of rhetoric and composition professionals who have had explicit preparation in the scholarly dimensions of writing program work. During the 2011-2012 academic year, I will work with the Institute for Digital Arts and Humanities at Indiana University to develop the prototype for an open-source knowledge base that collects and organizes metadata on feminist treatises in rhetoric and composition. I have begun a new project that considers women's irony as third-culture discourse in international contexts for diplomacy. This same desire to theorize models and heuristics for written communication carries over into many courses that I teach, firstly as a way of equipping writers for informed academic and civic participation in multiple spheres, and secondly in developing a composition curriculum for multilingual learners that focuses on building knowledge of discourse and rhetorical process. Together with Patricia Sullivan (Purdue University), I am also investigating how advances in digital humanities impact both historiography in rhetorical theory and the education of new historians of rhetoric. Finally, another new project will consider "indigenous" sites for theorizing a rhetoric of multilingualism at various intersections of discourse, composition, and second-language writing studies.

Please visit my web site for information into completed and ongoing projects.

Recent Courses

L371 Critical Practices: "Equipment for Living"
W501 Teaching of College Composition to Multilingual Writers
L207 Women in Social Movements
W240 Community Service Writing: Leadership and Civic Engagement
L470/GNDR G402 Women in the Archives, Vandals in the Stacks
W350 Advanced Expository Writing: Sustainable Public Discourse

Research Highlights

Forthcoming Publications:

"Multivalent Composition and the Re-Invention of Expertise." Forthcoming with U Pittsburgh Press in Multimodal Literacies and Emerging Genres in Student Compositions (Eds. Tracey Bowen, Carl Whithaus). Co-authored with Colin Charlton and Jonikka Charlton.


GenAdminGenAdmin: Theorizing WPA Identities in the 21st Century. Anderson, SC: Parlor Press, 2011. Co-authored with Colin Charlton, Jonikka Charlton, Kathleen J. Ryan, and Amy Ferdinandt Stolley.

Recent Articles and Book Chapters:

"Towards a 'Second-Generation' Suffragism: Language Politics in the Ironic Discourse of An American Suffragist." Gender and Language 5.1 (2011): 31-60.

"Emergent Taxonomies: Using ‘Tension’ and ‘Forum’ to Organize Primary Texts." Working in the Archives: Practical Research Methods for Rhetoric and Composition (Eds. Barbara L’Eplattenier, Lisa Mastrangelo, Wendy Sharer, Alexis Ramsey). Carbondale: Southern Illinois U P, 2009. 206-219.

"Theorizing Feminist Pragmatic Rhetoric as a Communicative Art for the Composition Practicum." College Composition and Communication, 61.1 (September 2009): 277-299. Co-authored with Kathleen J. Ryan.

"Beyond ‘Wit and Persuasion’: Rhetoric, Composition, and Humor Studies." The Primer of Humor Research (Ed. Victor Raskin). Berlin: Mouton de Gruyter, 2008. 399-448.

"Feminine Irony and the Art of Linguistic Cooperation in Anne Askew’s Sixteenth-Century Examinacyons." Rhetorica 25.4 (Autumn 2007): 385-412.

Recent Presentations and Invited Lectures:

"Challenging Agency: Cecilia Hennel Hendricks and Institutional Locatability." 8th Biennial International Feminisms and Rhetorics Conference, Minnesota State University-Mankato, Mankato, MN, October 12-15, 2011.

"Humoring the Female Pol: Irony, Consciousness-Raising, and 'Third-Culture' Discourse," invited presenter at Women and Comedy: History, Theory, Practice Workshop, Simon Fraser University, Vancouver, British Columbia, August 5, 2011.

"Principles for Teaching Multilingual Writers," College of Arts and Sciences, Annual Intensive Writing Roundtable, Indiana University, February 16, 2011.

"Toward a Pedagogy of Reflection: Strengthening Focus, Aims, and Appeals for Civic Engagement." Service-Learning Faculty Fellows Workshop, Indiana University, February 11, 2011.

"Building Leadership for Collective Action across Cultural and Institutional Lines," with Arlene Diaz, Valerie Grim, Joan Pong Linton, and Eric Love. 2nd Annual Men and Women of Color Leadership Conference, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, November 12-13, 2010.

"Developing Textual Identities: A Programmatic Approach to L2 Writing," symposium for teaching staff of Academic Literacies, English Language Instruction Program, Indiana University, October 29, 2010.

"Scholarly and Pedagogical Practices in Digital History," for Professor Joss Marsh's graduate students in Digital Humanities practicum, Indiana University, October 21, 2010.

"Going 'Native': Toward a Theory of Third-Culture Discourse." Thomas R. Watson Conference on Rhetoric and Composition, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY, October 14-16, 2010.

"Placement, Digital Location, and Feminist Agency." 14th Biennial Conference of the Rhetoric Society of America, Minneapolis, MN, May 28-31, 2010.

"Developing Textual Identities: Achieving ‘Optimal’ Course Design for First-Year Multilingual Writers." 2010 Writing Across the Curriculum Conference, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, May 20-22, 2010.

"Digital and Dustfree: Deploying the Digital Humanities." Lecture presented for English Department Digital Humanities Series, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN, February 24, 2010. With Patricia Sullivan.

"Digital and Dustfree: ‘Contradictions’ for the Third Wave of Digital Archival Recovery." 7th Biennial International Feminisms and Rhetorics Conference, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI, October 7–10, 2009.

"Writing For, About, or With the Community: Reflection and Curricular Cohesion in the Service-Learning Course," invited lecture and workshop presented for faculty fellows of Project Engage summer institute, Indiana University, May 14, 2009.

"Beyond Imitatio: Theorizing 'Moves' as Contact Zones in the Multilingual Composition Classroom." 60th Annual Conference on College Composition and Communication, San Francisco, CA, March 11-14, 2009.

Select Fellowships and Awards

Kathleen Ethel Welch Outstanding Article Award to recognize scholarship and research in the areas of feminist pedagogy, practice, history, and theory, with Kathleen J. Ryan (2011)

Institute for the Digital Arts and Humanities Faculty Fellowship, to develop “Beyond Recovery: Feminist Treatises Locations Project” (IUB, 2011-2012)

Elizabeth A. Flynn Award for most outstanding feminist scholarship published in field of rhetoric and composition, with Kathleen J. Ryan (2009)

Active Learning Grant for Course Development (IUB, 2009)

Project Engage Faculty Mentor Fellowship, Office of Service Learning (IUB, 2009)

Office of Service Learning Faculty Fellowship (IUB, 2008)

Summer Faculty Fellowship (2008)

Janice M. Lauer Dissertation Award (Purdue, 2006)