This collection features books and book contributions written by faculty in the Department of English at Fairfield University.
Elizabeth A. Petrino, Jocelyn M. Boryczka, and Jeffrey P. von Arx
In addition to co-editing the book, Elizabeth A. Petrino and Jocelyn M. Boryczka are contributing authors, “’The Personal is Political’: At the Intersections of Feminist and Jesuit Education", pp. 75-85.
***2013 Alpha Sigma Nu Book Award Winner***
Book description: This book explores how the principles and practices of Ignatian pedagogy overlap and intersect with contemporary feminist theory in order to gain deeper insight into the complexities of today's multicultural educational contexts. Drawing on a method of inquiry that locates individual and collective standpoints in relation to social, political, and economic structures, this volume highlights points of convergence and divergence between Ignatian and feminist pedagogies to explore how educators might find strikingly similar methods that advocate common goals--including engaging with issues such as race, gender, diversity, and social justice. The contributors to this volume initiate a dynamic dialogue that will enliven our campuses for years to come.--Publisher description
Laura Rattray and Emily J. Orlando
Emily J. Orlando is a contributing author, "Visual Art".
Bringing together a team of international scholars, this volume provides the first substantial text dedicated to the various contexts that frame Wharton's remarkable career. Each essay offers a clearly argued and lucid assessment of Wharton's work as it relates to seven key areas: life and works, critical receptions, book and publishing history, arts and aesthetics, social designs, time and place, and literary milieux. These sections provide a broad and accessible resource for students coming to Wharton for the first time while offering scholars new critical insights. Of interest to English and American studies departments, the volume will also appeal to researchers in gender studies, film studies, book history, art history, and transatlantic studies. --Publisher description
Heewon Chang, Drick Boyd, Eileen R. O'Shea, Roben Torosyan, Tracey Robert, Ingeborg E. Haug, Margaret Wills, and Betsy Bowen
Betsy Bowen (with Eileen O'Shea, Roben Torosyan, Tracey Robert, Ingeborg E. Haug, and Margaret Wills) is a contributing author, "Spirituality and Professional Collegiality: Esprit de Core."
Book description: This collection of articles explores how a wide range of academics-- diverse in location, rank and discipline-- understand and express how they deal with spirituality in their professional lives and how they integrate spirituality in teaching, research, administration, and advising. The contributors also analyze the culture of academia and its challenges to the spiritual development of those involved. Twenty chapter authors--from a variety of faith traditions--discuss the ways in which their own beliefs have affected their journeys through higher education. By using an autoethnographic, self-analytical lens, this collection shows how various spiritualities have influenced how higher education is understood, taught and performed. The book will stimulate debate and conversations on a topic traditionally ignored in academia.
The “Backwards” Research Guide for Writers: Using Your Life for Reflection, Connection, and Inspiration
The "Backwards" Research Guide for Writers demystifies the writing process by inviting writers of all levels to focus on their passions, questions, and obsessions as the key to generating seeds for further exploration of the world around them. Writers then develop these questions into focused projects that explore the teller’s central role in the open-ended quest of unfolding a research topic. The boom in narrative journalism, memoir, and creative nonfiction has generated wonderful writing, but no resource for writers exists to bridge the gap between passionate research and the page. This book addresses that gap by turning the task of “research” on its head and by speaking to students who resist the idea of research as an objective and dry assignment. Students are invited to experiment creatively with collecting observations and information and then to step beyond their subjective realities to interact with the world around them and ultimately become vulnerable authors willing to change their perspectives as they research and write.
Developed with input from college student writers, The "Backwards" Research Guide for Writers is relevant as a text for undergraduate and postgraduate courses in composition, creative nonfiction, literary journalism, and feature writing as well as for working journalists and other writers seeking a new way of approaching a writing project. It includes interviews with notable authors that focus not on the completed and intimidating project of a successful author, but on the project as it took shape and mystified a researcher. Another unique feature is a section in every chapter on ethics, as ethical questions are central to the writing process as well as a method for sparking interest in writing and learning. The guide includes extensive examples of research challenges and dilemmas, strategies for planning a research project, exercises for generating ideas, a guide for writing the research-based work, an appendix of on-line databases, a section in each chapter focused on ethics in research and writing called “gray matter,” a selection of recommended readings, and a bibliography of conventional research guides.
Robert Root, Michael Steinberg, and Sonya Huber
Sonya Huber is a contributing author, "Digital Suspicions" and "How Do I Write?"
Book description: The Fourth Genre offers the most comprehensive, teachable, and current introduction available today to the cutting-edge, evolving genre of creative nonfiction. While acknowledging the literary impulse of nonfiction to be a fourth genre equivalent to poetry, fiction, and drama, this text focuses on subgenres of the nonfiction form, including memoir, nature writing, personal essays, literary journalism, cultural criticism, and travel writing. This anthology was the first to draw on the common ground of the practicing writer and the practical scholar and to make the pedagogical connections between creative writing practice and composition theory, bridging some of the gaps between the teaching of composition, creative writing, and literature in English departments.
J. Brooks Bouson and Elizabeth A. Petrino
Elizabeth Petrino, is a contributing author, “Emily Dickinson and Her Culture", pp. 31-50.
Book description: This volume in the Critical Insights series, edited and with an introduction by J. Brooks Bouson, Professor of English at Loyola University in Chicago, brings together a variety of new and classic essays on Dickinson's life and work. Bouson's introduction reviews the unique challenges Dickinson presents to readers as well as the current state of Dickinson criticism, while a new essay by Paris Review contributor Jascha Hoffman celebrates Dickinson's compressive powers. A brief biography by Gerhard Brand then acquaints readers with the known details of the lives of Dickinson and her family and friends.
For readers studying Dickinson for the first time, a quartet of essays offers an introduction to her life, work, and critical reception. Elizabeth Petrino situates Dickinson within her historical and cultural context by exploring the influences of New England Puritanism, Romanticism, Transcendentalism, and the Civil War upon her work. Beginning with nineteenth-century newspaper and magazine reviews and ending with more recent studies of the Dickinson manuscripts and current postmodernist, feminist, psychoanalytic, and cultural studies, Fred D. White surveys the major trends in Dickinson criticism and points readers to especially helpful introductory texts. Margaret H. Freeman offers a close reading of a group of Dickinson's poems to show how experiencing their sound patterns and syntax can inform our understanding of them, as well as how their structuring metaphors demonstrate Dickinson's mental schemata. Finally, Matthew J. Bolton examines the trope of "the conscious corpse" in poems by Robert Browning, A. E. Housman, and Dickinson.
Alicia Christensen and Sonya Huber
Sonya Huber is a contributing author, "Excerpt from ‘The Promise of Power.'"
Book description: Memoirs are as varied as human emotion and experience, and those published in the distinguished American Lives Series run the gamut. Excerpted from this series and collected here for the first time, these dispatches from American lives take us from China during the Cultural Revolution to the streets of New York in the sixties to a cabin in the backwoods of Idaho. In prose as diverse as the stories they tell, writers such as Floyd Skloot, Ted Kooser, Peggy Shumaker, and Lee Martin, among many others, open windows to their own ordinary and extraordinary experiences. John Skoyles tells how, for his Uncle Fred, a particular “Hard Luck Suit” imparted misfortune. Brenda Serotte describes a Turkish grandmother who made her living reading palms, interpreting cups, and prescribing poultices for the community. In “Son of Mr. Green Jeans,” Dinty W. Moore views fatherhood through the lens of pop culture. Janet Sternburg’s Phantom Limb muses on the dilemmas of a child caring for a parent. Whether evoking moments of death or disease, in family or marriage, history, politics, religion, or culture, these glimpses into singular American lives come together in a richly textured, colorful patchwork quilt of American life.
Growing up in middle-class middle America, Sonya Huber viewed health care as did most of her peers: as an inconvenience or not at all. There were braces and cavities, medications and stitches, the family doctor and the local dentist. Finding herself without health insurance after college graduation, she didn’t worry. It was a temporary problem. Thirteen years and twenty-three jobs later, her view of the matter was quite different. Huber’s irreverent and affecting memoir of navigating the nation’s health-care system brings an awful and necessary dose of reality to the political debates and propaganda surrounding health-care reform. “I look like any other upwardly mobile hipster,” Huber says. “I carry a messenger bag, a few master’s degrees, and a toddler raised on organic milk.” What’s not evident, however, is that she is a veteran of Medicaid and WIC, the federal government’s supplemental nutrition program for women, infants, and children. In Cover Me, Huber tells a story that is at once all too familiar and rarely told: of being pushed to the edge by worry; of the adamant belief that better care was out there; of taking one mind-numbing job after another in pursuit of health insurance, only to find herself scrounging through the trash heap of our nation’s health-care system for tips and tricks that might mean the difference between life and death.
Laura Rattray and Emily J. Orlando
Emily J. Orlando is a contributing author, “Crude Ascending the Staircase: Undine Spragg and the Armory Show,”.
Bringing together twelve leading Wharton scholars from Europe and North America, this volume offers the first ever collection of essays on Wharton’s 1913 tour de force, The Custom of the Country. Described as 'her greatest book' by Hermione Lee in her acclaimed 2007 biography of the writer, and listed by Wharton herself at the end of a long and prolific career as one of her own favourite works, The Custom of the Country arguably remains the author’s most complex and controversial novel. The contributions to this collection demonstrate the continuing evolution of Wharton scholarship within modern critical approaches. --Publisher description
Will Robins and Robert Epstein
In addition to co-editing, Robert Epstein and Will Robins are contributing authors, “Introduction: The Sacred, the Profane, and Late Medieval Literature" and Robert Epstein is a contributing author, “Sacred Commerce: Chaucer’s Friar and the Spirit of Money”.
Literary depictions of the sacred and the secular from the Middle Ages are representative of the era's widely held cultural understandings related to religion and the nature of lived experience. Using late Medieval English literature, including some of Chaucer's writings, these essays do not try to define a secular realm distinct and separate from the divine or religious, but instead analyze intersections of the sacred and the profane, suggesting that these two categories are mutually constitutive rather than antithetical. With essays by former students of John V. Fleming, the collection pays tribute to the Princeton University professor emeritus through wide-ranging scholarship and literary criticism. Including reflections on depictions of Bathsheba, Troilus and Criseyde, the Legend of Good Women, Chaucer's Pardoner, and Margery Kempe, these essays focus on literature while ranging into history, philosophy, and the visual arts. Taken together, the work suggests that the domain of the sacred, as perceived in the Middle Ages, can variously be seen as having a hierarchical or a complementary relationship to the things of this world.
David B. Sachsman, James Simon, and JoAnn Meyer Valenti
Book description: Environment Reporters in the 21st Century is the story of specialized journalists who, because of their expertise, their experience, or their willingness, regularly write about environmental issues. This is the story of a relatively new journalistic beat, one that developed during the lifetime of the authors. This book provides a view of American journalism in the first decade of the new century, when newspapers and television were the major source of news in America.
The authors have divided the work into three parts. The first, Environment Reporting, includes a review of the literature and a detailed explanation of the methodology of the current study. Part II, The Environment Reporters of the 21st Century, describes the results of the present research. Part III, The Craft: Telling the Environment Story, provides in-depth accounts of environment reporters at work. Was the first decade of the 21st century a golden age of environmental reporting? The final chapter puts this research in historical perspective, viewing it in terms of the economic decline of the newspaper business and of local television news.
Environment reporters and their sources are eager to get news out, but not always in the same way, or at the same time. There is a constant struggle among the thousands of environmental activists, corporate public relations people, government officials, and scientists to frame the message in a way that is advantageous to their point of view. This has been called the great ecological communication war, the war between conflicting public relations forces to influence public policy. These competing interests need to understand how journalists think and function. This volume tells the story of environmental reporting imaginatively and innovatively.
Terry Carter, Maria Clayton, Betsy Bowen, Elizabeth H. Boquet, and Richard J. Regan
Betsy Bowen, Elizabeth Boquet, and Richard Regan are contributing authors, "Making connections: Teaching and learning in the online classroom", pp. 263-280.
Book description: This text provides selections that range from how to use technology to build a community of writers to integrating and shaping electronic locations for effective writing.
Robbin D. Crabtree, David Alan Sapp, and Adela C. Licona
In addition to co-editing, David A. Sapp (CAS, English, Fairfield University) and Robbin Crabtree (CAS, Communication, Fairfield University) co-authored the introduction, "The passion and the praxis of feminist pedagogy".
Book Description: This collection of essays traces the evolution of feminist pedagogy over the past twenty years, exploring both its theoretical and its practical dimensions.
Feminist pedagogy is defined as a set of epistemological assumptions, teaching strategies, approaches to content, classroom practices, and teacher-student relationships grounded in feminist theory. To apply this philosophy in the classroom, the editors maintain that feminist scholars must critically engage in dialogue and reflection about both what and how they teach, as well as how who they are affects how they teach. In identifying the themes and tensions within the field and in questioning why feminist pedagogy is particularly challenging in some educational environments, these articles illustrate how and why feminist theory is practiced in all kinds of classrooms.
In exploring feminist pedagogy in all its complexities, the contributors identify the practical applications of feminist theory in teaching practices, classroom dynamics, and student-teacher relationships. This volume will help readers develop theoretically grounded classroom practices informed by the advice and experience of fellow practitioners and feminist scholars. – Publisher description
Paul Lauter and Elizabeth A. Petrino
Elizabeth Petrino is a contributing author, Headnote, Instructor’s Guide Entry, and Online Sample Assignments, “Phoebe Cary”, pp. 3118-3120.
Book description: Unrivaled diversity and teachability have made The Heath Anthology a best-selling text. In presenting a more inclusive canon of American literature, The Heath Anthology changed the way American literature is taught. The Sixth Edition continues to balance the traditional, leading names in American literature with lesser-known writers and have built upon the anthology’s other strengths: its apparatus and its ancillaries.
Mindy Lewis and Sonya Huber
Sonya Huber is a contributing author, "A Portrait of Ten Bathrooms."
Book description: This is a collection everyone can relate to: a multidimensional look at the universal challenge of keeping our stuff, our dwellings, and our personal space clean and uncluttered. How we feel about keeping house speaks volumes about who we are, our roots, relationships, and our outlook on life.
Nels C. Pearson and Marc Singer
In addition to co-editing, Nels Pearson (with Marc Singer) co-authored, Open Cases: Detection, (Post)modernity, and the State,”, pp. 1-15.
Taking up a neglected area in the study of the crime novel, this collection investigates the growing number of writers who adapt conventions of detective fiction to expose problems of law, ethics, and truth that arise in postcolonial and transnational communities. While detective fiction has been linked to imperialism and constructions of race from its earliest origins, recent developments signal the evolution of the genre into a potent framework for narrating the complexities of identity, citizenship, and justice in a postcolonial world. Among the authors considered are Vikram Chandra, Gabriel García Márquez, Michael Ondaatje, Patrick Chamoiseau, Mario Vargas Llosa, Suki Kim, and Walter Mosley. The essays explore detective stories set in Latin America, the Caribbean, India, and North America, including novels that view the American metropolis from the point of view of Asian American, African American, or Latino characters. Offering ten new and original essays by scholars in the field, this volume highlights the diverse employment of detective fictions internationally, and uncovers important political and historical subtexts of popular crime novels. -- Publisher book description.
Robert Root, Michael Steinberg, and Sonya Huber
Sonya Huber is a contributing author, "The Real Who, What, When, and Why of Journalism."
Book description: The Fourth Genre offers the most comprehensive, teachable, and current introduction available today to the cutting-edge, evolving genre of creative nonfiction. While acknowledging the literary impulse of nonfiction to be a fourth genre equivalent to poetry, fiction, and drama, this text focuses on subgenres of the nonfiction form, including memoir, nature writing, personal essays, literary journalism, cultural criticism, and travel writing.
This anthology was the first to draw on the common ground of the practicing writer and the practical scholar and to make the pedagogical connections between creative writing practice and composition theory, bridging some of the gaps between the teaching of composition, creative writing, and literature in English departments.
Nancy Cary and Sonya Huber
Sonya Huber is a contributing author, "The God of Hunger."
Book description: More than eighty contributors offer up unique views of food and drink, what we hunger for, what pains us or sustains us, what brings us joy as individuals, as family, as culture. This collection of poetry, fiction, non-fiction, and art invites you to sit at the collective table we share as the human community.
Kevin Dvorak, Shanti Bruce, Elizabeth H. Boquet, and Michele Eodice
Elizabeth Boquet, with Michele Eodice, is a contributing author, "Creativity in the Writing Center: A Terrifying Conundrum."
Book description: This is the first book length attempt to address the role creativity plays in writing centers. Beginning with the premise that creativity has the potential to make work and learning environments more productive—and possibly more dangerous—the ideals in this collection will complicate visions of what writing centers can and should be. Striking a balance between theory and practice, readers will learn about creative tutor training and staff meeting activities, how to use toys to tutor and how to tutor creative writers, and, finally, how to implement creative outreach programs. Those who are in search of ways to infuse their centers with creativity and fun will find this book to be an invaluable, inspirational resource.
Caroline Grant, Elrena Evans, and Sonya Huber
Sonya Huber is a contributing author, "In Medias Res."
Book description: Every year, American universities publish glowing reports stating their commitment to diversity, often showing statistics of female hires as proof of success. Yet, although women make up increasing numbers of graduate students, graduate degree recipients, and even new hires, academic life remains overwhelmingly a man's world. The reality that the statistics fail to highlight is that the presence of women, specifically those with children, in the ranks of tenured faculty has not increased in a generation. Further, those women who do achieve tenure track placement tend to report slow advancement, income disparity, and lack of job satisfaction compared to their male colleagues.
Amid these disadvantages, what is a Mama, PhD to do? This literary anthology brings together a selection of deeply felt personal narratives by smart, interesting women who explore the continued inequality of the sexes in higher education and suggest changes that could make universities more family-friendly workplaces.
The contributors hail from a wide array of disciplines and bring with them a variety of perspectives, including those of single and adoptive parents. They address topics that range from the level of policy to practical day-to-day concerns, including caring for a child with special needs, breastfeeding on campus, negotiating viable maternity and family leave policies, job-sharing and telecommuting options, and fitting into desk/chair combinations while eight months pregnant.
Candid, provocative, and sometimes with a wry sense of humor, the thirty-five essays in this anthology speak to and offer support for any woman attempting to combine work and family, as well as anyone who is interested in improving the university's ability to live up to its reputation to be among the most progressive of American institutions.
It had come to this: breastfeeding her screaming three-month-old while sitting on the cigarette-scarred floor of a union hall, lying to her husband so she could attend yet another activist meeting, and otherwise actively self-destructing. Then Sonya Huber turned to her long-dead grandfather, the family “nobody,” for help. Huber’s search for meaning and resonance in the life of her grandfather Heina Buschman was unusual insofar as she knew him only through dismissive family stories: He let his wife die of neglect . . . he used his infant son as a decoy when transporting anti-Nazi literature in a baby carriage . . . and so the stories went. What she actually discovered was that, like his granddaughter, Heina Buschman was a committed and beleaguered activist whose story echoed her own. Huber’s research not only conjured her grandfather’s voice in answer to many of the questions that troubled her but also found in his story a source of personal sustenance for herself. Based on extensive research and documentation, this story of Heina Buschman offers a rare look into the heart of the “average” socialist trying to survive the Nazis and rebuild a broken world. Alternating with his voice is Huber’s own, providing a rich and moving counterpoint that makes this deeply personal exploration of family, politics, and individual responsibility a story for all of us and for all time.
Designing Globally Networked Learning Environments: Visionary Partnerships, Policies, and Pedagogies
Doreen Starke-Meyerring, Melanie Wilson, Robbin D. Crabtree, David Alan Sapp, Jose Alfonso Malespin, and Gonzalo Norori
Robbin Crabtree (CAS, Communication, Fairfield University) and David. A. Sapp (CAS, English, Fairfield University) are contributing authors (Chapter 6).
Book description: Faculty, administrators, and others in higher education face growing pressures to position their institutions, programs, and courses in "global markets" and to prepare students for global work and citizenship. These pressures raise urgent questions: What might higher education look like in a globally networked world? Do traditional industrial models of learning suffice, or what new visions for learning are emerging? What does it take to implement and maintain these visions? To address these questions, Designing Globally Networked Learning Environments brings together 25 educators from four continents, who share their richly diverse visions for teaching and learning in a globally networked world. What unites these visions is that they break with traditional models of repackaging traditional institutionally bounded courses for online delivery in global markets. Instead, these educators build robust partnerships to design globally networked learning environments that connect students with peers, instructors, and communities across traditional institutional, national, and other boundaries to facilitate the kind of cross-boundary knowledge making that students as professionals and citizens will need to participate in the shaping of an emerging global order and to address the most pressing global problems we face. The book offers these visions as opportunities for faculty, program directors, administrators, international program experts, instructional designers, faculty development experts, and others in higher education to work together to deliberate, develop, and shape inspiring visions for globally networked learning and to become active participants in the globalization of higher education. – Publisher description
Paula Bernat Bennett, Karen L. Kilcup, Philipp Schwieghauser, and Elizabeth A. Petrino
Elizabeth Petrino is a contributing author, “Discordant American Vistas: Teaching Nineteenth-Century Paintings and Poetry.”, pp. 244-258.
Book description: Twentieth-century modernism reduced the list of nineteenth-century American poets to Walt Whitman, Emily Dickinson, and (less often) Edgar Allan Poe. The rest were virtually forgotten.
This volume in the MLA series Options for Teaching marks a milestone in the resurgence of the study of the rest. It features poets, like Henry Wadsworth Longfellow and Lydia Huntley Sigourney, who were famous in their day, as well as poets who were marginalized on the basis of their race (Paul Laurence Dunbar, Alexander Posey) or their sociopolitical agenda (Emma Lazarus, John Greenleaf Whittier). It also takes a fresh look at poets whose work has been dismissed as sentimental (Frances Osgood), genteel (Oliver Wendell Holmes), or didactic (William Cullen Bryant). The volume’s twenty-two essays are grouped into parts: “Teaching Various Kinds of Poems,” “Teaching Poets in Context,” and “Strategies for Teaching.” The fourth part is a selective guide to the field: an annotated bibliography of editions, anthologies, reference books, biographies, critical studies, and Web resources.
Joshua Clark and Elizabeth H. Boquet
Elizabeth Boquet is a contributing author, "9:52 a.m."
Taste, smell, hear, and see Louisiana in this collection of one-minute experiences taking place over a twenty-four-hour period across the Pelican State. One hundred twenty Louisiana-born or current resident contributors of all ages, backgrounds, and perspectives have offered their grateful, graceful, and grave visions of the state, a place as evocative as the essays within this gathering of voices. The ultimate insider’s look, the book provides an unparalleled feel for hitherto hidden worlds inside the state. Together these minutes provide a mosaic of the landscape, heritage, speech, and traditions of Louisiana, a place so often romanticized, demonized, adored, pitied, and patronized. Contributors were asked to write one page or less about one minute, anytime, anywhere, in Louisiana. Writers selected include award-winning writers such as John Biguenet, Andrei Codrescu, Barry Gifford, Bev Marshall, David Madden, Lee Meitzen Grue, and Fredrick Barton as well as novice writers of all ages. Passages cast Louisiana’s diverse peoples as backdrop against the action that transpires within the minute. Authors and their stories’ settings reflect the entire state, from the northeast corner near Lake Providence to Lake Charles in the southeast; from Monroe along the Ouachita River and Shreveport in the northwest to Lafayette, the heart of Cajun country; from the south-centrally located Alexandria on the Red River to the southernmost port of New Orleans.
Anne E. Geller, Michele Eodice, Frankie Condon, Meg Carroll, and Elizabeth H. Boquet
The Everyday Writing Center challenges some of the most comfortable traditions in its field, and it does so with a commitment and persuasiveness that one seldom sees in scholarly discussion. The book, at its core, is an argument for a new writing center consciousness--one that makes the most of the writing center's unique, and uniquely fluid, identity. Writing center specialists live with a liminality that has been acknowledged but not fully explored in the literature. Their disciplinary identity is with the English department, but their mission is cross-disciplinary; their research is pedagogical, but they often report to central administration. Their education is in humanities, but their administrative role demands constant number-crunching. This fluid identity explains why Trickster--an icon of spontaneity, shape-shifting, and the creative potential of chaos--has come to be a favorite cultural figure for the authors of this book. Adapting Lewis Hyde and others, these authors use Trickster to develop a theme of ordinary disruptions ("the everyday") as a source of provocative learning moments that can liberate both student writers and writing center staff. At the same time, the authors parlay Etienne Wenger's concept of "community of practice" into an ethos for a dynamic, learner-centered pedagogy that is especially well-suited to the peculiar teaching situation of the writing center. Through Trickster, they question not only accepted approaches to writing center pedagogy, but conventional approaches to race, time, leadership, and collaboration as well. They encourage their field to exploit the creative potential in ordinary events that are normally seen as disruptive or defeating, and they challenge traditions in the field that tend to isolate a writing center director from the department and campus. Yet all is not random, for the authors anchor this high-risk/high-yield approach in their commitment to a version of Wenger's community of practice. Conceiving of themselves, their colleagues, student writers, and student tutors as co-learners engaged together in a dynamic life of learning, the authors find a way to ground the excess and randomness of the everyday, while advancing an ethic of mutual respect and self-challenge.