"(T)hey ought to mind what a woman says" : early Cherokee women's rhetorical traditions and rhetorical education
Moulder, Mary Amanda
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"'(T)hey ought to mind what a woman says" : early Cherokee women's rhetorical traditions and rhetorical education," illustrates how Cherokee women reinvented a sovereign Cherokee presence in the face of colonial hostility toward their political authority. Late eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century Cherokee women used oratory, and later writing, to insist that they possessed a mandate to participate in and help shape public debate. In chapter one, I discuss the defining features of an eighteenth-century Cherokee women's rhetorical tradition. Chapter two uses Deborah Brandt's theories of literacy accumulation to examine Cherokee mission schools and to demonstrate how Cherokee women refashioned writing skills they learned to affirm belonging in Cherokee communities. Chapter three employs Kenneth Burke's and Gerald Vizenor's theories of identification and consubstantiation to explore how Cherokee women deployed the language of American civility in print, thereby countering the image of the Vanishing Indian. The conclusion examines the implications of this study for current research in rhetoric and composition studies: Cherokee women's English-language literacy accumulation is analogous to contemporary literacy pedagogy debates.
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