Surrender: Feminist Rhetoric and Ethics in Love and Illness (Paperback)

Surrender: Feminist Rhetoric and Ethics in Love and Illness By Jessica Restaino Cover Image
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Winner, CCCC Outstanding Book Award, 2020

One of Library Journal's Top 20 Best-Selling Language Titles of 2019
In an ethnographic study spanning the last years of research collaborator and friend Susan Lundy Maute’s life with terminal breast cancer, author Jessica Restaino argues the interpretative challenges posed by research and writing amid illness and intimacy demand a methodological break from accepted genres and established practices of knowledge making. Restaino searches their experiences—recorded in interviews, informal writings, and correspondence—to discover a rhetoric of love and illness. She encourages a synthesis of methods and the acceptance of a reversal of roles—researcher and researched, writer and written-about—and emphasizes the relevancy of methodological diversity, the necessity of the personal, and the analytical richness of unpredictability and risk in being who we are in our scholarship at any given moment.
Bringing together critical analysis, qualitative-style research methods, close reading, Surrender: Feminist Rhetoric and Ethics inLove and Illness resists traditional ideas about academic writing and invites others to pursue collaborations that subvert accepted approaches to representation, textual production, and subjectivity. Restaino demonstrates a way of writing—the rendering of the academic text itself—that suggests how we do our work has resonance for what we produce. She offers framing questions for use by others interested in doing similar kinds of scholarship that may frighten, overwhelm, or confound. This book deepens our understanding of subjectivity and the gains made by feminist resistance to conventional concepts of objectivity in research collaborations.

About the Author

Jessica Restaino is an associate professor of writing studies and the director of gender, sexuality, and women’s studies at Montclair State University. She is the author of First Semester: Graduate Students, Teaching Writing, and the Challenge of Middle Ground and coeditor, with Laurie Cella, of Unsustainable: Re-imagining Community Literacy, Public Writing, Service-Learning, and the University

Praise For…

“Jessica Restaino’s Surrender offers an extremely powerful, absorbing narrative exchange of pain, support, transformation, and then absence. This book will confront and rearrange the reader’s held sense of their bodies, of themselves and those they love, of illness and death. I can’t imagine anyone reading this book and it not making an indelible mark. It will change how people teach and do research in rhetoric, composition, and many other fields, but it will also change people’s minds and hearts.”—Jay Timothy Dolmage, author of Disabled upon Arrival: Eugenics, Immigration, and the Construction of Race and Disability
 “In Surrender, Restaino pushes the field ever closer to the unknowable, moving toward a much-needed feminist ethics for questions of living and dying, and above all, building and sustaining connection. I was enthralled and pulled under with this breathtaking book, which reminds us all of how much research and life are inextricably entwined in all their messy complexities.”—Stephanie L. Kerschbaum, author of Toward a New Rhetoric of Difference
“How does a researcher/collaborator/friend tell the story of a loved one’s terminal illness? Searching, scathing, and elegant, Surrender shows us expanded possibilities of feminist research and writing. Beyond our current sense of the personal, of progress, of subjectivity, Jessica Restaino gives us instead the beautifully complicated work of the “impossible, imperfect, incomplete subject.” In so doing, she shows us the value of risk, failure, and uncertainty. It is a delicious and generative read, interweaving feminist and queer theories, medical rhetorics, qualitative methods, and the ineffable sense of the author’s sorrow.”—Jacqueline Rhodes, coauthor of On Multimodality: New Media in Composition Studies
Product Details
ISBN: 9780809337149
ISBN-10: 0809337142
Publisher: Southern Illinois University Press
Publication Date: February 1st, 2019
Pages: 204
Language: English