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Rhetoric of Science & Technology

RSA Preconference 2010


Deadline Extended to March 15, 2010: Rhetoric of Science & Technology RSA Preconference 2010

The Association for the Rhetoric of Science & Technology (ARST) is excited to hold a preconference in conjunction with the 2010 Rhetoric Society of America (RSA) meetings in Minneapolis. We'll be holding several ARST sessions the morning of May 28. The ARST preconference theme is:

"That Buck Rogers Stuff: The Rhetoric of Science and Science Fiction"

What happens in the space between science and science fiction? In its guise as the "literature of ideas," science fiction has inspired the careers of scientists, foreshadowed the arrival of new scientific developments, and illuminated the fact/value distinction. In that respect, science fiction is itself a "rhetoric of science"; that is to say, a reflexive discourse of science. Seen from a different angle, however, "sci-fi" is a synonym for pseudo-science and the misrepresentation of scientists. This is of particular concern in an era when "science" has become a highly politicized and hotly contested theme in public discourse. To what extent and with what effect does science fiction contribute to our notions of science and its place in the public sphere?

The organizers of the ARST preconference at RSA thus seek presentations that explore questions about how the rhetorics of science and science fiction are employed to unify or divide, to express concordance or difference, and to imagine the possibilities and dangers of science and technology.

Submit extended abstracts or presentation proposals (no longer than 5 pages, including notes and references) as Word or PDF attachments by March 15, 2010, to Bill White, ARST Secretary, at

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