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Richard Ohmann Award

College EnglishThe Richard Ohmann Award for Outstanding Article in College English recognizes the outstanding refereed article in the past volume year of the journal that makes a significant contribution to the field of English studies. Ohmann Award winners offer an innovative, well-researched inquiry regarding an exigent problem, issue, or debate in a manner that is relevant and accessible to a wide range of College English readers. The award is given in the name of Richard Ohmann, landmark editor of College English from 1966 to 1978. 

Articles to be considered will be chosen from the College English volume year, September through July in the year prior to selection. The first award was given for the 2000-2001 issues of the journal.

The editor(s) of the College English journal are a part of the award selection committee.

The award presentation takes place during the College Celebration at the NCTE Annual Convention. The Ohmann Award winner receives a complimentary registration to NCTE's Annual Convention (beginning in 2014), should he or she be able to attend to accept the award in person, and a $200 honorarium (beginning in 2015).

2014 Award Winner

Jim RidolfoJim Ridolfo for his College English essay, “Delivering Textual Diaspora: Building Digital Cultural Repositories as Rhetoric Research.” Jim’s fascinating NEH-sponsored research on the textual diaspora of the Samaritans illuminates the ways in which digital humanities research can open new questions for scholars interested in rhetoric and rhetorical historiography.

The Samaritans, one of the smallest religious and ethnic communities in the Middle East today, has had success in maintaining their cultural heritage through housing of manuscripts in libraries, collections, and museums across the world. Jim’s essay narrates the ways in which Samaritan Elders draw on the potential of digital archives to further maintain their cultural heritage. In theorizing the study of “how texts came to be where they are and how they will be used in the future,”—what he calls “textual diaspora”—Jim interconnects rhetorical historiography, cultural sensitivity, global access, and delivery. His essay offers a strong model for the integration of rhetorical studies and digital humanities work through his nuanced attention to both conceptual and technical goals for facilitating ongoing interaction with the texts of his digitization project. Jim's work exemplifies his call for “digital humanities to expand the realm of its concern from that of texts and what’s in them to how they are used by people and communities.” His vision for the future of digital humanities research is a vision to be admired and emulated.

Jim Ridolfo is assistant professor of writing, rhetoric, and digital media at the University of Kentucky. He received his doctorate in 2009 from Michigan State University in rhetoric and writing. In 2012, he was a Fulbright Middle East and North Africa Regional Research Program Scholar, working in the West Bank and Israel. His work has appeared in Rhetoric Review, Kairos, Enculturation, JAC, Pedagogy, and Ariadne

2014 Richard Ohmann Award Committee:
Mya Poe, Chair, Bump Halbritter, Julie Lindquist, Clancy Ratliff, Joseph R. Rodriguez, Sara Webb-Sunderhaus, Howard Tinberg 


Past Recipients

2013 Bump Halbritter and Julie Lindquist, "Time, Lives, and Videotape: Operationalizing Discovery in Scenes of Literacy Sponsorship," College English, November 2012

2012 Amy Wan, “In the Name of Citizenship: The Writing Classroom and the Promise of Citizenship,” College English, September 2011

2011 Nancy Welch, "We're Here, and We're Not Going Anywhere: Why Working Class Rhetorical Traditions Still Matter," College English, January 2011

2010 Susan C. Jarratt, "Classics and Counterpublics in Nineteenth-Century Historically Black Colleges," College English, November 2009

2009 Christopher Carter, "Writing with Light: Jacob Riis's Ambivalent Exposures," College English, November 2008 

2008 Mary Queen, “Transnational Feminist Rhetorics in a Digital World,” College English, May 2008

2007 LuMing Mao, “Studying the Chinese Rhetorical Tradition in the Present:
Re-presenting the Native’s Point of View,” College English, January 2007 

2006 Paul Kei Matsuda, “The Myth of Linguistic Homogeneity in U.S. College Composition,” College English, July 2006 

2005 Eli Goldblatt, “Alinsky's Reveille: A Community-Organizing Model for Neighborhood-Based Literacy Projects,” College English, January 2005 

2004 Susan Romano, "Tlaltelolco: The Grammatical Colonial Indios of Colonial Mexico," College English, January 2004

2003 J. Blake Scott, “Extending Rhetorical-Cultural Analysis: Transformations of Home HIV Testing,” College English, March 2003 

2002 Candace Spigelman, "Argument and Evidence in the Case of the Personal," College English, Sept. 2001 

2001 John Alberti, "Returning to Class: Opportunities for Multicultural Reform at
Majority Second Tier Schools," College English, May 2001


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