We invite you to submit a proposal to a special issue of WLN on the topic of writing centers and disability justice. This issue will include articles considering the embodied experience of disability in writing center work — ranging from physical disabilities to invisible disabilities, neurodivergence, and thinking through access needs. We are particularly interested in article proposals that weave a “BodyMind” (the idea that our bodies and minds are one, not separate) experience together with theoretical and pedagogical structures, engaging both narrative and rigor as they relate to disability. We reject the notion of accommodation-as-cure, and we invite you to “crip” the center.
For this special issue of WLN, we seek 300 word proposals for articles that will be roughly 3,000 words in length as well as shorter, narrative pieces (1,500 words) in the form of Tutor Columns. Of note: all submissions chosen for publication will require the appropriate accessibility measures (captions, formatting, etc.), and the editor will work with the authors of text-based submissions to create accessible audio versions of their texts to be hosted on SoundCloud. We invite submissions that consider BodyMind connections and experiences; push back on notions of cure (Clare, 2017); challenge ableist training, hiring, or consulting practices; share strategies for developing accessible programming; and engage one or several of the following questions (or imagine still further points of inquiry):
  • What is disability justice? How is it carried out in the work of a writing center?
  • How does your writing center engage disability? Does it? What training, materials, strategies, or relationships does your writing center have in place to support the disabled community on your campus?
  • How does your writing center address invisible disability within your own staff or with/for your writers?
  • Does your writing center recruit disabled consultants, writers, or administrators?
  • What risks or challenges are inherent in writing center professionals (whether consultants or administrators) identifying as disabled? What benefits or opportunities emerge in the disclosure process?
  • How do standard writing center practices such as non-directive tutoring, face- to-face consultation, drop-in consultation, and synchronous tutoring uphold cultures of ableism? How might we rethink these strategies or tenets to foster access?
  • Does the medical model of disability and/or a reliance on campus disability services shape your writing center’s ability to meet access needs of writers or consultants or administrators?
  • How does your disability affect your work in writing centers? What do you need? Is our field providing it?”
Schedule
  • Send article proposals (300-500 words) by May 31 to Karen Moroski-Rigney at moroskik@msu.edu. Please provide full contact information with your submission. In your proposal, clearly describe your focus, the theoretical and research base from which you will draw, and your plans for structuring a 3000-word article or a 1500-word essay for a Tutor’s Column (Works Cited and Notes included in the word count).
  • Invitations to submit full articles will be issued July 1.
  • Manuscripts will be due January 1, 2022.

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