Ruth J. Beerman
Ph.D. Student, Candidate, expected May 2013
M.A., University of Northern Iowa, Communication Studies, 2009
B.A., Mercer University, Political Science & Women and Gender Studies, 2004
Focus of Graduate Studies:
Doctoral student in rhetoric, emphasis in public controversy, argument, and how the body, gendered bodies in particular, intersect with those spheres.
Completed Rhetorical Leadership Concentration
Completed Graduate Certificate in Women’s Studies
I am interested in how rhetoric constructs, maintains, articulates, and imposes identities, both individually and institutionally. In particular, I focus on the body and its intersection in politics/government, law, public policy, popular culture, and media. My dissertation focuses on rhetorics of fatness and obesity, and how rhetorics in public policy, popular culture, and online spaces all serve to produce a particular understanding of agency, fat subjectivity and citizenship.
My coursework is preparing me to teach all levels of courses related to argumentation, public controversy, rhetorical/critical methodologies, feminist theory, rhetoric of women’s rights/feminism, and gender in communication.
I’ve taught Commun 103: Public Speaking and Commun 335: Critical Analysis of Communication, and Commun 402: Gender and Communication. Additionally, I’ve served as the assistant course director for Commun 103.
- Graduate Representative, Graduate School Advisory Council.
- Graduate Representative, Admission Records Policy Committee member.
- Graduate Mentor to master’s student.
- Co-creator and Co-Organizer of Public Speaking Showcase: Held biannually, the showcase highlights the importance of public speaking, and celebrates the work of college students from our introductory public speaking course (Commun 103).
- As another part of my commitment to public speaking and helping individuals hone their skills, I have been a volunteer or paid judge for the following organizations or tournaments: National Christian Forensics & Communications Association (2010-2012); Milwaukee Urban Debate League (2009-2010); Henderson Invitational Individual Events Tournament, University of Northern Iowa (2007-2009); Ulrich Debate Tournament, University of Northern Iowa (2006-2008).
Rippke, P., & Beerman, R. (2013). Image comics. Entry for Icons of the American Comic Book: From Captain America to Wonder Woman. Santa Barbara, CA: ABC-CLIO Greenwood.
Beerman, R. J. (2012). The body unbound: Empowered, heroism, and body image. The Journal of Graphic Novels and Comics, 3(2), 201-213.
Beerman, R. J. (2011). Too fat for Hooters? Examining the body as aesthetic evidence. In R. C. Rowland (Ed.) Reasoned argument and social change: Selected papers from the seventeenth biennial conference on argumentation (pp. 457-463). Washington, DC: National Communication Association.
Beerman, R. J. (2006). Agency for whom? Looking at International Women’s Day 2004: A time for consternation amidst celebration. The Iowa Journal of Communication, 38, 163-184.
Beerman, R. J. (2012). Making losing weight click: Control and controlling the (dieting) subject in Weight Watchers Online. Presentation at the National Communication Association conference, Orlando, FL, November 15-18, 2012.
Beerman, R. J. (2012). “Stop sugarcoating it!”: How anti-obesity rhetoric links overfeeding children to stopping the cycle of (rhetorical) violence. Presentation at the National Communication Association conference, Orlando, FL, November 15-18, 2012.
Beerman, R. J. (2012). Momentous moving: Michelle Obama as embodying the push for fitness as a public advocate in the Let's Move! campaign. Presentation at the Organization for the Study of Communication, Language, & Gender conference, Tacoma, WA, October 11-14, 2012.
Beerman, R. J. (2012). Big and beautiful? Using Drop Dead Diva to interrogate bodily intersections of gender, beauty, and fatness. Presentation at the Gender Matters Conference, Governors State University, University Park, IL, April 13-14, 2012.
Beerman, R. J. (2011). Which bodies get to play? Using community values to resolve community/individual tensions in international sport. Presentation at the National Communication Association Conference, New Orleans, LA, November 17-20, 2011.
Beerman, R. J. (2011). Too fat for Hooters? Examining the body as aesthetic evidence. Presentation at the 2011 NCA/AFA Summer Conference on Argumentation, Alta, UT, July 28-31, 2011.
Beerman, R. J. (2011). The role of female superheroes: Becoming Empowered. Presentation at the UW-System Women’s Studies and LGBTQ Conference, University of Wisconsin, Madison, March 25-26, 2011.
Beerman, R. J. (2010). The discourse of saving an other: Using performance theory to unpack positions of power and constraint in President George W. Bush’s Iraq war rhetoric. Presentation at the UW-System Women’s Studies and LGBTQ Conference, University of Wisconsin, Whitewater, April 15-16, 2010.