Communication and Culture | The Study of Public Advocacy (Topic: U.S. Environmental Movements and Public Culture)
C406 | 26556 | Pezzullo, P.

MW, 11:15 AM-12:30 PM, C9 200

Instructor: Phaedra Pezzullo
Office: Mottier Hall 206
Phone: 855-2106
Instructor Website:

This fall, C406 is designed to focus on U.S. public advocacy about
the environment.  To do so, we will be examining the histories of
grassroots environmental, environmental justice, and anti-
environmental movements.  As a course grounded in a rhetorical
perspective, we also will be developing our skills as advocates and
critics of issues related to environmental advocacy. Our primary
goal is to become more reflexive about how people communicate with,
about, and in the environment as rhetorical agents in public
culture.  Specifically, we will emphasize what have been the
constraints—both the limitations and the possibilities—of persuading
U.S. publics about environmental concerns.

Our readings reflect the vast range of environmental issues that the
course objectives entail, from the creation of national parks to the
impacts of environmental racism on toxically-assaulted communities
to the success of environmental backlash today in rolling back
environmental protections and infrastructure.  In doing so, we also
will consider a variety of public advocacy practices, including
tourism, slide shows, boycotts, civil disobedience, public
participation, and media campaigns. In addition to lecture,
presentations, and exams, active and informed engagement with these
timely and important topics is expected in the classroom.

Required Readings most likely will be:

Cox, J. Robert.  (2006).  Environmental Communication and the Public
Sphere.  Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage.  ISBN: 0761930507

Nash, Roderick. (2001, fourth edition).  Wilderness and the American
Mind.  New Haven: Yale UP.  ISBN: 0-300-02910-1

Bullard, Robert D. (2005).  The Quest for Environmental Justice:
Human Rights and the Politics of Pollution. San Francisco, CA:
Sierra Club. ISBN: 1578051207

Helvarg, David. (2004, revised edition).  The War Against the
Greens: The "Wise-Use" Movement, the New Right, and the Browning of
America. San Francisco, CA: Sierra Club. ISBN: 1555663281


Midterm Exam: 		     25%
Final Exam:		     25%
Two Position Papers:	     30% (15%, 4-5 pages each)
Group Debate Presentation:   20%