Kelly Pender, English

Kelly Pender

Kelly Pender

Associate Professor


306 Shanks Hall 
180 Turner Street, NW 
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061


(540) 231-9077


Department Membership


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  • History of rhetoric
  • Contemporary rhetorical theory
  • Rhetoric of health and medicine

Professional Activities

  • Director, Rhetoric and Writing PhD Program
  • Rhetoric Society of America
  • Conference on College Composition and Communication
  • Association for the Rhetoric of Science and Technology


  • BA, English, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • MA, English, North Carolina State University
  • PhD, English, Purdue University

Selected Publications


Techne: From Neoclassical to Postmodernism


  • “Genetic Subjectivity in situ: A Rhetorical Reading of Genetic Determinism and Genetic Opportunity in the Biosocial Community of FORCE.”  Rhetoric and Public Affairs 15.2 (2013): 319-349
  • “Philosophies of Invention Twenty Years After The Making of Knowledge in Composition” in The Changing of Knowledge in Composition: Contemporary Perspectives, eds. Lance Massey and Richard Gebhardt.  Logan, UT: Utah State Press, 2011, 63-83.
  • “Negation and the Contradictory Technics of Rhetoric.”  Rhetoric Society Quarterly 38.1 (2008): 2-24.

Additional Information

Currently working on a book manuscript, Being at Genetic Risk: Toward a Rhetoric of Care, which is under contract with the RSA Series in Transdisciplinary Rhetoric at Penn State Press.