Style Makes the Writing: Expanding Considerations of Style in the Writing Center
As a pedagogical tool, “style” in writing center lore has been cast as a lower-order concern. This marginalization stems not only from the difficulty of defining the word itself, but also from a persistent belief that “style” exists in a vacuum separate from “content,” “development,” and grammar, thus being of secondary importance to tutors and administrators. In this article, Edward Santos Garza challenges this clinical framework, arguing that style, a vital, permeating force, has much to offer those in writing center work. He positions style as a tool to help WC visitors more fully discuss, assess, and strengthen themselves as writers. Asserting that style is equally valuable for thinking about writing with regard to identity, Garza envisions how WC staff could productively foreground it in sessions and training.
[Style] pervades the whole being. The administrator with a sense for style hates waste; the engineer with a sense for style economises his material; the artisan with a sense for style prefers good work. Style is the ultimate morality of mind. (12) — Alfred North Whitehead “The Aims of Education"