Situating Our Rhetorical Practice




Taylor, Tim

Journal Title

Journal ISSN

Volume Title




As the writing consultants and Assistant Director have demonstrated, kairos is a core concept that we can use productively to situate and reflect on our rhetorical practice. The idea of “right timing,” the “opportune moment,” and the “embodiment of carpe diem” will further help us push past the false dualism of either directive or nondirective tutoring (Hawhee 20) . As the reflections above show, enacting kairotic thinking in the writing center can move us beyond that either-or choice and perhaps move us towards a stronger both-and philosophy. Since consultants are creative individuals who make important decisions on the spot when working with complicated individuals, this core concept invites us to reflect on our practices and our principles. Hill describes kairos as a “habit of mind, one that expresses itself in a kind of time that is living and creative” (212). The creativity of writing consultants brings to life the possibilities explored in Geller’s discussion of “epochal time” and coheres with the call put forth by the authors of The Everyday Writing Center that “[a]t the very heart of what we five have come to understand as we’ve talked about time is our belief that writing centers should be most focused on time that is relational” (33). Tutoring with kairos in mind provides a way to conceptualize that relational model of writing center practice.

LCSH Subject Headings