Good things come in fours

ASU writing, rhetorics and literacies scholars sweep CCCCs in a field that owes much to the legacy of Frank D'Angelo

By Kristen LaRue-Sandler — April 15, 2024

A collage of book and journal covers that were celebrated at the 2024 CCCC conference

It is perhaps fitting that at a gathering once chaired by the late Arizona State University Professor Emeritus Frank D’Angelo, a new crop of ASU scholars has garnered acclaim.

Image of Frank D'Angelo courtesy ASU Retirees Association

D’Angelo’s recent passing on March 23 at the age of 95 seemed to pass the proverbial baton. According to Professor Emeritus Keith Miller, D’Angelo and a group of perhaps ten other people built the Conference on College Composition and Communication—now known as CCCC, “the 4Cs”—from a small organization in the 1970s and ‘80s into “a large band of professionals who thought hard about language, persuasion, and how to empower students by teaching the inextricably linked processes of writing and thinking.”

How far has CCCC come? “Now thousands of people attend the annual conferences,” said Miller, “and there are so many journals that it's hard to keep track even of what they are and what they cover, let alone try to read even a fraction of their articles.”

The 2024 annual CCCC meeting took place Apr. 3-6 in Spokane, WA. The awards presentation was an ASU-packed affair, with faculty, alumni and students attending to see their colleagues receive CCCC honors, which included the following:

  • CCCC Technical and Scientific Communication Award

    Associate Professor Mark Hannah and alum Kristin Bennett (PhD 2022), now an assistant professor of technical communication at Sam Houston State University, received this award for their 2022 article “Transforming the Rights-Based Encounter: Disability Rights, Disability Justice, and the Ethics of Access” published in the Journal of Business and Technical Communication. The commendation is for the “Best Article Reporting Qualitative or Quantitative Research in Technical or Scientific Communication.”

  • Research Impact Award

    This award’s Honorable Mention citation went to Assistant Professor Jacob Greene, for his book “Composing Place: Digital Rhetorics for a Mobile World” (Utah State University Press, 2023). The annual award is presented for an empirical research publication that “most advances the mission of the organization or the needs of the profession.”

  • Outstanding Book Award

    With co-editor Christine Denecker, alum Casie Moreland (PhD 2018), now head of dual enrollment at the University of Idaho, received this honor for her collection “The Dual Enrollment Kaleidoscope: Reconfiguring Perceptions of First-Year Writing and Composition Studies” (Utah State University Press, 2022). The award is presented annually for outstanding works in composition and rhetoric that advance scholarship and research the areas of pedagogy, practice, history, and/or theory. ASU Professors Shirley Rose and Keith Miller wrote the book’s afterword.

Back in Arizona, a memorial gathering for D’Angelo was held on Apr. 3—the first day of CCCC 2024. The family suggested that “in lieu of flowers, please donate to a charity, read a book or raise a glass.” As D’Angelo’s son Marc noted, even in hospice care, in his 90s, the consummate academic was writing a new textbook. “I asked him what the favorite part of his 95 years were and he said ‘teaching rhetoric,’" shared Marc. “He was an amazing dad and educator. He will be missed.”