On this episode of the New Books Network, Dr. Lee Pierce
(she/they)--Asst. Prof. of Communication at the State University of New York at Geneseo--interviews Dr. Belinda Stillion Southard
(she/hers)--Assoc. Prof. of Communication at the University of Georgia--on the illuminating new book, How to Belong: Women’s Agency in a Transnational World
from Penn State University Press (2018). In How to Belong,
Dr. Stillion Southard examines the discourse of international women leaders seeking agency for women, the traditional subjects of violence across the global south. From the Liberian Women’s Initiative (LWI) to Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to Michelle Bachelet, Stillion Southard argues that the rhetorical choices of these actors embodied their particular transnational context, pushing back against the violent entails of nationalism and citizenship, traditionally conceived. As part of a broader conversation centered on exposing the violence of national citizenship and proposing ways of rejecting that violence, this book seeks to provide answers through the powerful rhetorical practices of resilient and inspiring women who have successfully negotiated what it means to belong, to be included, and to enact change beyond the boundaries of citizenship.