Press Room

Communication Scholars Available to Discuss Confederate Memorials and Monuments

August 22, 2017
Experts Available
Race/Class/Gender, Social Justice

Washington, DC (August 22, 2017) — In the wake of violent clashes between white nationalist demonstrators and anti-hate protestors in Charlottesville that began over the proposed removal of a Confederate statue, cities and states across the country are contemplating removal of their own monuments and memorials honoring Confederate military and government leaders. Several National Communication Association scholars are available to discuss the political, cultural, and historical influences of public memorials and commemoration, and how citizens, historians, and government officials communicate about memory and heritage through monuments and names.


Bradford Vivian, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Communication Arts & Sciences, Pennsylvania State University

Vivian’s research focuses on the rhetoric of public memory, witnessing, and political theory. He is the author of Commonplace Witnessing: Rhetorical Invention, Historical Remembrance, and Public Culture (Oxford University Press), Public Forgetting: The Rhetoric and Politics of Beginning Again (Penn State Press) and Being Made Strange: Rhetoric beyond Representation (SUNY Press).

Greg Dickinson, Ph.D.
Chair and Professor, Department of Communication Studies, Colorado State University.

Dickinson’s scholarship focuses on the ways buildings and human landscapes engage viewers and users on questions of values, beliefs, and action. He is the author of Suburban Dreams: Building and Imagining the Good Life (University of Alabama Press) and co-editor of Places of Public Memory: The Rhetoric of Museums and Memorials (with Carole Blair and Brian Ott). He is the editor-elect of NCA’s Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies journal.

Barbie Zelizer, Ph.D. 
Raymond Williams Professor of Communication and Director of the Scholars Program in Culture and Communication, Annenberg School for Communication, University of Pennsylvania

Zelizer’s research focuses on the cultural dimensions of journalism, specifically on collective memory, journalistic authority, and journalist images in times of crisis and war. She is the author of About to Die: How News Images Move the Public (Oxford University Press).

Davis Houck, Ph.D.
Fannie Lou Hamer Professor of Rhetorical Studies in the College of Communication & Information at Florida State University

Houck’s research interests include rhetorical theory and criticism, presidential rhetoric, the Black Freedom Movement, and historiography and archival research. He is the co-editor of a two-volume book, Rhetoric, Religion, and the Civil Rights Movement, 1954-1965, and a founding member of the Emmett Till Memory Project.


To schedule an interview with any of these experts, please contact Jenna Sauber at or 202-534-1104.

About the National Communication Association

The National Communication Association (NCA) advances Communication as the discipline that studies all forms, modes, media, and consequences of communication through humanistic, social scientific, and aesthetic inquiry. NCA serves the scholars, teachers, and practitioners who are its members by enabling and supporting their professional interests in research and teaching. Dedicated to fostering and promoting free and ethical communication, NCA promotes the widespread appreciation of the importance of communication in public and private life, the application of competent communication to improve the quality of human life and relationships, and the use of knowledge about communication to solve human problems. NCA supports inclusiveness and diversity among our faculties, within our membership, in the workplace, and in the classroom; NCA supports and promotes policies that fairly encourage this diversity and inclusion.

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