Grace Marie Mike

Rhetoric and feminism in the Americanization Era: The YWCA’s rhetorical education program for immigrant women

Grace Marie Mike

  • School: Purdue University (0183)
  • Degree: Ph.D.
  • Date: 2016 pp: 245
  • Advisor: Bay, Jennifer
  • Source: DAI-A 78/03(E)
  • Subjects: Language, literature and linguistics; Social sciences; Education; Administration; ESL; Feminism; Rhetorical education; Women; YWCA
  • ProQuest Document Number: 1832952528
  • ISBN: 9781369050790
  • UMI Number: AAT 10149990

Abstract:

This dissertation examines the Young Women’s Christian Association’s International Institute movement from an administrative perspective. Founded in the United States during the Americanization Era of the early 20 th century, the International Institute movement developed programs and services for immigrant women. One of the most prominent, and least examined, aspects of the movement was its work in the area of rhetorical education for non-English speaking immigrant women. Using a feminist, administrative historiographic methodology, this project positions the work of the International Institute’s administrators ecologically among other Americanization efforts taking place in this time period. Arguing that the International Institute movement positioned itself differently in relationship to immigrants, this dissertation explores this positioning in-depth through archival research. Most specifically, it focuses on the aspects of program construction, pedagogy, and activism, showing how each of these areas of the International Institute movement’s administration was informed by a feminist, ecological, rhetorical administrative philosophy. This project concludes by describing the implications of this movement on the work of writing program administrators and all those who work in rhetorical administration today.