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Iowa alumnus, John L. Lucaites (1984), wins prestigious Ehninger Distinguished Scholar Award from NCA

Sep 09, 2014


Prestigious Rhetorical Scholar Award Winner

Dr. John L. Lucaites Wins Prestigious Douglas W. Ehninger Distinguished Rhetorical Scholar Award From the National Communication Association

Dr. John L. Lucaites

Dr. John L. Lucaites, professor in the Department of Communication and Culture in the College of Arts and Sciences at Indiana University, is the 2014 recipient of the Douglas W. Ehninger Distinguished Rhetorical Scholar Award from the National Communication Association.

Dr. Lucaites was recognized for his work on civil rights rhetorics and in visual rhetorics.

“The Communication discipline has a long tradition of exceptional scholarship,” said Nancy Kidd, NCA’s Executive Director. “We’re proud to recognize Dr. Lucaites’ contributions with this well-deserved award.”

“Faculty and students in the department are delighted that Dr. Lucaites' excellent work has been recognized with this well-deserved honor,” said Jane Goodman, chair of the Department of Communications and Culture. “We extend to him our hearty congratulations and count ourselves fortunate that he is part of our department.”

Given annually, the award honors scholars who have conducted research programs in rhetorical theory, rhetorical criticism, and/or public address studies. Recipients are selected for their intellectual creativity, perseverance and impact on academic communities through multiple publications and presentations around a rhetorical topic or theme.

“John Lucaites has made significant contributions to rhetorical studies throughout his career, and this award recognizes his well-established place of leadership,” said Robert Terrill, associate professor in the Department of Communication and Culture at IU. “His early work on African American rhetoric has influenced a generation of scholars, and his more recent work in visual rhetoric is at the leading edge in a very active conversation in the discipline that continues to open new ways of thinking about the significance of rhetorical practice in contemporary public culture. Lucaites’s scholarship is engaged and innovative, widely read and universally valued, and always seeking new ways to discover what rhetoric can be.”

Lucaites’ most recent scholarship focuses on the relationship between rhetoric, citizenship and visual culture, with particular attention to photojournalism as a mode of “public art” that underwrites liberal-democratic public culture.

He is the co-author of Crafting Equality: America’s Anglo-African Word (University of Chicago, 1993), and No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy (University of Chicago, 2007); and co-editor of Martin Luther King, Jr. and the Sermonic Power of Public Discourse (University of Alabama, 1993), Contemporary Rhetorical Theory: A Reader (Guilford Press, 2000), and Rhetoric, Materiality, and Politics (Peter Lang, 2009).

He also co-hosts a weekly blog on rhetoric, visuality, and photojournalism:

He has won numerous awards and is a three time recipient of the National Communication Association’s Golden Monograph Award ( 1997, 2002, 2004), as well as the Winans-Wichelns Award for Distinguished Scholarship in Rhetoric and Public Address (2008) and the Diamond Anniversary Book Award (2008). In 2012 he was identified as a Distinguished Scholar by the National Communication Association.

He currently serves as the Associate Dean for Arts and Humanities in the College of Arts and Sciences.

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.