The second inflection of rhetoric that I mobilize might be described as "universal elements" because they concern elements of language use that are much more than content terms. These "universals" possess generative force that results in our capture.
- Ralph Cintron, Democracy as Fetish
Metaphorically and literally, rhetoric captures. Growing up at the Brownsville-Matamoros border, I view rhetoric as one that captures minds and hearts because of the way that brown folks in the area use language to engage with each other in quotidian practices: bilingual practices, music choices, and transnational movements. In addition, rhetoric that captures denotes the hypersurveillance and criminalization of this area which can lead to a physical capture. I find the border checkpoint as a particularly useful site to engage the metpahorical and literal capture of these brown folks.
Rhet-comp allows for various method/ologies to study and, hopefully, resolve these problems of citizenship, criminalization, and immigration enforcement. Therefore, I conceptualize rhet-comp as extremely elastic and molds to the contours of the problems at hand. This website functions as a form of public scholarship that emerges from rhet-comp but reaches beyond it.