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Peter Elbow is one of those scholars who had such an impact on his field that by mid-career he had already attained icon status. As an early proponent of what became known as process theory, Elbow, with others working along similar lines, developed a powerful body of theory that gradually reoriented instruction in writing toward an emphasis on invention and revision-toward the process of writing as a mode of thinking-and consequently toward a focus on the interaction between writer and audience, instead of on the traditionally conceived product of writing, the text. It is not too much to claim that Peter Elbow, like few others, changed the way writing is taught in America. Writing with Elbow is a volume written by leading scholars now working in the field of composition who trace their own scholarship to foundational work done by Peter Elbow over the last thirty years. The book is in that sense a celebration. But it is more than that, too. Elbow and process writing are not without their critics, and the essays collected in Writing with Elbow also test him, extend his work, explore his intellectual forebears, address his critics and contexts, and complicate his legacy across a wide range of issues in current composition research and practice. A thoughtful, comprehensive retrospective on Peter Elbow's legacy, Writing with Elbow is a must-read collection for composition scholars, teachers, English educationists, and graduate students.
Utah State University Press
Belanoff, Pat; Dickson, Marcia; Fontaine, Sheryl I.; and Moran, Charles, "Writing with Elbow" (2002). All USU Press Publications. 133.