Chapters two through four focus on revising three standard genres of writing as a means of enhancing writers’ understandings of the dialogic nature of such texts. Davis and Shadle advocate teachers of writing view writing as a journey of discovery with many routes rather than a carefully planned trip with a single destination.
In Chapter Two, “Research Writing as a Key to the Highway,” the authors recommend research writing be seen as a journey to knowledge rather than simply the requirement to pass a class. Instead, research should be used to help writers understand exploration of a new land – both literally in their research of a dream trip to anywhere in the world and figuratively as finding new information that interacts with current and future texts, thoughts, and beliefs.
The following chapter, “The Loose Talk of Persuasion,” takes up persuasion as a space where dialogue is used for transformation. Rather than relying on absolutes, Davis and Shadle purport that persuasion through dialogue prevents overly emotional, accusatory, and violent persuasions which students are accustomed to outside the writing classroom. The focus of such loose talk, persuasion relies on exchange, conversation, and consideration of opposing positions in order to influence. As in the previous chapter where exploration and wandering through the journey of research is emphasized, the third chapter of the book focuses on careful, considerate listening as a means of persuading and to revise student opinions of persuasion in action.