About Us

Cynthia Selfe

According to her Sweetland Digital Rhetoric Collaborative Wiki (2015) biography:

Cynthia Selfe is currently Distinguished Humanities Professor in the Department of English at The Ohio State University. She lives in Columbus, Ohio along with her husband and fellow scholar Richard 'Dickie' Selfe and their two dogs Sparky and Lucy.

Selfe was an early champion of the field of computers and writing along with a number of other scholars, including her frequent collaborator Gail Hawisher and other pioneers such as Hugh Burns. Selfe has worked tirelessly to draw humanists' attention to the socio-cultural milieu in which technology circulates, to consider how technology affects literacy in context, and to broaden humanists' understanding of "the text" beyond paper-based and print-based genres. Selfe's 1999 Chair's address to the Conference on College Composition and Communication, "Technology and Literacy: A Story about the Perils of Not Paying Attention," was influential in drawing disciplinary attention to technology in composition studies and the digital humanities.

Selfe completed her PhD at the University of Texas–Austin and worked for several decades at Michigan Technological University before moving to The Ohio State University in 2006. Along with Kate Keifer, Selfe founded the peer-reviewed journal Computers and Composition: An International Journal in the 1980s, which Hawisher later became co-editor of with Selfe. She founded the Digital Archive of Literacy Narratives at http://daln.osu.edu/ along with H. Louis Ulman of The Ohio State University. She is also a founding co-editor of the Computers and Composition Digital Press (CCDP), a peer-reviewed scholarly press for born-digital publications that are reviewed and published through Utah State University Press.

Cindy’s office chair is a black recliner with rainbow-colored polka dots. She can often be found in this chair video-conferencing with other scholars via Skype.

Since retiring Spring 2016 from OSU, Professor Selfe and her husband have moved back to their cabin in Michigan.

Samuel Head

Hi, Samuel Head here! I'm a PhD student in rhetoric, composition, and literacy at The Ohio State University. Probably because I inordinately spend too much time online, my research includes studying how to use social media in composition as well as how digital media can help with teaching about audience.

I was initially drawn to OSU because of Professor Selfe's presence there and have enjoyed popping into her office for random questions. I have recently worked with Professor Selfe in the Literacy Narratives of Black Columbus class at OSU collecting and analyzing narratives from Ohio's large Somali diaspora for the DALN. As a result of all this, I now have trouble spelling "self" without adding an extra "e" at the end.

What I enjoy most is playing pretend with my two daughters (our dress-up collection is quite extensive now), singing loudly at church (mostly tenor), and spending quality time with my wife (often in DIY house projects, cooking, or reading young adult literature together).