Speaking and Teaching

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Joseph P. Fisher's Speaking and Teaching Experience

Joe routinely offers presentations on the cultural history of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) and on disability inclusion in higher education. He has also spoken on a variety of pop culture topics at the Popular Culture Association and Modern Language Association conventions.

In 2010, Joe created the Composing Disability conference series, a biennial event that is co-sponsored and co-organized by members of the George Washington University’s English department, office of Disability Support Services, University Writing Program, and Office of Diversity, Equity, and Community Engagement. This event takes a cultural and activist approach to disability that examines the tensions between the embodied lives of disabled people and the rehabilitative pressure of the institutions that surround them. Over the course of its four installments, Composing Disability has hosted talks and performances by Merri Lisa Johnson, Terry Galloway, Ellen Forney, LaDonna Redmond, and Liz Crow.

Joe is also an experienced professor with teaching and curriculum design experience in fields as diverse as American literary studies, cyberethics, film studies, and intermediate and advanced composition. Joe is skilled in both traditional classroom and hybrid instruction.

Selected Presentations

• “From Accommodations to Accessibility” (co-presentation with Libbie Rifkin and Mimi Khúc, Georgetown University CNDLS Podcast, Season 2, Episode 2, October 2021)

• “Accommodating Students at a Distance” (co-presentation with Michelle Ohnona and Bingran Wang, Georgetown University-CNDLS, April 2020)

• “DiversAbility: Perspectives on Disability, Equity, and Inclusion at Yale and Beyond” (The George Washington University, April 2019)

• “Succeeding Outside of the Academy: Conversation about Career Paths for PhDs in the Humanities” (The George Washington University, November 2018)

• “Hidden from History: The Role of People with Disabilities in the Civil Rights Movement” (King Week-The George Washington University, January 2018)

• “The Power of Inclusion” (Professional Fellows Congress, November 2017)

• “Disability 101: Practical Approaches to Teaching Students with Disabilities” (co-presentation with Seth Bravin, Wade Fletcher, and Katherine Howell, Diversity Summit: Embracing Diversity and Inclusion at GWU 2017)

• “Disability and the Classroom: Legal Mandates, Shared Responsibilities, and Best Practices” (co-presentation with Seth Bravin, GWU Diversity Training Summit 2016)

• “A History of the ADA: Some Slanted Truths” (Institute of International Education 2016)

• “Demystifying the Writing Process” (Postsecondary Disability Training Institute 2015)

• “Disability Support Services Discussion Sessions 1 and 2” (co-presentation with Wade Fletcher, Composing Disability: Writing, Communication, Culture 2011)

• “The Jesus and Mary Chain Hate Rock ‘n’ Roll, but They Love Composition” (Popular Culture Association Convention 2011)

• “The Politics of Post 9-11 Music: Sound, Trauma, and the Music Industry in the Time of Terror” (IASPM-US Convention 2011)

• “Chicks dig this. It’s better than a puppy’: Crippled Masculinity and Enabling Misanthropy in House M.D.” (MLA Convention 2009)

• “‘There’s no need to say another word’: Wounded Storytelling, Infamy, and Recovery in Jack Kerouac’s Big Sur” (Midwest MLA Convention)

• “‘Catastrophe and the Cure’: Explosions in the Sky’s Post 9-11, Post-Rock Salvation” (American Culture Association Convention 2008)

• “‘We are all wired into a survival trip now’: Hallucinogenic Salvation in Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas” (Midwest MLA Convention 2007)

• “We are like [people] who have lost their legs’: Alcoholics Anonymous, Monstrosity, and Twentieth Century American Culture” (Popular Culture Association Convention 2007)

• “You Really Feel Duped?: Criminal Legitimacy in James Frey’s A Million Little Pieces” (Midwest MLA Convention 2006)

• “‘Something in the Way’: Phallocentric Marginalization of Ride and My Bloody Valentine” (Popular Culture Association Convention 2004)

Courses Taught

The College of Professional Studies, The George Washington University, August 2011-August 2019

  • Writing, Communication, and Media Relations I
  • Writing, Communication, and Media Relations II
  • Ethics in Science and Technology Policy

Northern Virginia Community College-Alexandria, January 2003-August 2013

  • Survey of American Literature II, 1865 to the Present
  • Survey of American Literature I, Colonial Era to 1865
  • College Composition II (emphasis on argumentation and research)
  • College Composition I (survey of various modes of academic writing, including research-based writing)
  • College Composition I/Individualized Instruction in Writing (introduction to collegiate writing coupled with individualized drafting and revision instruction in a writing lab)
  • Technical Report Writing (composition class designed for automotive majors)

English Department, The George Washington University, August 2004-May 2011

  • Introduction to Critical Theory
  • Introduction to American Literature: 1865-Present
  • Introduction to American Literature: Early American Writing to 1865
  • Composition Language & Arts & Science:
    • Stand by Them: Alienation and Identification in Young Adult Literature
    • Were They Goodfellas?: Bohemianism, Voyeurism, and Performativity in Gangster Media
    • Banned in the USA: Ideology, Banned Books, and American Education