McGill University, BA
University of British Columbia, MA, PhD

I teach courses in history and theory of rhetoric, and in rhetoric of science, technology, and medicine; I am a faculty member in the Science and Technology Studies Graduate Program. My research interests are both interdisciplinary, under the headings of “Science and Technology Studies” and “Health Humanities,” and disciplinary, under the headings of “History and Theory of Rhetoric” and “Rhetoric of Health and Medicine.” I am delighted currently to be on the editorial board of the brand new journal, Rhetoric of Health and Medicine. My recent work has been on rhetorical elements in public discourse on pain; drugs; breast cancer; and female sexual dysfunction. I am currently working on a project titled (for now), ‘What do we talk about when we talk about aging?’ It is a rhetorical study of ageism, focussing on the power and ubiquity of age-related micro-aggressions.

My essays appear in rhetoric journals, interdisciplinary health journals, and medical journals. I am author of Health and the Rhetoric of Medicine (Southern Illinois University Press, 2005). I have been a member of the President’s International Advisory Committee of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research, a Distinguished Scholar at the Peter Wall Institute for Advanced Studies, and recipient of a Killam Teaching Prize.

English 309. Rhetoric of Science and Medicine: Is John Oliver Right about Everything?


English 491D. Textual Identities: Being a Person in the Age of Health Itself

Winter 2018

ENGL229A Topics in the Study of Language and/or Rhetoric - LANGUAG/RHETORIC Sections

For an up to date listing of available topics, please see the English Department ( ).

Winter 2018

ENGL310 History and Theory of Rhetoric: Classical Rhetoric Sections

Introduction to classical rhetoric with attention to the analysis of present-day texts.

Winter 2018

ENGL309 Rhetoric of Science, Technology, and Medicine Sections

Exploration of the persuasive dimension of discourse practices in science, technology, and medicine.

Winter 2018

ENGL509A Studies in Rhetoric - STDS RHETORIC Sections

Selected Publications

  • “Ageism and Rhetoric.”  In Alan Bleakley, ed., The Routledge Handbook of Medical Humanities. Forthcoming 2019.
  • “The Empowered Patient on a Historical-Rhetorical Model: 19th-Century Patent-Medicine Ads and the 21st-Century Health Subject.” health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness, and Medicine.”  In press, 2019.
  • “Sex, Drugs, and Rhetoric: The Case of Flibanserin for ‘Female Sexual Dysfunction.’” Social Studies of Science 48, 4 (2018): 459-482.
  • “The Rhetoric of Female Sexual Dysfunction: Faux Feminism and the FDA. Canadian Medical Association Journal 187, 12 (8 September 2015): 915-916.
  • “The View from Here and There: Objectivity and the Rhetoric of Breast Cancer.” In Flavia Padovani, Jonathan Tsou, and Alan Richardson, eds., Objectivity in Science: Approaches to Historical Epistemology. Dordrecht: Springer, 2015. 211-226.
  • “Suffering and the Rhetoric of Care.” In Michael Hyde and James Herrick, eds., After the Genome: The Language of Our Biotechnological Future. Waco: Baylor University Press, 2013. 219-234.
  • Blake Scott, Judy Z. Segal, and Lisa Keränen. “Rhetoric of Health and Medicine: Inventional Possibilities for Scholarship and Engaged Practice.” Poroi: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Rhetoric Analysis and Invention. 9,1 (2013).
  • Breast Cancer and Its Narration: An Accidental Study.” Literature and Medicine 30, 2 (2012): 292-318.
  • “The Sexualization of the Medical. Journal of Sex Research 49, 4 (2012): 269-278.
  • “What, in Addition to Drugs, Do Pharmaceutical Ads Sell?”: The Rhetoric of Pleasure in Direct-to-Consumer Advertising for Prescription Pharmaceuticals.” In Deborah Dysart-Gale and Joan Leach, eds. Rhetorical Questions of Health and Medicine. Lanham, MD: Lexington Press, 2011. 9-32.
  • Miriam Solomon, Wm Young, Judy Segal and Stephanie Geiger. “Medication Adaptation Headache.” Cephalalgia 31, 5 (2011): 515-517.
  • “Rhetoric of Health and Medicine.” In Andrea Lunsford et al, eds. Sage Handbook of Rhetorical Studies. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage, 2009. 227-246.
  • “Internet Health and the 21st-Century Patient: A Rhetorical View. Written Communication 26 (October 2009): 351-369.