Karlyn Kohrs Campbell

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Karlyn Kohrs Campbell is an American academic specializing in rhetorical criticism at the University of Minnesota.[1]


Campbell was born on April 16, 1937, near Blomkest, Minnesota. She attended Willmar High School and graduated with a Bachelor of Arts from Macalester College, St. Paul, in 1958. She earned a Master of Arts (1959) and a Ph.D. (1968) from the University of Minnesota.

Professional life[edit]

Campbell has taught at the State University of New York at Brockport; the British College in Palermo, Sicily; Macalester College; California State University, Los Angeles; the State University of New York at Binghamton, the University of Kansas, Lawrence, where she was director of the women’s studies program; and at the University of Minnesota, where she chaired the Department of Communication Studies for nine years. She also edited the Quarterly Journal of Speech for three years. She was a fellow at the Joan Shorenstein Center on the Press, Politics, and Public Policy at Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government in 1992.

Theoretical Contributions[edit]

Karlyn Kohrs Campbell is currently a professor at the University of Minnesota where she teaches courses such as Seminar in Rhetorical Criticism, Intro to Rhetorical Criticism, and Rhetoric of Feminism. Her specialties include women in communication, rhetorical theory and criticism, presidential rhetoric, and political campaigns.[2] One of her most famous works in which she incorporates her rhetorical ideas is Agency: Promiscuous and Protean. In this essay, she attempts to proclaim the meanings of agency by referencing Sojourner Truth at the 1851 woman's rights convention. This is just one of the many examples in which she incorporates her interest in feminism and feminist rhetoric into her own works.[3]


Kohrs Campbell is the recipient of numerous awards for her distinguished work including the Francine Merritt Award for contributions to women, and the University of Minnesota Distinguished Woman Scholar Award. She also has received the NCA’s Donald H. Ecroyd Award for Outstanding Teaching in Higher Education, the National Communication Association Distinguished Scholar Award, the Ehninger Award for Distinguished Rhetorical Scholarship, the Winans-Wichelns Book Award, and the Charles Woolbert Award for Scholarship of Exceptional Quality.[4] Due to her success, the Karlyn Kohrs Campbell Award is presented to the author(s) of the Top Paper submitted to the Rhetorical Theory and Criticism Interest Group at the Central States Communication Association Convention.[5]


  1. ^ Campbell's webpage at the University of Minnesota
  2. ^ "Karlyn K Campbell." : Communication Studies : University of Minnesota. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014. <http://www.comm.umn.edu/faculty/profile.php?UID=campb003>.
  3. ^ "Changing Rhetoric: Karlyn Kohrs Campell and Kathleen Hall Jamieson." Jepson Forum. N.p., n.d. Web. 17 Feb. 2014 <http://jepson.richmond.edu/forum/events/kohrs-jamieson.html>.
  4. ^ http://www.comm.umn.edu/faculty/profile.php?UID=campb003
  5. ^ Campbell, Karlyn K. Unm.edu. N.p.: n.p., n.d. Agency: Promiscuous and Protean. Web. 4 Mar. 2014 <http://www.unm.edu/~sromano/english540/kohrs%20campbell%20agency%20promiscuous%20and%20protean.pdf>.

Further reading[edit]

  • Campbell, Karlyn K., ed. Women Public Speakers in the United States, 1800-1925: A Bio-Critical Sourcebook. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1993.
  • Campbell, Karlyn K., and Kathleen H. Jamieson. Deeds Done in Words: Presidential Rhetoric and the Genres of Governance. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1990.
  • Campbell, Karlyn K., ed. Man Cannot Speak for Her: vol. 1: Critical Study of Early Feminist Rhetoric, 1830-1925.
  • Campbell, Karlyn K., ed. Man Cannot Speak for Her: vol. 2: Key Texts of the Early Feminists, 1830-1925. Westport: Greenwood Press, 1989.
  • Jamieson, Kathleen H., and Karlyn K. Campbell. The Interplay of Influence: Mass Media & Their Publics in News, Advertising, Politics. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1983.
  • Campbell, Karlyn K. The Rhetorical Act. Belmont: Wadsworth, 1982; 2nd ed. 1996; 3rd ed., with Susan Schultz Huxman, 2003.
  • Campbell, Karlyn K., ed. Form and Genre: Shaping Rhetorical Action. Speech Communication Association, 1978.
  • Campbell, Karlyn K., and Thomas R. Burkholder, eds. Critiques of Contemporary Rhetoric. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company, 1997.
  • "The Rhetorical Presidency: A Two-Person Career", 179-195, in The Future of the Rhetorical Presidency ed. Martin J. Medhurst, Proceedings of Conference at Texas A & M University, 1995.
  • "Women's Struggle for the Right to Speak," 35-47, in Papers of the Conference on Rhetorical Criticism, California State University, Hayward, 1988.
  • "Genre and Culture: The Test Case of Women's Rhetoric," 9-31, in Rhetoric Society of America 1990 Conference Proceedings. ed. Victor J. Vitanza & Michelle Ballif (Arlington, TX: Rhetoric Society of America, 1991).