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Arabella Lyon

Associate Professor Arabella Lyon

President of the SUNY Council on Writing

Office: 323 Clemens Hall
Phone number: (716) 645-5093
E-mail address:


rhetorical theory, comparative rhetoric, human rights representation

Current Courses

Fall 2016

Eng 276 - Literature and Law

T Th             2:00 - 3:20
Reg. No. 23428

Eng 354 - Life Writing

T Th             12:30 - 1:50
Reg. No. 23460

Selected Publications


  • Deliberative Acts: Democracy, Rhetoric, and Rights.  State College: Penn State University Press, 2013. (Series on Rhetoric and Democratic Deliberation).  State College :  Penn State UP, 2013.  Rhetoric Society of America Book Award 2014.
  • Intentions: Negotiated, Contested, and Ignored.  State College: Penn State UP, 1998.  (Series on Literature and Philosophy). Ross Winterowd Book Award 1999.


  • Human Rights Rhetoric: Traditions of Testifying and Witnessing. Philadelphia: Routledge, 2012. Co-edited with Lester Olson. 

Essays and Journal Articles

  • "Traditions of Testifying and Witnessing." Human Rights Rhetoric: Traditions of Testifying and Witnessing. Philadelphia: Routledge, forthcoming July 2012. With Lester Olson. Originally  published as a Special Issue on Human Rights Rhetoric: Traditions of Witnessing and Testifying. Rhetoric Society Quarterly 41:3 (2011): 203-212.
  • "Writing An Empire: Cross-Talk on Authority, Act, and Relationships with the Other in the Analects, Daodejing,, and HanFeizi." Search for the Way: How Chinese Engaged the Other.  Ed. LuMing Mao. Special Issue of College English 72:4 (2010): 350-366.
  • "'You Fail': Plagiarism, the Ownership of Writing, and Transnational Conflict." College Composition  and Communication 61:2 (2009): 222-239.
  • "'Why Do the Rulers Listen to the Wild Theories of Speech-Makers?': Or Wuwei (non-action), Shi  (position/power) and Methods of Comparative Rhetoric." Ancient Non-Greek Rhetorics. Ed. Carol Lipson and Roberta Binkley. West Lafayette: Parlor Press. 2009. 176-96.
  • "Advances in Comparative Rhetorical Studies." The  Handbook of Rhetoric. Ed.Andrea Lunsford, Kirt H. Wilson, and Rosa A. Eberly.  Thousand Oak: Sage, 2009. 153-66. With Sue Hum.
  • "Rhetorical Authority in Athenian Democracy and the Chinese Legalism of Han Fei." Philosophy and Rhetoric 41(2008): 51-71.

Recent Awards and Fellowships

  • Rhetoric Society of America Book Award, 2014
  • Rhetoric Society of America Grant for a Summer Institute on Comparative Rhetoric, 2013
  • UB Humanities Institute Grant, SUNY Council on Writing Conference, 2012
  • NEH Summer Seminar, “Communication, Empire, and the City of Rome,” American Academy  in Rome, 2012.
  • Ross Winterowd Award for Most Outstanding Book in Composition Theory, 1999