Jessica Restaino

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Associate Professor, English

Dickson Hall
BA, Franklin and Marshall College
PhD, Temple University
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I am Associate Professor of English and Director of First-Year Writing at Montclair State. I teach undergraduate and graduate courses in the fields of rhetoric-composition and women's and gender studies. My research interests include writing teacher preparation, pedagogical theories and the teaching of writing, community literacy and activist writing/rhetorics, medical rhetorics, and feminist research methodologies, especially ethnography as a tool for rhetorical study. My first book, _First Semester: Graduate Students, First-Year Writing, and the Challenge of Middle Ground_, was published jointly by Southern Illinois University Press and the Conference on College Composition and Communication/NCTE as part of the Studies in Writing and Rhetoric series in 2012. My second book, an essay collection co-edited with Laurie Cella, examines university/community writing partnerships, and the challenges of effective service-learning initiatives (Lexington Press, 2012).

My essays appear in a variety of professional journals; a recent open-access piece can be found in the journal Peitho (

See below for links to book information and professional resources.

Office hours, in addition to those posted below, are also available by appointment.


My areas of specialization fall under the fields of composition and rhetoric, and include: writing teacher preparation, composition theory, community-based and activist writing, feminist rhetorics and research methodologies, and medical rhetorics.

Office Hours


  • Wednesday 12:30 pm - 2:30 pm


  • Wednesday 11:00 am - 2:00 pm


Research Projects

Surrender: Research, Writing, Rhetoric, Love

My current book (in process) draws on a two-year ethnography project I completed with Susan Lundy Maute in the last two years of her life with terminal breast cancer. In this book I examine the ways in which rhetorics of illness and intimacy offer pathways to expanded feminist approaches to research and writing in rhetorical studies.