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Jessica Restaino

Professor, Writing Studies

Conrad J. Schmitt Hall 304
BA, Franklin and Marshall College
PhD, Temple University
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I am Professor of Writing Studies and Gender, Sexuality, and Women's Studies at Montclair State University. I teach, research, and write in the fields of rhetoric-composition and gender and sexuality studies. My research interests include writing teacher preparation, pedagogical theories and the teaching of writing, feminist and queer theories, community literacy and activist writing/rhetorics, medical rhetorics, and feminist research methodologies, especially ethnography as a tool for rhetorical study. I am the author of _First Semester: Graduate Students, First-Year Writing, and the Challenge of Middle Ground_, published jointly 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 and co-editor, with Laurie Cella, of _Unsustainable: Re-imagining Community Literacy, Service-Learning, Public Writing, and the University (Lexington Press, 2012). My third book, _Surrender: Feminist Rhetorics and Ethics in Love and Illness_, was published by Southern Illinois University Press ( _Surrender_ is the recipient of the 2020 Conference on College Composition and Communication "Outstanding Book Award" (read more here:

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


1:00 pm - 2:00 pm
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm


11:00 am - 12:30 pm
11:30 am - 12:30 pm
and by appointment

Research Projects

Surrender: Research, Writing, Rhetoric, Love

My most recent book project 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. This work was published by Southern Illinois University Press in 2019.