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Vani Kannan

Assistant Professor & Writing Across the Curriculum (WAC) Co-Coordinator

Vani Kannan

Carman Hall 389
Office Hours


B.A., Barnard College
M.A., Colorado State University
Ph.D., Syracuse University


Vani Kannan researches writing across contexts (academic disciplines, workplaces, communities), multimodal/multigenre composition, and transnational/women-of-color feminisms. She is on the steering committee for the Women’s and Gender Studies program, co-coordinates Writing Across the Curriculum, and teaches a range of courses that include Composition, Writing and Social Issues, Women in Literature (with a focus on women-of-color writers), Creative Nonfiction, and graduate-level courses in Rhetoric and Composition. Her work has appeared in Enculturation: A Journal of Rhetoric, Writing, and Culture, Studies on Asia, and the edited collection The Political Turn in the Trump Era: Writing, Democracy, Activism. Additionally, she has co-authored articles for Journal of Writing Assessment, Community Literacy Journal, Reflections: Public Rhetoric, Civic Writing, and Service Learning, Literacy in Composition Studies, and Journal of Academic Freedom. She is currently developing a book project on the Third World Women's Alliance, a group that organized against racism, sexism, and imperialism in New York City and the Bay Area during the 1970s.

Selected Publications

  • “Taking a Lead from Student Movements in a ‘Political Turn.’” Writing Democracy: The Political Turn in and Beyond the Trump Era, edited by Shannon Carter, Deborah Mutnick, Stephen Parks, and Jessica Pauszek, Routledge, 2019, pp. 130-137.
  • "The Mahamantra, Kirtan Performance, and the Embodied Circulation of Cultural Rhetoric." Enculturation: A Journal of Rhetoric, Writing, and Culture vol. 2, 2016.
  • "'Model Minority' or Potential Terrorist? Affective Economies, Rhetorics of Silence & the Murder of Sunando Sen." Studies on Asia vol. 4, issue 1, 2014, pp. 7-43.