Frances Di Lauro, Ph.D.
Frances coordinates WRIT1001 and WRIT2002. She is also the 2013 coordinator for the Writing Hub's Student Writing Fellowships. Her research interests include the rhetoric of food and the influence of institutional and religious rhetorics on contemporary communication. The Hub's expert in eLearning and intellectual property, Frances also serves on the University’s eLearning committee.
Current Research Projects
Global Rhetoric: crisis and rebellion in the Arab Spring revolutions and the Occupy Movement
My interest in this subject resulted from lectures I presented in WRIT1002 in first semester of 2011. The first of these lectures, on Global Rhetoric, evolved as the Arab Spring revolution erupted in Tunisia in December 2010, then spread to Egypt, Jordan, Libya and Syria. While students examined the viral potential of messages, images and videos shared over the internet, posters that were being disseminated online encouraging people to take part in the occupation of Wall Street on 17 September. I used these in a lecture on Visual Rhetoric to illustrate the communicative power of images, authoritative ascription, and the written word. Students who have been tracking the development of that movement across the world are working with me to evaluate the use of current events in writing and composition instruction.
The Rhetoric of Intercession in Neopolitan Popular Religion from the Post-Tridentine to the present
Portraits of would-be saints still adorn the portals of residential buildings around the older neighbourhoods of the city of Naples. These less affluent quartiere still reflect a tradition of drawing indulgence from both canonised saints and those locally rooted individuals who were the subjects of failed campaigns for canonisation. Local priests turn a blind eye to the heterodox rites and practices negotiated by the popolino of inner city Naples, in the catacombs of certain Neopolitan Churches. This study looks at the persuasive elements that help to perpetuate and preserve these unorthodox beliefs and practices.
Medieval Penitential and Confessional Texts, and the Rhetoric of Redemption
The emergence of redemption ideology in the middle-ages brought about a possibility of salvation for sinners that would eventually divide the Church. Penitential and confessional were developed by clergy as compendiums to catalogue and order sins. In this project I examine the way these texts, as well as the art and literature of the period cultivated a fervour for public punishment and repentance.
The Rhetoric of Food from Myth to Memoir
In this research project I examine food narratives and their role in constructing myth and reflecting social mores, as well as their rhetorical power to bring about action or inaction. Texts analysed include mythologies, parietal art, statues, shopping lists, recipe books and advertisements.
“Writing with Wikipedia: Building ethos through collaborative academic research," with Angela Shetler. Exploring Technology for Writing and Writing Instruction, Eds. Kristine Pytash and Richard Ferdig. Forthcoming, 2013.
“Multimodal Writing Instruction in a Global World,” with Angela Shetler, Susan Thomas, and Benjamin Miller. Kairos: A Journal of Rhetoric, Technology, and Pedagogy (Special Issue: Multimodal Research Within/Across/Without Borders). Forthcoming, May 2013.
Between Heaven and Hell: Faces of Iniquity and Surrender in Dante Alighieri’s “La Divina Commedia”. Saarbrücken: Lambert Academic Publishers, 2012.
“‘The Gracious and Favouring Interposition of God’: Eusebius and Divine Providence". On a Panegyrical Note: Studies in Honour of Garry W Trompf: Sydney Studies in Religion 6 with an introduction by Carole M. Cusack, V. Barker and F. Di Lauro (Eds.). Sydney: Sydney Studies in Religion, 2007.
“Moctezuma’s Revenge: Iconoclasm in Film". … Through a Glass Darkly: Reflections on the Sacred: Collected Research with an introduction by Victoria Barker, F. Di Lauro (Ed.). Sydney, Sydney University Press, 2006.
“Living in the End Times: the Prophetic Language of Bob Dylan". Buddha of Suburbia: Proceedings of the Eighth Australian and International Religion, Literature and the Arts Conference, C.M. Cusack, F. Di Lauro and C. Hartney (Eds.). Sydney: RLA Press, 2005.
“Falling into the Darkside: Ominous Motifs in the ‘Fall of Icarus’ Myth". The Dark Side: Proceedings of the Seventh Australian and International Religion, Literature and the Arts Conference, C. Hartney and A. McGarrity (Eds.). Sydney: RLA Press, 2004.
“Keeping to the Centre: Ru and Daoist Ideals". Seeking the Centre: RLA Conference Proceedings 2001, C. Raymendt and M.L. Byrne (Eds.). Sydney: RLA Press, 2002.
“Through Christian Hands: Evidence for Elements of pre-Christian Tradition in the Mongan Myths". Australian Celtic Journal, Vol. 7, 2000-2001.
Selected Presentations and Workshops
“A Little Treasure, A Worldly Man, and Shameful Love in Dante’s Commedia”, A Love Supreme: The Aesthetics and Mythics of Love, Sydney Society for Literature and Aesthetics, University of Sydney, 2012.
“Inspiration born of crisis: The role of exile in Dante's Commedia”, Inspired Voices Research Cluster, University of Sydney, 2012.
“Redeeming Dante: Evidence for non-Islamic Precursors in the Commedia,” Third Dante Conference, Flinders University, 2006.
“Moctazuma’s Revenge”, Eternal Sunshine of the Academic Mind: An International Symposium on Religion, Film and Culture, A Symposium on Religion and Film, University of Sydney, 2006.
“Religion, Iconoclasm and Subversion”, Ways and Means: Reinventing Studies in Religion for the Third Millennium, The 29th Annual Conference of the Australian Association for the Study of Religion, University of Sydney, 2005.
“Studies on Compressed Teaching”, Brief Encounter: a Seminar on Intensive Teaching Methods, a Sydney Summer School/Religious Studies joint symposium, 2005.
“Living in the End Times: the Prophetic Language of Bob Dylan,” Buddha of Suburbia, The Eighth Australian and International Religion, Literature and the Arts Conference, 2004.
“Religious Pluralism in the 21st Century”, From Culture to Multiculture: An RLA/Affinity Association Joint Conference, 2003.
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences Excellence in Teaching (Practice) Award, 2009.
Faculty of Arts Excellence in Tutoring Award, 2005.
Ph.D. Religious Studies
The University of Sydney
Specialisation in Dante’s Eschatology and Other World Narratives
B.A. (Honours Class 1) Religious Studies
The University of Sydney
Majors in Religious Studies and Archaeology
Graduate Certificate of Teaching (Higher Education)
The University of Sydney
Diploma of Teaching Theory and Practice
- SMRG (Sydney Medieval and Renaissance Group)
- ascilite (Australasian Society for Computers in Learning in Tertiary Education)
- American Society for the History of Rhetoric (ASHR)
- E-Learning 2.0
- The Critical Thinking Community