An academic writing program as displacement space: New stories and new positions


  • Rick Fisher University of Wyoming
  • Cynthia H. Brock University of Wyoming
  • Kate Muir Welsh Exploratorium
  • Gabriel P. Swarts Baldwin Wallace University



academic writing groups, faculty development, models of writing, positioning theory


This qualitative study examined recounted experiences of nine faculty Academic Writing Fellows who participated in a year-long writing initiative that sought to foster productive academic writing practices. The initiative (including weekly writing groups, national writing mentors in each Fellow’s discipline, and two-weekend writing retreats) was designed to encourage habits and attitudes for successful academic writing through a community-based approach. Using Positioning Theory as an analytical lens, this study explored Fellows’ enactment of rights and duties and their evolving identities as academic writers. Our analyses indicate that the program functioned as a displacement space that allowed Fellows to explore their self-positioning as writers and to re-story themselves in productive ways. We argue that both spatial and temporal displacement contributed to participants’ opportunities for meaningful repositioning.


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How to Cite

Fisher, R., Brock, C. H., Welsh, K. M., & Swarts, G. P. (2023). An academic writing program as displacement space: New stories and new positions. Journal of Writing Research, 15(2), 167–197.