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Villanova Communication Professor Wins Prestigious Award for Research Program in Rhetoric and Public Address from the National Communication Association

Raka Shome, PhD

VILLANOVA, Pa. — Raka Shome, PhD, professor and the Harron Family Endowed Chair in Communication at Villanova University, has received the 2020 Douglas W. Ehninger Distinguished Rhetorical Scholar Award from the National Communication Association, the largest association for the study of communication. The award is given annually to honor scholars who have executed research programs in rhetorical theory, rhetorical criticism, and/or public address studies. It will be presented virtually on November 21, 2020 at the NCA 106th Annual Convention.

As one of the first postcolonial scholars in the discipline, Dr. Shome has produced an important body of work that untangles colonial rhetorical and media practices. 

Dr. Shome’s work has offered critical and political perspectives with which to engage neocolonialism and racism in both the US and abroad. She has modeled an innovative attention to reading coloniality not only for its oppressive capacity, but also the often-overlooked opportunities created by marginalized communities to claim space and voice.  

“The recognition Dr. Shome continues to receive for her important scholarship is well-deserved and truly inspiring,” said Adele Lindenmeyr, PhD, Dean, Villanova University College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. “We are thrilled that she has received this prestigious award.”

Dr. Shome has published widely in the areas of media cultures, post-coloniality, transnational articulations of gender, media and nationalism, and race. She is the author of Diana and Beyond: White Femininity, National Identity, and Contemporary Media Culture (University of Illinois Press, 2014). She is currently working on a book on the Clean India Movement and Contemporary Hindu Nationalism.  

Prior to arriving at Villanova, Dr. Shome was a faculty member at the London School of Economics, the University of Washington, Arizona State University and served as Senior Fellow at National University Singapore. She was also an invited scholar at the Advanced Institute of Cultural Studies in Sweden. She received her doctorate from the University of Georgia.

About Villanova University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences:  Since its founding in 1842, Villanova University’s College of Liberal Arts and Sciences has cultivated knowledge, understanding and intellectual courage for a purposeful life in a challenging and changing world. With more than 40 majors across the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences, it is the oldest and largest of Villanova’s colleges, serving more than 4,500 undergraduate and graduate students each year. The College is committed to a teacher-scholar model, offering outstanding undergraduate and graduate research opportunities and a rigorous core curriculum that prepares students to become critical thinkers, strong communicators and ethical leaders with a truly global perspective.