John Duffy

The William T. and Helen Kuhn Carey Professor of Modern Communication
Faculty Faculty Fellow, Klau Center for Civil and Human Rights

The William T. and Helen Kuhn Carey Professor of Modern Communication
272 Decio Faculty Hall
Notre Dame, IN 46556



Areas of study

  • Writing and education


Ph.D. in English, University of Wisconsin-Madison
M.A. in Applied Linguistics , Teachers College, Columbia University
M.A. in Anglo-Irish Studies, University College, Dublin
B.A. in English, Boston College

Research and teaching interests

Ethics, Rhetoric, Public Speaking, Writing Pedagogy, The 1619 Project


John Duffy is The William T. and Helen Kuhn Carey Professor of Modern Communication in the Department of English at the University of Notre Dame. He has published on the ethics of writing, the 1619 Project, the rhetoric of disability, and the historical development of literacy in cross-cultural contexts. In his recent book, Provocations of Virtue: Rhetoric, Ethics, and the Teaching of Writing, he examines the ethical dimensions of teaching writing in a post-truth world. John is co-editor of three volumes: After Plato: Ethics, Rhetoric and Writing Studies; Literacy, Economy, and Power: Writing and Research Ten Years After Literacy in American Lives; and Towards a Rhetoric of Everyday Life: New Directions in Research on Writing, Text, & Discourse. His monograph, Writing from These Roots, was awarded the 2009 Outstanding Book Award by the Conference on College Composition and Communication, and his book, Provocations of Virtue received honorable mention for the 2022 MLA Mina P. Shaughnessy Prize. He has published essays in CCC, College English, Rhetoric Review, JAC: A Journal of Rhetoric, Culture, and Politics, and elsewhere. John is a recipient of a National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship and received the 2022 Sheedy Excellence in Teaching Award, the highest teaching honor in the College of Arts & Letters. He teaches courses in rhetoric, writing, and literature, and serves as a Faculty Fellow in the Klau Center for Civil and Human Rights and the Notre Dame Initiative on Race and Resilience.


Representative publications