Michelle Gibbons

Michelle Gibbons

Phone: (603) 862-0760
Office: Communication, Horton Social Science Center Rm 135, Durham, NH 03824

Michelle Gibbons is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Communication. She earned a B.A. in English from Vassar College (2000), an M.A. in the History and Philosophy of Science from the University of Pittsburgh (2007), and a Ph.D. in Communication, also from the University of Pittsburgh (2010). She joined the University of New Hampshire in 2016, after holding a postdoctoral fellowship in digital pedagogy at Georgia Tech followed by a faculty position at SUNY Delhi in upstate New York. Her research interests include rhetorical theory and criticism, the rhetoric of science, technology and medicine, vernacular public discourse and the digital humanities. Her work has been published in journals that include Rhetoric Society Quarterly, Technical Communication Quarterly, Philosophy of Science, Journalism History, and Argumentation and Advocacy, among others. In 2015, her article “Beliefs about the Mind as Doxastic Inventional Resource: Freud, Neuroscience, and the Case of Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care” won the Association for the Rhetoric of Science and Technology’s Article of the Year Award. Dr. Gibbons’s current research project investigates the rhetorical deployment of commonsense psychological beliefs in public culture. At UNH, she teaches courses that include Propaganda and Persuasion, Rhetorical Theory and Criticism, and Digital Rhetoric.

Courses Taught

  • CMN 456: Propaganda and Persuasion
  • CMN 507: Intro Rhetorical Thry&Analysis
  • CMN 599: Internship
  • CMN 622: Digital Rhetoric
  • CMN 703: Seminar in Rhetorical Theory
  • CMN 799H: Honors Thesis


  • Ph.D., CommunicationSpeechComRhetoric, University of Pittsburgh
  • M.A., University of Pittsburgh
  • B.A., Vassar College

Research Interests

  • Digital rhetoric
  • Pedagogy
  • Rhetoric of science
  • Vernacular Public Discourse

Selected Publications

  • Gibbons, M. (2019). The recalcitrant invention of X-ray images. Technical Communication Quarterly, 28(1), 54-68. doi:10.1080/10572252.2018.1539193

  • Gibbons, M. (2019). Attaining landmark status: Rumelhart and McClelland's PDP Volumes and the Connectionist Paradigm.. J Hist Behav Sci, 55(1), 54-70. doi:10.1002/jhbs.21946

  • Gibbons, M. (2018). A Neurorhetoric of Incongruity. Poroi, 13(2). doi:10.13008/2151-2957.1248

  • Gibbons, M. G., & Seitz, D. (2017). Toward a Digital Methodology for Ideographic Criticism: A Case Study of 'Equality'. In A. Davisson, & A. Hess (Eds.), Theorizing Digital Rhetoric. Routledge.

  • Gibbons, M. G. (2014). Beliefs about the Mind as Doxastic Inventional Resource: Freud, Neuroscience, and the Case of Dr. Spock’s Baby and Child Care. Rhetoric Society Quarterly, 44(5), 427-448. doi:10.1080/02773945.2014.957411

  • Gibbons, M. G. (2012). Reassessing Discovery: Rosalind Franklin, Scientific Visualization, and the Structure of DNA*. Philosophy of Science, 79(1), 63-80. doi:10.1086/663241

  • Gibbons, M. G. (2009). 'Voices from the People': Letters to the American Phrenological Journal, 1854-64. Journalism History, 35(2), 72-81.

  • Gibbons, M. G. (2007). Seeing the Mind in the Matter: Functional Brain Imaging as Framed Visual Argument. Argumentation and Advocacy, 43(3-4), 175-188. doi:10.1080/00028533.2007.11821673

  • Most Cited Publications