Sarah Peterson Pittock is an Advanced Lecturer in the Program in Writing and Rhetoric and since 2013 has served as Associate Director of the Hume Center for Writing and Speaking. She earned a BA in English and French Literatures, with Honors in Humanities, from Stanford University and a PhD in Literature from the University of Colorado, Boulder. Her PhD dissertation investigated the ways eighteenth-century British women became literary critics and scholars without access to higher education. Through salon conversation and letter writing, the Bluestockings, as learned women were then known, built reputations as public intellectuals. Their strategies — conversation, collaboration, and community — are at the heart of Dr. Pittock’s research and work as a teacher and writing program administrator. In her role as Associate Director, she supports a writing-enriched curriculum by training the Hume Center tutors, giving workshops across campus, developing graduate writing and speaking programming, and sharing best practices in writing instruction.
Her work has been published in the Huffington Post, Rhetoric Review, Teaching Commons, Writing Commons, and Women's Writing. Current projects include a study of the representation of Enlightenment women as “modern Aspasias,” in reference to Socrates's legendary rhetoric consultant. Together with Julia Bleakney, she is also analyzing tutoring talk, a very particular form of conversation, to learn how writing tutors can positively impact undergraduate students’ revision practices.
Areas of specialization: humanities and education
Genre expertise: research statements, personal statements, abstracts, honors theses and dissertations
Enjoys coaching invention, argument, style