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Dr. Colleen Derkatch

Associate Professor
DepartmentEnglish
EducationPhD, University of British Columbia
Areas of Expertiserhetorical theory and criticism; rhetoric of science, medicine, and health; writing studies; genre theory; health humanities; science and technology studies

Biography:

Dr. Derkatch is Associate Professor of rhetoric in the Department of English. She received her PhD in English Language at the University of British Columbia. 

Her research in rhetoric of health and medicine examines how language shapes and is shaped by various, often embodied, and sometimes conflicting forms of expertise about illness, treatment, and health. Her book, Bounding Biomedicine: Evidence and Rhetoric in the New Science of Alternative Medicine, external link (University of Chicago Press, 2016), examines how scientific research on alternative health practices constitutes the boundaries between what counts as safe, effective health care and what does not. Her next book, external link, supported by Insight Development and Insight Grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), is on rhetorics of wellness in public discourse about natural health products. 

She has published articles in a range of journals such as Canadian Food Studies; Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness and Medicine;

Rhetoric of Health & Medicine; and Technical Communication Quarterly. 

She teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in rhetoric and writing studies, and supervises graduate students in rhetoric, health humanities, and science and technology studies.

Representative Publications:

Derkatch, Colleen. Bounding Biomedicine: Evidence and Rhetoric in the New Science of Alternative Medicine, external link. University of Chicago Press. April 2016.

Derkatch, Colleen. “The Self-Generating Language of Wellness and Natural Health, external link.” Rhetoric of Health & Medicine. 1.1-2 (2018): 132-60.

Derkatch, Colleen, and Philippa Spoel. “Public Health Promotion of ‘Local Food’: Constituting the Self-Governing Citizen-Consumer, external link.” Health: An Interdisciplinary Journal for the Social Study of Health, Illness and Medicine 21.2 (2017): 154-70.

Awards and Grants:

  • Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Insight Grant,  2018 – 2022. 
  • SSHRC Insight Development Grant, 2013 – 2017.
  • Ryerson University Deans’ Research Award (early career category), 2017.
  • Ryerson Faculty of Arts New Faculty Teaching Award, 2013.