Barr, Liz. “Feminism, Epistemic Authority, and Biomedical Activism.” Feminist Rhetorical Science Studies: Human Bodies, Posthumanist Worlds, Southern Illinois University Press, 2018, pp. 205–226.
Barr coins the term “embodied vernacularity” which “accounts for the speaking body in addition to the spoken word” (206). The scholarly conversation in which Barr is contributing is a body of research on how embodied vernacularity can contribute to research in feminist rhetorical social science studies. She achieves this by using the Truvada hearing as a case study and focusing on the strategies used by the community rhetors. Truvada is an HIV antiviral medication that can treat and reduce the risk of HIV infection. While Barr doesn’t make a case for or against PrEP (pre-exposure prophylaxis; the approach for preventing HIV infection), she chose the Truvada hearing as a case study because rhetorical strategies were used across asymmetrical relationships in the scientific sphere, specifically pharmaceutical company representatives, clinical researchers, and community members. Barr argues that the community rhetors used embodied vernacularity as an attempt to influence the committee’s policy decisions. The community members had to leverage a different technique than the pharmaceutical and clinical researchers to counter the rhetorical strategies used by the dominant discourses. Barr draws upon the roots of embodied vernacularity, which has roots in feminist theories and builds upon the research of rhetoricians, such as Gerard Hauser, Robert Howard and Donna Haraway to fill the gap in the research and contribute her unique scholarship to the theories of vernacular and rhetorics of the body, elucidating the ways the two theoretical frameworks function in concert to create embodied vernacularity.