Kevin Johnson, Ph.D.
Associate Professor of Communication Studies
Area of expertise: First Amendment, Critical/Cultural/Psychoanalytic Rhetorical Theory, Public Controversies
Phone: (562) 985-7130
What are your Research interests?
I am interested in studying rhetorical theory, public controversies, and/or the First Amendment. I am interested in rhetorical theory from the Greco-Roman tradition through contemporary critical/cultural/psychoanalytic theories. I often examine the relationship between such theoretical perspectives as they apply to political strategies and critiques of contemporary public and political controversies. I am also interested in studying the freedom of speech, press, assembly, religion, and petition in both the First Amendment and international contexts.
What are your Teaching interests?
I am interested in motivating students to achieve their desired goals. Specifically, I am interested in encouraging students to engage in critical thinking, promoting close and fair readings of texts, providing tools for future learning beyond the academic context, encouraging social responsibility, developing tools to refine the presentation of the self in society, and to be unabashedly unafraid in navigating an increasing complex world.
What courses have you taught?
Course I have taught include:
(1) Rhetorical Theory and Criticism I (graduate level)
(2) Communication Criticism (graduate and undergraduate level)
(3) Essentials of Public Speaking
(4) Survey of Rhetorical Theory
(6) Persuasive Speaking
(7) Freedom of Communication (pre-law)
(8) Media, Culture, and Society
(9) The First Amendment and Communication Technologies
(10) Freedom of Speech
(11) Rhetoric and Public Address (graduate level)
(12) Foundations of Rhetorical Theory and Practice
(14) Small Group Communication
(15) Debating Critical Methodologies (honors)
(16) Debating Theory: Sex, Terror, and Psychoanalysis (honors)
(17) Professional Communication Skills
How do you serve the department and the university and the community?
I serve on a variety of committees and am the Director of the Center for First Amendment Studies. I am in the line of succession to be Chair of the Freedom of Expression Division of the National Communication Association, and the line of succession to be Chair of the Law and Policy Division of the Broadcast Education Association. I serve on the editorial boards of the Western Journal of Communication and the First Amendment Studies Journal. I am on the Executive Committee of the Long Beach Branch NAACP, an Assistant Minister and Reader at Our Saviour’s Lutheran Church, a Vatican Library Reader, a Volunteer in Public Schools program volunteer for Long Beach Unified School District, and a high school football official in the Long Beach Football Officials Association.