Associate Professor of Communication Studies
Just a few seconds talking with Dr. Inabinet, and you'll realize he's from rural South Carolina. He came to Furman University as an undergraduate to pursue a music major in piano performance and organ. But the liberal arts "took," and he pursued the life of the "vir bonus dicendi peritus" (trans. "good man speaking as an expert") instead.
In 2019, that ancient ideal means trying to transform communication toward equity and intergenerational justice.
He advises groups on campus centered on communicating new ideas and ensuring uncommon voices are heard, including a group called Furman Creative Collaborative. The organization is most well known for hosting TEDxFurmanU and TEDxForWomen each year. It also engages in messaging boards and other activities to provoke unique conversation throughout the year.
Past leadership to influence campus discourse has also included the Furman University Debate Society, John Crabtree Student Commencement Speaker Committee, and chairing the Cultural Life Program Committee.
Inabinet also served as a chair of the Task Force on Slavery & Justice and helped produce its report "Seeking Abraham" in July 2018. Based on an accounting of institutional harms in regard to slavery and its legacy, that process attempted to repair the landscape, finances, educational process, and community-engagement of the institution. Working with senior administration and trustees, accepted recommendations are put into action, including ongoing research projects that continue to build on historical knowledge and improve the ways we communicate about the past.
Inabinet is often working with tough issues to move the conversation forward, whether about environment and sustainability, political polarization, racial healing, or truth-seeking in an era of fake news. Student research projects and study aways associated with these themes are a central part of his identity and interests.
Beyond Furman, Inabinet has become a leader in his field in promoting the study of rhetoric's history for contemporary uses. Whether through state leadership of the American Association of University Professors, or regional leadership of the American Society for the History of Rhetoric, he is a resource on speech laws and ethics to many.
Inabinet speaks to public audiences nationally and internationally on topics that include coffeehouses and the health of the public sphere, the rise of incivility and strategies for reasoned argument, the "illiberal arts" necessary to fight fascism, and the need for intergenerational justice as the defining communicative norm.
His favorite reads are Cicero and Hannah Arendt.
Out of the past comes new understanding.
Out of the present comes the capacity for grace.
Out of the future comes the opportunity to heal.
- Community Engagement Fellow
- Kappa Kappa Gamma Favorite Professor
- Kappa Delta Professor of the Mont
- Furman Writing Fellow
- David E. Shi Center for Sustainability Fellow
- Janice Hocker Rushing Early Career Research Award from Southern States Communication Association
- Top Paper Award, American Society for the History of Rhetoric
- James L. Golden Outstanding Student Essay in Rhetoric
- Favorite professor of the Wildcat Volleyball Team
- Commended Paper of the 38th Conference on Rhetorical Criticism at California State, Hayward
- Endel Medal in Communication Studies
- Bradshaw-Feaster Award
- Phi Beta Kappa
- Lambda Pi Eta
- Omicron Delta Kappa
- Pi Sigma Alpha
- Phi Eta Sigma
- External Grants Awarded: Associated Colleges of the South (ACS) Campus Space and Rhetorics of Race—Connecting Injustice to the Liberal Arts Geography & Built Environment; Alliance for the Advancement of Liberal Arts Colleges (AALAC) for “The 14th at 150” Workshop to Connect Justice after Slavery to Liberal Arts Colleges
- David E. Shi Fellows Research Grant, Furman University. “Sustainability and the Kingdom of Science.” with J. Aaron Simmons
- Mellon Asia Network Faculty Enhancement Program for “Power, Land, and Belief in a Divided Society"
- Associated Colleges of the South (ACS) Grant and Duke Endowment Grant with Tami Blumenfield, “Food Systems Transition in Southwest China and Upstate South Carolina: Fostering a Multimedia-Enhanced Dialogue."
- Ph.D., Communication Studies, Rhetoric and Public Culture, Northwestern University
- M.A., Communication Studies, Northwestern University,
- B.A. Communication Studies and Political Science, Furman University
Primary Research Area: History of rhetorical (speech) theory
Specific Areas of Research:
- Ciceronian and Arendtian rhetorical ethics
- Norms of speech circulation, the dynamics of publics and counterpublics
- Discourse in the American (US) South, especially antebellum economic argument
- Theories of intergenerational controversy
- Sustainability and advocacy
- J. Aaron Simmons and Brandon Inabinet, “Retooling the Discourse of Objectivity: Epistemic Postmodernism as Shared Public Life,” with J. Aaron Simmons. Public Culture 30, no. 2 (2018): 221-243
- Brandon Inabinet “Stoic Influence in a Ciceronian Rhetorical Tradition: Kant, Arendt, and Perelman’s ‘Rule of Justice.’” In Rhetoric in Europe: Philosophical Issues (Berlin: Frank & Timme, 2017), 107-120
- Brandon Inabinet, Tami Blumenfield, and Amanda Richey. “A Delicious Connection: Global Learning through Structured Multimedia Dialogue.” Council of Undergraduate Research Quarterly (CURQ) on the Web 37, no. 3 (2017): 4-10. http://www.cur.org/publications/curq_on_the_web/
- “Local Intervention and the Archival Trap.” With Luke Christie. Carolinas Communication Annual 31 (2015): 24-29; Jessica M. Prody and Brandon Inabinet, “Sustainable Advocacy: Voice for and Before an Intergenerational Audience.” In Voice and Environmental Communication. Edited by Jennifer Peeples and Stephen Depoe (New York: Palgrave Macmillan, 2014), 88-109
- Brandon Inabinet, “Writers and Social Media in Politics.” In Encyclopedia of Social Media and Politics, edited by Kerric Harvey (Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications, 2014)
- Brandon Inabinet, “Rhetorics of Pluralism and the Almost-Hidden Research Agenda.” In Council on Undergraduate Research Quarterly (On the Web) 35, no. 2 (Winter 2014): 31-32
- Brandon Inabinet, “Commencing a Politics of Empathic Civility,” Controversia 9, no. 1 (Fall 2013), 73-82
- Brandon Inabinet, “The American Scholar Lecture Revisited.” The Key Reporter - Phi Beta Kappa’s National Magazine (Fall 2012), 8. Full article online at http://www.pbk.org/home/FocusNews.aspx?id=974; Brandon Inabinet, “Democratic Circulation: Jacksonian Lithographs in U.S. Public Discourse.” Rhetoric & Public Affairs 15, no. 4 (Winter 2012): 659-666
- Brandon Inabinet, “The Long Farewell: Laurence M. Keitt’s Eulogy on John C. Calhoun.” Carologue – South Carolina Historical Society Magazine (Winter 2012), 17-22; Arthur E. Walzer and Brandon Inabinet, “Who Wrote the Rhetoric? A Response to Brad McAdon.” Advances in the History of Rhetoric 14, no. 2 (2011): 166-190
- Brandon Inabinet, “When Pastors Go Public: Richard Furman’s Public Letter on Slavery.” Southern Communication Journal 76, no. 3 (2011)
- Brandon Inabinet, “Argument, Tradition, and the Currency of Authority,” in Reasoned Argument and Social Change: Selected Papers from the 17th Biennial Conference on Argumentation, edited by Robert C. Rowland. National Communication Association, 2011
- Brandon Inabinet, “Southern Honor and the Politics of Civility.” Charleston Law Review 5, no. 3 (Spring 2011), 101-119
- Brandon Inabinet, “The Stoicism of the Ideal Orator: Cicero’s Hellenistic Ideal.” Advances in the History of Rhetoric 14, no. 1 (2011), 14-32
- Brandon Inabinet, “Whigging Out: Controversy in the Age of Jackson,” Rhetoric & Public Affairs 13, no. 3 (Fall 2010), 481-501
- Brandon Inabinet, "Masked Dueling in the Jacksonian Press: The Adams-Calhoun Controversy,” in Concerning Argument: Proceedings of the 2007 Alta Conference of the American Forensic Association, edited by Scott Jacobs and Marc Zarefsky (Washington, D.C.: National Communication Association, 2009), 375-382
- Brandon Inabinet, “Albert Beveridge, ‘March of the Flag’ (16 September 1898).” Voices of Democracy 1 (2006): 148-164.