Dr. Piano's dissertation research was an interdisciplinary study of Third Wave feminist cultural production, situated at the intersection of feminist studies, rhetorical and writing theories, and cultural studies. Several articles she has published from this project investigate the literacy practices (primarily making and distributing zines) of a feminist subculture engaged in producing alternative discourses through the use of high and low tech media. This research has contributed to the emerging field of ‘girls’ studies’ or what she calls ‘subcultural feminisms.’ Due to Hurricane Katrina’s impact on her teaching and research, Dr. Piano has created a print and digital archive known as the Writing After Katrina Archive Project (WAKAP) that is a repository of Katrina-related student writings produced in the English Department at UNO. She also has undertaken documenting the recovery through writing and photography to study the aesthetic, collective, and political uses of public space by New Orleans’ residents. Her more recent research utilizes critical concepts of cultural geography, visual rhetoric, and material/digital culture to analyze representations and manifestations of New Orleans post-Katrina.
Contributions to Books
Exchanging Life Narratives: The Politics and Poetics of Perzines, The Handbook of Research on Teaching Literacy through the Communicative, Visual and Performing Arts. (2007)
Resisting Subjects: The Politics of Spectacular Style in Women's Subcultural Production”, The Post-Subcultures Reader. (2003)
“Leaving Las Vegas: Reading the Prostitute as a Site of Abjection”, Exclusions in Feminist Thought: Challenging the Boundaries of Womanhood (2002)
Writing in the Cone of Uncertainty: An Argument for Sheltering in Place, College Composition and Communication (2014)
Working the Streets of Post-Katrina New Orleans: An Interview with Deon Haywood, Executive Director, Women with a Vision, Inc., Women's Studies Quarterly: Special Issue. Ruin. (2011)
While most people living in the United States watched, with sympathy and horror, the dismantling...
Making It Up As We Go: Students Writing and Teachers Reflecting on Post-K New Orleans (with Sarah Debacher, Celeste Del Russo, Elizabeth Lewis, and Reggie Poche), Reflections: A Journal of Writing, Service Learning and Community Literacy (2008)
Writing the Ruins: Rhetorics of Crisis and Uplift after the Flood, Rhizomes: Cultural Studies in Emerging Knowledge (2006)
Analyzing a Zine: Studying Subcultural Production on the World Wide Web, Kairos: A Journal for Teachers of Writing and Webbed Environments (2002)
Floodlines: Community and Resistance from Katrina to the Jena Six (Review), Reflections: A Journal of Writing, Service Learning and Community Literacy (2011)
Review of Floodlines: Community and Resistance from Katrina to the Jena Six by Jordan Flaherty.
River Rising, May 2011. A Photo Essay. Part I., Viz. Visual Rhetoric. Visual Culture. Pedagogy. Digital Writing and Research Lab at the University of Texas. (2011)
In May 2011, the Mississippi River rose to unprecedented heights, threatening a worst-case scenario of...