This essay recovers the communication pedagogy that the Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) developed as part of their outreach to immigrant men in the industries in the early-20th-century U.S.A. It brings into focus how the YMCA's teaching techniques negotiated the relation between labor and labor power by configuring sound, speech, and class subjectivity in a way that put in motion a form of productive affect. From this material history, the essay prompts reflection on the ways that sound continues to configure ever-shifting modes of productivity and exploitation, inviting scholars to critically consider the role of communication pedagogy in the evolving contexts of capitalism.
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- speech pedagogy