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YOUNG HARRIS, Ga. — Young Harris College Assistant Professor of Communication Dr. Joshua Guitar recently published his first book, Dissent, Discourse, and Democracy: Whistleblowers as Sites of Political Contestation, in which he critiques prominent government whistleblowing discourses and theorizes the concept of “abstruction.” Just months after the book’s release, Guitar was awarded the James Madison Prize for Outstanding Research in First Amendment Studies by the Southern States Communication Association (SSCA). This award is given to the top publication written on First Amendment and freedom of expression issues by a member of the SSCA.

“Receiving this distinction was such a rewarding experience,” said Guitar. “Research projects require a great deal of work, and being recognized for that labor and its contributions is a remarkable feeling. Awards like these are a testament to everyone who has mentored and supported me over the years, especially here at YHC, which is where this book came to fruition. I hope this award demonstrates to our YHC community that research has value and motivates our campus to continue urging knowledge forward.”

To ensure that knowledge keeps moving forward at YHC, Dr. Guitar donated a copy of his book to the Zell & Shirley Miller Library, where it is available for checkout by faculty, staff, students, and the community.

“This award validates what I have known since Dr. Guitar’s arrival at Young Harris College: He is a truly exemplary scholar,” said YHC Professor and Chair of Communication Studies Dr. Jennifer Hallett. “The quality and quantity of his contributions to the field have only begun, yet he already outpaces my expectations in all aspects of his work at YHC, including teaching, service, and of course, scholarship.”

Guitar earned a Bachelor of Arts in Communication at Adrian College, and he went on to earn a Master of Arts and a Doctor of Philosophy in Communication from Wayne State University. He is serving in his second year as Associate Professor of Communication at Young Harris College, where he teaches classes in rhetoric, critical media studies, and political communication. Guitar’s research has been featured in communication journals such as Critical Studies in Media Communication, First Amendment Studies, and Western Journal of Communication, and he wrote a chapter in the book, City Places, Country Spaces: Rhetorical Explorations of the Urban/Rural Divide.

About Young Harris College

Young Harris College is a private baccalaureate and master’s degree-granting institution located in the beautiful mountains of North Georgia. Founded in 1886 and historically affiliated with The United Methodist Church, Young Harris College educates, inspires, and empowers students through an education that purposefully integrates the liberal arts and professional studies. The College has four academic divisions: Fine Arts; Humanities; Mathematics, Science, and Technology; and Professional Studies. Approximately 1,400 students are enrolled in its residential and Early College programs. The College is an active member of the NCAA Division II and remains a fierce competitor in the prestigious Peach Belt Conference. For more information, visit