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Frames—defined as mental structures built through language and symbols that categorize our thoughts and experiences—have a significant impact on partnerships, shaping how participants understand the nature of the collabo- ration. While scholars have explored how teachers might frame engagement partnerships for university students and administrators, the field has yet to deeply draw on framing theory to examine community partner frames. This article argues that framing theory can shed light on how intentional frames might foster healthier partnerships for community members, offering a ro- bust tour of framing theory and illustrating its impact through an analysis of how one community leader frames a high school-college writing partnership for local youth—ultimately suggesting that community partners may have much to teach the field of community writing about how to use frames rhe- torically in engagement contexts.



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