We're here to learn as much as we can about the kinds of writing we do for an academic audience. So we'll develop and practice our skills of observation, analysis, and exposition. We'll focus on the cultures that produced us, the society in which we live, and our relationships to both. (Pretty much, anyway.)
Though we'll attend to the conventions of research writing such as summary, paraphrase, quotation, and formatting, our main focus at all times will be the actual WRITING WE DO. Sentences, paragraphing, rhetorical structures (organizing our thoughts).
13100 has a set of prescribed course outcomes.
Office: LA 105 Hours: please contact me
email: email@example.com phone: 481.6841 (message)
Lunsford et al., eds., Everyone's An Author
Yes, please, but behave yourself and use their powers for Good only.
ANALYZING A CULTURAL ARTIFACT: ADVERTISEMENTS
Reading and presenting for this unit: Everyone's An Author: "Thinking Rhetorically" (5) ; "Rhetorical Situations" (18); "Reading Rhetorically" (25); "Meeting Demands" (40); "Managing the Writing Process" (79)
WRITING LAB: NEFF B27
WRITING LAB: NEFF B27
ADVERTISEMENT ESSAY DUE FRIDAY 1 FEBRUARY 9 A.M. VIA EMAIL
ANALYZING WORDS IN EXPOSITION: ARTICLES
WRITING LAB: NEFF B73
WRITING LAB: NEFF B73
ARTICLES ESSAY DUE FRIDAY 1 MARCH 9 A.M. VIA EMAIL
ANALYSIS BY EXPLANATION: WHAT IS IT? HOW DOES IT WORK?
WRITING LAB: NEFF B73
WRITING LAB: NEFF B73
EXPLANATION ANALYSIS DUE FRIDAY 5 APRIL 9 A.M.
THIS IS WHAT YOU CARE ABOUT, AND SO SHOULD WE!
PRESENTATIONS: THE FIRST FOUR
PRESENTATIONS: FOUR MORE OF YOU
PRESENTATIONS: FOUR MORE WHO DIDN'T GO EARLIER
PRESENTATIONS: FOUR MORE WHO DIDN'T GO EARLIER, EITHER
PRESENTATIONS: THE FINAL FOUR, WHO MUST DO THE BEST JOB IMAGINABLE BUT NOT FEEL THE PRESSURE OR SCREW IT UP AND EMBARRASS US ALL
FINAL PROJECT DUE 9 A.M.
THIS IS WHAT I CARE ABOUT
You are allowed five (5) absences for any reason you choose. Students who miss more than this will fail the course, without exception, regardless of circumstances. I do not distinguish between “excused” and “unexcused” absences, nor am I responsible for material that you miss because you are absent. Students who miss the attendance call (the first five minutes of class) will be marked absent; students who get up and leave in the middle of class will be marked absent.
NOTE: if you signed up for the class, it is understood that you can attend it regardless of family or employment obligations. If you have emergencies, this is why you have absences allowed.
Your papers are due on the scheduled non-class dates via email by 9 a.m. Late papers = 0. You may revise all your papers (with the exception of the last) after meeting with the instructor in his office at our mutual convenience. Your revisions are due one (1) week after the conference.
it should go without saying that students are also expected to do their own work; indebtedness to secondary materials (either printed or electronic) must be clearly indicated so as to avoid plagiarism:
THERE IS NO NEED TO PLAGIARIZE IN HERE! NONE WHATSOEVER! AVAUNT, YE CHEATERS!
Your course grade is determined by a rough averaging together of your four paper grades, including your revisions.
Feel free to communicate with me at any time via email: firstname.lastname@example.org
I will usually get back to you sooner than you expect.
I always acknowledge an email submission with a reply confirming receipt. If you DON'T hear from me after a reasonable period of time, it means I didn't get the paper. It is YOUR responsibility to follow up in this case, not mine.
We'll sometimes present on assigned topics during our class periods. Before 3 p.m. on the due date, you'll email me a one-page summary of your presentation. It can be single-spaced, and must include a picture that will help your audience understand your point.
Your major presentation at the end of the semester must explain your final project, THIS IS WHAT I CARE ABOUT. You'll create a PowerPoint slide show to accompany yourself. We'll try and do three of these a day. It should be fun.
As a PFW student, you are entitled to free software, which you'll need. If you follow this link, you can dowload your own copy of Office 365 from IT services.
Everything in your regular papers should be double-spaced. There are no extra spaces between paragraphs, and block quotations are double-spaced. Go into your copy of Word, find the Paragraph menu, and make sure that it looks like the picture to the left.
Note: paragraphs for minor presentations can be single-spaced. Doesn't matter there.
It can be on the left or the right side
On the next line after the heading, center a title for the paper.
Begin your text on the next line after that title.
You'll compose your papers and shorter assignments in Word and email them to me, so there is nothing in hard copy.
The purpose of the assignment is to exercise your powers of visual analysis and to translate your insights to expository written form. You’ll choose a print or online advertisement and examine it as a cultural artifact. Your paragraphs should be devoted to the details of the image, and your focus should be at all times on what these details are DOING and how they contribute to the overall effect of the ad.
Assume that your audience is yourself: someone who understands media but might not always grasp the significance of what she or he sees. Ultimately, what you seek is not simply “selling” something—we take that for granted—but what elements of culture inform your ad.
You’ll be explaining to a reader what your artifact is, why someone might use it, and why it is important. Then, you’ll re-examine your ad’s significance and try to make a larger point about cultural values and practices.
Choose something that you care about and that will allow you to discuss elements other people might not notice. It doesn't have to be an item you use or necessarily aimed at you. As you write, you might ask yourself why the thing advertised disguises its real intent, if this is the case. Is the thing important to you? Is it important to the culture at large?
Due Friday, 1 February, 9 a.m., by email:
We’ll build on our previous assignment in which we determined the possible cultural significance of an advertisement by visual analysis. Here, we’ll sharpen our analytical powers further by examining the language of professional writers on a controversial subject, Hillary Rodham Clinton, former First Lady, Secretary of State, U. S. Senator, and presidential candidate.
Our materials will not be from pop culture, such as the internet, television news, blogs, or local newspapers. Instead, we’ll look at several articles from the august and longstanding American journals of opinion, The New Republic and National Review. As you’ll see, however, simply because these media are highbrow and aimed at a sophisticated readership does not mean that they’re free from ideology or political agendas.
You’ll compare two articles, one from New Republic, the other from National Review. You’ll see rather quickly that the journalists from one publication feel differently about Mris. Clinton than the other. Contrasting the pair of essays is easy. Comparing them and finding unexpected similarities and subtle differences is more challenging, and in this case, your mission.
Let’s use MLA style: we’ll consult our textbook for formatting.
Due Friday, 1 March, 9 a.m. via email.
Most plagiarism tends to be accidental, a result of carelessness or ignorance rather than malice. Ultimately, it's simpler than they say. It's yours, or it's not.
Let's build on the previous assignments by refining your paraphrasing, quoting, summarizing, and reporting skills, stretching your powers of observation and explanation, and informing the lot with a personal touch. Find a topic that interests you or is part of your life that another demographic might not understand, observable, functional and concrete rather than theoretical and abstract. Research it in reputable sources, not internet blogs, Facebook, or unsourced media. Google will always suggest Wikipedia first, but since these articles tend not to be properly reviewed or sourced, the site's offerings are not considered reputable.
Display understanding and comprehension of what you read. Quote something only when you can't summarize it better yourself.
Demonstrate rhetorical awareness: make purposeful and effective writing choices.
Impress us with your critical thinking skills, drawing reasonable conclusions about meaning.
Assume that your audience is yourself and your peers. You might know more than most people, but you aren't an expert. You want to find out more and develop your intellect in the process.
Avoid excessive breadth: an abstract concept like freedom or a biased term like "political correctness," "liberal," "right-winger" and the like would not be right for the assignment.
I would choose something fun (for me): coordinating clothing, tailoring, baseball card collecting, dog training and ownership, conducting literary research. Or: are there rituals or traditions from your community that you could explain?
Personal observations are fine as long as you use them appropriately and effectively. Using yourself as an argument is a bad strategy.
Choose a topic that's specific and observable and fairly concrete, one that is easily researched, so that you will have more material than you need.
At least six reputable sources. Print sources that can be accessed online, as with the previous assignment, would be best.
MLA style, Works Cited page
Due Friday, 5 April, 9 a.m. via email
This assignment should tell us something about you that you want to share with the class. Its only parameters are that it shouldn't be too personal, because then telling us about it would be awkward. If you can write about it for 4-5 pages, put it easily into a PowerPoint (or equivalent) presentation, make yourself understood about it, and treat it with relative academic gravitas, that would be best. If your idea fails any of these four elements, I'd strongly suggest you choose another topic.
hobby, passion, non-religious belief, non-cliché ethical position, art, reading, sport, relationship.
Any source material should be MLA formatted.
10 minute presentation with at least one visual aid.
Due Friday, 3 May, 9 a.m. via email
This is a content preview space you can use to get your audience interested in what you have to say so they can’t wait to learn and read more. Pull out the most interesting detail that appears on the page and write it here.