The Curricular Importance of Code Meshing in New Literacy Environments- Ian Cleary

Ian Cleary- Engl 14- Final Research Project- Dr. Voss

Intended Publisher: Young Scholars in Writing

11.15.15

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“Individuals inhabiting transnational contexts learn, take up, and use digital communication technologies to extend their communicative reach, to maintain their social and cultural identities, and construct their worlds.” -Gail E. Hawisher

Introduction

Horner’s discussion of the “Translation Model” concludes that “Code Meshing” increases the academic’s knowledge of new contextual environments and cultural narratives, which invariably leads to better informed, educated citizens who are capable of respectful discourse in society. It is the pedagogical institution’s obligation to engage students with new contextual literacies to broaden their knowledge. This paper examines three particular literacy environments and their importance in occupational, local, and global environments. Contact with these environments diversifies and innovates the curriculum and increases the student’s skills in both writing and verbal communication. Specifically, understanding the modes of writing and rhetoric within widely different contextual environments of the modern world is imperative in the process of acquiring literacy. In order to properly contextualize potentially new forms of interaction in the curriculum, these three respective literacy environments are recognized as eligible for integration  into the academic world for the purpose of better engaging the student and increasing the value of the institution.  

In summation, I am arguing for a curriculum which trains students to be consilient thinkers through the use of code-meshing in global, local and occupational environments. Particularly, students ought to be equipped with the skills necessary to use Horner & Zu’s code-meshing to increase their aptitudes with different literacy environments, and the social practices arranged therein. Academics are obligated to expose students to the varying literacies of these environments.  I originally conceptualized my research when pondering the multitude of insights I had at University as a result of teachers who explored new concepts in writing studies and taught with consilient backgrounds. In junction with innovative writing studies teachers, I noticed teachers with multiple credentials in different literacy environments taught multiple codes without intending to, hybridizing the education process and gifting the students with a greater span of knowledge. Literacy environments, in this context, are somewhat enigmatic and interchangeable. They may provide insights into the literacy transaction between student and teacher. Furthermore, mixing the curricular pot not only engages new literacy environments but also enhances the probability of innovative thought.

Moreover, the occupational, cultural and local literacy environments use multimodel mediums in distinct ways. Code-meshing, in this light, has both a multicultural and multimodal application. Therefore, Horner & Zu’s Code-meshing enhances communication across social, cultural and geographical environments as well as through multiple mediums. Non-verbal, image based communication through technological mediums is best demonstrated in transnational literacy environments.

There is an ethical code about illuminating the complexities of these literacy environments; by engaging with these diverse narrative environments students are empowered, reshaping the heavy burden of historical narratives which induce tyranny and injustice upon those excluded by them. Conceptualizing the social and cultural borders that make up the world is imperative to the educated student in this digital age. That is, being exposed to new literacy environments enables students to be empowered, rather than rigidly commanded by those whom have greater knowledge of these competitive literacy environments. Diversifying canonical narrative scopes assuages previously impenetrable fixed codes and allows for code meshing. Thereby, knowledge is shared rather than controlled.

Explanation

Before explicating the importance of Horner & Zu’s concept of code-meshing and its application to multi-environmental literacy, it is imperative to understand the evolution of curricular theory and re-examine the term literacy. Literacy is not to be looked at as singular, but rather one ought to “consider literacy in the plural, as a set of social practices (Horner & Zu, 113).” The broader scope of literacy in complex contextual environments enables a better visual of how code meshing can generate interaction between socio-historical and cultural systems currently unengaged with in academia. Horner & Zu contextualize code meshing as an integration of new cultural, social, and environmental codes. Grounded in writing studies theory, literacy becomes a more fluid, rather than fixed, concept.

Over the years, the curriculum has moved from a rigid Foundationalist model to an Accommodationist model. Today the curriculum is reemerging in a new lens, which is that of the Translation model. These models show the evolution of curriculum, enabling new forms of interpreting codes in literacy environments. The former model “treats academic literacy as a universal, uniform, and fixed set of linguistic and notational conventions and procedures (Horner, 113).” Ideally, this model worked as a “fixed entity,” and asked that students conform to the standard, mono-cultural and linguistic pedagogy. This has traditionally materialized as a lack of diversity within the curriculum; Often important cultural and occupational literacies have been negated by a lack of reciprocity among differing institutions. That is, literacy environments were singular, rather than operating within more complex systems. Canonical narratives, for example, were often limited, thereby granting students only singular perspectives on the outside world. This became an issue when student applicants with complex linguistic, cultural and social backgrounds severely struggled. In fact, the lack of environmental adaptability in the curriculum left many students disconnected from that community. Given that “The task of pedagogy is to somehow bring students into that community,” the pedagogy was forced to reshape itself. Not only were exploring students hindered, but these fixed educational boundaries overwhelmingly lacked hybridized education, leaving even traditional students without essential exposure to the outside world. Widening the scope of exposure and redefining what literacy environments should be integrated into the curriculum is an incredibly important discussion. The Foundationalist model lacks hybridity. Consider an inbred dog, they tend to have health issues as a result of lacking essential survival genes, which are only found in genetic pools outside the one they were bred into. Therefore, hybridized education is most nearly the assimilation of multiple literacy environments,  thereby granting the student an aptitude for consilient thinking.

The new model, the Accommodationist model, functions as a “fixed set of entities” rather than the Foundationalist model’s singular “fixed entity” prerogative (114). Curriculum was originally singular and non-conformative to other literacy environments. This negation was lessened by the Accommodationist model, which, at the least, recognized their are multiple narrative environments. Therefore, the transfer of literacy began to expand across more complex environments. As a result of the Accommodationist model, students are able to access multiple codes, training them to “switch from one code to another, depending on the specific discipline (114).” The accommodationist model specifically teaches students to “code-switch (116).” Accessing literacy in different codes rather than keeping with the more mundane, singular model is a step in the right direction. Being exposed to new narratives and literacy environments, therefore, expanded the student’s mind and deepened their capacity to think critically about the world.

While the Accommodationist model is a step in the right direction, the Translation Model takes the concept further. Instead of merely “code-switching”, the Translation Model incorporates “code-meshing” (116). Where the Accommodationist model asks that the student understand how to switch between literacy environments, the Translation model urges students to work as consilient thinkers within different environments. Thereby, the Translation model meshes rather than switches, incorporating hybridized views throughout the varying literacy environments, with the intent on attaining innovative insights and developing new literacy environments. The aspects of critical thinking are far more utilized through the latter model because understanding the specific codes for different literacy environments is only half the battle, the other half is being able to use those codes together in synchronicity. Thus, “Code-meshing” becomes a pedagogical process where students find ways to communicate within and between occupational, social and cultural boundaries. It is not only cultural environments that students need exposure to but also the occupational environments they desire to go into after graduating. The Workplace, as definitively expounded by Deborah Brandt, is a primary example of complex literacy environments outside academia. Furthermore, it is noted that codes are equally embedded within mediums as well as content. Using new mediums allows new types of literacies; engaging with new mediums generates new content and the ability access more people. Cultural environments are better engaged through image based mediums because of overarching language barriers, for example. Lebduska, in greater detail, contextualizes the difficulties of translation with cultural texts and the need for image based content in assuaging these barriers.

The Translation Model of literacy is exceedingly important to the future of education, given the importance of comprehending the many cultural, social and occupational narratives of the world. Without “hybrid discourses”, students will be educated in a stagnant, regressive style (120). To preclude students from engaging in the act of code-meshing is a disservice which leaves them at a substantial disadvantage, particularly in the globalized, digital age we live in today. There is also the ethical obligation involved with sharing knowledge of the varying literacy environments to the student body, thereby breaking down the unequal power dynamic of social relationships. Horner contends that “adopting code meshing reject(s) the monolinguistic of codes in hierarchical relation to one another (121).” Breaking down the barriers of language aids in the student’s opportunity to experience literacy in multiple and often new ways. the Translation model departs from fixed authority and introduces fluidity into education. Ultimately, Horner & Lu’s notion of “code-meshing” engages with new types of literacy environments, but what are these environments made up of more specifically? Exploring three potential literacy environments worth assimilating into the University curriculum may illuminate the answer to this question. The occupational, transnational and local environments are all dominant literacy environments in the world today, one’s students ought to understand before graduating. The objective now is to explore three environments where literacy is interpreted differently and how integrating these contextual literacies can benefit the curriculum.

Analysis & Implications : Cultural, Multimodal, and Transnational Environments

The articles by Gail Hawisher, et al., “Cultural Designs for Writing Digitally” and “Beyond Literate Lives: Collaboration, Literacy Narratives, Transnational connections, and Digital Media” both argue for implementing into the curriculum diverse cultural narratives through multimodal means. Gail Hawisher demonstrates the importance of transnational literacy in building agency for institutions and the individuals who create the narratives. These cultural, multimodal practices are reinforcing narratives that have not been heard. Hawisher conveys that multimodal “literacy activity” evokes “cultural forms of life saturated with textuality (Hawisher, 138).” This pedagogical approach reflects code meshing with both multimodal practices and transnational narratives. These cultural narratives are a breath of fresh air, which clearly move away from fixed forms of pedagogy previously discussed in favor of the Translation model. Gail emphasises that enhancing the students perspective on varying cultures through multimodal means “demonstrates a dynamic sense of agency…viewing environment as interactive and connected (139).” Therefore, Gail is discussing not only a new way of assimilating content but the ethical framework of widening the canonical narrative therein.

The narratives of Shafinaz, Dewayani, and Yu-Kyung Kang represent new forms of agency attainable through the construction and incorporation of multimodal, transnational, narratives today. In this particular environment, code meshing becomes not only an integration of cultural literacy environments, but also a multimodal practice (Horner & Lu). Shafinaz expressed her own trouble assimilating to U.S. culture and the difficulties of learning through a pedagogical framework as an outsider to that subtly culturally encoded framework. Dewayani conveyed unique cultural motifs which were largely unheard of to her classmates, exposing them to new uncharted global literacies. Gail reaffirms this when she says Dewayani “completed groundbreaking research on the oral literate culture of the Indonesian Baduy (141).” Meanwhile, Yu-Kyung Kang demonstrates the varying cultural barriers in digital spaces through her interpretation of the Korean Yahoo. She also used imagery and audio which blended a myriad of cultural frameworks, embodying in her project the very essence of code-meshing. Access to unique literacy environments such as this broadens the student’s perspective.

The Translation model incorporates narratives such as Yu-Kyung Kang’s in order to diversify the curriculum. Lebduska asserts that cultural narratives are less effective when “a bleached discourse threatens rhetorical agency (Lebduska).” Moreover, non-verbal or visual literacy environments are engaging transnational communicators as a result of their image based applicability. Language and cultural barriers are minimized as a result of implementing unique instruments of communication, such as pictures, music and dancing. Lebduska, in her article “Emoji, Emoji, What for Art Thou?” discusses the complexities of human emotion as barriers in themselves when using written text. However, bridges between cultural environments can be crossed through “linguistic; gestural; audio; spatial; visual and multimodal” mediums (Lebduska). Therefore, multimodal code meshing is an indispensable tool in developing cultural code meshing between transnational environments. Therefore, multimodal spaces engage students to grasp not only complex emotions but new cultural narratives. This is reinforced by Hawisher’s examples of the video narratives of three graduate students. All used image based, audio and spatial content in order to construct their narrative. Music, for example, becomes a basic form of connection even among culturally different individuals. As a result, code meshing is exemplified through both multimodal and transnational literacy environments.

Therefore, by learning from these narrators students can begin to comprehend the vast transnational environments of the globe and the multimodal practices therein. Students from culturally diverse backgrounds can teach new narrative content and exchange ideas transnationally in an academic setting, as exemplified in Gail’s research. Yu-Kyung was exceedingly aware that there are still large barriers between differing cultural environments, ones which make communication difficult. Her own struggle with her cross cultural identity has generated unique insights in regards to the future of academic discourse with transnational student bodies. Yu-Kyung was interviewed and she insightfully stated, “By compelling the students to practice and master the American academic writing format in accordance to its rules, am I forcing them to think like Americans? (143).” It isn’t language which is the only barrier, there are large cultural barriers which may even contain stigmas which immediately occlude constructive communication transnationally. Therefore, she is interested in changing the pedagogical framework to make the cultural barriers less effective in deterring transnational communication. This is done in writing studies courses which assent to Hawisher’s work with transnational narratives. Students must learn there is a great diversity to narrative, and that it isn’t a fixed, singular entity.

Often fixed entities in pedagogy inhibit innovative growth, whether by precluding the teaching of new cultural narratives or by educating in a stagnant style. It can also be a powerful tool for tyranny, given the lack of open mindedness involved in fixed, singular educational parameters. This can refer to both the lack of transnational, cultural narratives and the lack of multimodal application to these literacy environments. Widening the scope of cultural narratives in the curriculum will teach students to be global citizens, not just American citizens. Consider Gloria Anzaldua’s reconceptualization of the Mestizaje, and the importance of building the hybrid narrative based on Vasconcelos’ original philosophy. It isn’t a fight to change the language, but it is a fight to welcome and integrate cross-cultural literacy narratives in the academic community, merely for the purpose of being exposed to the world and its changes. Academia can teach innovatively by engaging in transnational environments and integrating these insights into the curriculum. This process is fruitful in that culturally diverse students may feel empowered and American students may extend their literacy to global levels. Gail’s research demonstrates there is an expansive world full of undiscovered insights outside the rigid Foundationalist curriculum, embedded in diverse and often unheard cultural narratives. Consilient thinking and examination of these transnational narratives is an opportunity for insight and exploration. Moreover, Hawisher commends the digital space as instrumental in developing transnational communication, it even contains diplomatic aspects. Digital technology has exponentially enhanced the ability to communicate transnationally. It is up to academic pioneers to discover new digital and transnational environments which are worth teaching to enhance the student bodies conceptualization of literacy, and to build bridges of communication between different cultures, generating harmony rather than hatred. Gail Hawisher adds depth to this argument in her article “Beyond Literacy Lives: Collaboration, Literacy Narratives, Transnational Connections, and Digital Media”. She states that in order to understand literacy on a global scale we must understand “the complex social and cultural ecology, both local and global, within which literacy practices and values are situated (Gail 188).”

When viewing a cultural text, it becomes imperative to grasp at the deeper socio-historical and geographical origins of it. Gail describes these emerging narratives as “culturally constituted (193).”  Hawisher has discovered that there is an unconscious flow of transnational literacies, especially within emerging digital spaces. The historicity of a text has a great deal to do with how it fits in the transnational environment, or a larger, global context. Cultural narratives are widely interconnected, given the historical transactions of ideas throughout the centuries. Often, cultural narratives share ideas with one another, a brief look at historical context reinforces this. Early texts share multiple cultural homes, and the ideas are exchanged between transnational barriers. How the academic community traces these texts is precisely how sociologists can begin to understand cultures better. Therefore, code-meshing in a transnational setting can be reinforced by engaging with the historical context of a text. Engaging with multiple literacy environments enhances the unifying aspect of differing cultural narratives, it is also a natural process. With code-meshing through the Translation model, students can assimilate combinations of cultural narratives, and create new ones as well.

An example of transnational, multimodal narratives coming to fruition is seen in Japanese film director Kurosawa’s “Throne of Blood”. Kurosawa works as a consilient thinker, using code meshing to express commonalities between varying cultural narratives. He could be considered the Shakespeare of film. It is ironic because in the film “Throne of Blood” he demonstrates the similarities between Scottish tribal society, as depicted in Shakespeare’s Macbeth, and the tribal societies of feudal Japan. This parable hardly deviates from Shakespeare’s original story, yet the cultural aesthetic is completely rearranged, delving its viewers into the heart of feudal Japan. The film shows that transnational communication can build bridges between different cultures, and that there are innate similarities among humans, even between widely geographically and culturally differing people. This type of multi-modal, transnational communication reinforces both Gail’s research and Yu-Kyung’s video narrative. Hawisher states, “Individuals inhabiting transnational contexts learn, take up, and use digital communication technologies to extend their communicative reach, to maintain their social and cultural identities, and construct their worlds (193).” Film, much like a stage play, engages with its audience far differently than text alone. Lebduska states, “no human society has ever existed without the creative externalization of internal images (Lebduska).” Moreover, imagery can build relationships among different nations, such as Kurosawa’s film does. While Multimodal presentation is the new way to build a narrative, cultural hybridity is the new way to harmonize and diplomatically build bridges transnationally. Code-meshing alters the focal point from looking for differences between cultures to looking for similarities. It is a diplomatic act, one that is ethically enriching for globalized citizens. Transnational literacy environments are important because the more nationalities communicate and identify, the better their relationship will be. This is better grounded in multimodal communication, given the importance of subtitles and acting in hindering language barriers further.

Transnational environments are increasingly important to understand for university students, given the ever changing “Global Eduscape (192).” During high school I lived in a dorm with people from many different nationalities. There was a school event in which we were told to prepare a for what they called the “STJ Olympics”. Our first task was to decorate our dorm according to the olympic theme, which materialized as a celebration of our differing nationalities. The different dorms on campus were evaluated and awarded for their decorations. One of the students, whom is a friend from the dorm, made a video of our creative process. Here are three pictures from that film: 

While students paint the mirrors with the olympic rings and contending athletes, they are sharing in a culturally unifying act, deriving image-based materials from many cultural codes, rather the one. It can be seen that a Korean student is painting with a Chinese, Taiwanese and American student. The Germans are helping out, and the painter of the olympic rings is from Brazil. Meanwhile, two Americans paint the American flag. The film has French music playing in the background as well. It is not seen in the video, but later a Chinese student put together a powerpoint on the main hall television which showed the flags of all our nationalities and played our national anthems in synchronicity with each picture. These small presentation techniques to decorate our dorm for the event showed in a diverse setting how many cultural narratives can build bridges and work together. In particular, this is cultural and multimodal code meshing at its finest. The use of video, sound and other nonverbal forms of communication, such as drawing, assents to Lebduska’s evaluation of the effectiveness of multimodal transnational literacy practices. The video shows how visual mediums can connect cultures transnationally in communicative acts. No matter how different cultural narratives are, the theme of these examples are unification of multiple cultural narratives. Rather than using cultural narratives to differentiate, we should be using them to integrate. Code meshing becomes a form of literate hybridity through these varying mediums, whereas Code switching is merely a way to build exclusive narratives. This shows the key difference between the Accommodationist and Translation model.

Therefore, it is imperative that the curriculum adapts to these new uses of transnational communication, engaging the student body in a new form of pedagogy which discovers that which is culturally diverse, rich in content, and technologically advanced. Furthermore, code-meshing has the potential to build cross-cultural relationships and identify similarities between different cultures. The Translation model enables code-meshing between cultural environments and multimodal ones.

Analysis & Implications : Local Environments

After looking at the importance of transnational environments in the pedagogical curriculum in order to develop literacy, one can further discern the equally compelling need to incorporate the local environment into the curriculum. Code-meshing between the academic and local community can embody new forms of agency for the institution and enrich the student’s understanding of his/her local environment. Building relationships with the community and developing projects therein is a beneficent, enriching act. Goldblatt’s article “The Unintended Consequences of Literacy” demonstrates that projects with the community bolster the ethical dimensions of the institution and empower the local community.

Goldblatt’s “The Unintended Consequences of Literacy” supports the conclusion that a harmonious relationship is important to construct between the institution and its local community. Goldblatt further supports the idea of sharing literacy with the community in order to generate creativity and provide the underprivileged with opportunity. Local community projects also provide an ethical component which addresses the issue of Sponsors who “regulate, suppress and withhold literacy (127)” by sharing knowledge outside the academic institution. Providing opportunity within the local community helps to alter the catastrophic effects of structural literacy, potentially providing educational opportunities for those who have nothing.

Goldblatt’s research is particularly interesting when viewing the interaction between Academic and local environments and how that brought about new insights within the pedagogical process. The Inside/Out program, created by Lori Pompa of the Criminal Justice department “educates undergraduates alongside incarcerated students at the penal institutions in the Philadelphia area and trains instructors (Goldblatt, 130)…” Programs like this one have “attracted millions of dollars of foundation and donor funds to address social issues (130).” It is discerned that there is a large ethical framework to work from. Moreover, sponsors can enhance their own agency by participating in beneficent communal programs, possibly receiving new networking opportunities to stabilize the institutions presence within the local community.

Underscored in the local community context is the stalwart acclamation that sharing knowledge and literacy must be the university’s priority. The fluid exchange of literacy is an important component in reshaping the local environment, just as much as it can enlighten the institution. Goldblatt mentioned how at Temple University, just outside the campus walls, there were high volumes of crime and poverty. The local programs attempted to rehabilitate the urban infrastructure, proving to the community the academic institutions worth, thereby asserting their role in that community.

Interaction with local environments can enhance the understanding of the local narrative. Much like pedagogical interpretations of transnational narratives such as Yu-Kyung’s video, local narratives are equally unique and significant. Goldblatt discussed how a group of students from the University of Arkansas participated in “local literacy / local history” projects which engaged them in this pedagogical environment (132). The results of this project were “astounding”, they consisted of a “narrative video about the Mississippi flood of 1927; a set of poems, with water-color illustrations, a short story about the writer’s parents’ participation in the civil rights movement; a documentary film about the first substantial farm ever run by a woman in the Delta (132).” The process becomes mutualistic, where students can share with the community their presentation tools and the community can share with the students the local narrative. The two environments have a great deal to benefit from one another.

This project was a major success in that it engaged the student body in local narratives, bringing to fruition new insights, innovative perspectives, and enriching forms of literacy. The students were able to work through multimodal means to present cultural information which enhanced their knowledge of local and academic environments. This mutualistic act brings harmony between the community and the institution, and helps the students better understand their local environment.

While new narratives can be accessed in local environments, so can the pedagogical institution interact with that environment out of ethical obligation. Santa Clara University implements into their curriculum the “Community Based Learning” programs, which are strikingly similar to Goldblatt’s examples. I worked with a community garden program in San Jose, we spent a great deal of time with the students, among whom very few were likely to attend college as a result of the poverty they were entrapped in. The low income area and the violence surrounding this impoverished elementary school was catastrophic. However, the program acted as a beacon of hope within the community, and as representatives of Santa Clara University, we were able to offer these students our time. The community programs at Santa Clara University are incredibly insightful for the students; they are able to learn a type of literacy in the local community thus strengthening their relationship with that community. Moreover, students increase their gratitude for the institution they are a part of.

Local community literacy environments are important to integrate into the curriculum because they are unique, there is an ethical component for any institution, and it further grounds the institution in that community. Code-meshing is an enriching act between these distinct academic and local communities. Community service projects are beneficial to university students, the community, and the academic institution.

Analysis & Implications : Workplace Environments

We have looked at how code-meshing is used in Local and Global literacy environments, and even how multimodal practices engage in new forms of communication. Yet, the occupational environments that students intend on going to after graduating university are equally important in assessing uncharted literacy environments. Horner’s Translation Model and code meshing is applicable to Brandt’s workplace literacy environment; In order to enable code-meshing and hybridized forms of literacy the workplace environment ought to be assimilated into the academic curriculum. The literacy environment of academia operates distinctly apart from the occupational environment a student intends to move on to after graduation, closing this gap is imperative. For example, writing classical essays and using powerpoint may differ greatly for the occupational writer who needs to write an article or business memo. Brandt’s “Literacy and Labor” and “Literacy and the Knowledge Economy” shows how insights from occupational writers can provide students with better skills for the workplace before they enter it. It is clear, however, that occupational environments indirectly shape educational curriculum, given that employers actively seek and recruit college graduates. In order for a student to be accepted into the occupational community they must develop the skills to do so at University. Brandt calls those whom write for a living “work a day writers (122).” Code-meshing becomes essential for prospective working writers.

Deborah Brandt in her article “Literacy and The Knowledge Economy” conveys that Literacy is a commodity and that specific literacies enable long term success in occupational environments. Her research shows that these specific literacies are often highly contextual to the specific job. Understanding the varying audiences and mediums in this environment are essential to the job. Writers, in an occupational context, serve as “tools of production, transforming complex organizational histories and interests, needs, and constraints into textual form (Brandt, 176).” Workplace literacy is complex, as it works through multiple institutionally specific mediums which are riddled with regulation and adaptation of the institutional voice. However, the practice of occupational writing, in all its complexity, merely demonstrates the importance of its need to be integrated into the academic curriculum. Moreover, teaching the standard occupational mediums will enable access to rudimentary skills in occupational settings.

In her article “Writing for a Living”, Brandt discusses the various mediums prevalent in occupational writing such as “Article briefs, business plans, article contracts, cross examinations, business plans, correspondence, editorials and interviews (Brandt, 162).” Brandt conceives that writing practices in the occupational environment are extensive; there are a breadth of regulations involved in the specific occupational writing genre. Within the respective mediums of occupational literacy, Brandt asserts there are particular regulations dependent on the company. While a business plan is one respective occupational medium, there are thousands of ways to write a business plan, dependent on the sponsor for whom it is for. Furthermore, the aesthetic choices for design are also increasingly distinct to the institution. Similar to the way no novel is the same, occupational modals equally vary in content and flavor, which is entirely dependent on the institutional regulations. However, it is clear the only way to become skilled at these varying occupational curriculums is through practice, and the assimilation of an institutional voice.

Brandt conveys that the writer must develop an “institutional voice”, particularly because their writing is not evaluated on an individual level as much as it is a representation of the corporation or company the worker is employed with (175). Consider the writing voice of a fiction novelist and that of a copywriter. The fiction novelist’s style and writing aesthetic would be completely different from that of the trained occupational writer. Transcending voice often becomes a functional tool, while the forms of communication in the workplace function as “complex pieces of machinery that turn raw materials into functional, transactional, and valuable form (182).” How does writing, a human practice, become mechanized? The variation of voice in writing is as extensive as the number of soda flavors there are. In order to develop an occupational voice, one must have endured many winters in an occupational environment. Therefore, the goal of the curriculum is to engage the student body with their occupational voice before their respective career, in order to leave the graduate better prepared for it. Equally, it is essential to gain rudimentary skills on the technical application of workplace mediums, these mediums should be taught as a part of First Year Writing courses. Teaching writers to write efficiently and with brevity ought to be the pedagogical mission to develop better prepared occupational writers. It isn’t just writers who need to be trained in workplace mediums, it is also every student who desires to enter a corporation in the future.

Furthermore, Brandt interviewed various writing based occupants and nearly all had stated that they had “made significant investments in new training and learning beyond their formal degrees (163).” This demonstrates the potential gap between the graduating student and veteran employees in the workplace. Bridging this gap by engaging in occupational skill training at university will help students engage in their work more effectively after graduation, likely challenging even veteran employees. The better the student is prepared for his career, the better they will perform in that career. The question becomes how to integrate the occupational model into the pedagogical one.

Brandt envelopes the reader in a complex world of occupational writing, one that the curriculum cannot ignore when training undergraduate students. It is important that students understand the ways of writing effectively in contextually specific occupational environments in order to function effectively in their careers. While regulations may vary for specific work environments, understanding broadly how these parameters function is imperative to the undergraduate student. It is clear that literacy in one environment may not translate to literacy in another, which is precisely why students must engage with occupational environments early on. It is also the student’s obligation to know what he/she wants to pursue after college, thereby focusing the types of literacy he/she engages with at University. However, it is clear there is a disparity between the literacy of occupational writers and the literacy of undergraduates. This gap may lessen with increased attention in a curriculum aimed at training occupational writers. Literacy must be seen as an organic, living, complex entity that works interchangeably with distinct environments. Therefore, the importance of Horner’s notion of “code-meshing” is without a parallel, particularly in the context that students must develop skills in their respective work environments before they enter them.

Conclusion

Horner’s notion of code-meshing can add depth to the curriculum and engage students with new literacy environments through multimodal practices. Hybridized discourse in education creates more skilled, consilient thinkers. Horner & Zu’s Translation model assents to code meshing between these environments and exposure to unexplored narratives. New cultural narratives allow students to explore more than the fixed canonical narratives of the Foundationalist curriculum. Local environments become enriching relationships for the institution and allow students the opportunity to ethically engage with those communities. There are also unique local narratives which are widely unknown. Furthermore, Occupational literacy environments help students better engage with the job market following their graduation, and teach them how to write in mediums which require specific training for. Moreover, integration of occupational literacy into the curriculum trains students to develop an institutional voice and follow regulation. Engaging students in literacy practices from global, local and occupational environments make for better informed citizens overall. These environments, through code meshing, are no longer fixed entities, but can work in synchronicity. For example, workplace literacy can converge with transnational environments, just as it can with local environments, dependent on the context of the employee. Students can use their understanding of occupational literacy in local and global environments, enabling unique hybridized forms of communication and potentially building entirely new literacy environments. Institutional sponsors have both an ethical and intellectual obligation to expose their students to the varying literacy environments of the world, this is done through engaging them in differing cultural narratives (not their own), the local community, and the work community. As a result, students become well informed and are able to engage in these communities as they leave university. Furthermore, they become consilient thinkers who use code-meshing to develop new innovative insights in their respective careers.

Works Cited

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Research after “Literacy in American Lives”. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 2013. Ebook Library. Web. 15 Nov. 2015.

Brandt, Deborah. “Writing for a Living- Literacy and the Knowledge Economy.” Madison:

University of Wisconsin, Sage Publications, 22.5. 2005. Electronic.

Berry, Patrick W., Gail E. Hawisher, and Cynthia L. Selfe. Transnational Literate Lives in

Digital Times. Logan, UT: Computers and Composition Digital P/Utah State UP, 2012.

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Zeng, Junjie. “Decorating Burrows.” Film. Facebook. Electronic. September 24, 2010. Accessed

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Lebduska, Lisa. “Emoji, Emoji, What for Art Thou?” Harlot of Hearts, 2014. Electronic.

 

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Emoji, Emoji, What for Art Thou? Lebduska- Thinking About Digital Spaces

“The struggle of literature is in fact a struggle to escape from the confines of language; it stretches out from the utmost limits of what can be said; what stirs literature is the call and attraction of what is not in the dictionary” (qtd. in Gabriele 59)

Communication is often challenged by the varying contexts and cultural codes of the globalized world. There are many cultures, mediums, environments, and ways of thinking. So, how can humans codify speech in a universal medium? It is precisely the Emoji’s job to respond to such inquiries. Superscribed brevity contaminates the digital world; thus emoji’s attempt to connect in an efficient aesthetically pleasing style. The multiple interpretations of an emoji is likened to the multiple interpretations of any human action. Humans are complex beings. It is difficult to contextualize an individual into simplistic terms just as it is to thoroughly communicate through the written word alone. That is why, since the epoch of Greco Roman Law, societies have attempted to compile rhetorical innuendos in both oratory and image-based contexts. Through various mediums, there is, logically, a higher probability in understanding the rhetor. “No human society has ever existed without the creative externalization of internal images.” Therefore, emoji’s attempt to add depth to the complex variations of communication prevalent in digital and physical literacy environments. Rhetor’s use “linguistic; gestural; audio; spatial; visual and multimodal” configurations to effectively persuade.

There are two advantages to emoji’s that I find particularly appealing. The first is its ability to cross transnational borders. Lebduska reasonably contends: “Everyone smiles in the same language.” The smiley face emoji is understandable to every human being on the planet; thats a lot of power. The second is its emphasis on “delivery”. There simply isn’t a faster way to communicate. Lebduska uses the example of a plane emoji to communicate that the user’s flight has landed. In specific cases, it can be demonstrated the emoji can ostensibly deliver a rather complex message without the hassle of attempting to “wrestle out the words”.

To the latter point, the user, however, runs the risk of making no sense at all to the reader. Therefore, emoji’s can only be used in a specific context. As ALL communication, the emoji becomes audience dependent. For example, if your audience is not emoji proficient, I don’t think Lebduska would recommend leaning your rhetorical goals on ambiguous (subjective perception, of course) symbolism. However, Lebduska does make an exceedingly compelling argument for the use of emoji’s. Instead of thinking of them as a notion of pop-culture I can now consider their technical, even professional uses in communication, especially in the context of globalization.

It isn’t news that symbolism was used long before recursive alphabets, as Lebduska duly demonstrates through her example of early cave paintings. There is something intellectually compelling about symbolism as it challenges us to interpret meaning. Meaning is never directly given, it must be interpreted. Great writers can accomplish this with words alone. Shakespeare is the mastermind of “point d’ironie”, and he/she who finds these hidden gems deserves a heartfelt pat on the back. Shakespeare was running stage plays, after all. The man who had a way with words was particularly focused on the physical movements of the “players” as a director. Imagery on the stage through props and the conveyance of emotion through the actors would have been his prerogative just as much as the words themselves. Emoji’s are uniquely similar to the actors ability to add depth to dramatic soliloquy’s through facial expression.

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(Here is a picture of Michael Fassbender in the new Macbeth production, using facial imagery to convey a narrative, similar to the use of emoji’s in reinforcing a texts ability to persuade.)

FINAL RESEARCH PROJECT PROPOSAL- Ian Cleary- Intended Publisher: Young Scholars in Writing 11.15.15

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(Kurosawa’s “Throne of Blood”. An adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”)

“Individuals inhabiting transnational contexts learn, take up, and use digital communication technologies to extend their communicative reach, to maintain their social and cultural identities, and construct their worlds.”

-Gail E. Hawisher

I argue that variational social and historical codes ought to be integrated into the pedagogical community, bringing transnational realities together, building bridges, thus enabling a wider scope for translation in the “Globalized Eduscape (192).” Gail points out the recurring importance of “transnational flows of cultural ideas across the global landscape”, particularly in respect to literacy narratives (193). The two important relationships the institutional sponsor should reinforce through the act of “code meshing” ought to be 1.) the local community and 2.) the global community. Thereby, institutions can construct pedagogical curriculums with a globalized understanding of the world. I will provide examples which underscore the importance “code meshing” in, specifically, global/cultural, occupational, and local environments. Brandt’s chapters titled “Literacy and Labor”, “Literacy and the Knowledge Economy”, Gail’s articles “Cultural Designs for Writing Digitally” “Beyond Literate Lives: Collaboration, Literacy Narratives, Transnational connections, and Digital Media” and Goldblatt’s “The Unintended Consequences of Literacy” all convey the importance of researching uncharted social contexts and environments for the pedagogical institution. Moreover, Kurosawa’s “Throne of Blood” embodies Horner’s notion of “Transitional Modes of Literacy”; the multimodal codified narrative used innovative visual techniques to build bridges transnationally.

More importantly, using the knowledge gained from various transnational, occupational and social environments students at university can be taught. The “code meshing” between these environments enables the pedagogical institution perspective from both a different culture and non-academic community which potentially bolsters the “reconstruction of meaning” in this complex digital age (110).Contact with these various contexts diversifies and innovates the pedagogical curriculum. In addition, sharing knowledge in global and local environments makes the institution an active member of the global community, building an ethical framework.

In the article “Toward A Labor Economy of Literacy”, Horner & Lu contend that “the task of pedagogy is to somehow bring students into that (institutional) community (115).” Thus, we can consider literacy to be situated in a complex set of communities represented by varying codes. These codes are represented in historical and social contexts, making up a universe of differing values. Proponents of the “Transitional Modes of Literacy” strive to enable “communication across differences (115).” Horner comments that we must “consider literacy as sets of social practices understood in relationship to the particular social aims and habits associated with their context of use (113).” Therefore, once new social constructs are identified, it becomes imperative to build bridges to access them. Sharing knowledge and innovative insights from this process is an essential part of the pedagogical mission for the writer. The imperative to implement multiple codes is called “code meshing”, and it “reject(s) the monolinguistic”, reinforcing the bridges of communication (116). Therefore, transnational and community outreach widens the knowledge capacity of the institution.

Horner remarks that there are scholars who believe “hybrid discourses obscure institutional dynamics of power (117).” The Foundationalist Model, for example, believes in a “fixed set of linguistic and notational conventions and procedures (113).” This framework ultimately lacks the blueprints for innovation in a globalized society such as the one we live in. It is the free flow of knowledge that empowers individuals who are negated in other pedagogical frameworks. In other words, academics need to construct cultural and gender diverse narratives in order to empower students and diversify content.

Works Cited

Duffy, John; Christoph, Julie Nelson; Goldblatt, Eli. Literacy, Economy, and Power : Writing and

Research after “Literacy in American Lives”. Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press,

  1. Ebook Library. Web. 15 Nov. 2015.

Brandt, Deborah. “Writing for a Living- Literacy and the Knowledge Economy.” Madison: University

of Wisconsin, Sage Publications, 22.5. 2005. Electronic.

Brandt, Deborah. Sponsors of Literacy. NCTE Research Foundation and U.S.

Department of Educational Research and Improvement, April, 1997.

Electronic.

Dr. Kate DeLuca – Examining Rhetorical Safe Spaces on Tumblr

Dr. DeLuca demonstrates that within online communities there really isn’t a designated “safe space” where individuals can engage in unfettered, vulnerable communication. That is particularly due to the ubiquitous sightings of “Troll-haters” who peruse the web looking for opportunities to condescend and demoralize regular online citizens who are looking to participate in a community. Dr. DeLuca asks “what if we didn’t just shake it off (3)?” Particularly, “haters interject in rhetorical safe space.” Tumblr tags such as “#fashion” and “#fatspo” are consistently berated by these crass internet ghouls.

While DeLuca demonstrates that “digital citizens are creating spaces for themselves across the web”, she is also pointing to the ethical obligations of said citizens within community contexts (6). She states, “As we make these spaces, we can engage within them, in ethical ways (6).” Thus, DeLuca integrates an ethical lens in how students see and participate in community spaces.

How a person participates in online spaces may vary. However, digital communities ought to have the right to monitor and limit trolling on the sites. Sites such as Tumblr have an obligation to their users to make the web a safe place. If the comments are in any way condescending they should not remain on the site, and the individual ought to receive punishment. I try to think about online spaces as analogous to physical spaces. If a book club is meeting at a coffee shop, and an egregious troll decides to contaminate the room with poisonous slander half as bad as the slander internet trolls implement they would surely receive harassment or disruption of peace suits. In other words, the law does not allow physical spaces to be hampered in the same way that digital spaces are. If a man stood up at a church and said God is a %$$#(*@ then he would surely be discredited, exiled from society, and maybe even arrested (depending on the community). Whereas, on the internet trolls go completely unchecked. Freedom of speech is different from slander or harassment, both of which are punishable by the law. So why aren’t internet trolls reprimanded in the same way? Kids are being abused on the internet daily, some of them are even killing themselves. You hear this story all the time.

In terms of feedback for DeLuca, it is unlikely I have any insights she haven’t already considered. Moreover, i’m not sure the projected aim of this project. I like the use of multimodal presentation, the Tumblr website is engaging and unique. It terms of content, I wanted to hear more background on the ethical implications of community safe spaces on the internet and how they can be protected. I like the notion of acting against internet trolls, and the legal implications of harassment. Legality on the internet is such a new territory that it is often vexing and something that we push under the rug in civil discussion. I’d love to open the can of worms and see how accountability can be enhanced online.

Serviss- Femicide and Rhetorics of Coadyuvante Blog Post

Tricia Serviss explores the avenues political activists have utilized to promote awareness of the atrocious Femicide occurring in Mexico. Persuasive tools are used to combat injustice in both a communal and legal setting. Live action represents the rhetors goals and supports the cause. “A legal request for access to documents” about victims was reinforced through a rigorous campaign to bring awareness to the Femicides within the public. (615) There is both logos and pathos apparent in the mediums which the freedom fighters publish their material. The coadyvante movement is effective because of their “collaborations on a pragmatic level, rhetorical strategies on a conceptual level, and shared literacy practices.” (614)

Similar to Moss, Serviss is demonstrating that literacy events occur often outside of a academic setting. Where Moss tracks the patterns of rhetoric in a church community, Serviss looks at how political activism uses literacy and rhetorical tools to empower. Collective action combines emotional appeal and legal action, making organizations a well armed force in the rhetorical battle. For the “Coordination of Nongovernmental Organization against Violence Toward Women”, the imperative in Mexico is to stop Femicide.

The rhetoric used in this setting is strikingly similar to that of the new “mestizaje” rhetoric. Thus, cultural codes are harnessed by the rhetorician to communicate effectively to the community. The post cards send a personal message and a legal prerogative. Moreover, the fight is not only against those who doubt transnationally, but the very culture and government which fails to respond to such atrocities. “Her (Farel) story was continually re-written by government officials and local reporters.” (613) When the government does not protect their citizens’ rights, it becomes a matter of political activism among citizens to bring about change. Consider Brandt’s appeal to the workers union whom were ostracized by voracious lawyers.

The complexity of the rhetoric was based on a common duplicity apparent when any group is attempting to change a social, political or economic system. In a Rogerian style, the rhetor must appease the values of the reader and at the same time oppose them. In order to convince one must appeal. These activists were continuously forced to “subvert and appease the patriarchal systems that cast their daughters as shameful and worthless.” (622) The combatants against injustice were further expressing long time cultural codes which had been built in order to fight injustice in a similar cultural system. Philosophical origins of the rhetoric could be traced back to liberation theology, which was founded upon the promise that heaven would be reserved for the poor and oppressed. Moreover, they contended that the spirit of christ was in the individual rather than the institution. “resistance to singularity of authority” is prevalent in both the coadyvante and liberation theological perspectives.

Thus the activism for victims of Femicide are shown to use various written/verbal mediums of literacy in both social and legal environments. The origins of the activism are rooted in cultural codes specific to the central american region such as liberation theology. In light of the increasingly oppressed women in this region, activists strive to critique narratives conciliatory with even the Mestizaje identity such as the story of Malinche. The indeginious Malinche is seen as raped rather than willingly partnered with the Spanish Cortes. Thus, the european conquest of central and south america is seen as an act of severe oppression rather than one of colonial expansion for the good of the empire. The shaping of a new narrative which empowers women is not only bringing awareness to the victims of Femicide but also addressing larger cultural codes which have effectively oppressed women in society. The first step in changing society is in changing the narrative, thus writing and the writing process becomes an essential weapon in doing this.

Writing Process Protocol- Writing in New Ways

Ian Cleary

English 16: Intro to Writing Studies & Digital Publishing

Dr. Julia Voss

Writing Process Project

10.25.15 

Introduction & Methodology

Exemplified in this writing process assessment is Prior’s Concurrent “Think Aloud” Protocol. Prior indicates that an individual involved in the “Think Aloud” protocol must “parse” his/her information through extensive, often sub-categorical “coding” stages. Moreover, the objective is to discern a relative “pattern of activity” between the process of planning and inscription (Prior-183). Reinforced by introspective audio sessions in between tasks, I will develope what Murray considers to be the pinnacle of the writing process. That is, the moment of “incubation”, where the writer composes via “unconscious activity.” However, such writing bliss is only accessible after arduous planning and revision(162). In this case, the test subject is myself. Murray comically comments he is the laboratory rat, I suppose I am too.

Conducive to the experiment, it is essential I provide some relevant background information on the subject. This is a self sponsored assignment, and so the subject is myself. I am a 22 year old, caucasian, straight-male, upper middle class senior at Santa Clara University. I can be slightly sardonic, though amiably liberal. I thoroughly enjoy the colloquial style of teaching which emphasises creative thinking and problem solving. As an English major, I also enjoy a breadth of literature from a myriad of genres and historical periods. I’m writing in my apartment, it is quant with a work desk. All of the writing and audio recorded introspection (link available in the work cited) for this protocol was recorded in my apartment. It is generally quite here, and no distractions worth noting were precluding my ability to write coherently.

The “rhetorical/ process goals” of these subsequent composing sessions will materialize as a brief three section analysis of Prior’s article titled, “Combining Phenomenological and Socio-historic Frameworks for Studying Literate Practices: Some Implications of Deborah Brandt’s Methodological Trajectory”, from Goldblatt’s distinguished book “Literacy, Economy and Power(Goldblatt, 176).” My writing protocol occurs in a naturalized setting, “combining thinking aloud protocols with the writer’s own introspective accounts (Berkenkotter, 158).” The audience will most nearly be individuals in our ENGL 16 class whom may hold an interest in Prior’s additional scholarly research, or the think aloud protocol. The five categories, in the interpretation section, will be weighted in value in accordance with the time spent on each.

This is standard college writing, I develop a critical analysis of the research I read about in a classical style. The goal is to coherently discuss the material which I have read, measuring the effectiveness of my words through the writing process protocol. It should be said that I am writing in English, and not attempting to reach an audience outside of the english language. Furthermore, culturally coded elements are contained in the writing such as my adherence to Santa Clara University, represented by Dr. Voss, as the primary sponsor of the assignment and of course the Writing Studies community within and outside the academic realm.

First, I read Prior’s article, which was a brief ten pages. After reading the article, I surmised the key concepts of the article and made initial preparations for a written summation of the material, wherein, I conclude the session with an audio recorded introspection which considers key quotes and concepts extracted from the text. Understanding the content I wrote about was indispensable for an apt written analysis, hence the introspection in regards to content. This goes for all writers whose voice is tailored to a specific contextual activity, whether it be occupational or genre specific, understanding the content is important. Second, I will engage in minimum constraint writing on the topic; therein, I will produce further introspection via audio recording. Third, the free writing and previously elluded to introspective sessions reinforced the subsequent production of a general outline, which, following its organization, is discussed via audio recording. The final two stages continued as follows, I produced a rough copy of my three section analysis, conducive to Murray’s “incubation” phase. The subsequent findings were dictated via audio then drafted, and re-revised. Wherein, the final three section summation of Prior’s article manifested as actual text. The process indicated, as conducive to the sub-categorical methodologies, “what proportion of time is spent in each type of activity.” (181) Brandt notes this formidable research as an analysis of “sequential patterns of activity”. (181) This will enable the audience to determine which sections of the writing process were emphasized and which were not.

Results

The initial minimum constraint writing activity was meant to enhance my own grasp on the material I chose to write with. That is, a time set to write without any regulation to better inscribe my thoughts to words. Content is a formidable element to the writing process, mastering it should be the initial step in writing. Furthermore, free writing enabled space to conceptualize complex ideologies and to talk through them. For example, a few sentences would work around an idea, and then a final sentence would make the idea “click”. The concluding sentence is in italics given its significance in encompassing previous thoughts on the topic; this was a way of highlighting important comprehensive moments in the free writing process. Here is an example from the minimum constraint writing process:

“The IO experiment shows that new tools produce more concise insights. We can better record the interactions of “life world” with new technological mediums. ‘cutting-edge computers, programs and networks’ help us shape who we are, help us communicate more clearly.”

The outline enhanced my understanding of design, as conducive to arrangement of ideas and structural fluidity. Using a diagram table, I was able to locate important insights from the free write and incorporate them accordingly. Each section is given concise points to focus on. Moving from the open landscape of free writing to the outline enhanced brevity. Minimum constraint writing emphasises creative interpretation, whereas the outline enables structure. However, the outline was also a creative process in that it could be read in different ways. The outline displayed the content in a way which lacked the rigidity of linear arrangement. The outline could be interpreted horizontally, vertically, and diagonally. The rearrangement of content illuminated the process of grappling with complex ideas.

Similar to Murray’s insight on the writing process, I noticed the arrangement of material is an audience dependent process. In other words, how texts are arranged are in accordance with the audience’s preference in aesthetic, or conceptual understanding of the material one is writing about. This also underlines Brandt’s concept of voice, and how technical voices are tailored to contribute in a  particular occupational function. Furthermore, the outline precluded redundancies bound to turn up in later drafts, as simplifying content became a routine task when organizing the outline.

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The drafting process was entirely dependent on the formerly prescribed technical actions taken. That is, the more planning leading to the initial draft enabled a writing experience nearer to Murray’s account of “incubation”. The act of composing comes in unconscious flows when enough preparation has been done. Composing is similar to the actor’s ability to act when they have arduously prepared for a scene. The greater the preparation time, the greater the performance. Understanding the material before writing precludes the writer from self discovery halfway through the paper, forcing him/her to digress and reformulate the thesis.

Dictation and introspection complimented the drafts fluidity also. Audio reflection enabled compositional depth. While the free writing space enabled the text to blossom creatively, introspection enabled me to better assimilate my writing to a wider architectural framework. Commentary on the arrangement of ideas allowed me to better indicate how I wanted things arranged. For example, in the audio session between drafts I mention, “The outline has been helpful in making the outline more fluid, bringing the elements together making each word more packed.” Other comments such as, “I found it challenging to limit the length of the sections, as it required great attention to each sentence” demonstrate increased effectiveness in writing given the insights harvested from the audio introspection (Soundcloud). When making one sentence the strength of four, understanding the arrangement of ideas becomes more important than writing long winded papers which lack a focus. By the same token, I was constantly considering sentence structure, and whether or not the audience would understand and/or enjoy the content. It was a vulnerable process recording the audio. I am used to presenting a polished product rather than the process of making one.

Between drafts one and two I was able to integrate a greater degree of brevity. The ideas were fixed, it was simply the technical structure that became the focus. Mentally, my exertions were not precluded by a lack of ideological clarity, making it a simple technical operation. A comparison between drafts one and two demonstrate the systematic progression of technical structuring for the sake of clarity. The arrangement of ideas from outline to initial draft is also an essential component.

I’ve highlighted key changes between the drafts. The color orange is representative of materials I got rid of, whereas yellow are components I added to the second draft. Much of this process consisted of mixing, matching and clarifying for the sake of greater coherence. For example, I conclude with “Technology is the new stage of authorship” as opposed to “technology tools built the new stage for authorship.” These sentences mean two different things. Simplifying my word choice became imperative to send a direct message that is digestible.

In many cases I embedded thematic positioning for the sake of aesthetic. Calculated themes engaged the audience. For example, I emphasize actors on a stage as representative of forms of agency and the stage as the structural or contextual elements separate from individual agency present in writing. I mention “Actors become essential players in the shapers of content, as does the stage upon which they act.” This sums up the contextual elements of text tracing Prior writes about in a broad way. If the audience is not aware of his definitive terms it is unhelpful to start in with dense terminology before “setting the stage.” Thus, it is essential that I use thematic positioning to make the material more understandable.

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Reflection

The protocol writing process was comprised of a variety of stages, in which, as Dr. Berkenkotter expounds, the “writing plan leads to a number of sub-plans.” The majority of my time was occupied by the initial outline and planning of what was to be drafted. Subsequently, the drafts flowed with ease once enough planning was done. Moreover, the outline component of the writing process negated a “reflexive focus”, whereas free writing emphasized it. Thus, the combination of exercises enabled a well balanced final text. I found composing with a technical consciousness created a greater flow of content.

Murray’s experience with revision in planning was similar, Berkenkotter found that “in the act of composing, writers move back and forth between planning, translating and reviewing their work (163).” Constant adherence to sentence to sentence transitional technique with an emphasis on clarity invariably reinforced my writing. The introspective audio accounts added depth to my understanding of not only the content I was writing about but the “stylistic and rhetorical goals” of the text itself. (163) All forms of embodied activity, often components of the protocol process, enhanced my subsequent reflections, and ultimately the quality of craftsmanship in the text. Thinking about writing, talking about writing, taking a coffee break and rereading were all utilized to compose effectively. Continuous planning and revising led to a form of unconscious writing, which Murray names “incubation (164).” Incubation occurred mostly in the second draft, as the first draft was primarily aimed at translating the outline subsets to an initial rhetorical structure.

Another key component to the writing process was attention to the audience. Murray contends that it is “wrong to say writers only consider their audiences when doing external revisions (165).” While there is no direct peer edit during the revision process, I was constantly considering the fluidity of my statements for the sake of my audience. My intention was to write briefly yet effectively, rather than long winded and redundant. The outline in particular enabled me to eliminate redundancy, for the sake of my audience.

Moreover, a great deal of technical writing today, as described by Brandt, is tailored to short concise snippets. Brandt’s interviewee assents, “If the statement isn’t consistent with parameters for communication, that’s not going out (180).” Only small portions of writing are meant to contextualize heaps of information. This is practical in an occupational environment. If the writer is effective, he/she will be able to take a large amount of data and provide a brief summation which is clear to an entire subjective audience. Occupational writers have the objective of putting writing into a “tangible, and thereby transactional form.” (167) By the same token, it is somewhat disheartening to limit components of the inner voice for the sake of brevity; this observation likely comes from my love of meandering creative writing and fiction novels.

It was striking to see how context dependent writing has become. While occupational writing is more neutral and aimed at being an effective vehicle for information, different mediums demand different rhetorical goals. At the same time the need to trace a text is inescapable. Not only are writers in need of finding the origin of their writing, or its “historicity”, they must refine it to a specific audience which requires an aptitude for cultural coding. Therein, audience dependent writing traverses through many worlds, and can be as diverse as are the number of people on the planet.

There is an ethical element to autonomy just as much as their is an ethical component to sharing. Sharing my writing process was challenging. There is an ethical aura reinforcing the concealment of the writers schemes or designs. Oscar Wilde often said that it was of the utmost importance to conceal the writer. In his particular situation, hiding elements of his identity was a matter of safety, as he was later imprisoned for his homosexuality. Another example of this would have been women writers whom gave themselves male names. While concealing personal identity is not the same as concealing the writing process, I think there are components which are invasive to the autonomy of a writer. Fiction writers in particular may not want to disclose for reasons of creative copyright. That is, certain elements of creativity may want to be copyrighted by the artist. Embodied activity may be conducive to success and so autonomy becomes a way of concealing the access points to literacy rather than sharing them.

Works Cited

Duffy, John; Christoph, Julie Nelson; Goldblatt, Eli. Literacy, Economy, and Power : Writing and

Research after “Literacy in American Lives.” Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press,

  1. Ebook Library. Web. 26 Oct. 2015.

Brandt, Deborah. “Writing for a Living: Literacy and the Knowledge Economy.” Written

Communication 22.2 (2005): 166-97. Electronic.

Berkenkotter, Carol and Donald M. Murray. “Decisions and Revisions- The Planning Strategies of a

Published Writer, and Response of a Laboratory Rat: Or, Being Protocoled.” College

Composition and Communication 34.2 (1983): 156-72. Electronic.

Prior, Paul. “Tracing Process: How Texts Come Into Being.” What Writing Does and How it Does It

(2004): 167-200. Electronic.

Cleary, Ian. “Writing Process Introspective Audio.” IanCleary. 557718328. Soundcloud, October 24,

2015. Electronic. https://soundcloud.com/ian-cleary-557718328.

My relationships with Sponsorship: A decisive factor in attaining health, wealth and a happy career

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Brandt’s Sponsorship Concept

Brandt defines sponsors as “powerful figures who bankroll events or smooth the way for initiates (Brandt 166).” In the specific context of Brandt’s definition, Sponsors regulate literacy, which is considered a “valued commodity(163).” The importance of education is not only in accessing literacy but acquiring the credentials necessary for a particular career path.

Application of Sponsorship

Sponsorship in an academic and non academic setting, emphasizes the overall importance of pedagogical, both academic and experiential, sponsorship in acquiring a fruitful career and generally happier life. Sponsorship has played a critical role in my own life by gifting me with literacy through higher education and teaching me about the outside world. Both my experience with sponsorship at Santa Clara University and my time in Costa Rica with an experiential program have gifted me with insights into literacy and the global environment of the 21st century.

Education has been the foremost asset in establishing fruitful paths to the future. Santa Clara University, for example, is a beneficent sponsor which has granted me access to literacy, the most important commodity of the 21st century. As an English major, Santa Clara University has provided me with the tools to write effectively and contend for jobs in the worldwide market. Santa Clara University has become a competitive sponsor in silicon valley, its regional location often makes it even more competitive given that it is positioned in the one of the most opulent regions of the world.

By the same token, I am aware that Santa Clara University is an exclusively private school. The education I have been given is a precious and rare commodity that most of the world will never receive. In many ways this correlates to Brandt’s notion of structural literacy. Sponsorship, in this context, is not only a highly valuable commodity but an indicator of status on a local and global scale. Santa Clara University provides access to paths that others outside the university community will be unable to access. As a result, I have a great deal of gratitude to my teachers and family for providing me with such an opportunity.

Santa Clara University is a particularly gracious pedagogical sponsor given their ethical duties as a jesuit institution. The prerogative of our university culture is to share knowledge and draw hard lines where ethical obligations arise. My first quarter at Santa Clara I took a theology class which emphasized an ethical framework. We read the book “La Verdad” by Mary Ignoffo and learned about the atrocities committed by the Salvadoran government. They murdered Jesuit priests who were promoting education in the country. I was able to meet Lucia Cerna, whom was the only survivor and witness to the assassination of the priests by the military. This real life story displayed the University’s commitment to illuminating the injustices of the world, conveying pedagogical sponsorship to be the sharing of both intellectual and ethical knowledge.

Aside from my experience with sponsorship through higher education, I have made contact with sponsorship which gave me perspective on the global issues of the 21st century. In high school I lived in Costa Rica for a year in an experiential education program. The woman who ran the program went to Harvard, and considered philosophical elements of teaching when creating the program. It was a unique kind of sponsorship which emphasized experiential education and enrichment of perception, particularly on a global level. Living in a third world country was an experience that highlighted the importance of pedagogical sponsorship, given the looming presence of economic disparities between 1st and 3rd world countries. It had the effect of learning through indirection. The more direct work we did was community service oriented. I managed a recycling program and worked on an earthquake relief team. The recycling program helped with the problem they had of burning trash. The aid we provided was in the form of rebuilding houses after the earthquake near Sarapiqui, a catastrophe which devastated many communities.

Nonetheless, I was able to access literacy in a non-academic environment through the Costa Rica sponsorship program, which is conducive to what Dr. Moss defines as a literacy event outside of the academic world, which in her research is seen through the sermons of preachers in the African American Community. Rather than interpreting a text I was interpreting global realities and exposing myself to unique contextual environments.

So, living in a 3rd world country made visible the lack of opportunity a majority of humans on the earth have for a better quality of life, thereby, through indirection, heavily emphasized the importance of sponsorship. In a third world country there is little employment, and the standard of living is much decreased from that of the United States. In Costa Rica, the majority of citizens were unemployed or employed in a job that was physically laborious and required little or no literacy skills. Upon returning to the United States, it was easy to discern jobs were more literacy oriented. Especially in my hometown of Silicon Valley, where tech companies thrive. It was disappointing to learn that America was outsourcing manufacturing branches to countries in Central America, sending much of the hazardous waste involved in making computers there. More than anything, my educational sponsors in Costa Rica taught me that the standard of living in the U.S. was a prized possession, yet invariably this meant hard times for those outside the country, particularly in the case of minimum wage labor.

Although living in a 3rd world country was a rude awakening, I noticed that access to Sponsorship was the saving grace which would enable me a better career and, subsequently, standard of living. U.S. citizenship, as given by a government sponsor, was foremost a ticket to a higher standard of living for many.

Historical, Social, and Cultural context 

From my personal reflections I learned that social status can be increased through qualified degrees from a premium sponsor, which granted the applicant a better career and standard of living. Sponsors of higher education in the U.S. led to better skilled training which in turn provided applicants with a more fruitful career. Skills learned in higher education trained “initiates” for better paying, less arduous careers.

Moreover, my own vehement love for education was supported by the ethical attachment higher education maintains. Through their granting of scholarships they have become imperative vehicles for social mobility In a world where literacy and important credentials bolster one’s career. Providing education to underprivileged students, through scholarships and grant programs, was an ethically enriching action from a sponsor. Moreover, Santa Clara University in particular acts as an ethically conscious sponsor through illuminating injustices in the world through a Jesuit lens. Thus, through indirection I was able to recognize the importance of pedagogical sponsorship when I witnessed the lack of opportunity in a 3rd world country, and find my own educational home in an ethically upright institution. 

Moreover, growing up in Silicon Valley I have often been immersed in a world of technology. It is apparent that this is ostensibly the birthplace of a brand new industry which has increased the value of pedagogical sponsorship. It is no surprise that computer technicians and software developers, also known as STEM employees, are receiving hefty salaries. After acquiring their skills from a university sponsor, they go on to receive a mean annual income of $83,940. There is a clear disparity between this lofty sum and that of ⅔ the American population working in retail and fast food employees. The latter group makes a meager $23,840 annually (Bureau of Labor Statistics). Subsequently, “nearly all stem occupations typically required an associate’s degree or higher for entry”, whereas, “associate’s degree or higher made up only about 27% of overall U.S. employment (Bureau of Labor Statistics).” Therefore, it is concluded that the technology industry is entirely credential based, sponsorship dependent, and very profitable compared with other occupational categories.

The criteria for employment in the tech industry only reinforces the role sponsorship plays, and invariably increases the value of higher education. This research is increasingly pertinent to people living in Silicon valley such as myself. In the San Jose-Sunnyvale- Santa Clara area today, STEM jobs make up over 20% of all employment, this is higher than any region in the country (Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Evaluate sponsorship concept in light of your application:

It is imperative to receive credentials by a sponsor in order to access literacy and thereby mobility in the social paradigm, which is clearly displayed in the example of STEM industry employees. Unfortunately, as discerned from my experience in Costa Rica, some people are not offered the opportunity to gain credentials or literacy from sponsorship. Many people are left without even a mediocre standard of living.

Moreover, the role of sponsorship fluctuates dependent on status and fiscal value of both the institution and the individual applicant. Sponsorship tends to be fixed when considering who attends university and who doesn’t. There are really bright students who can’t afford higher education and will not receive a scholarship. Brandt contends that these structural factors preclude access to literacy. Brandt’s particular example is that of Lowery, whom struggled for union workers’ rights. The lawyers used their higher authority, and literacy, to assuage the union’s efforts. Lawry’s efforts for union rights went from “quick, competent justice to expensive and long term justice (174).”

In Costa Rica, as in most of Central America, it is quite easy to see the exploitative measures of the U.S. upon these countries through faulty trade pacts or the environmental damage of outsourcing tech manufacturing. The lack of literacy is nonexcusable given their immediate proximity to the U.S. Comparatively, there is no infrastructure in countries like Nicaragua and Costa Rica, which is precisely why they lack access to literacy. Brandt states an honest approach to sponsorship would be “to expose more fully how unequal literacy chances relate to systems of unequal subsidy and reward for literacy (172).”

Those in higher positions of authority are able to use their abundant literacy and credential power for good or evil. The power of sharing knowledge is similar to the power of sharing money. In Brandt’s example, the lawyers are using their sponsorship powers for evil. In Costa Rica, the U.S. could, but doesn’t share their wealth and knowledge. The ugly truth is that being aware of inequalities illuminates the importance of sponsorship in maintaining a better quality of life. An eBay CEO may get paid $150,000 to work in an office in Cupertino, CA because of his computer science degree. Meanwhile, workers in a village in central america are paid a few dollars a day to manufacture the design in hazardous conditions, likely exposing themselves to many cancerous chemicals. Thus Brandt contends that larger economic cycles preclude the ability to attain literacy or credentials, thus creating a stagnant society. Moreover, it is displayed that without specific skill training from a sponsor, the prospects for a stable and fruitful career become slim.

Being ethically aware of global realities, such as living conditions I perceived first hand in countries such as Costa Rica, helps to conceptualize the importance of the sponsorship process in providing a better quality of living. In particular, higher education becomes a beneficent sponsor given the ethical obligations they fulfill by granting scholarships and helping students understand the realities of the globe. I have emphasized my own access to literacy at Santa Clara University as being imperative to success and understanding these realities. Moreover, the importance of sponsorship is conveyed in the research on STEM jobs in Silicon Valley. All of the STEM applicants have a bachelor’s degree. Thus, sponsorship, and the attainment of literacy and credentials therein, reigns as sovereign over nearly every occupational pursuit worth having.

Works Cited

Macfadyen, Matthew. Stiva Oblonsky. Tumblr, 2013. Electronic. Accessed October 5,

  1. http://matthewmacfadyencaps.tumblr.com/post/56130189435.

Daly, Mary and Leila Bengali. Is It Still Worth Going to College? Federal Reserve

Bank of San Francisco, May 5, 2014.  Electronic. Accessed October 3, 2015.

http://www.frbsf.org/economic-research/publications/economic-letter/2014/ma

y/is-college-worth-it-education-tuition-wages/

Burning Glass Technologies. How Demand For a Bachelor’s Degree is Reshaping the

Workforce. Burning Glass, September, 2014. Electronic. Accessed October 3,

2015.http://burning-glass.com/research/credentials-gap/

Watson, Audrey. Introduction: BLS Statistics by Occupation. Bureau of Labor

Statistics, August 2014. Electronic. Accessed October 2,

  1. http://www.bls.gov/spotlight/2014/occupations/

Davis, Matthew, Kevin Brock and Stephen McElroy. Expanding the Available Means of

Composing: Three Sites of Inquiry. Enculturation, 2012. Electronic. Accessed

September 29, 2015.http://enculturation.net/files/availablemeans/index.html

Brandt, Deborah. Sponsors of Literacy. NCTE Research Foundation and U.S.

Department of Educational Research and Improvement, April, 1997.

Electronic.

Beverly J. Moss “A Literacy Event in African American Churches: The Sermon as a Community Text”

Beverly Moss considers the sort of literacy which occurs in a non-academic setting. In particular, she elaborates on the rhetorical process which occurs in “worship services at predominantly African American churches (137).” Moss’s first order is to clarify that a “literacy event” is situated in “any action or sequence involving one or more, in which the production and/or comprehension of print plays a role (92).” Thus, these particular church services are emblematic of rhetoric established in a non-academic literacy event. Moreover, she contends that it is “impossible to talk about literacy without discussing the social practices of literacy.” Social practices are equated to be cultural codes and/or ritualistic events which are manifested as embodiments of communal memory. The preacher must “speak in the language and culture of their people, no matter how educated the preachers are.” Thus, the preacher must not only teach the sermon but implement what Moss calls “skillful allegory” into the summation of each leason. The practices of the community are represented by the preacher. The preacher embodies these elements as well as his own practice of literacy which may be separate from the community. His rhetorical tools for communication, however, are never separate from the communities understanding of communication. They are used in a setting which emphasizes key points between texts, through either a verbal or written architecture.

Moss discovers two preachers, one whom writes his sermons and one who doesn’t. Both refer back to scripture, as the primary goal is to teach the bible. Thus, regardless of the rhetorical vehicles the preacher is always working with a single, original text. The sermon is comprised of both “scriptural reference and skillful allegory (141).” The stories must pertain to the modern man or woman. Moss states the “preacher must address the contemporary man and his needs (141).” Thus, Moss discovers the complex contexts which are embedded in both “writing and speaking” when teaching a text which goes back a thousand years. Inciting interactive roles among the audience was seemingly conducive to providing an effective message. Moss assents that “dialogue is a normal part of the black preacher’s sermon (141).”

In such a context “preaching is a rhetorical art (142).” Specifically, the orators focus is to strengthen the community or even “construct communities (148).” Whether the preacher used a written script or not, both had a “basic philosophy which guides his ministry” which correlated back to the original text. The original text is interpreted differently dependent on the community to which it is being spoken to. Both preachers often incorporated political discussions into their sermons, taking looser interpretations on the scripture . Thus, the sermon becomes the site of “religious and social activity (147).” The original text becomes an anchor for the orator to engage the audience in modernizing biblical concepts, thus carrying the word of God into a modern social context.

The most essential rhetorical tool Moss discusses is storytelling, wether personal or biblical. Allegories provided substantial identification within the community, likely moreso than a dry reading of the original scripture. Moral lessons become easily accessible when their is an intermediary between the original scripture and the audience. The same goes for the interpretation of a menu at a restaurant and the waiter/waitress whom helps clarify. The waiter/ waitress reinforces the original text, often simplifying it into cultural codes conducive to the respective audience. Another element of preaching not unique to the church was the way in which the preacher emphasized community through the “WE” pronoun. Uniting the community substantially emphasized the rhetorical goals of the preacher. This is very similar to the communal emphasis local american diners placed on their customers. The “WE” pronoun gave customers a sense of comfort in a family friendly environment. The church culture emphasized community and inclusiveness building a strong foundation for social interaction which kept the church goers coming back. A “collective voice” demonstrated the importance of community in shaping the sermon, the same way the sermon intended to shape the community. These series of complex interactions were dialogic, and could even resort to the singing of “song lyrics as examples” for interpreting scripture. All of the church members felt a “insider status”, this ultimately placed the “collective voice” of the sermon and community on a higher level.

Overall, Moss’s research on African American sermons demonstrates the effectiveness of rhetoric in bringing a community together. It also demonstrates the power of sharing literacy. Both preachers were highly educated, and demonstrated this through their effectiveness in reaching their audience, not their ability to use high brow diction. It is displayed that the best way to reach an audience, no matter the content, is to communicate in their cultural language. Everybody community has a cultural language, and inclusiveness is an integral part in shaping the rhetorician’s speech, or in this case sermon. Imagine how effective these preachers would be if they incorporated multi-modal concepts into their sermons?

Questions: What were the most effective rhetorical tools of either Pastor? Was the manuscript or non-manuscript more effective? Was the non-manuscript preacher more audience dependent?

Tony Mirabelli’s “Learning To Serve”

What is foremost in my mind after reading Mirabelli is the poor treatment of waiters and waitresses in the food service industry. George Orwell describes the horrendous occupation as “like sorting a pack of cards against the clock.” (Orwell, 1933) Mirabelli contends that “virtually every rule of etiquette is violated by customers in their interaction with the waitress.” (160) It is clear to anyone who has gone out to dinner that this is blatantly apparent. No one should be subjected in such a way as this. While he doesn’t go into further detail, it is further clear that, from the management in the food industry, “literacy practices are manipulated by management to maintain control over the worker.” (159) Mirabelli illuminates the long grown stigmas of waiters and waitresses in this society. For example, on “bitter waitress.com” users hold the “assumption waitresses are ignorant and stupid.” (144) However, this is clearly not the case. Many are forced into the food industry in order to pay for college tuition.

Meanwhile, the breadth of the article distinguishes between “service workers” and “knowledge workers”, and how in the former “language is spoken, read or written vastly different from how it is used in a classroom.” Moreover, Mirabelli aptly distinguishes between “texts” and “verbal performances”. Such notations are imperative to the full conceptualization of literacy, especially in regards to Brandt’s deliberation of occupational literacy. “Social practice”, thus becomes conducive to accessing literacy and monetary gain. Waitresses and waiters often utilize wit, or what Mirabelli calls “emotional labor” to gain from a “monetary performance”. (158) These processes are not as different after all from the various performances “knowledge workers” may conduct. What is germane throughout all industries is the notion that “literacy continues to be defined by considerations of achievement.”(151) Moreover, restaurants utilize forms of literacy, such as a menu, as enticing customers to purchase certain food items. The waiter or waitress often benefits from ambiguities in the menu as an opportunity to explain his/her knowledge of the menu. Some customers have tailored needs separate from the menu, it is the waiter or waitress whom can communicate those needs for the comfort of the customer. Employees were often able to sagaciously appeal to customers through the “magic words strategy”, which was ostensibly a formidable “linguistic device” in generating approval from customers. (153)

Mirabelli briefly touches upon another intriguing subject. One which is conducive to a grander deliberation on the status of institutional authority. The diner’s often appeal emotionally to customers as a location promoting a “family, friendly atmosphere.” (155) Thus, it became a marketing component to attract customers who desire intimate dining experiences separate from other dining experiences. This notion of targeting an audience is overwhelmingly conducive to larger institutional methods of design to promote conscientious “corporate cultures” which propagate long term appeal. Thus, the attempt to establish the relationship between waiter/waitress and customer as a “gesture of friendliness”, rather than a economic transaction becomes a road to reciprocity and succesful business acumen.

The highlighted discussion of verbal versus written communication is apparent throughout the article. Moreover, the most effective form of communication is simultaneously providing multi-modal options. That is, the menu is reinforced by the waiter/or waitress, whom is a representative of the literal menu. Thus, written words and communication work in tandem to successfully communicate to the voracious, often irascible customers!

Self serve electronic menus are fast becoming utilized in the food industry. This type of technology might be better for society if subverted, think of the number of jobs America would loose if such a machine became germane throughout the food service industry.

Brandt- Writing for a Living_ Literacy and the Knowledge Economy

Brandt is deliberating the importance of viewing the writing process from an occupational perspective. Seeing that, “writing now composes about 3/4 of the value added in the production of goods and services.” (165) Thus, the “transactional form” of writing is comprised of the various ways in which generalization is occurring, as correlated to an efficient business, through the process of literacy and writing. “Managing knowledge has become the most important economic task of individuals, businesses and nations.” (165) The knowledge based transactions in what Brandt calls the “knowledge economy” are synchronic and reinforced by workplace categories of “communication, brain power, technology, learning and creativity.”(166) It is clear from Brandt’s research that writing intensive positions were inextricably bound to the all encompassing knowledge economy. Positions were thus categorized based on their exertions with writing in her subjects’  respective occupations. Overtly, Brandt contends that literacy is a “human skill integrated into the knowledge economy.”

There were two notable ways of utilizing writing in the workplace based on Brandt’s interviews. “texts” were either “a primary service for the company” or a “means of internal communications or coordination.” (167) Moreover, writers in these categories had all “made significant investments in new training and learning beyond their formal degrees.” (167) Brandt’s interviewees were highly intelligible, extrapolating profound insights into the writing process in an occupational environment.

It was clear that the writers personal voice was often subsumed by a variety of demanding parameters. That is, the corporate voice claims ascendency, followed by technical restriction in the writing itself. Brandt assents to this notion when she states “rules and regulatory agents have a growing presence in the oversight of writing.” (181) Writers were constrained in their efforts to effectively communicate; however some found the rigid structure appealing. The debate on wether or not extreme imposition on workplace writing is ongoing, one side contends such practices “inhibit innovation”, while others claim that emphasizing an institutional voice emphasizes coherence and germane fluidity. At both ends there is verity. It is when concise communication and rigid structure becomes the only emphasis in writing that problem occurs.

The discussion of email surveillance in the workplace was further perplexing. I find it separate from the argument for technical structure in writing memos, business plans, email correspondence and the like. If a managerial structure is supervising the emails of its employees, this is blatant invasion of privacy.

Another imperative point made by Brandt is the growing reliance on technology in the workplace. She contends, and her interviewees assent, “a whole culture revolves around the computer rather than typed words on paper.” (184) Moreover, the shift to technological primacy has technically changed the way messages or content is arranged in the workplace. For example, one interviewee explains that the exponential increase in access to information has forced workers to decrease the available content in a given memo or report. It is given a degree of sympathy is necessary for employees in the tech paradigm, who have to digest strenuously large quantities of available data in a single day. Brandt assents to this when she says, “Mass access to authorship is a relatively new phenomenon.” Thus there is no excuse for occupants, as the data is readily available.

Overall, the interviewees often expressed aversion to the varying parameters of occupational writing. They characterized their experiences as “involved in constant shifts” or “he lost much of his earlier autonomy”. (188) Though, these various technical skills are acquired for the sake of monetary reward. The individual must conform to the institutional parameters or desire of the allocated sponsor. If regulations change, it is the employees responsibility to assimilate and adapt.

When discussing a writers inner voice, however, much of technical writing assuages it almost entirely. There is no room for what Dr. Berkenkotter discusses as “reflexive” writing. In fact, workplace writing is engineered for “production and profit”, lacking any emphasis on conscience or individual rights. The seemingly lacking component in occupational writing is an ethical one, in turn conveniency and clear communication is emphasized. The naturalistic flavor of writing is subsumed by the titanic corporate mechanisms that run the world. Often, the individual occupational writer is a small cog in the gargantuan corporate mechanism, individual emphasis remains a paltry subject for these institutional employers.

The tight knit corporate structure enables employees to produce effectively very small tasks in proportion to corporates overall purpose. Thus, the ethical idea behind the company is only lightly trotted upon, given culpability is impossible to trace if an occupants job is nominally imperative to the overall corporate mission. Moreover, when authorship becomes for profit the spectrum changes. One of the interviewees expresses he may be “ruined as a reader” due to his role at work reading mass amounts of business emails. He ruminates that he never reads for pleasure, outside of work. How unfortunate!