WRIT 114.006 | ... with good intentions
Jason Tucker | Fall 2013 | MW 1:00-2:50 PM & F 1:00-1:50 PM
"…with good intentions: The rhetoric of representing, speaking about, and speaking for other people"
In this particular course, we will investigate the ways in which a wide range of texts represent a person or a group of people who belong to at least one identity group the author does not. Even if an author tries to stand up for his or her subjects—to advocate for them—that author’s judgments, assumptions, worldviews, etc. will always influence how he or she defines the people being documented. By studying how we talk about people, places, and events, we can uncover as much or more about the people composing the rhetoric (and the culture they come from) as we can about the subjects those authors represent. We study rhetoric to find the underlying implications—even whole philosophies—encoded into language, image, and many other texts. Aesthetic decisions are also ethical decisions. As we examine the techniques authors use, we will become more conscious of our own influences and our own assumptions about others (and the issues to which they are connected). We will develop greater skill (and, I hope, greater responsibility) in applying those techniques in our own compositions, and in using rhetoric to better understand and influence the complicated and diversely populated world in which we live.
Image Source: naixn's Flickr account