2020-2021 University Catalog 
    
    May 25, 2024  
2020-2021 University Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Course Descriptions


 

Writing and Rhetoric

  
  • WRIT 315 - Public Address


    The study of public address has long been considered the cornerstone of a liberal arts education - meant to prepare graduates for success in public life as citizens, community members, and professionals. Students will examine public discourse on a relevant theme while familiarizing themselves with key debates regarding the theory and criticism of public address. Following that, students will engage in their own rhetorical criticism, as well as participating in speech and dialogue exercises that draw on rhetorical principles. As students immerse themselves in the history, criticism, and performance of public address, they will also consider how rhetorical dynamics inform issues of democracy and citizenship, especially as those issues relate to differences of ethnicity, race, class, and gender.

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 325 - The Narrative in New Media


    Students will explore the ways in which innovations in media have changed the shape of narrative and textuality. People often assume that new media is a 20th-century development, but this course will be a more historicized view; the printing press, after all, changed media more fundamentally than anything since. Starting with a foundation of media theory and narrative theory, the course will then work through the ages: printing; newspapers; color printing; radio; television; electronic fiction; fan fiction; hypertext; remix aesthetics; and videogames.

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: None
    Formerly: WRIT 222


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  • WRIT 342 - Rhetoric in Black and White: Communication and Culture in Conflict


    In the nearly 400-year history of social relations between Blacks and Whites in America, rhetoric has often failed. Civil war, Jim Crow, Civil Rights, and Black Power were all actions or movements that ensued largely because words fell short of persuading persons of good will to submit to reasoned arguments. Arguably a pillar of American democracy (as in the freedom to speak and to dissent), why has rhetoric been so seemingly ineffective in securing mutual respect and understanding between America’s Black and White citizens? This course seeks to answer this question by closely examining the styles of communication that historically have shaped the cultural identities and public personas of the two groups. From slave speech to the languages of protest in the 1960s to verbal expression in rap music and social media today, the course considers why communication or dialogue involving race is often doomed to fail.

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 345 - Crafting Bodies: Movement, Gender, and Performance


    The primary focus will be the body as viewed through the rhetorical lens of techné, defined by Aristotle as crafted knowledge and application. It engages with recent developments in the field of rhetoric, which has expanded to consider how persuasion and meaning making are impacted by movement, gender, and performance. To this end, the course will center on theories for studying bodies, introducing students to the dominant conversations within rhetoric and related fields. Students will apply these frameworks to texts from popular, political, and artistic performances to better understand how dominant narratives about the body constrain or enable certain types of behavior and what they signify. Through this theoretical and practical study, students will become critically aware of the intersections of bodies and their representations and how these intersections influence our capacity for engaged deliberation and social action.

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 346 - Hip Hop: Race, Sex, and the Struggle in Urban America


    Examines the ways in which language has reinforced racial and ethnic identities and divisions in post-civil rights America. It explores the conceptual origins of race, ethnicity, and other categories of difference, particularly those produced through legal, political, socioeconomic, and humanistic discourses. Recognizing that the United States is not just a multicultural society but a multilingual one, the course investigates how urban American youth have “talked back” to power and seized the power to name. It focuses in particular on uses of the Hip Hop vernacular by urban Latin Americans, African Americans, Asian Americans, and white Americans to give voice to their reality and the urban struggle. The course also traces the causes and consequences of historical silences, as suggested by Martin Luther King’s dictum: “A riot is the language of the unheard.”

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 348 - Discourses of Whiteness


    Claims that whiteness–white racial identity–is more about language than biology. Whiteness is a rhetorical construct that exists only in discourse, yet its concrete effects impact societies all over the globe. Drawing on texts from around the world, students trace the evolution of this construct from its inception up to the present day, examining the rhetorical strategies whereby whiteness is both hidden and revealed in a variety of genres: personal memoirs, philosophical essays, scientific investigations, political writings, legal documents, critical analyses, historical essays, and such mass media as television, film, newspapers, and magazines. By engaging in the rhetorical analysis of these texts, students examine how the discourses of whiteness continue to frame reality and mediate power relations. A required evening film series accompanying the class has students viewing, discussing, and analyzing feature films, documentary films, and television shows.

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: WRIT 348L  
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: Global Engagements


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  
  • WRIT 350 - Rhetoric & Citizenship


    To engage students in both the analysis and production of public discourse through examining the rhetoric of citizenship. It is through the language and symbols of citizenship that individuals come to understand themselves as political subjectivities and engage with others as democratic agents. Students will examine how the meaning of citizenship is shaped and contested through public discourse. Students will analyze debates over citizenship, mainly in the context of immigration debates in the US and in other parts of the world.

    Credits: 1.00
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: Global Engagements


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 354 - Dialogue and Deliberation in Democratic Life


    Public communication is a vital part of democratic life. It is through the circulation and exchange of public speech that citizens shape the contours of public life, build community, and determine their core civic values. More importantly, it is through the work of democratic dialogue that citizens struggle with their inevitable differences and seek to find ways of working together despite those differences. The purpose of this class is to examine both the theory and practice of deliberative democracy, with the aim of better understanding how communities might use dialogue and deliberation to effectively engage across different perspectives. Students are asked to think critically about the possibilities and challenges of democratic dialogue. Students are also trained in facilitation techniques, with the major project for this class providing students an opportunity to facilitate an open forum on a campus-related issue.

    Credits: 1.00
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: Human Thought and Expression
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 391 - Independent Study


    Opportunity for individual study in areas not covered by formal course offerings, under the guidance of a member of the faculty.

    Credits: variable
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: None
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


  
  • WRIT 491 - Independent Study


    Opportunity for individual study in areas not covered by formal course offerings, under the guidance of a member of the faculty.

    Credits: variable
    Corequisite: None
    Prerequisites: None
    Major/Minor Restrictions: None
    Class Restriction: None
    Area of Inquiry: None
    Liberal Arts CORE: None


    Click here for Course Offerings by term


 

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