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ERIC Number: ED547847
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2012
Pages: 231
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
ISBN: 978-1-2675-3492-7
Writing on the Threshold: Investigating New Media Concerns in Composition Textbooks
Etlinger, Sarah A.
ProQuest LLC, Ph.D. Dissertation, The University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee
This dissertation examines three recent first-year composition textbooks' treatments of new media. These textbooks treat new media as equivalent to print media; I offer "media equivalency" to describe the problem. This concept suggests that one medium is understood by the same methods as another. I argue that the media equivalency present in these textbooks impoverishes students' understanding of rhetoric, writing, and communication, and prevents them from engaging with the material concerns of new media, which have re-mapped traditional notions of writing and communicating. Because of these shifts, I propose a pedagogy more in line with new media that takes as its central tenet a critically-oriented form of parody that points toward difference instead of satire. This form of parody, "neo-parody," describes the relationship between writing and new media and serves as a model for thinking about how to teach writing in our current context. A central component of neo-parody involves critical attention to composing processes, which requires sophisticated rhetorical knowledge not easily realized when composing with a single medium. Thus, neo-parody allows us to see writing and new media in dialogic conversation with each other instead of adversaries, or, as I argue in my analysis of the textbooks, substitutes for one another. As such, neo-parody promises new paths toward a composition pedagogy for the digital age. In Chapter 1, I trace the development of textbooks and discuss the criticism regarding the place of textbooks in the first-year composition classroom. However, since this dissertation also focuses on new media, in Chapter 2 I consider the debates about new media (and its relationship to writing), which come to a point of arrest when I introduce neo-parody as a way to make sense of this relationship. In Chapters 3 and 4, I outline the methods of analysis (3) and present my findings (4), which center around the concept of media equivalency. Finally, the last chapter imagines how neo-parody might come to fruition by examining a more radical textbook as a primer for neo-parody, and an assignment that illustrates how we might use this concept in our classrooms. [The dissertation citations contained here are published with the permission of ProQuest LLC. Further reproduction is prohibited without permission. Copies of dissertations may be obtained by Telephone (800) 1-800-521-0600. Web page:]
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Publication Type: Dissertations/Theses - Doctoral Dissertations
Education Level: Higher Education; Postsecondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A