ERIC Number: EJ898953
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 43
Interpretive Discourse and Other Models from Communication Studies: Expanding the Values of Technical Communication
Williams, Sean D.
Journal of Technical Writing and Communication, v40 n4 p429-446 2010
This article argues that in spite of some attempts to expand the diversity of approaches in Technical Communication, the field remains rooted in an expedient, managerial, techno-rational discourse, where discourse is understood as the values that guide research, practice, and teaching. The article draws on approaches from Communication Studies, specifically discursive analysis and metaphor analysis, to ground this claim and to demonstrate what possible alternative discourses might be possible. The article then argues that moving toward an "interpretive" discourse will expand the values of Technical Communication, but in a way that both retains existing assumptions but also includes a new focus on the "complete person." Interpretive discourse is theorized using Habermas' communicative rationality and User Experience Design and the article concludes with some implications about moving Technical Communication toward discursive diversity. Ultimately, the goal of the article is to encourage researchers, teachers, and professionals to embrace this discursive diversity that complicates our historical means-ends rationality.
Descriptors: Technical Writing, Interpersonal Communication, Figurative Language, Discourse Analysis, Communication Strategies, Discourse Communities
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A