Fall 2016 Courses: Senior Seminars

ENG 4973 Senior Seminar: Rhetorical Networks

Instructor: Kenneth Walker
Class Time: Mondays 1:00p.m. - 3:45p.m.

Course Description
This senior seminar in contemporary rhetorical theory inquires into the cultural practices embodied at specific places (i.e., cities, streets, clubs, neighborhoods, ranches, landscapes, etc.) in order to (re)examine the intersections of rhetoric and networks. Using theories of rhetorical networks we will explore the social, material, and digital communication capacities in contemporary spaces that shape the writing, the activity, and the subjectivity of those who inhabit them. To ground these theories in specific cases, the course will model inquiry into rhetorical networks in the past, present, and future spaces of San Antonio. Students can expect to: (a) read deeply in the interdisciplinary literature on rhetoric, networks, and space/place; (b) select networked spaces/places as sites of application for rhetorical and cultural theory, and (c) build site-specific projects such as documentaries, digital archives, and research-based writing to advance student’s professional goals.

Daily Reading Summary/Responses (20%)
Archival Work: Digital Database & Special Collections Visits (20%)
Research Project (40%)
Documentaries (20%)

Texts (Major Selections From...)

  • Greco-Roman Rhetorics (Plato, The Republic, Aristotle, from Topics & Politics, Cicero, De Oratore, Quintilian, Institutio Oratoria, etc.)
  • Fleming, City of Rhetoric (2008)
  • Rice, Distant Publics (2012)
  • Reynolds, Geographies of Writing (2007)
  • Latour, Why Has Critique Run Out of Steam? (2004)
  • Latour, An Inquiry into Modes of Existence (2013)
  • Harvey, Social Justice and the City (2009)
  • Soja, Postmodern Geographies (2011)
  • Massey, World City (2007)
  • de Certaeu, The Practice of Everyday Life (1983/2011)
  • Rice, Digital Detroit (2012)
  • Rickert, Ambient Rhetoric (2013)
  • Pfister, Networked Rhetorics (2014)

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