Class Notes October 9 & 14

Johns’ Text


Discourse community- text/ language

(COPs) Communities of practice- Discourse

            -You are a part of it and try to better it in some way

            -Stem from the community your in


Discourse is your beliefs and actions

Communities of practice you have to be actively present within


Social, Political, and Recreational Communities

Different pressures that come to us and make us join communities of practice.

I think you have many communities of practice but they aren’t necessarily all your Discourses. All these little communities make up our Discourses. I like to think of communities of practice as like little puzzle pieces that make up one big puzzle.


One of the values of the academic communities of practice is having your own opinions and beliefs. No one wants to talk to themselves, so interacting with these people of different opinions yet same interest help promote change and different ideas and opinions.


Professional Communities

-Can be professional

-Every major profession has its organizations, its practices, its textual conventions, and its genres

-discourse communities are communities of practice

-Conventions are the way they are because of values, needs, and practices of the community.



You need to fully learn it in order to articulate to some one else.


Language, Texts, and Values

-Texts must be explicit

  • To the point
  • Depends on the audience
  • Provide clarity

-Topic and argument should be prerevealed in the introduction

  • Pointing right to the argument
  • Guiding the reader

-Writers should provide “signs” for the reader to follow throughout the text

  • Follow


-Language of texts should create a distance between the writer and the text to give the appearance of objectivity

  • “author-evacuated”-speaks of academic expository prose-author’s personal voice is not clearly evidence because the first person pronoun is absent and arguments are muted
  • “author-saturated”-individual voice pervades
  • “I think” “ I feel”

-Texts should maintain a “rubber-gloved” quality of voice and register

  • “ wonderful”

-Writers should take a guarded stance, especially when presenting argumentation and results.

  • Hedging?
  • Modals (would, could, should)
  • Black & White statement

-Texts should display a vision of reality shared by members of the particular discourse community to which the text is addressed

  • Roles
  • “You need to put yourself in some one else’s shoes”

-Academic texts should display a set of social and authority relations; they should show the writer’s understanding of the roles they play within the text or context

  • Conventions of roles (appropriateness)
  • Hierarchy- Power relations

-Academic texts should acknowledge the complex and important nature of intertextuality, the exploitation of other texts without resorting to plagiarism



Class Notes- Peer Reviewing 11/20

How does one help a writer out without being to harsh?

Be constructive, suggestive, and not mean.

Take into account the writer’s interests and aims. Make sure they aren’t getting off topic.

Push further than what we have learned in class. Use class info/ lessons as a base of what we have learned.

Consider the stage of the draft. Concentrate on the large picture: the paper’s focus; the content; the writer’s voice.

Worry more about the big picture and ideas/ content not the grammar and sentence structure.

Comments in the margin- give us the ability to comment in the moment and help them right there in the paper

Comments at the end- we address larger concerns, emphasize the key points of your response, explain and elaborate on issues you want to deal with more fully.

Don’t write all over her paper; not inbetween lines or over the lines of text. Write in your space and let the writer have theirs.

Make sure comments explain your complete thoughts because the writer may not know where you are if you don’t explain enough. Efficiently elaborate.


Class Facilitation: Mediums, Modes, Genres, and Literacies

November 18, 2013

Free Write #1: Genre has characterizations but really has no set definition because genres are never the same and constantly changing. Some of these characterizations that help define genre include: Rhetorical, Social, Dynamic, Historical, Cultural, Situated, and Ideological. They help us get a grip on what genre really is. Genre creates situation just as much as situation creates genre. I am unsure exactly what medium and mode are in terms of English definitions. I know the math terms but not exactly the English ones. I am going to guess that they have to do with the audience and purpose of what you are writing.

Medium is the in between genres?

Genre is a classification, but everything has its own genre.

Mode- the manner in which an idea or topic is expressed or experienced.

-Ex. Instant messaging, texting, social media sources

Medium- is how you are saying what you want

Ex. Blog content is the mode but the medium itself is the blog and the computer

Literacies- not only the ability to read and write but the ability to communicate with the surrounding world

-Ex. Being able to communicate and socialize with those around you

Free Write #2: My ideas about mediums, modes, genres, and literacies have changed. And will continue to change like they have been for as long as I can remember. The definitions of these things are always especially for genres and literacies. Mediums and modes are a more stable concept. I learned that the English definition of medium is the means in which you communicate the message you are trying to get across. Mode means the manner in which an idea or topic is expressed or experienced.

Genre Notes November 11, 2013

Class Notes


-Flexible and stable

-Created by social situations

-General (forms)-[ex. Five paragraph essay] knowledge not enough for use

-Can’t be defined but can be characterized/ described

-Characteristics: social, rhetorical, dynamic, cultural, situated, ideological, historical

-They can adapt and change.

–They can adapt and change BECAUSE they are social, rhetorical, dynamic, historical, cultural, situated, and ideological.

-Antecedents-a.k.a the parents of another genre

-Genre is working like an infinity sign-things keep building off each other and just keeps on going but changing at the same time-Ex. Twitter.

-Genre chains- roles that genres create other genres-genre-genre-genre

-Ex. Teacher puts up assignment [genre]-Student does assignment [new genre]- Teacher grades/ put comments [creates another new genre]-

-Genre creates situation just as much as situation creates genre.

-Rhetorical (characterization)- choices – you make choices based on what your audience to experience – Ex. Faulkner’s writing choice: to link it to the past

-Social- Roles and relationships- Genre as a whole is social- The social who we want to be relates and comes about in different ways in situations

-Dynamic- “the ability of genres to both respond to and affect situation is part of what makes them dynamic”

Historical- genres depend on previous genres, antecedent genres, for their development

Cultural- norms, values, customs, like big D, Discourses

Situated- “an instance of a genre”- ex. Slideshow for weddings, but what if played at weddings anniversaries or even a funeral- Changes the way the genre is acting

-Ideological- we have our values and ways of thinking and expectations that we subconsciously have and when broken we immediately realize it

Technological Literate- Class Notes October 21

Technological Literate

October 21, 2013


Problems: Teach verse pedagogy- changes fast, changes slow


Learning to use technology as a kid: Powerpoint, word, typing,


Why this change to technology?



-Clean to read



Tech literate- manipulate to your advantage- adaptation

Discourse props- basics of props and technology and how to use them

-Knowing why it is important

-Application- to be able to apply knowledge in several ways



Technology also has is consequences.


-Not as socially literate

-Face to face conversations have become less important. Social interaction has changed from face to face to online.

– It has changed the dimensions of relationships.

-Violence and Depression


Media has authority over what we think or what is perfect.

It gives us false realities that cloud our vision.

Money is ultimately power- Power comes from popularity- Popularity comes from made up lies-

Class Notes 10/16

Literacies, Academic Discourses, & Conventions of Appropriateness

Group Facilitation


Conventions of appropriateness- understandings developed overtime about the kinds of behaviors associated with teaching and learning, which are, and are not, appropriate. Includes: academic behaviors in the classroom; kinds of interactions he of she has with students; whether and how textbooks are used.


Ex. Teachers




-Dress appropriately

-Age appropriateness




-Personal Life

-Trash talking


Examples of teachers- respecting your teacher also along with willingness to learn


In order to be literate in an academic discourse, one must be able to converse with someone of that specific in that discourse in a way that exemplifies their knowledge of that Discourse. There are “qualifications” in order to get into an academic discourse community. For example, an art major would have no idea what a physics major is talking about when explaining dynamic pressure. And vice versa; a physics major would not really know how to write an artistic reflection.


How to join an Academic Discourse?

-You must know the terminology and “language” of that Discourse.

-It is authority that oversees that certain Discourse.

-There are no magic steps or formula to get into a certain Discourse. 


Class Notes September 30, 2013

Culture, Literacy, and Discourse


Culture is changing faster than we know it.

We have to learn to accept certain aspects of our culture and other cultures.

Miss America clip- Talked about how Nina was the first Miss America winner to be criticized after winning because of her ethnicity.

Food- food is a huge part of culture. Ex. We were given cupcakes and French Biscotti. The French Biscotti was more earthly and natural tasting. The cupcakes clearly represented the American culture. Cupcakes are sugary and sweet and clearly genetically modified.

As we go to different countries, we experience different cultures. It makes us aware of other countries’ cultures and realizes the big and little differences. These different cultures create different Discourses.


Class Notes September 23, 2013

-Their identity is their Discourse.

-They had distinct Discourse. Example: They used different Spanish dialect with different people.

-Everything has a different culture

-It was oppressive in the way that society and culture made the Chicanos think that they were not good enough ex. Professor and not letting her teach Chicano literature

-The masculine form usually takes over. It’s sad in the way that they are oppressed.

-Why did her mom tell her to speak English when she was sending mixed messages herself?



-Consequences: positive, negative


English is a powerful language.

-Why should we have to make things in Spanish for other people? Why can’t they learn our language instead of us accommodating them?

-English is dominant but Spanish is a growing language that we have to accept

-I think as long as they are citizens of America…

-English as a fixed trade language?

–Different forms of English that come from different cultures and languages combined

-Language evolves according to the people who use it.

-Should we have a national language?

-No I do not think we should have a national language because it kind of closes off the option for some people to come over to our country. It limits the ability of opportunities people have in this country we claim is “the land of freedom”.

Class Notes September 16, 2013: Life World Discourse


Lifeworld Discourse

-How society has changed its Discourse?

-We have 18th century values and Discourses of independence, male dominance, and roles in society.

-Changes in Discourses come from society- ex. Technology and students- Students used to have books but now we all use laptops and ipads.

History- Western civilization has caused us to become what we have today

Discourses change through history because that’s where we get our morals

Whenever there is a Discourse when someone wants us to change, the demeanor changes.

You change your Discourse when you change your environment and when your wants change.

-I think it can also change when you want something different in your life. Like if you want to be a successful college student, you will do your work and study. If you don’t want that for your life, you will not have the drive to be successful.


Ex. Perfumes in different cultures and they thought he smelled bad. Cultures are a part of our life world discourse.


Short Video:

  • The judge told off the lawyer for showing disrespect
  • He wasn’t fitting his Discourse of being a lawyer
  • His Discourses overlapped
  •  The different Discourses in the court room were displayed


Literacy depends on the society you are in. It is very contextual. How can we define literacy if everyone’s definition is different?


They would dress in clothing that are okay with getting muddy and dirty-typically plaid shirt, overalls, or cowboys boots

They value hard work, and down to earth things.

They may talk a little more country or southern.

Class Notes 9/11/2013

Class Notes Continued 9/11/2013


Others Responses to the Question

  1. Family man at first, Filmmaking, Store owner, Entrepreneur, Friend (Discourse of Friend changes the values of what you are willing to do), Artist-street artist, Celebrity

-At first he followed the law, he then came rebellious with his art and filmmaking

Street Artist:

  • Dress- Hoody, clothes you don’t care about, dark colors, camouflage, running shoes, change of clothes, bag, mask
  • Technology- printers, spray paint, software/photoshop, computer, phones, camera
  • Place- Big City
  • Time- Mostly at night
  • Values- proving that you are a “badass”, the art comes first (not money), no snitching, secrecy, creating your own artwork and not coping each other, rebels,
  • Belief- street art has message and meaning and love and passion
  • Language- street art vs. graffiti,

2. Make connections/ knowing people, prove yourself, being validated, changing what you do to make others believe, truly believing it yourself



Change (Discourse, Lifeworld)

He doesn’t really fit the “Street artist” Discourse because he looks like a family man.

His mom died and caused him to become a filmmaker.

Technology causes troubles for street artists.

He kind of cheated the system… He became a street artist yet he didn’t spend that much time doing it.