Writing and the Digital Generation

Essays on New Media Rhetoric

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About the Book

Is it true that, in this era of digitization and mass media, reading and writing are on the decline? In a thought-provoking collection of essays and profiles, 30 contributors explore what may instead be a rise in rhetorical activity, an upsurge due in part to the sudden blurring of the traditional roles of creator and audience in participatory media. This collection explores topics too often overlooked by traditional academic scholarship, though critical to an exploration of rhetoric and popular culture, including fan fiction, reality television, blogging, online role-playing games, and Fantasy Football. Both scholarly and engaging, this text draws rhetorical studies into the digital age.

About the Author(s)

Heather Urbanski is currently an assistant professor of English at Fitchburg State University in Massachusetts.

Bibliographic Details

Edited by Heather Urbanski
Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 278
Bibliographic Info: photo, notes, bibliographies, indexes
Copyright Date: 2010
pISBN: 978-0-7864-3720-7
eISBN: 978-0-7864-5586-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Preface      1
Introduction: Blurring Rhetorical Borders
HEATHER URBANSKI      3

I. React: Maintaining a Fan Community Essays
1. The Inter(Active) Soap Opera Viewer: Fantastic Practices and Mediated Communities
MELISSA AMES      19
2. Going Deep: What Online Sports Culture Teaches Us About the Rhetorical Future of Social Networks
MICHAEL R. TRICE      33
3. Spoiling Heroes, Enhancing Our Viewing Pleasure: NBC’s Heroes and the Re-Shaping of the Televisual Landscape
MARINA HASSAPOPOULOU      45
4. History, the Trace, and Fandom Wank
KAREN HELLEKSON      58
5. Writing Wonder Women: How Playful Resistance Leads to Sustained Authorial Participation at Sequential Tart
KIMBERLY DEVRIES      70

Profiles
6. What the Frell Happened? Rhetorical Strategies of the Farscape Community
SEAN MOREY      83
7. The Realtime Forum Fan
THOMAS B. CAVANAGH      86
8. “As Seen on The Colbert Report”: Or, Why I Love Reality TV
GEORGIANA O. MILLER      90

II. Re-Mix: Participating in Established Narratives Essays
9. Making Our Voices Heard: Young Adult Females Writing Participatory Fan Fiction
SUSANNA COLEMAN      95
10. Dungeons and Dragons for Jocks: Trash Talking and Viewing Habits of Fantasy Football League Participants
JULIE L. ROWSE      106
11. Alternate Universes on Video: Ficvid and the Future of Narrative
KIM MIDDLETON      117

Profiles
12. Dean, Mal and Snape Walk into a Bar: Lessons in Crossing Over
JULIE FLYNN      132
13. Stars of a Different Variety: Stealth Teaching Through Fanfic
KRISTINE LARSEN      135

III. Re-Create: Creating Narratives within Established Frames Essays
14. Writing and Rhetoric for a Ludic Democracy: YouTube, Fandom, and Participatory Pleasure
DIANE PENROD      141
15. World of Rhetcraft: Rhetorical Production and Raiding in World of Warcraft
CHRISTOPHER PAUL      152
16. Rekindling Rhetoric: Oratory and Marketplace Culture in Guild Wars
MATTHEW S. S. JOHNSON      162
17. Virtual Guerrillas and a World of Extras: Shooting Machinima in Second Life
MARK PEPPER      174
18. Remix, Play, and Remediation: Undertheorized Composing Practices
ANDRÉA DAVIS, SUZANNE WEBB, DUNDEE LACKEY, and DÀNIELLE NICOLE DEVOSS      186

Profiles
19. Conf(us)(ess)ions of a Videogame Role-Player
ZACH WAGGONER      198
20. Born Again in a Fictional Universe: A Participant Portrait of EVE Online
HARALD WARMELINK      201
21. A Place to Call Home: The Experience of One Guild Chat in World of Warcraft
WENDI JEWELL      204
22. Magic Canvas: Digital Building Blocks
CATHERINE MCDONALD      207

IV. Teaching the Digital Generation Essays
23. Encouraging Feedback: Responding to Fan Fiction at Different Colored Pens
JULI PARRISH      213
24. MetaSpace: Meatspace and Blogging Intersect
ELIZABETH KLEINFELD      226
25. Meeting the Digital Generation in the Classroom: A Reflection on the Obstacles
HEATHER URBANSKI      239

Profiles
26. Making Dorothy Parker My MySpace Friend: A Classroom Application for Social Networks
ASHLEY ANDREWS      252
27. Novel Cartographies, New Correspondences
JENTERY SAYERS      255

About the Contributors      259
Index      265

Book Reviews & Awards

“captured my heart and engaged my mind”—Science Fiction Studies.