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The Roots of Re-mix: Back to Imitation, back to form

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Jennifer Kontny

on 1 May 2010

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Transcript of The Roots of Re-mix: Back to Imitation, back to form

Imitation, states Nick Delbanco, is The 2010 College Composition and Communication's call for papers states, "whether it’s taking the old and making it fresh and new or taking the current and giving it a different spin, to remix a thing is to try and make it better."




Have we used the notion of "re-mix" before the focus
on new media within our field?
What does re-mix offer the field of rhetoric and composition?


"remix" can happen in
two ways. 1) by "taking the old and making it fresh and new..." 2) by "taking the current... Like this: OR and giving it a Different spin..." Re-mix And... To address these questions, let's get back... In the 2010 Conference on College Composition and
Communication call for papers, one of the most central composition journals in our field, 're-mix' was listed as the conference's theme. "Whether it's taking the old and making it fresh and new or taking the current and giving it a different spin, to re-mix a thing is to try and make it better.

According to this definition, then, Pulling at the Roots of Re-mix: back to imitation, back to form In the 2010 Conference of College Composition and Communication call for papers, 're-mix' was listed as the conference theme. As stated in the call, "whether it's taking the old and making it fresh and new, or taking the current and giving it a different spin, to re-mix a thing is to try and make it better." So, it seems like is a term we use most often with visual or audio texts. But how can "re-mix" be used to help us think
about other kinds of texts?
In writing about the first "What I did over summer
vacation" essays, Lucille Schultz posits that students' "voices" rest outside of the process of imitation.

Clearly, by asking students to write about the
familiar and the personal, these writers disavov
the contentions that students had nothing to say,
and they invite students to write in their own voice,
not in imitation...(Schultz 21). imitation ...is often thought to be a completely outmoded form of writing instruction within the field of rhetoric and composition. Imitation, for Schultz, who was writing during the mid-ninties, imitation within the history of writing instruction seems to be seen as something that detracts from student inventiveness. That is, Schultz sees the expressivist quality of writing about one's self (i.e. what students did over summer vacation) as being less opressive because, in these models, Schultz claims, students do not imitate or model the voice of another, rather, they are free to invent their own voice.
Both invention and imitation are generative (D'Angleo 283).




In the 1970s, one of the last articles on "imitation" was published in
our central journal, College Composition and Communication. This
journal, the same journal tied to the conference calling for papers on "re-mix,"
published an article entitled "Imitation and Style" by Frank D'Angelo that stated
the following: All three focus on having students read about systemic cultural injustices inflicted by dominant societal groups and dominant discourses on those with less power, and upon the empowering possibilities of rhetoric if students are educated to "read" carefully and "resist" the social texts that help keep some groups subordinated. Andrea Greenbaum has recently argued that cultural studies approaches, critical approaches, many feminist approaches, and even postcolonial approaches can all be seen as similar "emancipatory movements in composition." reading, analyzing, and discussing the texts upon which the course rests are unlikely to leave room for any actual teaching of writing. So we get a "writing" course in which writing is required and evaluated, but not taught.
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