Department of English

Mac Scott


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Courses


RHE 310 • Intermed Expository Writing

43908 • Fall 2021
Meets TTH 11:00AM-12:30PM PAR 6
Wr

In our society, there’s no shortage of people claiming to be original and independent thinkers, and we often assume good writing is produced through acts of creative genius. Such views, however, neglect the social dynamics through which ideas and writing emerge. Writing scholar Joseph Harris says that “whatever else they do, intellectuals almost always write in response to the work of others.” While we may be uneasy with the term “intellectual,” Harris speaks to the fact that meaningful writing often emerges when a writer engages with and expands upon compelling texts written by other people. This class asks you to approach writing as a way to think through and build from—whether by applying, complicating, or extending—the insights and concepts of other writers. You will practice bringing texts written by other people into conversation with your own experiences and to make use of these texts and ideas for your own purposes. You will also engage with and learn from one another through class discussions, informal feedback, and structured peer reviews. 

 

Toward this end, course readings will feature writers who expose the social, political, and personal dimensions of language. In turn, you will theorize and write about language, including how language both shapes and is shaped by our cultural beliefs, our relationships, and even our realities. To do this work, you will write weekly reading responses and three main projects (one 4-page essay; one webtext roughly equivalent to 4-6 pages; one multimedia composition roughly equivalent to 5-7 pages). These projects will require you to participate in all aspects of the writing process, including reading, discussion, drafting, revising, peer review, and editing. We will also learn about the dimension of writing associated with style, including word choice, syntax, and flow as well as narration and arrangement, and you will make choices concerning your own writing style(s) depending on various rhetorical considerations, such as purpose, readability, and genre.

 

Tentative Grade Breakdown

Short essay on “natural facts” about language - 20%

Webtext on language and community - 20%

Multimedia composition on language and reality - 20%

Weekly reading responses - 30%

Participation and in-class activities - 10%

 

Required Course Readings

Joseph Harris, Rewriting: How to Do Things with Texts (e-version available at UT Libraries)

 

Chapters/essays made available on Canvas will likely include: Chris Holcomb and M. Jimmie Killingsworth’s Performing Prose: The Study and Practice of Style in Composition (excerpt);

Stanley Fish’s “What Should Colleges Teach?”; Vershawn Ashanti Young’s “Should Writer’s Use They Own English?”; James Baldwin’s “If Black English Isn’t a Language, Then Tell Me, What Is?”; James Porter’s “Intertextuality and the Discourse Community”; Gloria Anzaldúa’s “How to Tame a Wild Tongue”; bell hooks’s “Language: Teaching New Worlds/New Words”; George Lakoff’s “Why It Matters How We Frame the Environment”; Rebecca Solnit’s Foreword to Call Them by Their True Names

RHE 309K • Rhet Of Late Night Comedy

43345 • Spring 2019
Meets MW 10:00AM-11:30AM FAC 7
Wr

Before its current use in public discourse, the phrase “fake news” was used to describe The Daily Show with Jon Stewart—a late-night political satire TV show that featured a variety of comedians (such as Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Larry Wilmore, and Samantha Bee) who have since gone on to host similar shows of their own. By providing comedic takes on current events and political actors, these shows led to questions concerning the role and effects of satire in our society. While The Daily Show may have eventually outgrown (or shied away from) the “fake news” label, the tension between late-night comedy, political commentary, and the news continues to provoke passionate debate.

In this course, students will examine a variety of arguments about, for, and against late-night political comedy, including the (in)effectiveness of satire, political bias and/or responsibility, and the diversity (or lack thereof) of TV show hosts and writing staffs. Students will also learn about the various rhetorical strategies used within these shows, such as irony, imitation, hyperbole, metaphor, and self-deprecation, as well as the affordances and limitations of the multimodal format by which hosts address their audiences. Students will ultimately put forth their own arguments concerning the place, potential, and/or problem of late-night comedy in the contemporary political and cultural landscape.

Assignments

  • Paper 1: Annotated Bibliography (10%)
  • Paper 2.1: Rhetorical Analysis (“A Closer Look”) (10%)
  • Paper 2.2: Revision (15%)
  • Paper 3.1: Argument (10%)
  • Paper 3.2: Revision (20%)
  • Paper 4: Video Presentation (10%)
  • 5 Short Writing Assignments (25%)
  • Peer Reviews (Mandatory)
  • Participation (Required) 

Required Texts

  • Everything’s an Argument, Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz, 7th edition (without readings)
  • Little Longhorn Handbook

RHE 309K • Rhet Of Late Night Comedy

43695 • Fall 2018
Meets MW 10:00AM-11:30AM PAR 104
Wr

Before its current use in public discourse, the phrase “fake news” was used to describe The Daily Show with Jon Stewart—a late-night political satire TV show that featured a variety of comedians (such as Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Larry Wilmore, and Samantha Bee) who have since gone on to host similar shows of their own. By providing comedic takes on current events and political actors, these shows led to questions concerning the role and effects of satire in our society. While The Daily Show may have eventually outgrown (or shied away from) the “fake news” label, the tension between late-night comedy, political commentary, and the news continues to provoke passionate debate.

In this course, students will examine a variety of arguments about, for, and against late-night political comedy, including the (in)effectiveness of satire, political bias and/or responsibility, and the diversity (or lack thereof) of TV show hosts and writing staffs. Students will also learn about the various rhetorical strategies used within these shows, such as irony, imitation, hyperbole, metaphor, and self-deprecation, as well as the affordances and limitations of the multimodal format by which hosts address their audiences. Students will ultimately put forth their own arguments concerning the place, potential, and/or problem of late-night comedy in the contemporary political and cultural landscape.

Assignments

  • Paper 1: Annotated Bibliography (10%)
  • Paper 2.1: Rhetorical Analysis (“A Closer Look”) (10%)
  • Paper 2.2: Revision (15%)
  • Paper 3.1: Argument (10%)
  • Paper 3.2: Revision (20%)
  • Paper 4: Video Presentation (10%)
  • 5 Short Writing Assignments (25%)
  • Peer Reviews (Mandatory)
  • Participation (Required) 

Required Texts

  • Everything’s an Argument, Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz, 7th edition (without readings)
  • Little Longhorn Handbook

RHE S309K • Rhet Of Late Night Comedy

84440 • Summer 2018
Meets MTWTHF 10:00AM-11:30AM PAR 306
Wr

Course Description

Before its current use in public discourse, the phrase “fake news” was used to describe The Daily Show with Jon Stewart—a late-night political satire TV show that featured a variety of comedians (such as Stephen Colbert, John Oliver, Larry Wilmore, and Samantha Bee) who have since gone on to host similar shows of their own. By providing comedic takes on current events and political actors, these shows led to questions concerning the role and effects of satire in our society. While The Daily Show may have eventually outgrown (or shied away from) the “fake news” label, the tension between late-night comedy, political commentary, and the news continues to provoke passionate debate.

In this course, students will examine a variety of arguments about, for, and against late-night political comedy, including the (in)effectiveness of satire, political bias and/or responsibility, and the diversity (or lack thereof) of TV show hosts and writing staffs. Students will also learn about the various rhetorical strategies used within these shows, such as irony, imitation, hyperbole, metaphor, and self-deprecation, as well as the affordances and limitations of the multimodal format by which hosts address their audiences. Students will ultimately put forth their own arguments concerning the place, potential, and/or problem of late-night comedy in the contemporary political and cultural landscape.

 

Assignments

  • Paper 1: Annotated Bibliography (10%)
  • Paper 2.1: Rhetorical Analysis (“A Closer Look”) (10%)
  • Paper 2.2: Revision (15%)
  • Paper 3.1: Argument (10%)
  • Paper 3.2: Revision (20%)
  • Paper 4: Video Presentation (10%)
  • 5 Short Writing Assignments (25%)
  • Peer Reviews (Mandatory)
  • Participation (Required)

Required Texts

  • Everything’s an Argument, Lunsford and Ruszkiewicz, 7th edition (without readings)
  • Little Longhorn Handbook

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