ENGL 1113 Yale University Different Forms of Communication Essay

Yale University

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I don’t understand this Communications question and need help to study.

I want you to read the 3 texts and find what is connected between them then come with a unique claim. it's important to not just stop at observing or reporting, but to also deepen or broaden the ways in which your reader thinks about this topic. Make sure that you're focused on the three articles that you read and that your claim is a unique response to their arguments that you then focus on arguing in the essay. (You should articulate who you are responding to, what they say that you wish to respond to, and have some sense of what your response will entail. At least 1250 words with in-texts citation and work cited page). I am an international students so I would recommend using basic language more than academic.

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Communication Teacher ISSN: 1740-4622 (Print) 1740-4630 (Online) Journal homepage: “Nobody puts baby in a binder”: Using memes to teach visual reason Emily Stones To cite this article: Emily Stones (2017) “Nobody puts baby in a binder”: Using memes to teach visual reason, Communication Teacher, 31:3, 137-142, DOI: 10.1080/17404622.2017.1314525 To link to this article: Published online: 25 Apr 2017. Submit your article to this journal Article views: 429 View related articles View Crossmark data Full Terms & Conditions of access and use can be found at COMMUNICATION TEACHER, 2017 VOL. 31, NO. 3, 137–142 ORIGINAL TEACHING IDEAS—SINGLE “Nobody puts baby in a binder”: Using memes to teach visual reason Emily Stones Department of Communication, Regis University, Denver, Colorado, USA Courses: Visual Rhetoric, Political Communication, Media and Society, Argumentation Objective: Students trace a social hierarchy created through the visual reason of memes. ARTICLE HISTORY Received 6 May 2016 Accepted 22 July 2016 Introduction and rationale Images are the foundation of contemporary life, and the communication field is frequently called upon to make sense of how images affect our sociopolitical environment. Our students possess valuable skills and knowledge of social media and other new technologies, but because of their intimacy with these technologies, they sometimes lack the reflective space that is needed to assess them critically. Visual rhetoric scholarship offers us a rich and nuanced understanding of visual culture, as academics have vigorously responded to what Mitchell (1994) calls the “pictorial turn” in Western societies, one that alters not just our modes of representation (from a primarily linguistic/written culture to a highly visual one), but also changes the nature of power structures, ways of knowing, and our means of communicating with others. Indeed, scholars often emphasize the primacy of images in our meaning-making activities of everyday life and the visual imperative such actions demand (Birdsell & Groarke, 2007; Debord, 1994; Finn, 2012; Hartley, 1992; Hill & Helmers, 2004; Olson, Finnegan, & Hope, 2008; Parry-Giles & Parry-Giles, 2002). Hariman and Lucaites’ (2007) articulation in No Caption Needed: Iconic Photographs, Public Culture, and Liberal Democracy of how a visual democracy functions best captures the concept of visual reason.1 They claim that democratic discussion and decision-making takes an epideictic form, and political issues must be negotiated through the social relations we imagine ourselves as part of, even if we never come face to face with those we perceive as fellow members. The authors explain, The visual public sphere activates public identity as a web of associations rather than as structure of arguments. Arguments are not erased, but they have to work through social networks … One sees who is being discussed, and the act of seeing them activates one’s own sense of social awareness. Critical reason is intertwined with social reflection. Images become mirrors, arguments are set in the context of social knowledge, and conclusions have to fit with or motivate adjustment of one’s own relationships with others. (p. 301) CONTACT Emily Stones © 2017 National Communication Association 138 E. STONES Their assertions about societal dynamics magnify the importance of viewer-viewed relationships and expand on the notion that images “choreograph a space between the observer and what is observed” (Garland-Thomson, 2001, p. 339), or what Mitchell calls the “recognition scene” that frames much of the discipline’s analysis and theory (p. 33). The concept of visual reason also articulates the connections between social order, the performance of mainstream values, and the complexity of verbal-visual rhetorics. When initially presented, visual reason can appear abstract and amorphous, and therefore potentially confusing to students. Concretizing this concept through a hands-on activity helps students explore the impact of perceived relations and social order in political discourse. It also enhances student reflection about the interplay of cultural knowledge and visual communication in their own decoding of political issues and events. The activity Preparation Prior to class, the instructor spends some time browsing sites such as Know Your Meme to get a sense of political meme series that are familiar to the students. Two meme series that have proven to work well in past iterations of this exercise include “Binders Full of Women” ( and “Casually Pepper Spray Everything Cop” ( The instructor makes copies of 8–10 memes in each series to distribute during the activity. In class The activity typically takes 45 minutes from start to end. Using “Binders Full of Women” as an initial example, the instructor shows a clip from a 2012 presidential debate to contextualize Mitt Romney’s controversial response to a question about pay equity for women ( The instructor asks students to speculate why some critics deemed his statement about “binders full of women” inappropriate. Students may struggle at first, as the comment does not sound overtly offensive in the original context. They will eventually suggest it is somewhat objectifying or does not pay homage to the skills these female employees had to offer. One way to introduce the meme series (see Figure 1) is to describe the images as individual interpretations of Romney’s statement, contextualized within mainstream cultural knowledge. The instructor emphasizes that the purpose of the exercise is not to judge Romney’s statement as prejudicial or not, but to see how members of the public made sense of Romney’s statement by imagining him within a particular social order. To start the analysis, the instructor distributes the memes to groups of three or four students and asks them to rank Romney’s “treatment of women” in comparison to other cultural figures. Students can create a numbered list or lay out the images in a visual hierarchy. When the class reconvenes, they compare their rankings. Students will organize the figures differently, depending on their age, knowledge, and differences in perceptions, COMMUNICATION TEACHER 139 Figure 1. Example memes from “Binders Full of Women” series. but certain themes will emerge, especially in the upper and lower echelons of their hierarchies (see Appendix A). The instructor asks students to explain their rationale and debriefs the exercise (see the next section). The second meme series is inspired by a 2011 incident at the University of California, Davis, in which campus police officers pepper sprayed Occupy UC Davis student protesters that refused to leave the campus. The instructor shows students a video of the events ( and explains the context. The instructor asks students to formulate an argument against Officer Pike’s actions, which transpires as something similar to “his actions are an unnecessarily cruel retaliation against a peaceful protest.” The instructor gives each group sample memes from the series and asks them to create a hierarchy that charts “how cruel” his actions were compared to other cultural figures. Many memes will show Officer Pike spraying children and animals, emphasizing his abuse of power on “innocent” victims. The more remarkable memes will feature Pike in an already distressing picture (such as in a WWII concentration camp), spraying someone who has already been wronged and therefore suggesting that Pike is even worse than the original perpetrator. 140 E. STONES Debriefing Binders full of women After completing the first activity, the instructor asks students to revisit their initial assessment of Romney’s statement. What do students learn from the meme series in regards to valuing, respecting, and empowering women in meaningful ways? Compared to someone like Ryan Gosling, where did Romney go wrong with his comments? The instructor points out that the memes make Romney’s statement seem more offensive than they originally perceived. Are the memes a fair representation of his comment or his character? What happens when we use cultural figures and create social order to “discuss” women’s rights? What gets left out of this conversation? Pepper spray cop After students complete the second activity, the instructor informs students of how the incident played out, with Officer Pike receiving countless emails and phone calls, many of them death threats ( and that UC Davis spent $175,000 to clean up their online presence after the incident ( The instructor asks students if they are surprised at the contempt Pike received after seeing the memes in which Pike is portrayed as worse than, for example, Godzilla, Hitler, and Pontius Pilate. The instructor questions if the memes helped to clarify or expand the students’ own thinking on the events. Does Officer Pike’s punishment (i.e. social castigation) fit the crime? Did the meme take on a life of its own? When are the memes more about injustice and the abuse of power and less about Officer Pike’s specific actions? The instructor spends time reflecting about how political issues are expressed in contemporary culture and the benefits and drawbacks of using memes—and the relations they (re)create—to inform political discussion and decision making. General debriefing In addition to teaching visual reason and how arguments travel through and by the relations articulated in these images, this debriefing is an excellent opportunity to reinforce concepts the instructor may have covered in class. . . . . Images act as enthymemes, in which the audience fills in reasoning, claims, and evidence to make sense of an implied argument (Blair, 2004). The movement and dissemination of images are important, as circulation changes the messages’ meaning and impact (Finnegan, 2003; Johnson, 2007). Memetic arguments stem from “visual commonplaces” and “digital topoi,” or the represented collective memories and cultural knowledge the public is presumed to understand (Hariman & Lucaites, 2007, p. 2; Sci & Dewberry, 2014, p. 232). In political communication contexts, the claim that logic and rationality assist, but do not determine political decision making sets the stage for perspectives that start with similar proclamations, such as Lakoff’s (2004) emphasis on metaphors and framing. COMMUNICATION TEACHER 141 The meme exercise allows the instructor to “bring it all together” and cement the paradigmatic shift students need to experience in order to process the implications of our visual culture. Appraisal Memes are banal and humorous, and their significance sneaks up on students. After this exercise, students have told me that they will “never look at memes in the same way.” I have completed a variation of this exercise four times in visual communication courses, and always at the end of the semester. At that point, the memes provide a fresh lens through which to review concepts we explored all semester. During the exercise, students gasp, chuckle, and click their tongues, demonstrating their embodied engagement in the material. Anytime we can laugh and learn simultaneously in class, this instructor is pleased. Note 1. I use the term visual reason to encompass the sense-making processes explained in this essay. None of the authors cited explicitly use this term. Notes on contributor Emily Stones received her Ph.D. from Indiana University and is a faculty member at Regis University in Denver, Colorado. Her primary research interests include non-profit fundraising rhetoric, disability visual activism, and political image-making, topics which greatly inform some of her favorite courses to teach on disability culture and political communication. References and suggested readings Birdsell, D. S., & Groarke, L. (2007). Outlines of a theory of visual argument. Argumentation and Advocacy, 43, 103–113. Blair, J. A. (2004). The rhetoric of visual arguments. In C. A. Hill & M. Helmers (Eds.), Defining visual rhetorics (pp. 41–61). Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. Debord, G. (1994). The society of the spectacle (D. Nicholson-Smith, Trans.). New York, NY: Zone Books. (Original work published 1967) Finn, J. M. (2012). Visual communication and culture: Images in action. Don Mills, Ont.: Oxford University. Finnegan, C. A. (2003). Picturing poverty: Print culture and FSA photographs. Washington, D.C.: Smithsonian Institution. Garland-Thomson, R. (2001). Seeing the disabled: Visual rhetorics of disability in popular photography. In P. K. Longmore & L. Umansky (Eds.), The new disability history: American perspectives (pp. 335–374). New York, NY: New York University. Hariman, R., & Lucaites, J. L. (2007). No caption needed: Iconic photographs, public culture, and liberal democracy. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago. Hartley, J. (1992). The politics of pictures: The creation of the public in the age of popular media. London: Routledge. Hill, C. A., & Helmers, M. H. (2004). Defining visual rhetorics. Mahwah, NJ: Lawrence Erlbaum. Johnson, D. (2007). Mapping the meme: A geographical approach to materialist rhetorical criticism. Communication and Critical/Cultural Studies, 4(1), 27–50. Lakoff, G. (2004). Don’t think of an elephant: know your values and frame the debate: The essential guide for progressives. White River Junction, VT: Chelsea Green. 142 E. STONES Mitchell, W. J. T. (1994). Picture theory: Essays on verbal and visual representation. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago. Olson, L. C., Finnegan, C. A., & Hope, D. S. (2008). Visual rhetoric: A reader in communication and American culture. Los Angeles, CA: Sage. Parry-Giles, S. J., & Parry-Giles, T. (2002). Constructing Clinton: Hyperreality and presidential image-making in postmodern politics. New York, NY: Peter Lang. Sci, S. A., & Dewberry, D. R. (2014). Something funny? The Laughing Joe Biden meme as digital topoi within political argumentation. In C. Palczewski (Ed.), Disturbing argument: Selected works from the 18thNCA/AFA Alta Conference on argumentation (pp. 232–237). New York, NY: Routledge. Appendix A How Stories Argue: The Deep Roots of Storytelling in Political Rhetoric Author(s): Andrew Leslie Source: Storytelling, Self, Society , Vol. 11, No. 1 (Spring 2015), pp. 66-84 Published by: Wayne State University Press Stable URL: JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range of content in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new forms of scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms & Conditions of Use, available at Wayne State University Press is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access to Storytelling, Self, Society This content downloaded from on Mon, 06 Jan 2020 18:53:06 UTC All use subject to How Stories Argue The Deep Roots of Storytelling in Political Rhetoric Andrew Leslie Storytelling has long been an important part of both campaigning and creating and maintaining community. However, the relationship between stories and rational argument has been problematic in the study of public moral debate. The question remains unsettled: How do stories argue? How do stories have a persuasive role in political rhetoric? Rather than the view that narrative reasoning is based in a different paradigm of reasoning, I argue that the persuasive use of stories goes back to early rhetorical training and that stories have always been used along with rhetorical argument as part of persuasive discourse. Vladimir Propp’s work on the morphology of folk- and fairy tales demonstrates that stories use topics, or topoi, in a manner similar to those used to generate lines of argument in rhetoric. I offer four aspects of narrative that affect the persuasive reception of stories: performance, adaptation, context, and iconicity. These aspects of rhetorical storytelling, combined with the topoi of the story, give us a new analytical framework for evaluating the persuasive potential of political storytelling. It was said in the old days that every year Thor made a circle around Middle Earth, beating back the enemies of order. Thor got older every year, and the circle occupied by gods and men grew smaller. The wisdom god, ‘Woden,’ went out to the king of the trolls, got him in an arm lock, and demanded to know of Storytelling, Self, Society, Vol. 11, No. 1 (2015), pp. 66–84. Copyright © 2016 by Wayne State University Press, Detroit, MI 48201 This content downloaded from on Mon, 06 Jan 2020 18:53:06 UTC All use subject to Leslie n 67 him how order might triumph over chaos. “Give me your left eye,” said the king of the trolls, “and I’ll tell you.” Without hesitation, Woden gave up his left eye. “Now tell me.” The troll said, “The secret is, Watch with both eyes!”1 T he author and critic John Gardner used this mythic anecdote as an allegory of art and criticism. The artist and critic beat back the forces of chaos, but those multiply while Thor’s hammer gets heavier to wield every year. In On Moral Fiction, Gardner uses the hammer on postmodern writers such as William Gass for spending their talents on fiction that glories only in self-referential irony, undercutting characters and themes that might strike an ethical chord in their audience—that might, in short, have a persuasive moral effect. There has been much speculation over the years about how stories function persuasively, that is, how they argue. That stories, or to use the more academic term “narratives,” have persuasive impact has long been understood.2 Yet the relationship of stories to rational argument structures has to date been rather muddled. There are a number of ways to approach this relationship, which I explore in this essay. There is also broad agreement that narrative is important in politics, though just exactly how may be somewhat uncertain. In its recent preliminary analysis of the 2014 election, the Democratic Party found that, while their policies find favor with the American people, the Republicans create a better narrative, which makes them more attractive. Thus the analysis suggests the creation of a “national narrative project” that will “create a strong values-based national narrative that will engage, inspire, and motivate voters to identify with and support Democrats” (“Democratic National Committee”). Narrative seems to be the balm in Gilead that will heal all political ills. Stories have long been used for persuasive intent, yet the relationship of narrative to argument in public moral debate has remained unsettled. How do stories argue? This essay addresses that question starting from Walter Fisher’s influential essay “Narration as a Human Communication Paradigm.” Fisher, drawing from Kenneth Burke, posits two dimensions of judgment that audiences use in evaluating whether narratives offer “goo ...
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Communication in all its forms may be termed as the gesture of conveying particular details
from one person to another, place, or group. Communication includes a message, a sender and
the recipient. Additionally, it includes emotions, cultural issues, location and the means of
communication. These elements of communication are explicitly depicted in the three articles in
this essay, that is: The Deep Roots of Storytelling in Political Rhetoric, "Nobody puts baby in a
binder": Using memes to teach visual reason and How Nothing Became Something: White
Space, Rhetoric, History, and Meaning have one thing in common. They all are communicating
different issues and scenarios through different media.
The Deep Roots of Storytelling in Political Rhetoric is an article that conveys various
historical stories with various authors and their arguments on them. The narration has been used
in this case to communicate about various scenarios and their arguments. Argumentation is a
means of solving problems by allowing challenges and justification of how valid claims are.
From Walter Fisher's article titled "Narration as a Human Communication Paradigm." He shows
how stories involve the audience in reasoning and their motives on the story through two forms
of judgment probable and coherent this is because the audience owns the story's judgment since
it is the centred art (Leslie, pg. 69).
Fisher's story has massive inspiration in the field of communication. Narratives also requir...

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