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Convergences : Message - Method - Medium

Convergences : Message - Method - Medium - 02 edition

ISBN13: 978-0312250744

Cover of Convergences : Message - Method - Medium 02 (ISBN 978-0312250744)
ISBN13: 978-0312250744
ISBN10: 0312250746
Cover type:
Edition/Copyright: 02
Publisher: Bedford Books
Published: 2002
International: No

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Convergences : Message - Method - Medium - 02 edition

ISBN13: 978-0312250744

Robert Atwan

ISBN13: 978-0312250744
ISBN10: 0312250746
Cover type:
Edition/Copyright: 02
Publisher: Bedford Books

Published: 2002
International: No
Summary

Picture these texts: Maya Lin's initial proposal and sketches for the Vietnam Memorial presented with photographs of the completed site, and Lin's essay revisiting the project 20 years later. Comic strip dad Mike Doonsbury is featured on his daughter's new web site, followed by screen shots of a "real life" web diva's site, jennicam.com. Sally Mann's striking photograph of her daughter Jessie is accompanied by an interview with Jessie that talks about the relationship between mother and daughter, photographer and subject. These are the kinds of selections included in Convergences, the full-color composition reader for those instructors who want their students to be critical readers of all the texts they encounter, no matter what form they're in. Today's communicators -- writers, artists, speakers, and designers -- deploy words, images, color, shape, design, layout, and perspective differently, depending on their purpose. And in this composition reader, students are asked to explore not just what a text says--but also why, where, how, and for whom it is created. How are we meant to read this essay, or view this photograph? Which conventions does a given text meet, and which does it break? How do Web sites respond to advertisements? How do advertisements respond to the daily news? What do horror movies have to do with historical events? Today's student is a new kind of reader, one who must read, think, and write about a constant stream of image, word, and idea. Convergences is a new kind of composition reader, one that prompts students to become more critical consumers of message, method, and medium as they learn to write more effectively.

Convergences brings together an incredibly wide range of verbal and visual readings -- and highlights the way they speak to each other. With essays, photographs, Web sites, poems, cartoons, stories, billboards, advertisements, paintings, monuments, maps, and album covers, this composition reader represents the range of texts the twenty-first century reader encounters every day. And by grouping these texts in clusters that cross genre and medium -- by putting together a related poster, web site, essay, and poem, for example -- this composition reader also asks students to map out relationships between verbal and visual messages, and to trace the analytical process other writers, thinkers, and artists have followed as they do the same.

In Convergences, six simple and familiar themes come with a twist. Staging Portraits outlines the way verbal and visual portraits reveal certain details and hide others. Telling Secrets asks why we love to tell secrets, and what our secrets tell about us. Shaping Spaces explores what it means to think spatially -- whether the space is a piece of paper, our room, or the World Wide Web. Making History traces how describing the past often means making it up. Dividing Lines shows how different groups of people draw lines between us and them. And Moving Pictures plays on the ways different media construct and market fact and fiction for our news and entertainment.

Convergences connects verbal and visual texts and introduces a critical perspective students can use to analyze both. What do you need to tie together a visual or verbal narrative? What are the conventions of a tabloid, and how do writers and artists play with those conventions? Which rhetorical strategies make an argument more effective? How do poets and photographers think about, and then deploy, metaphor? What does an online diary share with traditional private writing, and where does it diverge? "Comments" from writers, artists, and critics model some answers to these kinds of questions--and suggest new directions students can take in their own questioning of the texts that surround them.

Convergences surrounds verbal and visual texts with editorial apparatus that prompts students to ask what, where, when, how, and why as they read and write. Why does it matter that the message be tailored for the medium? Why has this Web site been posted, and what has its creator chosen to emphasize? Who is this advertisement aimed at, and what is it selling? Convergences presents each new reading as the end result of conscious choices made by its creator, and it helps students learn to make conscious choices constructing their own texts. By asking students to think about shared sets of conventions, features, and purposes -- generic conventions about how a text is put together -- as well as about what is being said in a text, Convergences meets the analytical needs of today's student.

A general introduction guides students through reading and writing about different genres, including the essay, the advertisement, the photograph, and the Web site.

A Glossary of Terms integrates classical rhetoric with the terms of marketing, media, and mass persuasion, with marginal glosses in the text to help students tie the material they read into a larger rhetorical context.

Key Terms in each chapter explore how a critical rhetorical strategy was applied in a selection in that chapter.

Comments bring outside voices into critical dialogue with the readings.

Message/Method/Medium questions at the end of each selection prompt students to specifically consider what each text is saying, the verbal and visual strategies used to construct each message, and the impact that medium has on the message.

Convergences: Writing/Researching/Collaborating questions at the end of each chapter prompt students to make connections within and outside the text as they write critical responses to what they've read.

Author Bio

Atwan, Robert :

Robert Atwan founded the Best American Essays series, for which he serves as series editor. His essays and reviews have appeared in the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, the Atlantic Monthly, and the Kenyon Review. For Bedford/St. Martin's, he has edited America Now: Short readings from Recent Periodicals, now in its fourth edition and Ten on Ten: Major Essayists on Recurring Themes, and he has coedited with Donald McQuade The Writer's Presence: A Pool of Readings, now in its third edition, and with Jon Roberts Left, Right, and Center: Voices across the Political Spectrum.

Table of Contents


1. Staging Portraits
Self Portraits: Cindy Sherman's Many Selves

Cindy Sherman, Untitled Film Still #48 (Photograph)
Untitled #96 (Photograph)
Dorothy Allison, What Did You Expect? (Essay)
Monsters: Ellen Harvey (Nine Paintings)
Christine Castro, maganda.org (Three Screen Shots)
Home Movies: Judith Ortiz Cofer
Judith Ortiz Cofer, Silent Dancing (Memoir)
Cover of Silent Dancing: A Partial Remembrance of a Puerto Rican Childhood (Book Cover)
Judith Ortiz Cofer, Lessons of the Past (Poem)

KEY TERM: Metaphor

Robert Atwan, Bobland (Map)
Confessions: Anne Sexton
Anne Sexton, Resume 1965 (Résumé)
Arthur Furst, Anne Sexton, Summer 1974 (Photograph)
Anne Sexton, Self in 1958 (Poem)
Gerhard Richter, Betty (Painting)
Family Photos: Sally Mann
Sally Mann, Candy Cigarette (Photograph)
Melissa Harris, Daughter, Model, Muse Jessie Mann on Being Photographed (Interview)
William Wegman, Cinderella (Photograph)
Tabloid Photography: Weegee
Wendy Lesser, Weegee (Essay)
Weegee, Newsboy (Photograph)
Dancing (Photograph)
Mulberry Street Café (Photograph)
Car Crash Upper Fifth Avenue July 13, 1941 (Photograph)
Physicians Against Landmines (Advertisement)
Reflections: Norman Rockwell
Norman Rockwell, Triple Self-Portrait (Painting)
Girl at Mirror, 1954 (Painting)
Gene Pelham, Mary Whalen (Photograph)
Charles Rosen and Henri Zerner, Scenes from the American Dream (Essay)
Convergences: Writing, Researching, Collaborating

2. Telling Secrets

Selling Secrets: Miss Clairol
Miss Clairol, Does She . . . or Doesn't She? (Advertisement)
James Twitchell, How to Advertise a Dangerous Product (Essay)
Luc Sante, What Secrets Tell (Essay)
Hauntings: Abandoned Places
Edward Hopper, Haunted House (Painting)
Joyce Carol Oates, They All Just Went Away (Essay)
Unspoken: David Sedaris
David Sedaris, Ashes (Memoir)
David Sedaris, Letter to Sarah Vowell on the Movies (Letter)
Keith Pandolfi, This American Icon (Profile)
The Kitchen Table: Carrie Mae Weems
Carrie Mae Weems, Untitled (Woman with Daughter) From Untitled (Kitchen Table Series) (Four Photographs)
KEY TERM: Narrative
Public Apology: Bill Clinton
Bill Clinton, Even Presidents Have Private Lives (Presidential Address)
The Boston Globe, Tuesday, August 18, 1998 (Newspaper Front Page)
Nothing to Hide: Web Cam
Gary Trudeau, Alex's Real-Time Web Site (Comic Strip)
She Has Fans in Finland (Comic Strip)
Time for Bed! (Comic Strip)
Now Turn Toward the Camera (Comic Strip)
www.jennicam.com (Two Screen Shots)
Documentary Photography: Mary Ellen Mark
Mary Ellen Mark, The Damm Family in Their Car, Los Angeles 1987 (Photograph)
Chrissy Damm and Adam Johnson, Liano, California, 1994 (Photograph)
Jacob Riis, Homeless Boys, New York City, 1870 (Photograph)
Kathleen Coulborn Faller, Children with a Secret (Essay)
Franz Kafka, The Problem with Our Laws (Short Story)
State Secrets: My Lai
Thomas Partsch, March 15-18, 1968 (Journal)
Ronald Haeberle, My Lai Villagers Before and After Being Shot by U.S. Troops (Three Photographs)
William L. Calley, Court Martial Transcript (Transcript)
Convergences: Writing, Researching, Collaborating

3. Shaping Spaces

Yahoo!: A Nice Place to Stay on the Internet (Billboard)
A Place to Talk
Ian Frazier, Dearly Disconnected (Essay)
Richard Estes, Telephone Booths (Painting)
Lauren Greenfield, Phone Booth (Photograph)
Key Terms: Comparison and Contrast
Three Stock Photos: Old Phone, Pay Phone, Cell Phone
American Leisure
Mitch Epstein, Cocoa Beach, Florida, 1983 (Photograph)
56th Street and Fifth Avenue, New York City (Photograph)
A View from Above
Pico Iyer, Nowhere Man (Essay)
Alex S. Maclean, Automobile Junkyard Alongside River and McMansions (Two Photographs)
John Updike, Island Cities (Poem)
Negative Population Growth, Remember When This Was Heavy Traffic? (Advertisement)
Nicole Lamy, Life in Motion (Essay and Photoessay)
Margaret Morton, Mr. Lee's House
Mr. Lee (Photograph)
Mr. Lee's House, the Hill, 1991 (Photograph)
Mr. Lee, Chinatown, 1992 (Oral History)
Invading Territory: A Storyteller Inspired
Julia Alvarez, Neighbors (Fiction)
Polibio Diaz, Camino a Manabao (Photograph)
Nick Waplington, Private vs. Public Space
www.childprodigy.com ("Fabricated" Screen Shot)
www.anarchy.co.uk ("Fabricated" Screen Shot)
www.socialistinternational.com ("Fabricated" Screen Shot)
The United Colors of Death Row
Barbara Ehrenreich, Dirty Laundry (Essay)
Benetton, Four Spreads from We, on Death Row (Advertisement)
Convergences: Writing, Researching, Collaborating

4. Making History

Fourth Revolution, Solemates: A Century in Shoes (Three Screenshots)
Montage: Danny Lyon
Danny Lyon, Ernst (Photomontage)
Four Generations (Photomontage)
First Photographs, 1960 (PhotomMontage)
Raphe at 17, 1992 (Photomontage)
Hollywood: Moving History
A Conversation Between Mark Carnes and Oliver Stone (Interview)
Michael Wilmington, See Worthy (Review)
Kate and Jack on the Titanic (Film Still)
Nixon (Film Still)
JFK (Film Still)
Chicago: Wayne F. Miller
Gordon Parks, Speaking for the Past (Essay)
Wayne F. Miller, Rabbits for Sale, 1948 (Photograph)
Two Girls Waiting Outside a Tavern (Photograph)
One-Room Kitchenette (Photograph)
Gwendolyn Brooks, Kitchenette Apartment (Poem)
Ralph Ellison, What America Would Be Like without Blacks (Essay)
Join: Propaganda and Protest
Pat Conroy, My Heart's Content (Essay)
I Want You for U.S. Army, c. 1917 (Poster)
You'll Be on the Greatest Team in the World!, 1943 (Poster)
When Was the Last Time You Got Promoted?, 1973 (Poster)
www.goarmy.com (Screen Shot)
Massacre: Film and Fact
Sherman Alexie, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Poem)
The Texas Chainsaw Massacre (Poster)
Verlyn Klinkenborg, Sand Creek (Essay)
Colonel John M. Klinkenborg (Photograph)
Cheyenne and Arapaho Chiefs (Photograph)
Attack of Sand Creek (Drawing)
Map of Sand Creek (Map)
Memorial: Maya Lin
Maya Lin, Making the Memorial (Essay)
Proposal and Sketches for the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, 1982 (Proposal and Sketches)
The Vietnam Veterans Memorial, Washington DC (Three Photographs)
KEY TERM: Definition
Art: Dictionary Definition and Image
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, Forgetting Would Be a Second Abandonment (Advertisement)
Convergences: Writing, Researching, Collaborating

5. Dividing Lines

Public Education, 77% Of Anti-Abortion Leaders Are Men. 100% of Them Will Never Be Pregnant. (Advertisement)
Love/Hate, Control/Chaos, Clean/Dirty (Six Photographs)
Arthur Schlesinger Jr., The Cult of Ethnicity, Good and Bad (Essay)
Poem/Photograph
Jesse DeMartino, Jason and Mike at the Cabin Near Huntsville, Texas, 1996 (Poem)
Jan Morris, Conundrum, 1974 (Photograph)
Richard Rodriguez, Gangstas (Essay)
American Indian College Fund, I'll Never Fight for Women's Rights (Advertisement)
ACLU, Who Would You Be More Likely to Stop for, Charles Manson or Martin Luther King? (Advertisement)
Leslie Feinberg, Transgender Warriors (Essay and Photographs)
Essay and Computer-Generated Art
Andrew Sullivan, Two Nations, Undivided (Essay)
Newsweek Cover, Morphed Face of George Bush and Al Gore (Computer-Generated Art)
Leslie Marmon Silko, In the Combat Zone (Essay)
Elizabeth Alexander, Race (Poem)
Gloria Steinem, Supremacy Crimes (Essay)
Essay and Anti-Ad
Eric Schlosser, Thruput from Fast Food Nation (Essay)
Adbusters, Baby McFry (Anti-Advertisment)
Jhumpa Lahiri, This Blessed House (Fiction)
bell hooks, Learning in the Shadow of Race and Class (Essay)
Jeff Cohen & Jonah Goldberg, Beyond Belief (Debate)
Convergences: Writing, Researching, Collaborating

6. Moving Pictures

Essay and Two Cartoon Stills
Robert Pinsky, Creating the "Real," in Bright Yellow and Blue (Essay)
Matt Groening, Homer Simpson and the Who (Cartoon Still)
Behind the Laughter (Cartoon Still)
Essay and Photograph
Salman Rushdie, Crash (Essay)
Wreck of Princess Diana's Car (Photograph)
Essay and Three Newspaper Front Pages
William Saletan, The Elian Pictures (Essay)
Boston Sunday Globe, April 23, 2000 (Newspaper Front Page)
Miami Herald, April 23, 2000 (Newspaper Front Page)
Los Angeles Times, April 23, 2000 (Newspaper Front Page)
John Grisham, Unnatural Killers (Essay)
Brad Davis, On Little Boys and Their Guns (Poem)
Essay, Profile, and Web Site
Katie Roiphe, Profiles Encouraged (Essay)
M. L. Elrick, Eminem's Dirty Secret (Profile)
www.salon.com (Web Site)
ABC, T.V. Is Good (Advertisement)
Marilyn Manson, Columbine: Whose Fault Is It? (Essay)
Talking Heads, True Stories (Album Cover Art)
www.theonion.com (Spoof E-newspaper)
Mark Danner, The Shame of Political TV (Essay)
Scott Adams, Dilbert (Comic Strip)
Rick Moody, Destroy All Monsters (Essay)
Jeff Danziger, The Creative Process at Fox Television (Comic Strip)
Stephanie Harrell, Days of Our Real-Life Romances (Short Story)
Convergences: Writing, Researching, Collaborating

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