Material Studies

(Seminar by Sipai Klein, Julia Munro, Michael Tondre) 1. The meaning-making process writers face has been historically determined by the “technology” of paper. The integration of electronic communication has arguably changed writers’ meaning-making processes and the discourse produced by writers. In other words, the material contexts of writing have influenced how we write about the world and how the world shapes what we can write. As teachers of writing, we often encounter issues of changing … Continue reading

Reflections on Digital Media Archaeology: Excavating Definitions

In this article I wish to reflect at more length on the topic of “archaeology of digital media,” which happens to be the topic of discussion this week for the weekly Digital Pedagogy Seminar for first-year Brittain Fellows. Although many literary scholars are certainly well-versed in historical approaches, myself included, the phrase “archaeology of digital media” struck me as rather vague. While certain theoretical approaches (such as Freidrich Kittler’s Gramophone, Film, Typewriter, and Jay David … Continue reading

The Archaeology of Digital Media: Excavating Definitions

(Seminar by Amanda Madden, Julia Munro, and Michael Tondre). 1. One of the promises of teaching with digital technology involves its power to evoke the historical conditions of the past through the tools and techniques of the present. To be sure, web-based learning can be a vital means of exploring the formal and stylistic characteristics of novels, plays, poems, and other discursive artifacts. But the web can also help students to grasp the historical relations … Continue reading

Venturing into Unfamiliar Territory: Visualizations of the Oral Mode in the Classroom


Last week I ventured into largely-unknown territory for me – speech analysis and a consideration of the oral mode. Unknown, I say, because even though teaching involves vast amounts of time standing before an audience and, well, speaking, I have never formally studied speech at length: no speech communication class, no toastmasters, no “how to win friends and influence people” chapter on speaking, nothing. I was drawn to the topic, however, in that this past … Continue reading