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COURSE CATALOGUE : WRITING AND RHETORIC

The primary purpose of the Writing and Rhetoric Program is to offer rigorous courses at all levels that integrate the study of writing and the study of rhetoric. The courses help students across the Colleges strengthen their abilities to express themselves effectively in written discourse. They help students meet the challenges of the community curriculum, which puts effective written discourse at its center. Writing is both a way to learn course content and a result of learning: the mark of a liberally educated person.

Writing across the curriculum is also a central component of program offerings through the Writing Colleagues Program. This program prepares student mentors to help with the teaching of writing and reading through the program’s work in first-year seminars and other courses, and supports faculty members' use of writing in their courses.

Finally, for students interested in a concentrated study of writing and rhetoric, the program offers a disciplinary major and minor, which require students to complete foundational courses in grammar and style, discourse analysis, and rhetorical analysis. Elective courses are offered at all levels. In addition, majors will select a concentration — Journalism and Professional Writing, Language as Social Action, or Theories of Writing and Rhetoric — to focus and extend the work of the foundational courses, electives, and a capstone seminar.

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR (B.A.)
disciplinary, 12 courses
One introductory course from among WRRH 100, 105, 106, 200, and 335; three core courses 201, 260, and 360; a group of four courses in a concentration (Journalism and Professional Writing, Language as Social Action, or Theories of Writing and Rhetoric); one course in each remaining concentration; one additional elective; and the capstone (WRRH 420).

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MINOR
disciplinary, 7 courses
One introductory course from among WRRH 100, 105, 106, 200 and 335; three core courses, WRRH 201, 260, and 360; two electives; and the capstone (WRRH 420).

COURSE CONCENTRATIONS FOR MAJORS
Note: Some courses serve more than one concentration. It is the students’ responsibility to discuss their plans for completing a concentration with their adviser. The introductory courses and the capstone do not count toward concentration.

Journalism and Professional Writing
This concentration focuses on the craft of writing for the public sphere. Students analyze and write in a variety of professional writing genres: science writing, memoir, investigative journalism, new media composition, travel writing, magazine features, and creative nonfiction. Students also engage with the theories and methods of interviewing, research, ethics, editing, and design.

This concentration prepares students for careers in journalism, publishing, editing, advertising, marketing, and public relations, though students interested in public policy, business, and the law also gain practical writing experience with a journalism and professional writing concentration. This concentration also prepares students for future graduate work in journalism, media studies, communication, technical writing, and the essay.

WRRH 210 Introduction to Print Journalism
WRRH 218 Getting Dressed: Discourses of Fashion
WRRH 219 Feature Sports Writing
WRRH 221 Going Places: Travel Writing
WRRH 225 Writing in the Professional Workplace
WRRH 230 Adolescent Literature
WRRH 310 Digital Journalism: Reporting Online
WRRH 311 Introduction to Publishing
WRRH 320 Op-Ed: Writing Political and Cultural Commentary
WRRH 325 The Science Beat
WRRH 327 Literary Journalism: The Art of Reporting and Nonfiction Narrative
WRRH 329 The Lyric Essay
WRRH 330 New Media Writing: Theory and Production
WRRH 331 Advanced Style Seminar
WRRH 333 Digital Rhetorics and Writing with New Technology
WRRH 499 Internship in Writing and Rhetoric

Language as Social Action
This concentration explores language as a form of action through which social relations, cultural forms, hierarchies, ideologies, and identities are mediated and constituted. Students are exposed to theories and methods that examine the politics of language with a particular emphasis on Discourse Studies, ethnography, and Intercultural Rhetoric and Communication. Students investigate discourse across genres, cultural contexts, modalities, and historical junctures and use these investigations to foster social action.

Students in this concentration acquire a theory-informed understanding of how to interpret, conceptualize, and engage communicative and rhetorical interactions among different groups, fields, and formations. Such grounding prepares students for further graduate work in rhetoric, intercultural communication, sociolinguistics, and cultural studies, or for a professional career involving international communication, activism, education, or business, among others.

WRRH 170 American Sign Language I
WRRH 171 American Sign Language II
WRRH 218 Getting Dressed: Discourses of Fashion
WRRH 265 He Says, She Says: Language and Gender
WRRH 280 Immigrant Experience: Voices and Discourses
WRRH 284 Black Talk, White Talk
WRRH 309 Talk and Text II: Language in Action
WRRH 315 The Rhetoric of Memory
WRRH 320 Op-Ed: Writing Political and Cultural Commentary
WRRH 333 Digital Rhetoric and Writing with New Technologies
WRRH 345 Rhetoric of Place
WRRH 365 Rhetorics of Feminist Activism
WRRH 375 Discourses of Rape in Contemporary Culture
WRRH 499 Internship in Writing and Rhetoric

Theories of Writing and Rhetoric
This concentration focuses on the theories that inform the study of writing and rhetoric. Students are exposed to the histories, research methodologies, and pedagogies that inform the field of rhetoric and composition specifically and theories of language and power more broadly. Students study diverse rhetorical traditions, exploring and articulating their own theories of how writing and rhetoric are culturally, ecologically, and politically situated.

Students in this concentration gain exposure to academic conversations about language, literacy, and culture, preparing them for a range of careers including law, politics, business, public advocacy, and education, or for further academic study in rhetorical theory, composition studies, literacy studies, and communication studies.

WRRH 230 Adolescent Literature
WRRH 240 Writing and the Culture of Reading
WRRH 265 He Says, She Says: Language and Gender
WRRH 280 Immigrant Experiences: Voices and Discourses
WRRH 315 The Rhetoric of Memory
WRRH 326 Literary Journalism
WRRH 330 New Media Writing: Theory and Production
WRRH 331 Advanced Style Seminar
WRRH 333 Digital Rhetorics and Writing with New Technologies
WRRH 335 The Writing Colleagues Seminar
WRRH 345 Rhetoric of Place
WRRH 365 Rhetorics of Feminist Activism
WRRH 490 Writing Colleagues Field Placement
WRRH 499 Internship in Writing and Rhetoric

COURSE DESCRIPTIONS
WRRH 100 Writer's Seminar This course is for students in any major who want to become successful as college writers. By honing skills in critical reading and thinking, students are introduced to analysis and argumentation in order to consider their ideas within the context of academic writing and their own lives. Students develop writing techniques through composing and revising narratives, analytical essays, and guided research projects. The course focuses on writing individually and in collaboration with peers, the instructor, and other student support (Writing Colleagues or CTL Writing Fellows) through an emphasis on the process of invention, drafting, and revision. Course times and themes vary with instructor.

WRRH 105 Multilingual Writer's Seminar This introductory English for Speakers of Other Languages course provides students with the opportunity to develop a foundational level of English literacy and communication skills. This course places an emphasis on writing in various genres including argumentation, narration, and summary, as well as various writing skills including cohesion, structure, grammatical fluency, and revision. Students will use their experiences at HWS to develop their English writing, reading, listening, and speaking skills, with priority being given to writing development. Students will improve their English skills through written responses to readings, essays written in multiple genres, and a presentation on an aspect in American culture or their home culture. The time and theme of the course may vary with the instructor. (Janney, Fall, offered annually)

WRRH 106 Multilingual Writer's Seminar II This intermediate English as a Second Language course provides students with the opportunity to build upon the English literacy and communication skills they acquired in WRRH 105. Through an emphasis on more advanced grammatical skills and academic communication skills, such as analysis, synthesis, primary research, and critical thinking, students will become increasingly familiar with using the English Language for effective communication in academia. Students will improve their English through weekly writing responses to readings, essays written in multiple genres, a presentation on a topic of the student's interest, and acting as a discussion leader in class once per semester to improve verbal communication skills. The time and theme of the course may vary with the instructor and semester. (Janney, Spring, offered annually)

WRRH 170 American Sign Language I In this introductory course, students learn basic ASL vocabulary and grammar as well as strategies for successful communication with the deaf. Instead of assuming a disability or medical model of deafness, this course presents the American Deaf Community as a linguistic minority and examines the complex relationship between language and identity. Students will develop an appreciation for the Deaf Community's contribution to the linguistic and cultural diversity of North America. They will consider the values and unique cultural characteristics of the Deaf Community in contrast to mainstream "hearing" cultural norms. Students learn about the historical context for the deaf experience in the United States from the early 19th century to the culmination of civil rights struggle with the passage of the Americans With Disabilities Act of 1990 through viewing documentaries like "Through Deaf Eyes."  Films like "Hear and Now" introduce them to the controversy of cochlear implantation and its impact on deaf identity. Readings include "Introduction to American Deaf Culture" and "A Journey Into the Deaf-World."  (Cappiello, Fall, offered annually)

WRRH 171 American Sign Language II This course continues to develop the linguistic and cultural concepts introduced in ASL I. Students will expand their ASL vocabulary and incorporate greater use of the linguistic features unique to signed languages. Varied sentence structures are explored and encouraged. The use of space, classifiers, and storytelling techniques are also introduced. Current events relating to the deaf community are frequently discussed as they occur, and off-campus opportunities to venture into the Deaf-World are made available. After a brief survey of various professions related to deafness and deaf education, the course culminates with an introductory translation project that permits students to experience and appreciate the challenges and complexities of translation and interpretation from English. (Cappiello, Spring, offered annually)

WRRH 200 Writer's Seminar II This intermediate writing course offers students the chance to develop writing and research skills through reading and writing processes introduced in WRRH 100, with an emphasis on increased responsibility for engaging in critical analysis and argument and for developing research projects. Students become more familiar with academic standards and conventions, particularly with the ever-widening variety of research tools available to them. Invention strategies, multiple drafts and revision, peer responses, and editing are stressed. Texts are variable depending on faculty preference. (Staff, offered each semester)

WRRH 201 Grammar and Style Grammar and Style provides a foundational knowledge of traditional English grammar and investigates the relationship between grammar and style. Style, as a canon of rhetoric, depends on the conscious control of grammar through the choices every writer makes. Working together and individually, we study the rules of grammar, diagram sentences, complete exercises, take quizzes and exams, and write grammatical analyses — everything designed to make students grammatically savvy writers. (Forbes, Green, Werner, offered annually)

WRRH 210 Introduction to Print Journalism This course introduces print journalism. It focuses on the basics of reporting and feature writing (business, sports, local government, and the law). Participants should expect to produce several pages of accurate, detailed, and well-written copy a week and be prepared for extensive and numerous revisions. Students also work on typography and layout. As the major project for the semester, students in teams write, edit, design, and typeset a newspaper.  (Repeatable) (Forbes, Babbitt, offered annually)

WRRH 219 Feature Sports Writing Glenn Strout, series editor of Best American Sports Writing, argues that sports writing is more about people and what concerns us—love, death, desire, labor, and loss—than about the simple results of a game or competition. This course builds from the premise that sports writing offers readers and writers important ways of making sense of our worlds. Whether we are reading Roger Angell's description of a baseball, considering a one-eyed matador, watching a high school girls' softball team, or contemplating a one-armed quarterback, we immerse ourselves and our readers in making sense of the world. We explore such questions as, Why are sports so deeply imbedded in our culture? What are the ethics of sport? How do sports disenfranchise certain populations? To answer these and other questions, students keep journals, write weekly sports features, and produce a mid-term and final portfolio.

WRRH 240 Writing and Culture of Reading Academic, intellectual culture is a culture of the word, of reading and writing, of print. This course explores the dynamics of this culture through a close interrogation of the writing and reading practices of intellectuals, ourselves included. Through the course of the semester students keep a reading journal, write several critical essays, and complete a final project. (Forbes, Green, offered alternate years)

WRRH 250 Talk and Text: Introduction to Discourse This course investigates one of the fundamental theoretical ways language is studied today. Students study the theories of discourse analysis and practice those theories by analyzing spoken and written texts. Analysis of the various kinds of texts in our culture—from interviews to courtroom testimony, from political speeches to radio and TV talk shows—leads into discussions of conversational style, gender, linguistic stereotypes, and intracultural communication. (Dickinson, offered annually)

WRRH 280 Immigrant Experiences This intermediate writing course studies immigrant experiences in their local, national, and global contexts with a particular focus on discourses surrounding immigrant lives. The course examines the historical, political and linguistic aspects of immigration, such as ethnicity, culture, and cross-cultural divides.  Students will complete rhetorical and linguistic analyses of immigration policies, immigrant discourses, and produce their own writing. (Staff, offered alternate years)

WRRH 284 Black Talk, White Talk What is BEV or Ebonics? Is it a language or a dialect? This course studies Black English Vernacular, also called Ebonics or Black street speech or Black talk (depending on the linguist): its sounds, structure, semantics, and history. It investigates the differences between black and white spoken discourse styles, which lead to tension and misunderstanding. It looks at written texts for the ways in which they reveal particular styles of spoken discourse. And it investigates the educational public policy issues surrounding Black English Vernacular. (Forbes, offered alternate years)

WRRH 310 Digital Journalism: Reporting Online This course is designed as a stand-alone or a follow-up to WRRH 210, the introduction to print journalism.  Students read two online newspapers daily, The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal, write and rewrite at least one story a week, learn the principles of writing for an internet audience, and design and publish their own blogs and online newspapers.  There is a fee for this course.  (Forbes, Babbitt, offered annually)

WRRH 311 Introduction to Publishing This course focuses on the principles and practices of magazine and book publishing. It explores the way rhetoric functions in publishing and how "gatekeeping" functions in this industry of ideas and cultural influence: who decides what and who gets heard. The issues of gender, race, and class are central. Students study general interest and special interest magazine publishing; general trade book, academic or special interest book publishing; and the history of American publishing from the colonial era. Participants keep a reading journal; write several critical essays about the major issues in magazine and book publishing today; and complete a major semester-long project, individually or in teams (for instance, editing a book-length manuscript or producing a magazine). (Forbes, offered alternate years)

WRRH 325 The Science Beat This course is designed for students interested in writing about science, in science journalism, or in strengthening their research and writing skills.  Students produce weekly articles, read and discuss articles by major science writers, and read and discuss each other's articles in a workshop. (Forbes)

WRRH 327 Literary Journalism Literary journalism blends factual reporting with narrative and stylistic strategies common in literature. Literary journalists are bound by many of the same standards as other reporters, but they have the additional goal, as Ben Yagoda puts it, of "making facts dance." The literary journalist might, therefore, suppress direct quotation - a staple of traditional journalism - in favor of scene and dialogue. Or, rather than withdrawing the writer's point of view to achieve objectivity, the story might foreground the reporter's voice and experiences. This course will explore specific ways in which journalism benefits from literary techniques. Our approach will be twofold: We will examine the genre historically, and we will critique student work during regular workshops.  Although we will begin by identifying the genre's roots in the 18th and 19th centuries (including works by Defoe, Boswell, Dickens), we will spend the bulk of the semester steeped in 20th century and present-day practices.  "New Journalism" (including works by Capote, Mailer, Didion, Thompson, Wolfe) will be a cornerstone of our study, as will today's cutting-edge practitioners (such as Coates, Beard, Rankine, and Wallace).  Students will both emulate and resist these writers in their own work. (Babbitt)

WRRH 329 The Lyric Essay HWS is the birthplace of the lyric essay. It was in the introduction to the Fall 1997 issue of Seneca Review that esteemed HWS professor Deborah Tall and Hobart alumnus John D’Agata gave the lyric essay its most seminal and enduring definition, which begins by characterizing the new hybrid form as "a fascinating sub-genre that straddles the essay and the lyric poem… give[s] primacy to artfulness over the conveying of information… [and] forsake[s] narrative line, discursive logic, and the art of persuasion in favor of idiosyncratic meditation."  We will begin our course examining the essays of Tall, D’Agata, and writers published in Seneca Review. And in order to gain an appreciation of the lyric essay as an inherently innovative, ever-evolving, genre-busting art form, we will proceed to study a wide range of essayists. To enrich our on-going discussion, we will also occasionally incorporate key progenitors such as Montaigne and theorists such as Deleuze & Guattari, Derrida, and Wittgenstein. Students will both create their own lyric essays and respond critically to each other’s creative work in regularly held workshops.

WRRH 330 New Media Writing New media technologies are currently exploding writing possibilities in thrilling multimodal, multimedia, and multidisciplinary ways. This course will explore new media writing through theory and practice in literature, creative writing, and journalism. Throughout the semester we will build a firm theoretical foundation in theories of new media and technology (through writers such as Heidegger, Baudrillard, and Haraway). To complement our theoretical inquiry, we will study new media works in genres such as journalism, literature, and art (including work by Strickland, and Goldsmith and the Nieman Storyboard), as well as some criticism responding to those works and their methods. Major assignments will include academic blogs responding to assigned materials, a video essay, an audio collage, a multimedia online document, and the curation of a creative Tumblr series. Students will respond critically to each other's new media projects in regularly held workshops. (Babbitt)

WRRH 333 Digital Rhetoric and Writing with New Technologies Digital Rhetorics analyzes the rhetorical and cultural impacts of established and emerging new media artifacts from YouTube videos and Instagram posts to viral memes. Students produce content for digital platforms (blogs, digital portfolios, memes, etc.) while building an understanding of how rhetorical history and technological innovations impact the consumption of online content and the communities that are formed in digital space. Although the course discusses the importance of digital literacy and how to use some online programs and newer technologies, the class concentrates on how new media and virtual interfaces impact our global culture and the individual user. Students have the opportunity to develop analytical and creative skills through a diverse set of writing (and design layout) assignments. These new digital writing and design skills will be utilized and valued as students complete a service-learning component for the course with a local non-profit organization. (Ristow, offered alternate years)

WRRH 335 Writing Colleagues Seminar This rigorous and writing intensive course is designed for students who plan to work in the Writing Colleagues Program. The course contains unique, challenging writing assignments while examining current theories of composition and rhetoric. Students read and discuss scholarship pertaining to linguistic diversity, multilingual writers, and the emerging scholarship on curriculum-based peer tutors. Students investigate writing as a process and discuss the ways reading impacts and remains interdependent to writing. In addition, students have the opportunity to train and practice techniques and new skills as Writing Colleagues with their peers and within a five-week practicum component, usually with students enrolled in an introductory level writing course. Prerequisites: First-year students and sophomores are accepted following nomination, application, and an interview process. (Dickinson, Ristow, offered each semester)

WRRH 360 Power and Persuasion: Rhetorical History, Theory, and Criticism Power and Persuasion focuses on rhetorical history, theory, and practice with an emphasis on analytical methodology. Rhetorical analysis includes a broad range of methods that are based on different theories of and approaches to rhetoric. Therefore, the learning of methods will be informed by rhetorical histories and theories, and students will be inquiring into the ways that theories can change as they are put into practice, and how practice can challenge and enrich theory. The process of analysis will improve both close reading and critical thinking skills, will improve understanding of what makes arguments effective and the ways that they are constructed according to purpose and audience, and will improve students writing by revealing the many ways that writers use language in purposeful ways. (Werner, offered annually)

WRRH 375 Discourses of Rape in Contemporary Culture An examination of the many ways our culture talks about rape, from political rape to date rape; the changing definitions of rape; rape as metaphor; and the social, political, and ethical implications of such discourses. How does the news media cover rape? How does the entertainment industry portray rape? Issues of power and powerlessness, victims and victimization, and privacy and the public good emerge. (Forbes, offered alternate years)

WRRH 420 Writer's Guild As the senior seminar that acts as a capstone to a major or minor in WRRH, this course requires students to write extensively, to think critically about their own and others' work, to synthesize old writing and produce new arguments about it, and to pursue publication. WRRH 420 is structured around two major components. The first, the capstone portfolio, is designed to help students synthesize their learning as a WRRH major or minor. The second, a substantial publishable work, requires students to learn and follow the publishing process: choosing a text, selecting a venue, analyzing the venue, revising the text for that venue, and submitting the piece for publication. In addition, students will engage in many smaller steps along the way including proposing their ideas, workshopping in writing groups, and presenting their work in a public forum.  Prerequisite: permission of the instructor based on a portfolio draft. (Staff, Spring, offered annually)

WRRH 450 Independent Study

WRRH 456 1/2 Credit Independent Study

WRRH 490 Writing Colleague Field Placement Writing Colleagues must enroll in WRRH 490 every semester they are in a course placement. In addition to attending their placements, helping professors develop writing assignments and activities, reading student essays, and working one-on-one with writers, Writing Colleagues enrolled in WRRH 490 must also attend monthly professional development meetings, meet bi-weekly with the WC Coordinator, submit a weekly WC journal, and to the community's writing culture through other writing assignments and activities. These activities are designed to support Writing Colleagues as they continue to strengthen their own reading and writing skills and develop as Writing Colleagues. (Dickinson, Ristow, Perkins, offered each semester)

WRRH 495 Honors

WRRH 499 Internship

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