Spring 2014

engl 20833: sophomore seminar

“The #epicfail as Argument”

Description from course syllabus:

Failure is something we have all dealt with at some point. Failed quizzes or tests in school. Failed plans and projects at work. Failed relationships with the people in our lives. And as frustrating or disappointing as each of these failures might initially seem, in time we come to understand how failure can lay the groundwork for success by exposing both the flaws in our original plan and the rules, limits, or behaviors we have violated in our attempt to achieve a desired goal. The purpose of this writing course, then, is to examine failed communication—speeches that flopped, tweets that shocked the world, movies that “bombed” at the box office, books that confused their readers—as a way of better understanding the processes by which effective communication operates. By exploring how and why the #epicfail has achieved such a ubiquitous place in contemporary culture, students in this course will wrestle with both the freedoms and constraints placed upon speakers in various rhetorical situations in order to better understand how arguments are generated and disseminated in the 21st century.

TCU Requirements Fulfilled: Written Communication (WCO)


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