COURSE DESCRIPTION

RHETORIC OF TEXT & IMAGE
ENGL 392B
Winter 2008
Professor O'Gorman

Course Title: ENGL 392B Rhetoric of Text & Image
Department: English
Location: Flex Lab (Dana Porter Library 328)
Time: 6:00-9:00 Tuesday

Course Texts:
The majority of the articles for this course are available on the UW ACE course site. Other required texts include:
>Blake, William, Favorite Works of William Blake (Dover, 1996).
> McLuhan, Marshall and Quentin Fiore, The Medium is the Massage (Ginkgo Press, 2005).
> White, Alexander W., The Elements of Graphic Design (Allworth Press, 2002)

Instructor: Professor Marcel O'Gorman
Office Hours: Thur. 2:00-4:00 & by appointment
Office Location: Hagey Hall 258
Phone: 519 888 4567 x32946
Email: marcel at uwaterloo dot ca

The official description of this course is as follows:

This course introduces students to the interaction of texts and images in such professional writing fields as advertising, book illustration, technical documentation, journalism, and public relations. Issues may include visual and textual literacy, the semiotics and rhetoric of design, and the ideological basis of social communication.

We will be taking a different approach to this course by considering the interaction of images and texts in academic writing as well. In a culture that relies heavily on pictures for communication, academic research in the humanities is still entrenched in textual, print-based methodologies and ideologies. This course asks students to imagine a mode of academic communication that relies as heavily on the "imagetext" and the "hypericon" as it does on the paragraph and the dissertation. Along the way, we will conduct readings that employ cultural, psychological, and philosophical approaches to understanding how we communicate with images.

The course is designed to work as a "studio," which explains why it is being held on the Flex Lab. Each session will be split into two portions: Theory and Practice. This is a false distinction since students will be asked to integrate theory and practice throughout the term in individual and group assignments. In effect, the goal of the course is to teach students how to effectively combine theory and practice in ways that blur the distinction between design project and research project.

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