Discourse Community Analysis Presented by the UTA English Writing Center Updated 6/10/2015 SPT Hosted by English Writing Center www.uta.edu/owl [email protected] A Division of the Department of English Sponsored by the College of Liberal Arts www.uta.edu/owl
Workshop Leaders Presented by: The Writing Center Executive Staff www.uta.edu/owl Discourse Community Analysis The Rhetorical Situation: The purpose of this paperand a primary purpose of ENGL 1301is to demonstrate for you that the process of joining an academic discourse community is not so different from the process by which
youve joined other discourse communities. Main assignment objective: Write a paper to [your instructor] and your classmates about a time when you successfully joined a discourse community. Show us how you learned to make ethos appeals (i.e., establish and draw on your credibility), logos appeals (i.e., draw on factual knowledge and ways of reasoning), and pathos appeals (i.e., draw on the values and emotions of other members) that were specific to the community. www.uta.edu/owl
Discourse Community Lingo Do you know what discourse community this is based on the terms? If you are headed to the crag today make sure you fill your rack with a range of cams and stoppers or you will have to bail your beta flash attempt. The crux includes a dyno off an arte. Make sure you flag before you dyno or you will barn door. Discourse Community Lingo
Translation: If you are headed to the [rock climbing spot] today make sure you fill your [assortment of climbing gear] with a range [here means sizes] of [two different kinds of safety gear that catch you if you fall] or you will have to [quit] your [climb something on the first try] attempt. The [most difficult part] includes a [jump/launch yourself straight up] off an [corner]. Make sure you [use one foot to balance youoff the rock but hanging out to balance] before you [launch yourself up] or you will [swing outward causing you to lose your balance].
Generating Topics and Evidence Do you have skills, abilities, hobbies, or interests that others might not have or understand? What are they? Do you use special language, terms, words, or equipment that others might not know? Can you give some examples? Activity: Write five terms specific to your discourse community that others likely do not know. www.uta.edu/owl Audience
Remember, your audience for this paper is your instructor and classmates. What does that mean? - You must write specifically for that audience. - You should explain key terms and concepts that your audience may not know. - You should prove that you are/were active in that community; in other words, give examples of your active participation in that community. www.uta.edu/owl
Thesis = Claim + Reasons Template: In this paper, I will prove/demonstrate that I successfully entered the discourse community of ________ by acquiring [logos], [pathos], and [ethos]. Example: In this paper, I will prove that I entered the discourse community of high school band by acquiring content knowledge, establishing my credibility, and learning to sway other members of the
community. www.uta.edu/owl Reasons In your thesis, your reasons should: 1. answer the because part of your claim 2. state that you mastered ethos, logos, and pathos appeals that were specific to this particular community However, your reasons should reappear in the topic sentences of your body
paragraph so that it is clear which rhetorical appeal each paragraph will focus on proving. www.uta.edu/owl Reasons Sample Topic Sentences: In any community, members share knowledge and ways of thinking, as well as particular ways of communicating this knowledge and thinking. (FYW P30) Acquiring knowledge does not matter if the speaker or writer does not come across as a person of good sense, good will, and good intentions to other members of the community.
(FYW P31) Do you know to which appeal(s) these two topic sentences refer? Has the writer made their point for the paragraph clear? Generating Evidence All evidence (i.e. logos, pathos, ethos) comes from YOU! No resources needed for this paper, please! Logos: 1. What evidence can you provide that demonstrates
that you have acquired the knowledge and/or vocabulary of this discourse community (logos)? 2. How did you acquire this knowledge (i.e. what did you do to learn it)? www.uta.edu/owl Generating Evidence Ethos: 1. How did your knowledge/expertise create credibility for you as a member of this discourse community?
2. In other words, how did you gain acceptance among the other members? Generating Evidence Pathos: 1. What values/emotions do the members of your discourse community share? 2. What values/emotions motivated your continued participation in this discourse community? 3. How does your understanding of the values/emotions of your discourse community allow you to evoke said
emotions/values in other members of your community? Creating the Naysayer When you create a naysayer you should have a particular group of people mind. Remember to name them by name. Questions you might ask yourself: o Who might challenge that I was a member of this discourse community? o What reasons might they give?
o How might I refute their claims? OR o Who might think that this is not a discourse community at all? o Why might they say that? o How might I go about proving that it is a discourse community.? Common Pitfalls 1. DO NOT write a narrative: You should show, not tell. Dont let your examples fall into storytelling. You are trying to relay
anecdotes as evidence that you were indeed successful in joining the particular discourse community. 2. Lack of detail: Be specific! You dont have to tell your audience everything you know about the discourse community, but give extended examples and be detailed in the examples that you do give. Remember we are discussing discourse communities; so, technical terminology or expertise is a great way to give evidence. 3. Lack of metacommentary: Get personal and use I. Your goal is to reflect back on your knowledge and participation in the discourse community and demonstrate your active involvement. 4. Missing/Failed Counterargument: Try to imagine someone
challenging your membership. Who would do that? Why? On what grounds? What Else Can I Do? Make an appointment with The Writing Center! http://www.uta.mywconline.com Upcoming Workshops GrammarShops We will also be offering weekly grammar workshops this semester covering various grammatical
concepts. Check our schedule (www.uta.mywconline.com) or our calendar (http://www.uta.edu/owl/workshops/grammar.php) for days and times.
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