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2000-Level Courses

Rhetoric, Writing, and Communications


2000-Level Courses (PDF)

FALL TERM, 2019

Professional Style and Editing
RHET-2131
Section 001, Fall Term
MW 4:00-5:15PM
Instructor: Robert Byrnes  

This course teaches students to revise their prose, not for new ideas but for better phrasing of the ones they already have. Students will learn how to write in several prose styles and to edit each other's work professionally in terms of stylistic (rather than only grammatical) criteria. The course will include a number of short style exercises as well as longer essays, and a great deal of practice in editing. It will be a great help for anyone intending to write polished term papers or theses, not to mention business memos.

Rhetorical Criticism
RHET–2135
Section 001, Fall Term
TuTh 11:30AM-12:45PM
Instructor: Tracy Whalen  

Rhetoric has for 2500 years attracted bad press. It’s often seen as a synonym for trickery, bombast, lies, or empty words. This course challenges rhetoric’s maligned reputation by exploring various definitions of the term as developed by rhetorical theorists. It discusses, with reference to everyday life, the consequential role rhetoric plays in bringing about connection and division between symbol users. Week by week, we apply different rhetorical frameworks to texts that argue against the norm, move us, shape our view of a situation, and ultimately do things. The course examines public address, media events, common metaphors, websites, and powerful social narratives with a view to understanding how symbols encourage, obstruct, and refine agreement—and direct our attitudes and action. 

Contemporary Communication Theory
RHET-2137
Section 001, Fall Term
TuTh 1:00-2:15PM
Instructor: Matthew Flisfeder

This course introduces students to some of the central theories in contemporary communication studies. It covers a broad range of topics, including: media and ideology; media and public discourse; democracy and the public sphere; the critical political economy of communication; cultural representation and images of inequality in the media; media convergence and contemporary media experiences; and, new media culture and identity.   

Rhetoric of Animality
RHET-2142
Section 001, Fall Term
MW 4:00-5:15PM
Instructor: Jason Hannan

This course examines what has come to be known in the humanities as "the question of the animal". It considers how moral discourse in the West has failed to grapple with the physical and metaphysical presence of non-human animals. Students examine how the moral status of animals has been theorized in Western thought. Students interrogate the different tropes used to uphold the human-animal distinction, including the idea that speech, communication, and reason confer a special status upon humanity. Students engage a wide range of writings addressing "the question of the animal". Students taking a Major in Rhetoric and Communications must complete Academic Writing before taking this course.

Communication & Pop Culture
RHET-2250
Section 001, Fall Term
MW 2:30-3:45PM
Instructor: Matthew Flisfeder

This course examines the relationship between the rise of new media and discourses used to write about popular culture. The course looks at changing rhetorics of taste, from the nineteenth to the twentieth century, as new media made art and culture more accessible to the public.  The course also examines how new processes of mediated distribution of art changed the discursive strategies for writing about popular culture. Course topics include: the rise of photography and the technological reproducibility of images; mass media and the culture industry; technology and globalization; and augmented reality and video games.

Rhetorical Grammar
RHET-2530
Section 001, Fall Term
TuTh 4:00-5:15PM
Instructor: Janice Freeman

This course sharpens students’ ability to write and edit efficiently at the sentence and paragraph levels. Through close analysis of examples, students first acquire a vocabulary for discussing grammar, syntax, and error that refines their understanding of English sentence and paragraph structures. With these tools, students can identify structural flaws in prose more precisely and thoroughly and better distinguish between errors and stylistic choices. The relationship between sentences – cohesion, unity, and emphasis – is then considered, and students are briefly introduced to fundamentals of style. Hands-on and peer- centred, this course includes many writing and editing exercises, some completed within class, others assigned as homework. Previous students have said that it supports and complements their understanding of other Rhetoric and language courses and should be considered a prerequisite to such courses as Professional Style and Editing and Rhetorical Criticism.

TEXTS AND MATERIALS:

  • Access to Rhetorical Grammar: Grammatical Choices, Rhetorical Effects (8th Edition) Martha J. Kolln, Loretta Gray (on reserve in the library or you can purchase the text at the bookstore; ensure if you buy a used copy that it is the eighth edition).
  • Five different colours of highlighter pens

FALL/WINTER TERM, 2019-2020

Tutoring Writing
RHET-2500
Section 001, Fall/Winter
Tu 8:30-9:45AM
Instructor: Andrew McGillivray

This course is designed to provide the theoretical and practical knowledge students will need to work as a writing tutor in the Department of Rhetoric, Writing, and Communications. The class meets once weekly throughout Fall and Winter terms. Readings in composition theory and in the principles of peer tutoring will introduce students to such topics as the composing process, methods of writing assessment, rhetorical expectations in academic writing, and the ethical responsibilities of tutors in a peer-tutoring relationship. Students enrolled in this course will be expected to be a part of the University of Winnipeg’s growing community of tutors by taking part in community-building, “shadow” existing tutors to learn about best practices in peer conferences, and commit to at least five hours of peer tutoring in the fall term.


WINTER TERM, 2020

Professional Style and Editing
RHET-2131
Section 050, Winter Term
W 6:00-9:00PM
Instructor: Jaqueline McLeod Rogers

This course teaches students to revise their prose, not for new ideas but for better phrasing of the ones they already have. Students will learn how to write in several prose styles and to edit each other's work professionally in terms of stylistic (rather than only grammatical) criteria. The course will include a number of short style exercises as well as longer essays, and a great deal of practice in editing. It will be a great help for anyone intending to write polished term papers or theses, not to mention business memos.

Rhetorical Criticism
RHET–2135
Section 002, Winter Term
TuTh 8:30-9:45AM
Instructor: Shawn Moi

This course is recommended for students whose interests extend beyond the kinds of literature traditionally studied in English courses. The emphasis will be on non-literary texts and on language used to persuade -- on media talk and advertising copy; on political speeches, campaigns, and editorials; on popular and professional essays. For the rhetorical critic, such uses of language are considered worthy of close analysis not because they have lasting aesthetic value, but because they reveal cultural values and social trends. Students in this course will examine a variety of nonfiction in order to develop the perspective of rhetorical criticism, which views language acts as responses to historical circumstances, addressed to particular audiences and motivated by particular goals. Contemporary, written texts will comprise the bulk of the reading in the course, but speeches and pre-modern texts may also be considered. In addition, students will be encouraged to suggest other readings (including magazine and newspaper articles) that are suitable for rhetorical analysis.

Contemporary Communication Theory
RHET-2137
Section 002, Winter Term
TuTh 4:00-5:15PM
Instructor: Jason Hannan

This course introduces students to some of the central theories in contemporary communication studies. It covers a broad range of topics, including: media and ideology; media and public discourse; democracy and the public sphere; the critical political economy of communication; cultural representation and images of inequality in the media; media convergence and contemporary media experiences; and, new media culture and identity.

Oral Communication
RHET-2145
Section 001, Winter Term
TuTh 2:30-3:45PM
Instructor: Tracy Whalen

The goals of this course are threefold: to improve students' presentation skills, to develop their understanding and critical analysis of other presentations, and to address meaningful topics in our world. Students develop their speaking skills (and rhetorical acumen) in very practical ways by addressing different audiences through different communicative forms, including conversation and class discussion, group presentations for an outside panel, and individual three-minute thesis presentations. These activities are informed, always, by rhetorical history and theory and by close consideration of why and how we might speak in the first place—and when, why, and how we might listen as well.