Media Materiality Manifesto

Media Materiality Manifesto

Highlight. Reverse. Remix.

Just keep swimming. But tell me, what have you been swimming in?

Like the fish that swims in water, you too swim inside the rivers and oceans of media. From the materiality of the pencils in your hands to the keys at your fingertips to the TV coursing through your eyes, you just keep swimming. But start revealing the materiality of the mediums around you.

Media demands your interaction. It demands that you follow an established set of wars, wares and ways to forgotten roles and rules of your generation. Highlight the materiality clouding your senses.

Materiality is the essence of these mediums. It’s the parts of the whole. Start seeing the water around you by taking the expected into the unexpected.

Start questioning the naturalness of your ways. Why is it “natural” to get food from a supermarket? Is it natural because you’ve been doing it for your entire life? Does that make it natural?

Program or be programmed. Because how can you change something or make it better unless you understand the underlying parts? Reverse your ways.

Talk backwards. Now sound the warring remix. Make us all listen to ourselves. But tread softly, my friend, because your better is their worse.

black boxes february album

Steven and I wrapped up the album today. I think we were crazy for doing this, considering, well, a lot of things, but damn it feels good to have this complete draft done.

I’m excited to play it live.

black boxes pop player

black boxes pop player on

Formative Writing Experience

When I try to recall some event that put me on a path to new knowledge on how to become a better writer, I usually think of how it involved rhetoric and rhetorical devices, i.e. becoming a Sophist, perhaps(?). Yet, there was a time when I was prompted to reflect on my writing process and I soon realized that I had none (that I was aware of).

This was in Graduate Scholarship class and I felt rather silly for not really knowing what I do. There were some usual moves that I could recall, but I couldn’t get too “granular”. There were some other colleagues who seemed to have a better idea and some with real concrete and definitive methods. I personally concluded that I have a set of tools and make decisions on how and when to utilize them for specific exigences and developing situations. Yet, over the last almost two years, I now wonder: Do I go back to Invention, Pre-writing, Drafting, Revising as a standardized process?

I do know that I have a love-hate relationship with the invention process. It’s so damn difficult, but mind bending cool sometimes! If there’s a place that I dwell for awhile it is in this corner of the process — I am very dialectic about it. I try to gain multiple perspectives, let it brew, try to write it out and then after a bit of incubating I’m ready to go. Yet, I’ve also been known to hammer out some decent writing on the fly, when pressed to do so.

All this to say, the reflection on my own writing process has enabled me to formulate some ideas on what I do, what I like about it, what I hate and try to streamline or make easier on myself, and hopefully in the end become a little bit better than before.

Process posting on wk 3 readings

Sommers “Revision Strategies of Student Writers and Experienced Writers”:

We have a dilemma as compositionalists: writing is linear, but thought and the writing process is not. Our student writers believe in the struggle “to bring their essays into congruence with a predefined meaning. The experienced writers do the opposite,” creating meaning in the revision process. (330)

Student vs. Expert Writers: On revision

  • Student writers: never use the word “revision” (325) and focus on surface level wording, which is only describing your thoughts in a different way, instead of changing and learning different approaches to a subject/theme.

    “The students place a symbolic importance on their selection and rejection of words as the determiners of success or failure for their compositions.” (326)

    Repetition is a strong worry, but lexical repetition is not “diagnosed”. (327)
    Modification of ideas: Students don’t think revision is an activity to “modify and develop perspectives and ideas

    One Reason Why

    Since [students] write their introductions and their thesis statements even before they have really discovered what they want to say, their early close attention to the thesis statement, and more generally the linear model, function to restrict and circumscribe not only the development of their ideas, but also their ability to change the direction of these ideas. (327)

  • Expert writers: Rewriting and revising are a way to “form or shape” their arguments, and the experienced writers discuss revision in “structural expressions such as ‘finding a framework,’ ‘a pattern,’ or ‘a design’ for their argument.” (329)

    “Revising confuses the beginning and end, the agent and vehicle; it confuses, in order to find, the line of argument.” (329)


[Expert writers] have abstracted the standards of a reader and this reader seems to be partially a reflection of themselves and functions as a critical and productive collaborator–a collaborator who has yet to love their work.” (Sommers, 329)

[connecting Sommers and Bruffee]

…our task [as writing teachers] must involve engaging students in conversation among themselves at as many points in both the writing and the reading process as possible, and that we should contrive to ensure that students’ conversation about the way read and write is similar in as many ways as possible to the way we would like them eventually to read and write. (Bruffee, 551)


Bruffee argues for collaborative learning as work “that promotes a sort of reacculturation,” where and when the students are changed somehow by the process. As Sommers may note, the writing process is not linear, but recursive, requiring conversation and restructuring of the ideas in revision rendering possibilities for change.

Bruffee contends that knowledge is socially constructed through the constant gardening or continuous state of “negotiation or conversation.” (555) He aligns with Rorty’s knowledge as a “social artifact,” and discusses the need for normal and abnormal discourse, beget by the teaching of practical rhetoric and critical analysis, so they can generate new knowledge. (557)

These processes undermine the current authority of the university/institution, where we as teachers are redefined as members of a knowledge community, where we can invite new members via the social channels of negotiation and conversation.


wordpress doesn’t embed prezi anymore — boo! — so there’s the link.


This is not done yet, but I’ll just post this with the hopes I finish by 01/25. (revision 01/25 2:47pm: I’m not gonna finish.)

FYI — It is a timeline trying to “define and divide” the 19th century current traditionalist sense, while trying to make some connections between the parenthetical divisions with the expressionists, as well as reach back to the ancient traditionalist rhetoric of ole.

…and so it comes and goes and blows away.

Comp-Rhet Acad[m]eme as Gamer?

Visualization of Wark's _Gamer Theory_
So, on the day that I start this blog, I receive the print version of Wark’s _Gamer Theory_ in the mail. For the last two years I have been struggling to find where computer programming, composition, and education collide. These moving parts are the makeup of my research arc that I am assembling with the XO laptop.

Hopefully, I can make some connections this class, Comp Theory, and possibly with the help of Wark and my research with Dr. Brooks. I foresee myself studying social constructivism (SC) in Comp Theory, and I hope to pull in Wark and SC into my continuing research. Ultimately, I want to explore the idea that computer programming is crucial in computer-mediated composition and we need to implement curricula to create more savvy users–not the dumbed-down GUI-interfaced electric crowd that we are today.

More to follow…