MA Scaffolding Synthesis

Which 2 – 4 theories are you choosing and why? How are they similar enough that you can justify getting them to work together? How do they fill each other’s gaps?

  • Theories: I will be working with Genre theory (Miller), CHAT (Prior et. al), and Archeology. Genre theory affords a way to categorize and separate Facebook profile pictures based on the agency of the user, while CHAT and Archeology provide a useful way of looking at the connections between users and the network based on the type of profile picture a user posts.
  • These three theories are similar in that they provide a lens for looking at how both the user, based on agency and urge to connect with others in the network, and communities of other users, based on how they interact with the user and their own profile pictures, interact within the network.
  • While CHAT and Archeology provide a way to view the connections between the users, they offer little in terms of agency for the user. And while Genre theory provides little on the connections within the network, it offers a way to determine agency for the user.

How do these theories align with how you position yourself as a scholar?

  • First, these theories allow me to focus on how society functions in the online world. This is important to me as a MA student in professional writing, because I prefer to work within either the technical writing or media writing realms.
  • Second, these theories provide a way to gauge how younger members of the society are being influenced and how the connections they make will provide the foundation for society’s future. While I am not interested in teaching, I do feel that our younger generations are important because they influence how society and life will change and grow or dissolve in the future.

How do these theories align with your own biases and background (the reason you came to this project in the first place)?

  • I chose this OoS because I feel that our society no longer communicates through the oral and literary technologies, but instead through the digital technologies. As a writer, I feel we must look to the future of writing and literature, which I feel will continue to evolve into a primarily digital world.
  • I also chose this OoS because it seems that most social aspects of humanity now function within a social media site. My job, family, interests, and even classes mostly communicate through Facebook instead of other forms of communication. I feel most people would feel very out of touch with the world if they were not allowed to check their Facebook account. I am unsure whether this points solely to an economy of attention or simply the way our society is evolving, but I find it interesting how important this site has become.

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