Case Study commentary – Adrienne and Kim

Case Study Outline response no. 1 – Adrienne

Adrienne is analyzing public profile images as rhetorical devices (or with rhetorical functions) using CHAT and Foucauldian analysis.

I think that contextualizing representations in digital spaces in this way is highly functional, but I’m concerned in the CHAT section by the presence of a sole laminated chronotope. I think one of the driving concepts of the theory is that the laminar nature of the chronotopes expects that such rhetorical practices would function at multiple levels concurrently. Are there other chronotopic features we might consider?

As for Foucault, I have no real questions or concerns. I might note that there are other functions of discontinuity in profile pictures, perhaps, besides the temporal changes of aging and maturing – including through group associations, group photographs, photographs of others (e.g. children/grandchildren/pets) as profile images, etc.


Case Study Outline response no. 2 – Kim F.

Kim is analyzing writing centers as functional networks through the lens of Spinuzzi’s Tracing Genre and Latour’s Reassembling the Social.

I am intrigued by the notion of viewing the writing center as a network rather than as a node within a discursive network. Obviously, the notion of a network scales up or down according to the locus of study and the lensing used to explore it – so any scale is likely viable. That said, I am interested in how this network would connect with other networks, as well as how it functions internally (that said, if you aren’t interested in that, that’s totally cool!)  I only bring this up because the “network” of the writing center is so strongly influenced by external (institutional) contexts.

One recommendation I might make would be to look at Spinuzzi’s “Working Alone Together” (2012), which explores how professionals function in shared spaces while working on individual projects and for discrete organizations (in, for example, shared office rental spaces). I feel like his direct applications of some of his theories to a practical semi-collaborative space might be informative for your own methodologies.  Although his work is more inter-organizational, it provides some great methods for intra-organizational study as well.

As for Latour – while I am not personally a fan of the agentive impulse he embraces, I think you do a good job of exploring how it would function for inanimate objects’ influence on the writing space and situated learning practices.   It’s a real challenge to contextualize technology within the WC network because of the complex organizational relationships between text, tech, and production practices.  I think your approach really nails this.  Great work across the board!


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