Communication 326

E S S A Y E X A M # 1
Communication 326
Communication, Society and Culture
WINTER 2018 Prof. C. Coleman Emery
Refer to the Essay-Exam Assignment Sheet on D2L before beginning your essay.
Essays are due on D2L ONLY. Take care to ensure you upload your essay before the 5 p.m. deadline,
Friday, February 9, to avoid being locked-out of the computer: only papers uploaded on D2L will
be graded. You must cite your sources in APA format and attach a Reference Page (Bibliography)
of the sources you have cited.
Remember we can only open word doc copies and pdf copies.
Write a 1250-to-1500 word argument that explores the core meaning of what the author
is conveying based on your understanding of the author’s claims within the context of
your class readings. In other words, the quote represents more than the words alone
and you are expected to examine meanings beyond the quote. Use the quote as a springboard
for your essay.
What are the author’s key points as evidenced in the quote and his or her other writings?
How does she or he illuminate them (use examples from your readings)? How does the
author construct meaning? What does she or he mean (use examples)? Make linkages
across the author’s writings and ideas, and feel free to link with other authors you have
read. Use an example from the headlines or history to describe how the author’s treatise,
theories and/or assumptions are relevant to the study of communication on a broad,
structural level (rather than an individual-level).
Offer your personal assessment and/or critique about the value of the author’s arguments,
and end big: offer a compelling summary conclusion to your essay.
 Dig deeply. If you find you have only 500 words then you are not writing enough detail and are
likely writing too superficially in your essay
 Build an argument that brings evidence from you
Page 2 of 3
releasing a single…meaning, but is a space of many dimensions, in which are wedded and
contested various kinds of writing, no one of which is original [Edited from the original]
2. Walter Benjamin says:
By replicating the work many times over, it substitutes a mass existence for a unique
existence. And in permitting the reproduction to reach the recipient in his or her own
situation, it actualizes that which is reproduced. These two processes lead to a massive
upheaval in the domain of objects handed down from the past–a shattering of tradition…
The authenticity of a thing is the quintessence of all that is transmissible in it from its origin
on, ranging from its physical duration to the historical testimony relating to it. Since the
historical testimony is founded on the physical duration, the former, too, is jeopardized by
reproduction, in which the physical duration plays no part. And what is really jeopardized
when the historical testimony is affected is the authority of the object, the weight it derives
from tradition [Edited from the original]
3. Laura Mulvey writes:
The image of a woman as (passive) raw material for the man’s (active) gaze is significant for
the content and structure of the representation, adding a further layer demanded by the
ideology of the patriarchal order….the camera’s technology allows the viewer to feel like a
voyeur who is invisible, and that editing techniques allow “invisible editing” that “blur[s] the
limits of screen space.” The stage is a creation. An illusion. [Edited from the original]
4. Jonathan Culler writes:
American prize-winning scholar Toni Morrison argues that “American literature has been
deeply marked by the often unacknowledged historical presence of slavery, and that this
literature’s engagements with freedom—the freedom of the frontier, of the open road, of
the unfettered imagination—should be read in the context of enslavement, from which
they take significance.” [from Culler, Literary Theory, Oxford Press, p. 67]
5. Stuart Hall writes:
“The level of connotation of the visual sign, of its contextual reference and positioning in
different discursive fields of meaning and association, is the point where already coded
signs intersect with the deep semantic codes of a culture and take on additional more active
ideological dimension…the relations of signs…reveal “a complex structure of dominance”
and that decoding a message means readers reach for meanings that reflect “deep semantic
codes of a culture and take on additional, more active ideological dimensions” [Edited from
the original]
6. Michel Foucault writes:
…truth-claims are constructed through discourses. The question isn’t whether something is
true, factual or correct: what matters is how truth is produced: In a society such as ours
there are manifold relations of power which permeate, characterize and constitute the
social body, and these relations of power cannot themselves be established, consolidated
nor implemented without the production, accumulation, circulation and functioning of a
Page 3 of 3
Grading Rubric
Assess how well the student (each bulleted section has equal weight):
 Organizes the paper: is it well-written? Polished? Clear? Sound conclusion? Intellectually
sophisticated? Follows APA style, in-text, with correct citations? (25%)
 Defines relevant terms clearly and cogently, and links them seamlessly to the essay?
Discusses successfully the key theories in the essay and draws linkages between concepts
(and may use other authors from our readings in drawing linkages) and draws on relevant
sources? (25%)
 Uses sound and relevant evidence from key sources to build both theoretical and applied
arguments? Successfully applies example(s) from history or the headlines and links it
effectively to the essay? (25%)
 Connects the theories to the essay and/or theories in a structural framework effectively?
Makes a good, sound argument and/or critique and demonstrates a thoughtful analysis
overall (25%)
Minimum 1250 words and maximum 1500 words not counting your Reference Page
(Bibliography). Penalty if your word count is greater than the maximum requirement by 5%,
or less than the minimum requirement by 5%). Recommended: 1500 words.
All papers must be presented in a word-processor format (pdf preferred) and include:
Cover page (spacing is your choice):
Essay-Exam #1
February 9, 2018
Word Count: — words
Question # Full text of question
 APA style throughout
 Correct and accurate in-text citations
 Write your own words only unless a quote is cited. After citing other writers, explain the
quote in your own words
 D2L’s Turnitin program will flag plagiarism. If plagiarism is noted you will be asked to
defend your work and provide citations
 Double-space with no extra spaces between paragraphs
 Page numbers
 Correct spelling and grammar (make sure to double-check)
 Reference Page (Bibliography) of works you cite (single spaced) No Wikipedia or
dictionaries can be used