Topics in Media and Culture: The History and Future of the Book--Portfolio II

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Welcome to my second blogging portfolio this semester!  All of these entries deal with a wide variety of communication eras.  I begin with a link to my first portfolio, which details the oral communication era, but most of the blogs below deal with the manuscript, print, and digital eras of communicatation.  Throughout these units, I have been able to make a lot of connections between material from and about different eras.  These connections have allowed me to better understand the development of communication and how this important this development often overlooked by our society that is constantly bombarded with communications.  Although this portfolio is not as extensive as my last portfolio, neither in my own posts nor my comments, I feel that it shows a high level of engagement with the texts we have been discussing, as well as learning opportunities and changes of heart regarding new forms of communication.  I know for next time I will work on commenting more often when I do read others’ blogs.


As usual, the blogs below are arranged into seven categories:  Coverage, Depth, Interaction, Discussion, Timeliness, Xenoblogging, and Wildcards.  Enjoy!



Coverage: All of the blogs in this section show that I have blogged on each of the readings in the course; however, I did miss a few readings this time.  Despite this fact, these blogs show that I am able to discuss the material well.


Did Technology Really Develop the Soul?- Although this blog was a day late, I talk about how Havelock discusses the ways that writing helped to develop the soul.  I may not agree with him completely, but the argument is interesting, so take a look.


Print: Good and Not So Great- In this blog, I talk about some of the downfalls of print that I thought of based on Eisenstein’s essay. 


I’m Agreeing with Darnton-In this blog, I agreed with Darnton that looking at the bibliography may help us to examine older texts, as well as some not so old texts. 


Cybertext May Not Be So Bad Afterall- As I read about cybertext in Aarseth’s chapter, I found that it might not be as horrible to study as I thought it would be.  I actually enjoyed some of the points in the chapter, and was even able to make connections to what we had read in print culture.


Just Trying to Get Aarseth’s Ideas-Despite the positive comments the week before, I found this chapter to be more difficult.  Take a look. 


The Video Was a Helpful Guide- Dr. Jerz and Peter’s video about interactive fiction was helpful in playing the game.  Take a look at the connections I made.


A Big Surprise from Interactive Fiction- Although I thought I would dislike these types of games, I found that they were challenging, yet fun, and opened my eyes to the benefits of not judging so much before I actually engage with it. 



Depth: In these blogs, I have gone beyond the simple coverage of the text to include other examples, connections,  or links to other sources to further relate and explain the texts.


Text Does Speak, but It Has Many Voices-I brought personal experiences to this blog by relating what Elbow has to say about teaching writing to a writing program that I created and taught at a public library over the summer.


Why Are We Not Speaking About What We Are Writing?- In this blog, I connected to material read earlier when we were discussing oral communication.  Plato talks about one downfall of writing being that work is not spread, and I realize that this happens a lot with undergraduate work (not here though!). 


This Is a Really Strange Book- I used my previous experience with literary criticism to highlight some of the type of lit. crit. that would apply to Calvino’s novel that would maybe benefit my classmates. 


I Don’t Know If I Like It Yet- Here, I talk about Italo Calvino’s If On a Winter’s Night a Traveler, and my uncertain opinion of the text.  I also connect it to what Havelock said about text speaking. 


Originals Are Great to Have, but We Need to Be Realistic Too-I discussed Darnton’s views of making space in libraries by putting more books and periodicals on microfilm from the stance of someone who worked in a library.  I also help with meaning by defining “paean,” which is featured in his title.


Translation or Preservation-Books Will Still Have to Be Forgotten- I talk about the ways translation is presented in Calvino’s novel, as well as ways that such translations can be forgotten, causing a book to not be read in the future.  I also link to ideas that Darnton discusses. 


ELO Collection- Although I did not especially enjoy this experience, I did relate it to a story in the field of education.  So if you like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, you should read this. 


I Think I Am Understanding Aarseth- I made lots of connections in this blog, to print culture and to my own experiences with interactive fiction



Interaction/Xenoblogging: These are links to peers’ blogs on which I commented.  Take a look at these because they are always really interesting!


Linear vs Non-linear-This is one of Tiffany’s blogs that I commented on.  We agreed, but the discussion was furthered.



Discussion: These blogs show comments or new ideas that were discussed on my own blogs, either by me or my peers that I referenced or who commented on my blog.


Text Does Speak, but It Has Many Voices- In this blog, I referenced two of my classmates, so take a look at what we all have to say.


I Don’t Know If I Like It Yet- Maddie brought new insight to my opinions of Calvino’s book, so take a look.


This Is a Really Strange Book- When discussing Calvino’s novel, I had a response from Chelsea that led to better understanding for me, and a discussion between the two of us.  Dr. Jerz also pointed out some types of criticism that applied to the text which I had left out in my analysis.


ELO Collection- Although no one commented on this blog, I did comment on what others said about their experiences with the collection.  Take a look.



Timeliness: As I mentioned in my last portfolio, this is still an area that needs much improvement, perhaps even more than was needed before.  It seems that with more difficult readings (and more work as the semester progressed), we neglected the blogs in favor of carefully reading through and understanding a reading-at least in my case.  However, here are the ones I submitted early or on time. 


Text Does Speak, but It Has Many Voices


Why Are We Not Speaking About What We Are Writing?


Originals Are Great to Have, but We Need to Be Realistic Too


Translation or Preservation-Books Will Still Have to Be Forgotten


I’m Agreeing with Darnton


Just Trying to Get Aarseth’s Ideas


ELO Collection



Wildcards: As I mentioned in my last portfolio, my Senior Seminar class is blogging as part of our service project.  Take a look at what we have done, because I think we have had an ambitious project that has been successful so far.


Seniors Helping Seniors-Helping Hands Make Happy Hearts


Also, here is one of my comments on Greta’s blog:


First Home Visit: Traveling into the Unknown for a Pleasant Surprise

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