Effects of Medium of Communication on Experimental Negotiation

October 31st, 2010

Short, J. A. Effects of Medium of Communication on Experimental Negotiation. Human Relations. 27 3 (1974): 225-34

This 1974 article details a study that John Short conducted to determine the effects of communication medium on experimental negotiation. While it was written over 35 years ago, it is foundational to social presence theory that Short later developed. The study was conducted due to what Short saw as a move to decentralize business and a greater difficulty of having face-to-face (FtF) communication, an occurrence far more relevant to the globalization of business and education in our current era. Read the rest of this entry »

Electric Rhetoric – Technologies of Electric Rhetoric

October 28th, 2010

The Sophistic performance of electronic rhetoric has arrived. …It is on computers. … and it is on television. (137)

Welch, Kathleen E. Electric Rhetoric: Classical Rhetoric, Oralism, and a New Literacy. The MIT Press, 1999.

In this fifth Chapter of Electric Rhetoric, Technologies of Electric Rhetoric, Welch elaborates on her idea of an electric rhetoric–stemming from an Ongian tie to secondary orality, which exists in, and due to, the electronic era. Given the ubiquity of computer use, Welch calls for a digital literacy not only for anyone wanting to enter the workplace, but also for anyone who wants to fully experience that richness that has been brought about by new media and our current state of technology. Read the rest of this entry »

Electric Rhetoric – An Isocratic Literacy Theory

October 27th, 2010

I contend that we do not now know Isocrates’ rhetorical theories well enough, because we have not understood classical Greek rhetoric and writing practices for our electrified time. (33)

Welch, Kathleen E. Electric Rhetoric: Classical Rhetoric, Oralism, and a New Literacy. The MIT Press, 1999.

In this Chapter 2 of Electric Rhetoric, Welch argues that the classical rhetoric set forth by interpretations of Aristotle and Plato is “categorical and highly ordered” (p. 33) and does not account for our “electrified time.” While it may be categorical and ordered, that helps for classification. She also contends that Isocrates’ rhetoric is by nature misogynistic and exclusionist. While this may be true, that was an unfortunate condition of the period. Applied today, Aristotelian and Platonic rhetorical theory need not be exclusionist or misogynist. This is a point Welch understands well, as she goes to great lengths to vindicate Isocrates’ rhetoric and find application for it in the “next rhetoric” (Chapter 4) that she proposes.

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Electric Rhetoric – A New Literacy

October 26th, 2010

Electronic technologies have led to electronic consciousness, an awareness or mentalité that now changes literacy but in no way diminishes it. (104)

Welch, Kathleen E. Electric Rhetoric: Classical Rhetoric, Oralism, and a New Literacy. The MIT Press, 1999.

Welch begins this work noting that computer screens dominate the workplace and other key places in our daily lives, and this was published in 1999. Today, we interact with screens even more so with touch-screen payment systems, watches, menus, and of course our cell-phones, which now perform virtually any online task we desire. She goes on to discuss how the use of video is used in many beneficial ways, exampling its use in the medical industry. These conditions of our current use of the internet, static and interactive screens, and video have created a literacy that previous generations did not posses. It is important, here to define literacy for this discussion and to clarify that it does not merely refer to an ability to read and write or to simply understand the technology. Welch defines literacy as follows: Read the rest of this entry »

Presence of the Word – Word as Sound

October 24th, 2010

[C]ultures which do not reduce words to space but know them only as oral-aural phenomena, in actuality or in the imagination, naturally regard words as more powerful than do literate cultures” (112).

Ong, Walter J. The Presence of the Word: Some Prolegomena for Cultural and Religious History. The Terry Lectures. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1967.

That words are powerful is a common idea, meaning that words can hurt, words bring knowledge, words bring action, etc. However, for early man and oral cultures, words actually bring physical power.

It is a commonplace that early man, strongly if by no means exclusively oral-aural, experiences words–which for him typically are spoken words–as powerful, effective, of a piece with other actuality far more than later visualist man is likely to do. A word is a real happening, indeed a happening par excellence. (111).

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