GWRJ Issue 3.2
Wilfinger explores genre analysis through the eyes of a non-English major. She introduces the terms “genre” and “genre analysis” in such a way as to make them less intimidating to other writers, while focusing on the genre of professional blogs to guide them through what is possibly their first formal analysis. She ends the article by discussing the benefits of genre studies.
In a quest to understand keepsakes about loved ones who have passed away, McDuffie explores the genre of obituaries in American culture. She finds what information is typically included in obituaries and what is not, along with who writes and pays for these publications. She also determines what this information reveals about our own culture and determines that obituaries are often insufficient mementos to adequately memorialize our loved ones.
Shoshanna Van Tress
Examining the elusive nature of the genre-within-a-genre known as the quilt label, Van Tress describes how a seemingly simple genre may be difficult to define, complicated by questions of history, culture, artistic style, and intended audience. These factors and others influence the ways in which these texts are created and how they are read by various audiences.
Qabazard explores how cultural differences impact genre conventions of American and Kuwaiti fast-food advertisements. She discusses the implications for all readers and writers.
Gradea describes the political propaganda of the Communist period of Romania (1947-1989), in which the one-party political system shaped the rhetoric of public discourse. She contextualizes the political slogan and the radical tone it developed over time. After analyzing the genre of the slogan and its political context, she resituates this genre into a different context.
Edel presents a little boy’s struggle to write as a way to illustrate important aspects about writing fiction. The commentary provided in the side bars discusses choices about details in fiction and how these details can change the tone and feel of a work. The Velociraptor’s Notes provide additional commentary on the commentary, from the point of view of velociraptors, of course.
Zwick focuses on instructions on writing realistic fictional narrative using examples from his own work as well as examples from the book Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov. Although some consider narrative an easy genre to write, Zwick argues that it is one of the hardest. He goes into detail about the various requirements of this genre using what he calls aspects as well as a hierarchical diagram.
Safran explores the reasons for researching and understanding a genre before creating it. Part of this process includes acknowledging the variances in expectations for various genres—they are not all formatted like essays! She conducts this exploration through a narration of her own experience learning the genre of the memo.
Koehler tackles usability—a very big idea—in a small amount of space. And, because Koehler doesn’t believe in doing things in a small way, this article also takes up the idea of how genre and usability, when thought about together, can help us write more effectively.
Shane T. Lucas
Lucas discusses his process for writing a Manga after finding out that his school writing has not prepared him to write one. After reading Manga, watching anime, and using his art background, Shane begins to discover what he needs to do to write his own.
Nave is compelled to relate the works of graffiti artist SOL with his own creative writing. As he does so, he asserts that writing is as much about establishing identity and existence as it is about executing craft and technique. He argues for a “graffiti consciousness” that enables all text producers to see themselves as writers, regardless of their scholarly or artistic credentials.
Kniss explores her process for creating political cartoons using a framework she developed through her experiences as an artist and student of genre studies. She focuses on a cartoon she created criticizing the No Child Left Behind Act and examines how the model she created for drawing cartoons is also useful for other kinds of creative activity.
Lisa L. Phillips
Phillips describes the process of tattoo compositions as a collaborative writing process between artist and client. For the client, the process involves making decisions about what she wants her tattoo to communicate to other people about her. For the tattoo artist, the process involves making informed decisions about placement, design, ink, and color based on the client’s request. Ultimately, the process of composition involves learning about a new genre.