Communication And Culture | Political Communication
C444 | 1185 | Terrill


Some courses approach politics as a "science," but we shall approach it as
an art.  Specifically, we will examine the way that persuasive
communicative artistry has effected social change in America.  How do
metaphor, myth, identification, sacrifice, scape-goating, and pleasure
accomplish political work?  We will discuss how individuals and groups
deploy these concepts strategically to accomplish social change and how
audiences make use of them to interpret the political messages they
receive.  In addition, we will discuss the way that many of these
communicative forms and themes seem to be "at large" in our culture,
forming our political selves without our being aware of their work and
becoming resources through which our selves and our publics are crafted.
The course will proceed primarily through the close examination of
exemplars of political communication, including:  public speeches; film &
TV; and social movements.

Work will include several short written assignments which will culminate in
a combined oral/written final project.  For this project, students are
required to make use of course material in a careful, sustained, and
"hands-on" study of a particular individual or group currently attempting
to effect (or resist) social change through political communication.  Since
2000 is an election year, there will be ample opportunity to bring course
material and "real world" political communication into contact with one
another.