Communication and Culture | Current Topics in CMCL
C334 | 1146 | Rockler

Individualism—the sense that we are each responsible for our own
well-being, success, and happiness, regardless of any obstacles that
might make these things difficult to achieve. Individualism is one of
the primary values of U.S. culture.

This course will examine individualism as a key U.S. value that
defines and shapes much of our rhetoric and our media representations.
This course will focus on the concept of therapeutic rhetoric, or
rhetoric which focuses on individual action and personal
responsibility and de-emphasizes collectivism, social activism, and
societal obstacles which may hinder and individual’s ability to
succeed.   We will examine how news coverage often reflects
therapeutic rhetoric, how social issues such as crime and welfare
often are discussed therapeutically, and how therapeutic rhetoric
affects our discourse and understanding of feminism, gender issues,
and race issues.