Communication and Culture | Persuasion
C324 | 1156 | Cynthia Smith

This course explores the theory and practice of human influence in
American popular culture (e.g., films, television, speeches,
advertisements, architecture, and monuments).  Its overarching goals
are to increase your awareness of persuasive messages in everyday life
and to provide you with the tools necessary to make informed decisions
for ethical action in today's society.  The course is primarily
consumer-oriented, meaning that it focuses on the critique of
persuasive messages using a variety of critical and theoretical
approaches to persuasion. It is not, therefore, a "How To" course in
persuasion. This course continually asks what we are being asked to
do, believe, and value by the texts we encounter everyday, and how
messages are structured to get us to come to those beliefs and values.

Although it is not designated as an intensive writing course, this
course will require that you write frequently. A series of brief
papers are part of the course. It also includes a final, independent,
critical paper of 10-15 pages. Two examinations will be administered.
Finally, C324 will also require your active and informed participation
in class, particularly in collaborative groups.