About Spring 2020


COVID-19 Response Revised Course Overview:
I hope this message finds you all as safe and healthy as can be expected during a global pandemic. Please know that I value your health and well-being above anything else, so I am happy to negotiate with you any assignment requirements or due dates in our revised class. Despite the circumstances I hope that our class theme and final project offer some helpful frames through which to analyze the ways that present events shape the future, as well as the ways that our models of the future shape our actions in the present. Please do not hesitate to email me with any questions or concerns.

Given that remainder of our class will be held remotely, you can find the following changes made to the course site, syllabus, calendar, assignments, and class plans:

  • 1. Group Presentation: For full credit please submit your slideshow and video of your in-class presentations to Canvas by 11:59 on March 31. YOU ARE NO LONGER REQUIRED TO CONVERT AND SUBMIT THE PRESENTATION AS A VIDEO.
  • 2. The remaining reading quizzes have been cancelled
  • 3. Shakespeare’s The Tempest and NK Jemisin’s “The Evaluators” have been removed from the syllabus. You are no longer required to read these texts.
  • 4. The first week of remote classes have been posted 31 March. Portfolio Workshop 3 and 2 April World Building. I’ll have the remaining remote classes up shortly.
  • 5. The Canvas video chat feature has some limitations, so I’ll be available to chat via bluejeans 9-11 today. Here’s the link https://gatech.bluejeans.com/9964675720
  • 6. In the remaining weeks, you will complete The New Futures Invention Project and the Final Portfolio. The process documents, through which you develop the New Futures Project, are now a part of the remote classroom instruction as you can see from the 2 April World Building Class Plan.

Course Details

ENGL F3 T/R, 9:30-10:45, Clough 280
ENGL N7 T/R 12:00-1:15, Clough 272
Professor Dr. McKenna Rose
Office Hours T/R 11:00-11:45 and by appointment in Hall 006
Contact mckenna.rose@lmc.gatech.edu
Professor Site mckennarose.org
Course Site futures.mckennarose.org/

Course Description

The cumulative consequences of the Anthropocene—warming, carbon emission, species loss, deforestation, melting, ocean acidification, and the global waste crisis—make the future of life on earth difficult to imagine. Throughout most of human history, we have relied on models such as generational inheritance or market growth to imagine what lies ahead, but if the last few years are any indication, the rhetoric we use to project the future are increasingly insufficient. In response to this figural exigency, students in this class will draw on rhetorical forms and figures from the Sciences and Humanities to invent new figures, stories, and models that describe contemporary environmental degradation, potential responses to it, and the world to come. Students will begin by illustrating concepts of “the future” and “futurity” through contemporary media, and then expand their insights through theoretical and political texts to imagine a world free from the terminal effects of climate change. To expand on their initial research, and also uncover ways in which our present is partially determined by the future we imagined hundreds of years ago, students will investigate the history of the future as environmental rhetoric popularized in early literature such as Thomas More’s Utopia and William Shakespeare’s The Tempest. Using a multimedia approach to communication, which considers the interrelationship between Written, Oral, Visual, Electronic, and Nonverbal modes, students will articulate their own ideas about the future through a poster analysis of contemporary visual media, a slideshare and explainer video project broadcast from ten years in the future, and a creative world building project in which they research a contemporary environmental crisis by inventing a new future.

Course Goals/Concepts

Goals/Concepts Description
Rhetoric Students learn rhetorical strategies to create purposeful, audience directed artifacts that present well-organized, well-supported, well-designed arguments using appropriate conventions of written, oral, visual, and/or nonverbal communication
Process Students develop confidence in using recursive strategies, including planning, drafting, critiquing, revising, publishing/presenting, and reflecting
Multimodality Students develop competence in major communication modalities (Written, Oral, Visual, Electronic, and Nonverbal) and understand that modalities work synergistically
Collaboration Students learn to be productive in communities of practice—for example, as readers and critics, as team members and leaders—balancing their individual and collaborative responsibilities
Sustainability Students learn to identify relationships among ecological, social, and economic systems