20 Feb. Silent Spring & Presentation Formats

Featured Image: An airplane spraying DDT over Baker County, Oregon as part of a spruce budworm control project, 1955

Part I. Silent Spring

We are going to watch the short video clip, and then you can take 5 or so minutes to review the questions below before we respond to them in discussion:
  • 1. How did post WWII/Cold War rhetoric shape human relationships to the natural world? How does that rhetoric continue to shape the language we use to describe or represent the relationship between humans and the natural world?
  • 2. What are the main rhetorical features of the first chapter of Silent Spring?
  • 3. Compare the ways Carson imagines the future in the first chapter to the ways she imagines the future in the second chapter?
  • 4. According to Carson, why have “we fallen into a mesmerized state that makes us accept as inevitable that which is inferior or detrimental, as though having lost the will or the vision to demand what is good” (12)?


Part II. Presentation Strategies

Keep the following in mind as we watch Doyle Canning’ TEDx talk on the Green New Deal:

  • 1. What’s the overall goal of Canning’s talk?
  • 2. What are the major rhetorical features of her talk, i.e. what sorts of key terms or phrases does she use to frame her description?
  • 3. How does she use images in her talk, i.e what images stood out to you? How does she use the images to surprise the audience, inform them, provide context, etc.?
  • 4. How does the form of the presentations we are performing in class, i.e. coming to your from 10 years in the future to show you all how we did it, compare to the form of the TedX talk?

Part III. Presentation Pairs

  • Time permitting, get into your presentation pairs and discuss the larger organization strategy you might employ and what sorts of visual iconography you can use to engage audiences.


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