Theory in a Digital Age: A Project of English 483 Students, Coastal Carolina University

From Literacy to Electracy: Resistant Rhetorical Bodies in Digital Spaces

    Bodies rhetorically work to both expose and resist cultural normativities in the ages of both literacy and electracy. I refer to instances that people use their body to expose cultural normativities that are imposed on it by societal expectations or restrictions as the “written on” body. I refer to instances that people change or morph their body in order to resist these normativities as the “speaking body.”  The body in digital spaces can work toward social justice ends by both exposing the ways in which the body is regulated by social and cultural normativities in physical spaces, and then by using new media technology to interrupt and resist these notions. As the examples I will use illustrate, the technology associated with the age of electracy opens up new opportunities for resisting cultural normativities by changing or morphing one’s bodily existence.
    In this project, you will notice a video and corresponding textual explication demonstrating the way that the “written on” body operates in digital spaces which appear in apparatuses of electracy. Lastly, you will notice a video of textual explication of the “speaking body” in the age of electracy. I will also theorize about the significance of the change in bodily rhetoric from literacy to electracy and note the possibilities for social justice that have emerged from the apparatuses and technologies of electracy. The contents of this project also include an explanation of Gregory Ulmer's "The Learning Screen" and an explanation of the shift in discourse and research toward non-traditional rhetorics. I encourage you to navigate this project freely, without being bound to a linear reading of this project's contents. 


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