Computers and Composition, volume 22, number 1 (Special Issue on New Media). Esp. Grigar, Dene. “Kineticism, Rhetoric, and New Media Artists.”

In this article, Grigar argues that while rhetorical analysis of the visual and aural have gained prominence, it is also important to consider the rhetorical kinetic act. She claims the kinetic activity refers to motion, however, in terms of new media it can be viewed as “new media works that turn readers into users and create characters who are no longer described as moving, but indeed dart, jump, run, roll…”(Grigar 105). She describes the work of two female new media artists, Jill Scott and Magerete Jahrmann, whose work has an element of the interactive, oftentimes through the use of their bodies. Grigar claims that without a rhetoric of the kinetic, the artists’ message and impact are lost. Girgar points out that the artists rhetoric breaks decorum and this is accomplished through use of the body. She makes the distinction that when the female artist uses her body this break with decorum occurs kinetically. When it is the audience manipulating the work of art  it (the break of decorum) occurs kinesthetically. This insight implies that any and all media is a kind of rhetoric–it can take any form–“sound, action, body action–in addition to writing and orality and the visual” (Grigar 112). She concludes that although we talk about visual rhetoric, we should also be talking about rhetoric associated with auditory, kinetic, and the like” (112).

Grigar argues that we should be thinking widely about the modes of expression used for communicating: “Along with words or even images, we may be more thorough with our research if we come to see rhetoric as “media rhetoric”-that is, communication that crosses and encompasses all media” (112). This is so simple. This sounds a lot like multimodal literacy without any reference to Kress and the gang. This also reminds me of Bloom’s taxonomy of educational objectives. There was supposed to be: the cognitive, the affective and the kinesthetic/psychomotor. They were envisioned as a triad, although it was only the cognitive that became well known (because it was the easiest to research). Bloom et al’s theory of kinesthetic was about doing/producing things…why does no one ever use Bloom’s taxonomy? I mean the affective and the psychomotor– I think it’s fascinating stuff.

Advertisements