31 Aug. Solutions.

Featured Image: Oil from the Deepwater Horizon oil spill approaches the coast of Mobile, Ala., May 6, 2010

Freewrite:

Take 2-3 minutes and respond to the following:

  • Of all of the disasters disasters Nixon discusses throughout his final chapter, which is most arresting?

    To answer this question, zero in on a specific paragraph in which Nixon explains the disaster you chose.

    Think about the way the paragraph is composed–does the topic sentence announce the information to follow, does are there citations included from other authors, does he use any key terms, how does the paragraph you chose help the overall goal of the chapter to progress?

  • Discussion

    • 1. Nixon compares the flag planted behind the men in the underwater cabinet meeting to a flag that Russia planted in the North Pole Seabed in 2007. What do these two symbols, flags planted beneath the ocean, suggest about Earth’s future (267)?
    • 2. Who’s responsible for environmental devastation? How can those responsible be held accountable? Who has the moral authority to hold responsible parties accountable? Why is it so hard for transnational corporations to be called to account for their misdeeds?
    • 3. What’s the danger of bracketing foreign disasters as “foreign”? How is the concept of “foreign” faulty as it pertains to environmental issues?
    • 4. If we remembered spills like the 1979 Ixtoc oil explosion, would the Even Horizon spill have been avoided? According to Nixon what keeps us from holding these disasters in our memories? What can we do to remember?
    • 5. Consider this question that Nixon asks toward the end of his book: “How will writers, photographers, video artists, podcasters, and blogger navigate the possibilities–and possible perils–opened up by a new media culture characterized both by intensive, instant connectivity and by impatient, distractive staccato rhythms?” (276).

    Group Activity

    In response to Nixon’s conclusion, ort yourselves into groups of four or five and complete the following:
    • 1. Imagine that your group is humanity’s last, best hope to save the planet from final environmental devastation. You have been given unlimited resources and the full support US government to solve Climate Change and its subsidiary effects. Take ten minutes and solve Climate Change. 
    • 2. After you draft a list of solutions (approx. 8-10), elect a person from your group to write your solutions on the white board.
    • 3. After you write your solutions on the board, discuss with your group which solutions overlap with the other groups and which solutions are unique.
    • 4. Finally, be prepared to discuss the following: do the solutions you listed, and the potential overlap, suggest we already know how to solve the climate crisis? If yes, what’s stopping us?

    Synthesis

    • How do Nixon’s criticisms, solutions, suggests square with yours?

    Oil containment boom used in an attempt to protect barrier islands

    For Next Tuesday

    Please do the following for Tuesday, Sept
    Do a quick internet search and locate 2-3 sustainability graphics or visual renderings of environment devastation. Be prepared to talk abou the images you pulled with the class.

     

    RQ: Nixon, 273-80

    Directions

    Keep the following questions in mind as you read Rob Nixon’s “Scenes from the Seabed: The Future of Dissent,” 273-280. The questions are designed to guide your reading practices and our class discussions. You are not required to provide formal answers in class or online.

    1.Nixon concludes the section of the reading for last week by claiming, that developed nations “sewsaw” between two risky options: domestic drilling and dependance on foreign oil. What “third option” does he suggest? Do you agree?

    2. Who’s responsible for environmental devastation? How can those responsible be held accountable? Who has the moral authority to hold responsible parties accountable? Why is it so hard for transnational corporations to be called to account for their misdeeds?

    3. What’s the danger of bracketing foreign disasters as “foreign”? How is the concept of “foreign” faulty as it pertains to environmental issues?

    4. If we remembered spills like the 1979 Ixtoc oil explosion, would the Even Horizon spill have been avoided? According to Nixon what keeps us from holding these disasters in our memories? What can we do to remember?

    5. Nixon’s book came out in 2011, which means he probably finished writing it in 2010. How does the Gross Negligence ruling and subsequent claims settlement fit into with Nixon’s assessment of power of legislation?

    6. What’s lost in these disasters? What’s gained from not taking preventative measures until after the disaster have occurred? The terror of unlearned lessons…

    7. What’s “Corexit” (272) and why is it so scary?

    8. If, in the first half of his Epilogue, Nixon focuses on the difficulty of rendering “slow violence,” why does he turn to the impossibility of rendering “unseen violence” (273) or the terrible effects of ecological disaster that culpable parties attempt erase?

    9. What accounts for the discrepancy in responses between the Event Horizon spill and the “546 million gallons of oil spilled in the Niger Delta” (274)?

    10. Consider this question that Nixon asks toward the end of his book, “How will writers, photographers, video artists, podcasters, and blogger navigate the possibilities–and possible perils–opened up by a new media culture characterized both by intensive, instant connectivity and by impatient, distractive staccato rhythms?” (276).

    29 Sept. Reflection.

    Housekeeping:

    • Any questions about the Video composition or submission?
    • Any questions about completing the Student Instructor Agreement Form?

    Part I: Course Blog Sign-Up

    • From any page of the course website, click on the course title and number of the section in which you are enrolled (ENGL F2, D1, N2), and then follow the prompts to login/register as a course blog Author.

      Each time you have a post due, you will click on the link to your section, create a new post, and publish to the GATech hosted domain, which is totally anonymous to any user outside of GATech.  

    Course Blog Privacy Settings

    Part II: Final Portfolio

    • Take a few minutes and read through the Final Portfolio Assignment.
    • Please note a more detailed description of the Purpose/Goals and How-To publish in Mahara can be found in WOVENText (151-58)

    Reflection Discussion

    • What is the best part about your video, and what portion of the assignment gave you the most trouble?

    Reflection Freewrite/Draft

    Take ten minutes and freewrite in response to at least four of the following prompts:
    • 1.What is your argument or purpose, and how did you make the argument or purpose visible in your artifact?
    • 2. Who is the intended audience for your artifact, and why? How is your choice of audience reflected in your artifact?
    • 3. What are the defining features of the genre or media that you are using in this project, and how do you make use of these features?
    • 4.What are the defining features of the genre or media that you are using in this project, and how do you make use of these features?
    • 5. If you had more time for revision, what would you change and why?
    • Consider for the final draft: What choices will you make to revise this list into a 1-2 paragraphs for the final draft of the portfolio?

    Tool W/S: Mahara How-To

    We are going to work through the following as a class. Be sure to ask ANY questions as we move through the How-To:
    • 1. Go to Mahara (mahara.gatech.edu and NOT mahra.org) and login with your GaTech Id/PW
    • 2. Click on “Create a Page” upper right hand corner
    • Once inside “Create a Page,” “Edit title and description” to read “Artifact 0: First Week Video
    • 3. Edit Content, Text: click on “text” and then “Add” in the pop up window. You’ll be able to reconfigure the position later, so don’t worry about layout till the content has been added.
    • 4. Edit Content, Media: Once the text has been added and published, click on “Media” and then “Embed Media” from the dropdown menu or you can paste a URL from YouTube.

    Part II: Environmental Rhetoric

    Organize yourselves into groups of three, and respond to the following:

    • 1. Spend a minute looking at the photo below, and describe what you see, i.e. what is being depicted? 
    • 2. According to Nixon what is happening in the scene below and why is it important (264)?
    • 3. In the discourse surrounding the environmental crisis, is visual rhetoric more effective than verbal, why/why not?

     

    Nixon, “Scenes from the Seabed”

    • 1. According to Nixon what how are problems facing the environment typically represented? What are some examples he gives of typical representation? 
    • 2. What does Nixon mean by “slow violence”? Why is slow violence difficult to represent? 
    • 3. What are some examples of representations of slow violence?
    • 4. How do the representations of slow violence Nixon highlights offer an alternative to traditional representations/narratives of environmental disaster?

     

     

    RQ: WOVENText & Nixon (263-73)

    Directions

    Keep the following questions in mind as you read WOVENText (146-7 & 151-60). The questions are designed to guide your reading practices and our class discussions. You are not required to provide formal answers in class or online.

    WOVEN Rubric, or what we are calling in the class “The Common Feedback Chart.”

    1.How will the WOVEN Rubric, i.e. “The Common Feedback Chart,” be applied to your projects?

    2.How will the WOVEN Rubric provide Macro and Micro views of your performances? (147)

    Building the Final Communication Portfolio (151-60)

    1. What’s a reflective Portfolio? How does it differ from other types of portfolios you will likely make over the course of your career?

    2. Why write “self assessments,” i.e. reflective short essays about your project and process?

    3.How does “reflective assessment” help you to transfer knowledge/skills from one course to another (152)?

    4. What is the Final Portfolio?

    5. What is Mahara?

    Rob Nixon’s “Scenes from the Seabed: The Future of Dissent,” 263-273.

    1.What does the epigraph mean? What’s the relationship between the epithet and the rest of the essay?

    2. Why does Nixon invoke Atlantas in the first sentence, “The island of Atlantis, according to Plato, vanished into the ocean ‘in a single night and day of misfortune'” (263)? Is his opening effective, why or why not?

    3. What does Nixon mean by “slow violence”? Why is the process of “slow violence” so difficult for writers to communicate?

    4. Spend a minute looking at the photo of the underwater cabinet meeting, how does Nixon “read the scene” (264)? How does the president of the Maldives, Mohamad Nasheen, communicate the slow changes from climate change that his country faces? What does he want to accomplish through his “underwater cabinet meeting”? Is President Nasheen successful, why/why not?

    5. What does the planting of a flag traditionally symbolize? How do the planted flags that Nixon discusses challenge older notions of the symbolic gesture (266-7)?

    6. What some of intersections between human rights and environmental rights that Nixon highlights through his reading of the two “seabed scenes” in the first section of the chapter?

    7. BP brands itself as “Beyond Petroleum” (268). What does BP intend for that slogan to mean? What does Nixon suggest it means?

    8. What does Nixon mean by the phrase “technological sublime” (268)? What sorts of imaginative tools do people have to counter the “technological sublime”?

    9. Why is it useful or important to frame the conversation about climate change as a contest over the symbols we use to represent what is happening to the world?