Problematizing the Notion of Posthuman Subjectivity

In “Invention in the Wild,” Thomas Rickert brings together various concepts of kairos to address posthuman subjects. As he explains, “Viewing kairos sans the autonomous, willing subject – or … posthuman subjectivity … will entail moving away from certain kinds of metaphors like poles, middles, and harmony that have a tendency to reinscribe the traditional subject” (82). So moving away from early notions of subjectivity requires new metaphors distinct from linear, analogical models, such as suggested by terms like poles, middles, and harmony. According to Rickert, such a reconceptualization of subjectivity as posthuman (c.f. Hayles) entails “terms of immersion rather than connection, flow rather than node” (82). To synthesize these two descriptions of posthuman subjects, a revamped theory would recruit metaphors of flow and immersion as it works to describe the position of subjects in nonlinear ways. Continue reading “Problematizing the Notion of Posthuman Subjectivity”

Rhetorical Reading

Overall, the practice of using Writing About Writing in my basic writing classroom has been a fruitful enterprise. One notable success was my decision to assign Christina Haas and Linda Flower’s “Rhetorical Reading Strategies and the Construction of Meaning” for the summary essay. Students were required to read and summarize Haas and Flower’s essay in a 2-page double-spaced summary essay. My students found themselves relating well with the students described in Haas and Flower’s study of freshman readers, and the content of the article was relevant, as we worked on developing effective reading strategies that can lead to writing for academic purposes. The assignment sequence was successful also because the article offered enough complexity that students actually had to choose what issues and details to focus on and include in their summary. Continue reading “Rhetorical Reading”