Rhetoric, Culture, and Society: Introduction to Criticism
116 001 | Session D | CCN: 14293
Introduction to Criticism
Location: Dwinelle 79
Date / Time: Tu/We/Th 1:00pm - 3:29pm
What is critical thinking? What is criticism? What is the critic’s role in society? Such questions may lead us to reflect on how we collectively find fault in ideas, people, and objects, bringing to mind concerns about “cancel culture,” and the demand for hot takes about anything and everything. This course, however, adopts a rhetorical approach to these questions, and looks beyond the outrage of the moment to cultivate students’ ability to discern how our world hangs together, or how it could, and to make meaningful claims about it. Drawing on various modes and materials of discourse, we will explore the origins of diverse conceptions of critical thinking and the attitudes attached to them. This exploration will lead us to think and rethink the practice of criticism past and present. This thinking will, by the end of the course, make us better critics, which is to say we will partake in a criticism that expands the world of ideas and action available to us today.