Rethinking the Theme Park at Halloween Horror Nights

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An actor at Halloween Horror Nights. While I’ve lived here in Florida for a few years, and been an annual passholder at Disney since before I came to Orlando, I haven’t spent as much time at Universal Studios. Every year I’m impressed by the advertising campaign that accompanies the arrival of Universal’s Halloween Horror Nights (“hosted” by Chance, pictured above), but this is the first year I’ve actually been lured in to attending. I was delighted to find it to be a great... Read More

Literacy Narratives and the Need to Make Yourself Vulnerable

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In the beginning of this semester, I asked my students to write a short reflection on how they learned to read and write. The assignment was an abbreviated version of what we traditionally call a literacy narrative in the field of writing and rhetoric. Literacy narratives are popular assignments in composition classrooms, and if you have taught ENC 1101 or 1102, you have probably assigned some variety of a literacy narrative. Pedagogically, they offer powerful ways of helping students connect... Read More

From Student to Colleague: T&T Milestone Series Tackles Professional Socialization

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The work we do as undergraduate and master’s students tends to prepare us with invaluable foundations in a field of knowledge and skills in interpretation and writing, but the structure of those degrees tends to insulate us from a broader understanding of the university as an institution or academia as a culture. We then can gain that knowledge during the PhD, but this has traditionally been an informal process as part of general mentorship from one’s adviser and so highly variable. With... Read More

Welcome to Texts & Technology, Our Spaceship Earth

Posted by Carissa Baker.

As I was riding Spaceship Earth at Epcot a few weeks ago, I had a light bulb moment: Spaceship Earth is a representation of human relationships with technology, as it is meant to be, but it can also be a symbol for the discipline of Texts & Technology. If you don’t have familiarity with this ride, it is at the entrance to Epcot, Disney’s permanent World’s Fair theme park. The ride is housed in a geodesic sphere a la Buckminster Fuller, also known as “the giant golf ball.” Opened... Read More

On Competition, Teamwork, and Finding Your Scholarly Voice: Valuing the Desks around You

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My high school basketball coach once told me, “A rising tide lifts all ships.” I think he just wanted to motivate me to box-out more when the shots went up, but his point was that when we work unselfishly together toward goals, it benefits everyone. I never thought that basketball advice could apply to academia, until I finished my second year in the T&T program. Academia is an uber-competitive space. Admission departments judge who gets in from who does not. Why? Because academia... Read More