In this course, we will use Georgia Tech’s WOVEN (written, oral, visual, electronic, and nonverbal) mode-based curriculum to engage in critical thinking, articulate clear communication, and foster rhetorical awareness. Particularly, this course will focus on transnational popular culture mediated within what Henry Jenkins defines as a “convergence culture.” With the contemporary influence of social media and the constant engagement of worldwide fan communities, the lines between corporate and grassroots digital and material production is blurred, resulting in interaction between “the power of the media producer and the power of the consumer.” This includes the definition of community, the creation and dissemination of media, and the constant conversation taking place through (social) media platforms.
The “source material” of this course will range from BTS (방탄소년단) to Star Wars, from Star Trek to professional wrestling, from Dancing with the Stars to Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. From hashtags to fan projects and from music videos to reaction videos, we will explore the ways that contemporary popular culture and fandom cross perceived boundaries through digital mediation while also considering the cultural, political, social, and economic issues present in such media “convergence.” The projects for this course engage each of the WOVEN modes that might include, but will not be limited to, discussion board posts, Twitter conversations, the creation of transformative works, and analysis of social media circulation. Through engaging with a diverse range of media not only limited to academic theory, we will ourselves engage in transnational media, placing ourselves into dialogue with source materials while mediating our interactions through WOVEN modes of communication. The course will employ both lecture and workshop teaching approaches.