Nonacademic Writing: Social Theory and Technology

By Ann Hill Duin; Craig J. Hansen | Go to book overview

that maintain the imbalances of class and economic status as competing voices in space. Those who have power have "strategies" for action and agency, whereas those without resort to "tactics" or inventive ploys to work and survive within someone else's system. Here again the Dana policy statement can be read as a strategy by the empowered, written for those who have only tactics with which to translate and make use of its meaning.

We have tried to suggest some of the interpretive potential in bringing semiotic perspectives to bear on workplace writing and in looking to architecture as mirror and metaphor for literate practice. Writing for the architect involves semiotic play and cultural design, and we believe that similar fluencies are part of other specialized discourses in professional settings. The architectural semiotic, for us, exemplifies ownership, the degree to which those in power recognize the worldly expanse of the language practice, the proximities to lived spaces, and the degree to which they enter into a negotiation over the boundaries of language. People do have choices. Our choice is to represent workplace writing as instances of cultural practice where the boundaries of space and text begin to crack, splinter, and shatter.


REFERENCES

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Banning M. ( 1992, November). Expert and formal knowledge in an emergent field: A critical study of snow scientists and field workers. Paper presented at Speech Communication Association national meeting. Chicago.

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Eagleton T. ( 1983). Literary theory: An introduction. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.

Faigley L. ( 1985). Nonacademic writing: The social perspective. In L. Odell & D. Goswami (Eds.), Writing in nonacademic settings (pp. 231-248). New York: Guilford.

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