Posts by js

Chicana Art

By js, 4 March, 2011, No Comment

I hope to take Michelle to this activity.

Deconstructing the Digital Native/Immigrant Myth

By js, 13 February, 2011, 2 Comments

The blog post The Myth of the Digital Native argues that the terms digital native and digital immigrant create false dichotomies.

We hear a lot about the notion of Digital Natives and Digital Immigrants, a concept originally suggested by Marc Prensky in a paper by the same name (PDF).  It makes an presumption that those born after the widespread introduction of digital technologies are somehow out of step with the world of technology, while those who were born and raised in the digital age are naturally able to function within it.

Betcher provides several examples when the terms, with their neat definitions, do not apply. Seniors who know how to do limited things with technology but are not aware of the many possibilities and tools they can use. Teenagers who have the technology at home, but never figure out how to set it up. His own kids who are adept with certain technologies but get stumped when new ones, which don’t follow the patterns of use they are used to, are introduced.

He says

I think we make a huge error of judgment if we assume that just because a 14 year old takes a lot of photos with their phone and sends 300+ texts a month that they have some sort of innate “native” status. We seem to assume that because they use tools like Google to find information, that they understand how to do it well.   And we assume that because they might have 200 friends on Facebook that they understand what it means to live in a digital world.

He also points out that there are many adults who don’t fit within the age range for digital native but who are very adept at using all types of technologies. If one only looked at their skills then they could be considered digital natives.

He also argues that not only is the myth based on simple dichotomies, but the danger comes when we take these dichotomies as truths and then act accordingly, especially in our schools.

It’s a dangerous myth because it has some real implications for how we approach technology in schools.  If we believe that “all kids are good with technology and all adults aren’t”, which, in its most basic terms, is the kind of polarised thinking that the native/immigrant myth perpetuates, it can play out in schools with all sorts of bizarre unstated beliefs…

He argues that there are some kids who are just good at technology like there are kids who are good swimmers. I think the key is that those who are good with technology, both young and old, are eager learners, ready to experiment, and good at seeing, using, and looking for patterns.

So instead of saying Digital Native we should use Digital Generation when we want to refer to those who were born into the internet age.

But the recipe for a Digital Native:

1. life long learning skills

2. comfortable with experimentation

3. excellent at discerning and applying patterns.

The question of methods

By js, 30 July, 2010, No Comment


Logging in today’s work.


By js, 30 July, 2010, No Comment


Chicana rhetoric

By js, 29 July, 2010, No Comment

I’ve just finished reading kendal Leon’s dissertation about chicana rhetoric titled “BUILDING A CHICANA RHETORIC FOR RHETORIC AND COMPOSITION: METHODOLOGY, PRACTICE, and PERFORMANCE.”

In her dissertation, Leon argues that the term “Chicana” is a “political act of identification” that is rhetorical because it is ideological and “carries explicit political implications that mediate performance of what it means to be a Chicana” (abstrac ii-iii)

She examines not Chicanas which perform a “stabilized ‘rhetoric’” but instead places rhetoric as a “dependent variable” which “[alters] with and through Chicana production” (2-3).

She acknowledges that Chicana identity and rhetoric has been studied in poetic writing and wants to show how it is also articulated in other types of writing. (3)

She focuses on “Chicana identity as not only reflecting a reality but as an
epistemic that incites correlative actions” (4).

Leon identifies “commonalities or repetitious practices enacted by Chicanas” (15). She defines Chicana rhetoric as “a specific set of practices that are developed and employed within a particular context from which Chicana emerges” (15-16).

  1. Shared Topoi and Symbols to Resist and to Use to Create
    1. recanting or retelling stories of symbolic figures
    2. topoi-border and mestiza (consciousness)–learning to deal with plurality and contrdictions
  2. Use of poetics to theorize
  3. Recognition and Utilization of Experiential Knowledge
    1. “acknowledges experience as a source of knowledge about the world” which leads “Chicanas to create or adopt theories to help invent ways to account for and build upon this epistemology and ontology” (17)
  4. Invention and Intervention of Histories
    1. “the subject position of Chicana is itself created to stand in opposition, or to be more precise, operates in strategic tension with historical constructions of Mexican American and/or Latina. Chicana writers often create new narratives that interrogate and recast histories to enable activist subjectivities.” (18)
  5. Connective and Collective
    1. “Chicana rhetoric employs the Nahua trope of difrasismo17, or coupling. The
      difference is that rather than operating on replacement or minimization, difrasismo
      creates relationships—sometimes spatial, or ideological. What this allows then is the
      production of affinities to be formed. Affinities and relations can also take place textually by placing different languages and discursive practices next and in between each other. I do not call this “multi-genre” but instead an act of textual affinities (i.e. Calafell, “Pro(re-…. Textual affinities may also take place by disrupting subjectivities
      based on chronos. ….affinities are also produced in Chicana rhetoric materially
       …. Chicana identity operates productively: when one affiliates as and with Chicana(s), it shapes the way we see the world and the way we act in it as scholars and activists.” (18-19)

Leon focuses on “how Chicana-ness is understood, defined, felt and experienced is actually part of a shared practice of Chicana rhetoric. To reiterate, I am looking at Chicana rhetoric because, as you can see, calling oneself a Chicana enacts an intentional chain of ideological and material signification. Therefore, what this dissertation does is to examine and explain the how of Chicana identity—how it operates rhetorically in the world, including the world of texts, histories, and action; and at the same time, the way it operates in the world with a particular set of outcomes and practices.” (19)

The Latino Blogosphere

By js, 28 January, 2010, No Comment

Long list of Latin@ bloggers

BlogWorld 2009 had the innovative idea of hosting a multicultural panel.  A clear sign of vision and pulse of the current situation in the U.S.A.  I had the honor to be invited by Jose Villa from Sensis to represent the fastest growing group both online and offline: The Latino(a)s!  During the session, I was often asked about the Latino blogosphere.  What do we blog about? Which language do we use? Where are we? And so forth.  This post is an attempt to answer  these questions.

Sandoval and Technology

By js, 27 January, 2010, No Comment

Dialogues between Paul Virilio and Chela Sandoval.

“This quest for subversion through situated and embodied utopian and imaginative rhetoric devices is then, in my opinion, exactly at work in Sandoval’s Methodology of the Oppressed. Her use of an imaginative and utopian discourse on new technologies and her conflation of the techniques-for-moving-energy of the oppressed with certain new technologies should therefore best be understood as originating from an attempt to re-appropriate these technologies and discourses for the female US third world subaltern. This puts a creative hybrid feminist/anti-racist subject at the centre of the technological debate. Similarly, she creates a situated utopian vision of love in a postmodern world, where she reclaims the traditionally hetero-romantic concept of love for anti-racist feminist purposes. Where Kendrick’s text still remained within the register of European subjectivities, and Deleuze and Guattari are not clear about what the re-centring on a non-Eurocentric subject might look like, Sandoval thus vitally rewrites and re-imagines in “New Sciences”, “US Third World Feminism” and in  Methodology both feminist history and the history of new technologies. She does this in order to validate US third world feminist knowledges, so as to make this feminism an integral part of (previously white, Western) hegemonic feminism and of discourses on globalisation and new technologies. This appropriation of (new) technologies invokes new subjectivities that are hybrid in superseding previous modernist and humanist dichotomies of first versus third world, human versus machine, real versus virtual, culture versus nature and male versus female. Interestingly, Sandoval creates this double de- and reconstructive move, in which we can again recognise many arguments of Haraway’s “A Manifesto for Cyborgs”, through partially taking on board Fredric Jameson’s analyses on the postmodern late-capitalist condition, but vigorously rejecting his modernist Eurocentric nostalgia. Her biggest objection to Jameson is indeed the “limits of [his] imaginary” (19) which result eventually in a “Jamesonian eulogy” that merely seeks to reinstall certain modern hegemonic conditions, similar to Virilio’s lament. In this case then, only a taking on board of the astute analyses of present-day connections, combined with a situated imaginative rejection of this subject of modernism from the point of view of the marginalised, can provide us with the tools to overcome the structural power relations under attack. Such a strategy of technology coincides with Deleuze and Guattari’s notion of technology as both conveying representational contents in line with its dominant choices and developments. It also contributes to, as they coin it, “new assemblages of enunciation” (Soft Subversions 133) through the desires of the oppressed.”

Reliability and Validity in Research

By js, 27 January, 2010, No Comment

We suggest that by focusing on strategies to establish trustworthiness (Guba and Lincoln’s 1981 term for rigor1) at the end of the study, rather than focusing on processes verification during the study, the investigator runs the risk of missing serious threats to the reliability and validity until it is too late to correct them. (3-4)

The purpose of this article is to reestablish reliability and validity as appropriate to qualitative inquiry; to identify the problems created by post hoc assessments of qualitative research; to review general verification strategies in relation to qualitative research, and to discuss the implications of returning the responsibility for the attainment of reliability and validity to the investigator. (4)

Presentation on Blogs as Knowledge Logs

By js, 27 January, 2010, No Comment

New Research Summit: “A study of online citizen reviews”

Keynote by Lisa Ede. On May 12, 2006 a group of featured speakers interactively explored the new media as teaching tool and object of study for writing teachers, including: online discourse communities, online publication, literacy, and the ethical dimension of this collaborative medium.

Thanks to Jaime M. for pointing me to this.

Latinos “Making the Next Generation”

By js, 20 January, 2010, No Comment

Sarita E. Brown “Making the Next Generation Our Greatest Resource” pgs 83-100

I first came across Brown’s name when I saw an Excellencia presentation and realized that some of the programs which have been implemented at this campus could qualify for the recognition which Excellencia gives annually.

I also remember watching a recording of a panel presentation in which she participated. The activities which she is involved in demonstrate the conviction of the words in this essay.

Her focus is on education. She says

“Decisive action, guided by clear goals, and sustained commitment, is required to capture the promise of tomorrow offered America by the sheer size and thriving raw talent of the Latino community” (Brown, 84).

Brown cites Steve Murdoch, Texas demographer, to provide evidence of what she terms the “sheer size”

Texas will become less than one-half Ango in the next few eyars and is likely to have a Hispanic majority . . . .This pattern suggests that the State’s future will be increasingly tied to its non-Anglo populations and that the way non-Anglo populations grow and change will largely determine the future of Texas (87)