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Read. Write. Oxford.
Culture: A Reader for Writers presents work from a broad spectrum of writers who are grappling with the cultural trends around them. Some defend the status quo, some wonder what to make of new gadgets, some embrace uncertainty, and others celebrate inevitable shifts that will resonate for years to come. Whether the topic is working conditions, student loans, movie protagonists, or soldiers returning from war, the writers give voice to the discomfort and hope that accompanies change. And more importantly, they show the writhing and wonder that makes culture itself readable. Each chapter takes on a particularly urgent subject of contemporary conversation: work, consumerism, language, social media, identity, entertainment, nature, politics, and war. The photo galleries give shape and imagery to the subjects discussed in the readings.
Developed for the freshman composition course, Culture: A Reader for Writers includes an interdisciplinary mix of public, academic, and scientific reading selections, providing students with the rhetorical knowledge and compositional skills required to participate effectively in academic and public conversations about culture and change.
Culture: A Reader for Writers is part of a series of brief single-topic readers from Oxford University Press designed for today's college writing courses. Each reader in this series approaches a topic of contemporary conversation from multiple perspectives.
John Mauk is Writing Director and Instructor of Composition and Rhetoric at Northwestern Michigan College.
Table of Contents
1. Work: What We Do Amy Reiter, "Why Being a Jerk at Work Pays" Daily Beast Elizabeth Dwoskin, "Why Americans Won't Do Dirty Jobs" Bloomberg Businessweek Julie Hanus, "White Collared: When Did Our Jobs Turn Into a Joke?" Utne Reader Patricia Ann McNair, "I Go On Running" Jason Storms, "In the Valley of the Shadow of Debt" Ross Perlin, "Of Apprentices and Interns" Lapham's Quarterly Christian Williams, "This, That, and the American Dream" Utne Reader Mike Rose, "Blue-Collar Brilliance" American Scholar 2. Consumerism: How We Spend Sara Davis, "Freshly Minted" The Smart Set David E. Procter, "The Rural Grocery Crisis" Daily Yonder Dan Heath and Chip Heath, "How to Pick the Perfect Brand Name" Fast Company Charles Kenny, "Haiti Doesn't Need Your Old T-Shirt" Foreign Policy Drew Harwell, "Honey Buns Sweeten Life for Florida Prisoners" St. Petersburg Times Sharon Begley and Jean Chatzky, "The New Science Behind Your Spending Addiction" The Daily Beast Sharon Angel, "Sorting Out Santa" Fredrik deBoer, "The Resentment Machine" The New Inquiry Damien Walter, "Sparks Will Fly" Aeon 3. Language: What We Mean Julie Traves, "The Church of Please and Thank You" This Richard Chin, "The Science of Sarcasm? Yeah, Right" Smithsonian Blake Gopnik, "Revolution in a Can" Foreign Policy Autumn Whitefield-Madrano, "Thoughts on a Word: Fine" The New Inquiry Juliette Kayyem,"Never Say, "Never Again" Foreign Policy Robert Lane Greene, "OMG, ETC" More Intelligent Life Fleda Brown, "Art and Buddhism: Looking for What's True" 4. Social Media: How We Communicate Lucy P. Marcus, "What It Means Today To Be 'Connected'" Harvard Business Review Steven Krause, "Living Within Social Networks" Cynthia Jones, "Lying, Cheating, and Virtual Relationships" Global Virtue Ethics Review Michael Erard, "What I Didn't Write About When I Wrote About Quitting Facebook" The Morning News Robert Fulford, "How Twitter Saved the Octothorpe" National Post Roger Scruton, "Hiding Behind The Screen" The New Atlantis James Gleick, "What Defines a Meme?" Smithsonian 5. Identity: Who We Are Sameer Pandya, "The Picture for Men: Superhero or Slacker" Pacific Standard Cristina Black, "Bathing Suit Shopping With Annette Kellerman, the Australian Mermaid" The Hairpin Doug LaForest, "Illegal Aliens" S. Alan Ray, "Despite the Controversy, We're Glad We Asked" Chronicle of Higher Education Eboo Patel, "Is Your Campus Diverse?" Chronicle of Higher Education Leila Ahmed, "Reinventing the Veil" FT Magazine 6. Entertainment: What We Watch, How We Listen Laura Bennett, "Fallon and Letterman and the Invisible Late Show Audience" The New Republic Richard Lawson and Jen Doll, "Lies Hollywood Told Us: Love and Romance Edition" The Atlantic Wire Stefan Babich, "The Fall of the Female Protagonist in Kids' Movies" Persephone Amanda Marcotte, "The Shocking Radicalism of 'Brave'" American Prospect Steve Yates, "The Sound of Capitalism" Prospect 7. Nature: How We Share the Planet Jerry Dennis, "Smoke Gets in Your Eyes" Excerpt from From a Wooden Canoe Stephanie Mills, "Some Words for the Wild" from Tough Little Beauties Hugh Pennington, "Bug-Affairs" London Review of Books Robert Moor, "Mother Nature's Sons" N+1 Rob Dunn, "Fly On Wall Sees Things It Wishes It Hadn't" Scientific American David P. Barash, "Two Cheers for Nature" Chronicle of Higher Education Michael Shellenberger and Ted Norhaus, "Evolve" Orion 8. Politics: How We Govern Jeremy Brechner, "The 99 Percent Organize Themselves" The Nation David Korten, "When Bankers Rule the World" Yes Magazine Deanna Isaacs, "The Transnational Economy" The Chicago Reader Starhawk, "A Pagan's Response to the Affordable Healthcare Act" Dirt Worship David R. Dow, "We Stop the Next Aurora Not With Gun Control But With Better Mental Health Treatment" Daily Beast Janice Brewer, "Letter from Governor Janice Brewer to President Barack Obama" Kat Langdale, "The Illogical World of US Immigration" 9. War: How We Fight Doug Stanton, "What the Water Dragged In" New York Times Benjamin Busch, "U.S. Soldier Afghan Rampage Tears at Our National Soul" Daily Beast Emily Chertoff, "Occupy Wounded Knee" The Atlantic Nick Turse, "A Six-Point Plan for Global War" TomDispatch Neal Whitman, "'Kinetic' Connections" Visual Thesaurus Chris Hedges, "War Is Betrayal" Boston Review Tom Malinowski, Sarah Holewinski, and Tammy Schultz, "Post-Conflict Potter" Foreign Policy Appendix: Researching and Writing About Culture