you will use speech codes theory to discuss the communication behavior of a specific culture within the greater American culture

For your third major assignment you will use speech codes theory to discuss the communication behavior of a specific culture within the greater American culture. Use the content from the speech codes theory presentations to identify a specific speech code that can distinguish the culture from others. Beyond this, I want you to make specific claims about power that can be determined via the speech code you observe.

This is not something you can do by doing a Wikipedia quick search that tells you about a culture so you can write something like a book review. You need to actually observe the culture for some amount of time. Some of you are parts of such a culture, which will provide you access. Others will need to find a culture to observe. One way this can be easy is to pick a culture where you can observe cultural behavior online. That being said, you need to observe actual interaction and you need to be able to distinguish how this can be considered a unique culture by that interaction. So, you need to start observing NOW!

The Osage Naming Ritual video and the Madre Terms video are examples of how to do this type of work, as is Philipsen’s Teamsterville study. In the Osage Naming Rituals there are clear challenges the Osage encounter from people outside the community that try to engage the ritual from another culture’s perspective. In the Madre Terms example we can see how men use a term as an identity marker for women – these are not just words they mark women as someone to whom one should show deference or desire. Similarly, Philipsen’s study indicates the power of culture and gender to determine who gets to talk to whom and in what ways. But think about how these studies focus their approach on 1. A specific ritual; 2. A specific type of term; and 3. Specific rules and premises for talk. So, the rule for doing this type of work effectively is depth, not breadth. The key is to find that one thing that really gives us a meaningful understanding.

i will give you one more example: One of my research projects considers how members of Alcoholics Anonymous attempt to control the behavior of other members. One thing I found in my research is how members use certain rhetorical tropes (a figure of speech used for persuasive intent). One trope I identified is the trope of the newcomer. This trope is employed in different ways to try to attempt to control group behavior, individual behavior or to justify one’s actions. The power of the trope lies in the often recited saying that “the newcomer is the most important person in the room.” Imbuing this idea of newcomer with such power enables members to be able to evoke the idea of the newcomer, whether one be in the room or not. In the Alcohoiics Anonymous text it warns against trying to control the behavior of others, even when one’s intention might be quite virtuous. While many of the intentions members have for the use of this trope are, in fact, quite virtuous, it is enacted mostly as a means of control and, just like Madre terms, the control lies outside the person to whom the term applies.

You must use concepts from the course in constructing your submission. By this I mean you must define these concepts and also directly cite them from course material. You must keep in mind that all exercises and assignments are first and foremost intended for you to demonstrate your understanding of the course content.

Finally, this course is about Intercultural Communication, so your paper needs to focus on communication. We don’t need a lot of talk about things outside of communication. You will give us a picture of the community by giving us a glimpse of how they talk, so we don’t need history lesson. For instance, I don’t need to tell you everything about AA, to give you a sense of what it looks like to exert rhetorical power within the fellowship in a way that clearly distinguishes it from other co-cultures.

I would expect for a paper to be at least 5 pages of text, not including references and title page, to be able to give us enough information about a communication practice of a culture for us to get a real insight regarding how communication functions as a form of power within the community.

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