Monday, May 27, 2019

MALAS Summer 2019 Recommended Summer Seminar! SDSU Sociology Professor Michael Roberts's WEALTH STATUS & POWER

SOC 433: Wealth, Status, and Power
Professor Roberts                                                                                        Summer 2019
Office: NH 213                                                                                             MTW, 5-7:15pm
Hours: M-W 4-5pm                                                                                       AL 105
Course Description:
This course is designed as an investigation into the issue of social inequality in terms of the distribution of wealth and income, status hierarchy and political power.  The main focus is upon social inequality as an institutional process. Such a focus means that we will examine patterns of inequality in these main areas and consider their causes and consequences for communities and individuals living in modern societies. We will begin with an analysis of how competing theoretical paradigms frame the issue of inequality in different and sometimes contradictory ways, including the differences and similarities between Weberian, functionalist and Marxist perspectives.  Such a comparison of theoretical paradigms will consider the main differences between the concept of stratification and the concept of class conflict.  Then, we will consider how different forms of inequality intersect with another.  For example, we will look at how inequalities rooted in the social construction of race, class and gender mediate the experiences of individuals and communities.  Most of the empirical studies focus upon the US context, but we will include a consideration of how the processes of globalization have complicated the US experience of inequality and stratification.  Lastly, we will give special attention to how recent changes in the global economy have dramatically transformed class, status and power relations in society.
Student Learning Outcomes:
  1. Develop a critical understanding of the processes that stratify individuals along the lines of class, status and power
  2. Explore the central concepts that sociologists use to describe the contours of stratification and inequality
  3. Evaluate competing theoretical paradigms that frame explanations for the causes and consequences of inequality in society
  4. Critique “common sense” viewpoints on the origins and effects of social stratification 
  5. Reflect upon and discuss the variety of points of view on social inequality expressed by peers in this class through discussion of key texts 
Course Requirements:
Attendance is required and participation in class discussion counts as roughly 40% of your grade.  Participation in class discussion includes bringing your book or articles to class, as we will often times conduct close readings of selected texts together in class.  The class participation requirement will involve short essays (1-2 pages, typed double-spaced) that are due each Monday.  These short papers are brief summaries of the main points from the assigned reading.  Each Wednesday I will provide you with a reading assignment and a brief summary of the central arguments from that reading assignment is due the following Monday. The remaining 60% of your grade will be fulfilled by 2 take-home, essay-form exams.  Each exam will have two parts: a short-essay section and a long-essay section. Each section will have two questions.  You choose one and write an essay answering it.  These assignments are take-home assignments.
Final grades in this course will be based on the following scale: 
A = 95%-100% 
A- = 90%-94%
B = 85%-89% 
B- = 80%-84% 
C = 75%-79% 
C- =70%-74%
D = 65%-69% 
D- = 60%-64%
F = 59% or Below
Required Readings:
There are a few articles and 2 books required for this class.   The articles will be made available by me in PDF format, and delivered to you via blackboard.  The books are available in used condition if desired, and all three should cost less than an expensive textbook.  If you are worried about costs of books see me asap to work out another arrangement.  The books have been ordered through our campus bookstore.  They are:
  1. Working Class Majorityby Michael Zweig
  2. Class: The Anthology by Stanley Aronowitz and Michael Roberts


The class appears in web portal as:

Footnotes: 91


as you can see, it is a SOC 433 which MALASheads
can't take for graduate credit!


you CAN take it as MALAS 798 Special Study
class, or, if the Sociology Department gets its
act together, Soc 798 (though that option is
not 'live' yet through web portal). So, in the interim,
if interested, sign up for it as:
MALAS-798 01*****
Footnotes: 93

I have heard it might be cheaper to take it 
through Open University (though I do not know
that for a fact.

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

MALAS Fall 2019 Seminar! MALAS 600D: Rhetoric of Visual Composing with Professor Jennifer Sheppard


Rhetoric of Visual Composing
RWS 543/MALAS 600D
Professor Jennifer Sheppard

Shepard Fairey (source)

Visual messages are a powerful way to inform, persuade and educate. Within professional settings, the ability to communicate effectively with supervisors, co-workers, clients, and public audiences through combinations of visual, textual, and technological elements is an invaluable skill. This course takes a rhetorical and professionally-oriented approach to analyzing, organizing, and communicating ideas, educational content, and specialized information through visual and multimodal means. The course readings will introduce you to research on visual communication, basic design and layout strategies for print, presentational, and online contexts, and the use of images and data visualization to convey specialized content. Research and practitioner materials will be used as a basis for evaluating the rhetorical choices in the visual communication work of others and for learning how to apply these concepts to visual composing projects common to the workplace (e.g. a proposal and an infographic/visual data display). The focus throughout the course will be on learning to evaluate and craft texts that integrate effective visual strategies to create user-friendly, informative, and persuasive texts for professional audiences. In addition to focusing specifically on the visual, this course will also consider these affordances and constraints in relation to other modalities, including textual, spatial, gestural, and auditory. Being better aware of how multimodal rhetorical choices influence an audience can help you to be more critical of what others are saying to you, as well as to make use of these strategies in your own communication.


Jennifer Sheppard is an Assistant Professor in the Rhetoric and Writing Studies Department. Her research focuses on the intersection of theory, practice, and pedagogy in digital writing, visual and multimodal rhetoric, and professional communication. Her work has appeared in Computers and Composition, Journal of Literacy and Technology, Hybrid Pedagogy, and several edited collections, including Designing Texts: Teaching Visual Communication. She is also co-author of Writer/Designer: A Guide to Making Multimodal Projects, published in its second edition by Bedford/St. Martin’s in 2018. Dr. Sheppard has been at SDSU since 2014 and is the winner of the 2018-2019 College of Arts and Letters Excellence in Teaching Award. As San Diego State, she has taught a wide range of courses, including everything from first-year writing to upper division courses in visual and popular culture rhetorics and professional writing to graduate seminars in rhetoric, literacy, and technology. She has also served as the Associate Director of the Lower Division Writing Program where she collaborated in curriculum development and the training and mentoring of new graduate teaching assistants. Dr. Sheppard holds a B.A. in Liberal Studies and an M.A. in English from California State University Chico and a Ph.D. in Rhetoric and Technical Communication from Michigan Technological University. 

Jennifer Sheppard, PhD 
Assistant Professor of Digital Rhetoric 
Dept. of Rhetoric and Writing Studies 
San Diego State University 

Section Details:

Schedule #22248



Full TitleSeminar: Media Studies, Fine Arts, Transformative Arts
DescriptionMALAS seminars are divided into four general areas with content that varies semester to semester. Each course may be repeated once with new content. See Class Schedule for specific content. Maximum credit six units for each of the following courses: MALAS 600A, 600B, 600C, 600D.
PrerequisiteGraduate standing.

Stacked with RWS 543. Not open to students concurrently enrolled in or with credit in RWS 543 (Rhetoric of Visual Composition).

The following student levels are allowed: Graduate.