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This is an old revision of ActivityForRettbergChap5 made by MorganAdmin on 2015-02-10 09:37:12.


Activity for Rettberg Chap 5: Blogs as Narratives

Read Blogging chap 5 before you work with this.

One of the important social uses of blogs is for narratives. Seems natural.

Some can be personal - mirrors - but, as Rettberg mentions, bloggers start blogs, or start stretches of posts on blogs, as a way of recording a project. There are blogs about senior year, about writing a dissertation, about learning to cook, raising kids, building a house, moving to the country and creating a home ...

Blogs as narrative also cross blog genre lines. There are narrative filter blogs, narrative personal blogs, narrative topic blogs. The narrative is a feature of how the blog progresses, not what it's about.

Blogs can be used as narratives: more episodic than continuous. And obviously limited by being narrated from inside of the stream of events.

"When blogs tell stories, they generally do so in an episodic form, with each post being a self-cpntained unit that contributes to an overall narrative. ... [T]he overall story as gleaned from reading a blog is likely to be pieced together from fragments, perhaps supplemented by bits of stories from other places." 119

And, still, bloggers use internal and external linking to construct the narratives - as well as images.

Mirrors and veils - Self-reflective function along with

Do This

Locate a blog that can be read as a narrative. Not a fictional blog, however: Choose one that you can tell is real - and if you can't tell if it's real or not, don't use it.

Read the blog. You'll have to comb the blogger's archive to find out when it started, and to get an overall sense of the direction of the blog, the topics and style of the posts - personal or even confessional, or more public and distant - and to get a sense of whee it went and where it seems to be going.

In a series of posts, consider how the blogger uses narrative. Re-read that sentence: post more than once on this! Twice is minimal - three is better. Use Rettberg's chapter 5 as a model for what to consider, what to look at in the blog, what to mention in your consideration. For instance, here are some of the elements that Rettberg considers in chapter 5:

Did I mention: Make your consideration of the blog you select as a series of posts. Got that? You consideration is itself going to be a narrative.

As you work with the blog more closely, you can start considering things such as

Between your multiple posts, visit other blogs in the class to see what others are seeing. Then return to the narrative blog you're looking at. In your posts, connect what you're finding back to Rettberg's consideration in chapter 5, drawing on what she finds when she looks at blogs as narratives. Compare what you're seeing, what you make of the blog, with what she finds. Compare what you're finding, too, with what others in the class are finding.

This is the web, so draw on examples, quote from the blog, and link to what you're looking at.

This is the web, so keep in mind that when you link to a post, the blogger can follow the link back to your blog. The way to work with that is to make a serious, if informal, consideration of the blog. Reign in the sarcasm, snark, flippancy. There are real people out there. Respect them.

Can't find one? Choose one of these

If you have questions about whether this is or isn't - look to chapter 5 to help you consider what to look at, what's worth mentioning. I'm asking you to draw on Rettberg's work


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