Letter from Student Editor
By Michael Fiorillo
What you are about to read are the works of five University of Central Florida undergraduate students. Each of these pieces is a testament to the individual who wrote it, making each work unique and at the same time wholly similar. The common thread between them is rhetoric and its powerful ability to aid in understanding our world. With topics that cover governmental exchanges, paradigm shifts, video games, and social communication, I encourage you to read each one. Convergence/Rhetoric Volume 4 reflects our expansion and solidification of previous editions. After reviewing many submissions for this volume, we have selected five fine candidates to showcase.
Tyler Burton connects his experience of quarantining with an interesting look at social relationships and video games. "Corona Crossing" is quite an introspective piece and one that many can identify with as we attempt to look back at the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. His piece is influenced by writing for remote work and the intense technological integration that COVID-19 has brought to our lives.
Oliver Lyon continues the video game theme with his connection between Jean Baudriallard's hyperreality and the fantastical franchise of Pokémon. Entitled "The Pokélife Chose Me:
The Hyper-Reality of Pokémon," Oliver states his case for the positive value of Pokémon's hyperreality.
Lindsey Wright introduces the medium of Tik Tok with a unique form of digital ethnography in "A Case Study of How Sharing TikToks Creates Social Meaning Among Viewers." She expands beyond a simplistic understanding of Tik Tok video sharing as she follows herself and three friends for several days of study. Her work makes readers think about one's own use of social media, and the social connections it can afford.
Christian Tabet uncovers shifting fashion and clothing trends as a product of a greater paradigm shift within gender and its free expression. He sets off to underline several past trends and changing attitudes of fashion and its differences between genders. With an acute perspective on the future, "Boys Like Pink & Girls Can Wear Blue: Shifting Paradigms in Fashion, Expression, & Gender Ideals" is a compelling read.
Kealani Smith provides readers with a look at the intersection between rhetoric and government in, "Rhetorical Exchanges in Government: Yoho versus AOC." Rhetorical ecologies and rhetorical listening are two of Smith's main touchpoints within her work as she studies the tense confrontation between Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and Ted Yoho.
Each work presented in Convergence/Rhetoric's Volume 4 is something to be proud of. We hope that Convergence can continue to provide support and recognition for authors in Writing & Rhetoric, as well as the rest of the Humanities. I am glad to have been able to edit and work with the authors published here.
Please consider submitting your own work to the journal. Without such insightful and unique writers, our journal would not be able to publish the caliber of work that we do.