Convergence: Volume 4: Issue 2

From the Student Editors

By Carlos Palomino and Daniel Manrique


Logical topoi in the Court Case of The United States of America Vs Timothy McVeigh

Abstract The Court Case of Timothy McVeigh is notorious as one of the first large-scale terrorist attacks on U.S. soil. While we, unfortunately, are much more familiar with these acts today, Lawyer Joseph Hartzler had a difficult time convincing the jury that such an act of brutality was even possible. In Rhetoric, Aristotle outlines possible ways orators can make their listeners feel to make them believe their argument is better. Hartzler intelligently used many of these tactics to convince the jury that McVeigh was a terrible person capable of the horrendous crime. However, the most prominent logical topoi used by Hartzler would be anger. Or, in other words, he made the jury angry at Hartzler to make them believe he was capable of such a horrible action. Analyzing this case through the eyes of Aristotle's logical topoi, we can better understand what made his argument so effective and ultimately successful.

By Abigail Ayres


The Rhetoric of Space and How It Applies to Yoga and Meditation

Abstract Upon initial observation, one might not immediately associate the rhetoric of spaces, both real and imagined, with the practice of yoga and meditation. However, while practicing with these two subjects everyday as a yoga teacher and as a writing student, I noticed several similarities connecting these two distance subjects together. Utilizing Michael Foucault's article "Of Other Spaces: Utopias and Heterotopias" and Nedra Reynolds' article "Composition Imagined Geographies: The Politics of Space in the Frontier, City, and Cyberspace" along with several other resources, I discuss the link between the real and imagined spaces of the world around us in a rhetorical context and how these same spaces apply to the spaces yoga and meditation provide within a regular practice.

By Autumn McComas


Spearing the Panopticon of an Icon: How French Philosophers' Writings Can Help #FreeBritney

Abstract This essay approaches performing and recording artist Britney Spears's career trajectory, since 2008, through the writings of French philosopher Michel Foucault and his contemporaries. With an understanding of these philosophers' writings, particularly concerning the concept of the panopticon, fans of Spears will comprehend how these concepts influence Spears's life in the public eye across media, both conventional and social. As one of the most popular and scrutinized American celebrities alive, Spears herself has expressed a need for freedom and privacy under a panopticon made of power structures and across many genres. This panopticon’s power structures consist of patriarchy, the entertainment industry, consumer culture, and conservatorship laws; the genres include music videos, documentaries, Spears's posts on Instagram, and court transcripts. The essay concludes with mention of (and suggestions for) those active in the #FreeBritney movement, as they tackle the aforementioned power structures and help secure Spears's needs.

By Kurt Ramos


The Simple and Clean Design of RollAdvantage

Abstract This paper tackles web accessibility with the website RollAdvantage to research the overall aesthetic, layout, formatting, and design choices. Using various tools, the intent of the paper is to analyze these acces- sibility issues, factor in the possible problems audiences to the website may face, and then provide suggestions to improve the site while maintaining its integrity and theme. The paper explores the simplistic website RollAdvantage, a site primarily used to create tokens for digital online tabletop role-playing games. Reviewing each webpage on RollAdvantage and utilizing the WAVE Web Accessibility Evaluation Tool, points of concern are addressed and expanded upon with fixes provided in the conclusion. The primary focus of the paper explores the contrast ratio, font choice, and color choice within RollAdvantage and explains possible solutions. The paper concludes that the simplicity of the web- site allows for the quick and easy fix to the accessibility concerns that are addressed in the paper.

By Conner W. Ramputi


Developing Brand Guidelines

Abstract This research uses brand guidelines as an example of writing in the field of technical communication. This is done through both the explicit description of how to develop brand guidelines and in the use of the stated guidelines in the actual creation of the infographic. The CRAP principles of design and color theory were used when making the infographic, as well as consistency of font, sizing, spacing, and other elements of design. This project was created with a few different audiences in mind. As an infographic, it has the overt purpose of informing readers about how to create brand guidelines. However, it also has the covert purpose of showing readers how much thought goes into the presentation of a brand and how marketing tactics are used to entice consumers into parasocial relationships with brands. Additionally, this project serves to demonstrate that technical writing is about creating bland user manuals and terms and conditions pages. It's an exciting, multi-faceted, audience-centered field that has a variety of applications.

By Lindsey Wright