RHET250 University of San Francisco Vietnam Veterans Memorial Paper – Excelsior Writers | excelsiorwriters.com
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Public artworks such as monuments, murals, and memorials can be controversial for their portrayal of past figures and events. People often disagree on their purpose, design, and meanings. A work of public art can be read as a text, one created with a purpose but which can have a wide variety of effects on viewers (the audience). We read differently according to our experience, aesthetics, and worldview. In the United States today, numerous monuments and other works of public art are being contested and sometimes removed or destroyed; at the same time, new monuments and murals are changing the public landscape. Some regard contentious monuments and other public artworks as artifacts that must be preserved, while others view them as rhetorical tools that present a particular view of history. How do public artworks make us question our depiction of the past? What or who should be commemorated, and how? What belongs in public space? 1. For your critical response, choose a public artwork viewed in class or discussed in a class text (for example, the statue of Lee in Charlottesville, Arnautoff’s The Life of Washington, the Early Days statue in San Francisco, the Vietnam Veterans Memorial, or the Memorial to the Disappeared in Chile). You may wish to do some brief research on the monument or mural’s design or composition, the occasion that led to its creation, and its reception by the public. 2. First, identify the work and discuss its rhetorical situation. Address some of the following questions: What occasion led to its creation? What figure(s) or event(s) does it commemorate? What 2 do you see as the purpose of this work? Whose point of view is reflected in its design or composition? Who is it for? What is controversial about this work or the history to which it responds? What are some different positions people have taken on the controversy? How have different audiences responded to the work? 3. In your response to the work, address some of the following questions: What is effective or compelling about the work, its design or composition, its location? To what values and emotions does the work appeal? Are there aspects of the work that you find ineffective or problematic? How does the work shape how you view the past event(s) or figure(s) it commemorates? Does the work suggest a possible future or point to change? What is the work’s relationship to truth, in your opinion? This assignment gives you the opportunity to analyze the rhetoric of a visual text, relating the text’s effects to a social debate. Rather than answering all of the questions above in a list, use them as a springboard to craft a compelling and substantive critical response. Evaluation: CR 2 will be evaluated for effort (meeting requirements); substantive discussion that shows intellectual risk; evidence that you have read and thought about the class texts and their questions; good use of support; and evidence that you have edited and proofread your paper in order to maximize clarity and minimize errors in grammar, punctuation, and mechanics. Have your CR accessible during class on M 9/16 so you can draw from it during discussion.

Requirements: • Length: 2-3 pages • Format: typed in standard 12-point font and double-spaced. • Support: Incorporate at least 1 quotation from a text read in class or from your own research. Be selective with quotations. Remember to use correct parenthetical in-text citations when quoting or paraphrasing. • Using MLA or APA style, include at the end of your CR a correctly formatted full citation for every text you use, including class readings. (No need to cite the PowerPoint presentation.) Consult the Pocket Style Manual or the Online Writing Lab for information on how to cite sources. • Review the policy on academic integrity. Critical responses containing plagiarized material will not receive credit.

Topic chosen : Vietnam Veterans memorial

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