Geolocating Compositional Strategies at the Virtual University » Writing Prompt 2

Writing Prompt 2

“Capturing Evidence”

What’s a campus, anyway? I suppose the answer depends upon how a campus is captured.

The goals of this response paper are:

  • To become more familiar with spatial analysis or spatiology.
  • To further practice using artifacts in the service of writing.
  • To continue exploring why perspective matters.
  • To “capture” one space through different media and strategies.
  • To start compiling a digital class archive of the UW campus.

Husky HeadFor this response paper, you are going to get situated on campus. Visit the campus space that you selected during class discussion. Now closely observe the social practices of your designated space or “campus zone.”

Next, document your space’s social practices through at least two different media. Take some photos; write a short story, log, or a poem; draw or paint it; conduct an interview; or even record a verbal narrative that captures how you see the space functioning. The more captures, the better. After all, you are gathering evidence for an argument about the campus.

When you are done, practice closely reading each of your captures. In a short paper, introduce each capture (e.g., where it was captured and what is its medium), explain what you see/hear, and articulate the implications of the capture. When considering the implications, you might ask: “What everyday, spatial practices are missing from this capture?” Or, “How is the representation of space functioning here?” Most importantly, your implications should highlight how your evidence says what it says.

Finally, use your captures and analyses of them to define your “campus zone.” For now, there’s no need to explain or argue for your definition. Just provide one. For example, is your zone a “private space”? A “public space”? A “study space”? A “community space”? An “administrative space.” Be specific. Only one definition is necessary.

Your audience for this assignment includes your peers and me. When you are finished, each of your captures should be added to the class map (with or without the analyses). If you have questions about how to add them to the map, just let me know! I’m glad to help!

All Example Writing Prompts:

Four prompts for short, “response” papers:

Writing Prompt 1: “The Autogeographical Map”

Writing Prompt 2: “Capturing Evidence”

Writing Prompt 3: “What’s Missing?”

Writing Prompt 4: “Re-Mapping”

And one prompt for a longer paper:

Writing Prompt 5: “This Map Matters”

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