Communication: History, Forms, Process, Principles, and Competence

Edited by Matthew A. McIntosh / 03.03.2018 Historian Brewminate Editor-in-Chief Communication: History and Forms Introduction Before we dive into the history of communication, it is important that we have a shared understanding of what we mean by the word communication. For our purposes in this book, we will define communication as the process of generating meaning by sending[…]

Media and Culture

Edited by Matthew A. McIntosh / 03.03.2018 Historian Brewminate Editor-in-Chief Pop Culture Mania Figure 1.1: Just as fans could purchase Jerry Lind hats, Beatles fans could purchase Beatle wigs. / Paul Townsend – 1960s Beatlemania Fashion In 1850, an epidemic swept America—but instead of leaving victims sick with fever or flu, this epidemic involved a rabid craze[…]

Understanding Social Interaction

Edited by Matthew A. McIntosh / 02.28.2018 Historian Brewminate Editor-in-Chief 1 – Introduction 1.2 – Overview In sociology, social interaction is a dynamic sequence of social actions between individuals (or groups) who modify their actions and reactions due to actions by their interaction partner(s). Social interactions can be differentiated into accidental, repeated, regular and regulated.[…]

Decoding Languages in the Lab

New linguistics facility applies scientific tenets to understanding how we communicate. By Jill Radsken / 02.21.2018 Dorothy Ahn stood behind a video camera, recording a fellow researcher reading simple sentences — “One girl is my friend. That girl plays soccer”— while pointing for emphasis. The filming was part of a research experiment comparing speech gestures[…]

Portugal and the Building of Atlantic Telegraph Networks

Map of the 1858 Atlantic Cable route / Public Domain By Dr. Ana Paula Silva Postdoctoral Researcher Interuniversity Center for the History of Science and Technology (CIUHCT) New University of Lisbon Introduction Most of the existing studies on submarine cables are built from a national point of view, stressing how great powers, namely Great Britain,[…]

Going Viral: How Social Media Can Create Worse Epidemics

In the age of social media, fears and rumors about outbreaks and epidemics can quickly spread out of control. How can health officials help contain the panic? By Mike Ives / 10.28.2016 In the spring of 2014, Vietnam’s state-controlled news media reported that dozens of children had died after turning up at hospitals in the[…]

The Pedagogy of Feeling Bad: A Desire for Catharsis in Cinema

Nikolaj Lübecker argues for the ethic of “feel-bad” films, movies in which desire for catharsis is built up but ultimately denied in a variety of ways. He draws on directors such as Lars Von Trier, Gus Van Sant, Michael Haneke, and many others. By Roman Friedman PhD Student in Educational Policy, Organization and Leadership (EPOL)[…]

Primate Vocalizations are Much More than Gibberish

Chimpanzees use alarm calls to inform each other of danger. / Ronald Woan, Flickr Nonhuman primates clearly do more than just screech meaningless sounds at each other, but what are the limits of their communication? By Jay Schwartz / 08.25.2017 PhD Candidate in Neuroscience and Animal Behavior Emory University A chimpanzee is strolling along a[…]

Rough, Smooth, or Deep: Why the Sound of a Voice is Multisensory

Sarah Vaughan by William P Gottlieb. / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Pavlo Shopin / 11.15.2017 Lecturer in the Philosophy of Language, Comparative Linguistics, and Translation National Pedagogical Dragomanov University To make sense of human voices, we rely on senses beyond hearing. The songs of Taylor Swift can be sweet and soft. Lady Gaga’s singing feels[…]

The Art of Dealing With Difficult People

By Azriel ReShel / 11.10.2017 Seven Ways to Ditch the Drama Think you’re too spiritual to have someone challenging in your life? Not even that one difficult person? Perhaps someone in your office, a friend, professional colleague or, most likely, a family member? Most of us have at least one testing person that keeps us[…]

Should You Feel Sad about the Demise of the Handwritten Letter?

‘You spoke of Hope surpassing Home, I thought that Hope was Home – a misapprehension of architecture.’ Emily Dickinson letter to Otis Phillips Lord. / Amhurst College Library By Dr. Siobhan Phillips / 04.12.2017 Professor of English Dickinson College A lot of people love personal letters now that very few people write them. We have publishing initiatives such[…]

For a Primer on How to Make Fun of Nazis, Look to Charlie Chaplin

Charlie Chaplin’s character Adenoid Hynkel was a not-so-subtle nod to Adolf Hitler. / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Kevin Hagopian / 08.24.2017 Senior Lecturer of Media Studies (Cinema Studies) Pennsylvania State University White nationalists and neo-Nazis are having their moment. Former Ku Klux Klan Imperial Wizard David Duke is back, yet again, in the media spotlight, while[…]

The Unexpected Benefits of Getting Lost in Translation

‘You can never, in American public life, underestimate the advantages of complete and total incomprehensibility.’ Kissinger meets Anwar Sadat in 1976. / Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Edward Gibson / 09.25.2017 Professor of Cognitive Science Massachusetts Institute of Technology About 20 per cent of the United States population (60 million out of 300 million people) are[…]

Social Media also has a Dark History – Lessons can be Learned

By Dr. Nicholas Bowman / 06.27.2017 Associate Professor of Communication Studies West Virginia University It was in April 2016 that Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced that the social media platform was providing its nearly two billion users the opportunity to livestream content. The move was viewed as a natural extension of the platform’s primary goal: providing a space[…]

Royal Propaganda, from Prints to Pixels

Triumphal Entry into Babylon (detail), Gérard Audran (French, 1640–1703) after Charles Le Brun (French, 1619–90), 1675. Etching and engraving, two sheets. Assembled size: 27 15/16 x 36 1/8 in. (71 x 91.8 cm). The Getty Research Institute, 2003.PR.33 By John Hicks / 05.27.2010 Research Assistant, Getty Publications Department Spin control—it’s been around for centuries. Louis[…]

Logic: Categorical Propositions and Syllogisms

Image via Shutterstock By Dr. Garth Kemerling / 11.12.2011 Professor of Philosophy Capella University Categorical Propositions Now that we’ve taken notice of many of the difficulties that can be caused by sloppy use of ordinary language in argumentation, we’re ready to begin the more precise study of deductive reasoning. Here we’ll achieve the greater precision[…]

Logic: Arguments, Language, Meaning, and Fallacies

Photo by JacoTen, Wikimedia Commons By Dr. Garth Kemerling / 11.12.2011 Professor of Philosophy Capella University Arguments and Inference The Discipline of Logic Human life is full of decisions, including significant choices about what to believe. Although everyone prefers to believe what is true, we often disagree with each other about what that is in[…]

How Subtle Eye Signals Help Subtle Turn-Taking in Conversation

Théodule Ribot Conversation Piece 1872. / Walters Art Museum By Dr. René Müri / 09.28.2016 Specialist in in Neurorehabilitation, Neuro-ophthalmology, and Cognition and Learning Perception and Eye Movement Laboratory University of Bern, Switzerland In every conversation, there is an unspoken code – a set of social rules that guides you. When to talk, when to stop talking, when[…]

On the Reformation’s 500th Anniversary, Remembering Martin Luther’s Contribution to Literacy

An exhibition for the Luther monument in Worms. AP Photo/Jens Meyer By Dr. Richard Gunderman Professor of Medicine, Liberal Arts, and Philanthropy Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis This year marks the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s famous 95 Theses, which helped spark the founding of the Reformation and the division of Christianity into Protestantism[…]