Department of Rhetoric and Writing

The University of Texas at Austin

Reading Empathy, Hypocrisy, and Hope? in Chipotle’s The Scarecrow

Image credit: Chipotle 

What do Chipotle’s animated ads tell us about contemporary food discourse, animal rights, and Chipotle itself?

Food Porn Roundup: The Seven Deadly Desserts

It seems to me that we can canvas each of the Seven Deadly Sins with food. Specifically, with dessert.

 Midnight Mousse Cake

 Image Credit: Not So Humble Pie

Read more about Food Porn Roundup: The Seven Deadly Desserts

Longhorns and Ovaries

Five days before a significant Texas, and Austin, Election Day, I’m stepping back to consider the visual rhetoric employed during Wendy Davis’s famous filibuster and the subsequent protests for women’s reproductive rights at the Texas capitol. I’m particularly interested in the claiming of UT’s particular shade of burnt orange in support of Davis and the revision of the longhorn symbol into a uterus and ovaries.

(White) Men Behaving Badly, or, Why I'll Be Staying Home This Halloween


Image Credit: Google Image Search

These are truly tough times for white males in America. Read more about (White) Men Behaving Badly, or, Why I'll Be Staying Home This Halloween

We Should Maybe Stop Putting Babies in Pumpkins

As a child, I dressed up for Halloween only once. 

 It looked like this:

 Aubri Clown

Image Credit: Aubri's Mom 

Final Girl + Corpse Supercut

final girl + corpse supercut from rhiannon on Vimeo.

In honor of Halloween, I compiled a supercut of a trope within a trope: the moment in which the final girl* discovers a corpse. Enjoy!

*In her excellent 1987 essay “Her Body Himself” Carol J. Clover coined the term “final girl.” According to Clover:  Read more about Final Girl + Corpse Supercut

Pet Costumes & Staging Human-Animal Relations

black and white photo of a dog and cat in turn of the century clothing

from buzzfeed.com

In his 2010 text, Developing Animals: Wildlife and Early American Photography, Matthew Brower considers the constructed nature of wildlife photography and what it tells us about historical understandings of human-animal relations. Brower is the curator of the University of Toronto Art Centre and a lecturer in museum studies in the Faculty of Information at the University of Toronto. Beginning with an analysis of early American photographs of taxidermy, his text examines the practice of “camera hunting” in the nineteenth century, the invention of the photographic blind and Abbott Thayer’s use of photographs to make arguments about animal coloration and camouflage. Brower argues that examining these photographic practices illustrates how they construct a particular narrative of the relationship between animals and humans. Brower suggests that photos of perceived “wild animals” are staged to tell a particular story about the historical constitution of the animal and human-animal interaction.

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