About Intercultural ExtraneityThis page addresses:
This site is titled “intercultural extraneity” to take issue with the claim that intercultural “competence” is something to be possessed once and for all, or simply downloaded. The “extraneous” is the extra work we need to do to try to comprehend a (continually changing) situation. Hans-Georg Gadamer explains this as the effort that goes into understanding something apart from ourselves: “To reach an understanding in a dialogue is not merely a matter of … successfully asserting one’s own point of view, but being transformed into a communion in which we do not remain what we were” (2004: 371).
To understand something else is extraneous because it isn’t included in the original frame of reference unless one makes the effort to understand. Clifford Geertz observed that “Cultural analysis is intrinsically incomplete … to get somewhere with the matter at hand is to intensify the suspicion, both your own and that of others, that you are not quite getting it right” (1973: 322). This is further complicated by the fact that the culture of today is intercultural: characterized by the interaction of multiple cultures, both global and epistemic.The syllabus:
- Critically analyze, evaluate, relate, and synthesize the sometimes competing views and expressions of American, global, and digital culture and where they intersect;
- Cultivate digital literacy;
- Develop contextual and historical awareness;
- Demonstrate enough knowledge of the subject matter to raise meaningful questions effectively;
- Gather and evaluate relevant and credible sources;
- Engender good intercultural communication skills in various projects and across networks;
- Understand the role of rhetoric and its influence in promoting stereotypes;
- Demonstrate an understanding of the definition and consequences of plagiarism and uphold academic honesty;
- Improve self-knowledge and self-direction through working with others in a networked, intercultural setting.
- Group/individual site posts (5 by end Nov.) – 30%
- Group/individual forum (5 different weeks) – 30%
- Group/individual glossary (5 different weeks) – 10%
- Reflective course evaluation due 8 December (1) – 10%
- Interlinked final individual post (1) – 20%
A note on due dates: Weekly assignments are due weekly. Weekly assignments are therefore replaced by the next week’s assignment on the site each week. However, students whose work was submitted but not published because it needs improvements may have a week’s extension in which to complete the assignment. Please remember to change the status of improved posts from ‘draft’ to ‘pending’.
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Course material and assignments:Please note that you are responsible for downloading course material when the course is in session. Materials may no longer be available once the semester has ended due to site maintenance. Assignments will be replaced weekly as no late work is accepted.
- Week 1: Virtual community, 21st C skills
- Week 2: Context/content
- Week 3: Privacy/agency
- Week 4: Social dilemma
- Week 5: Our virtual community garden
- Week 6: Social networks: communication, collapse
- Week 7: Social networks: bias & media literacies
- Week 8: Participatory action research
Week 1: Virtual community, 21st C skills
- Postman, N. (1990). Informing ourselves to death. Open Mind e1095, archive.org. Online video resource.
- Chua, S. (2013). Mapping what I’m learning. sachachua.blog. Online text. Note: mindmaps can become multimedia where they include a combination of words and images and links to other media.
- Engelbart, D. (1962). Augmenting Human Intellect: A Conceptual Framework. Stanford Research Institute, 1-41.Online text.
- Licklider, J. C. R., & R. W. Taylor. (1968). The computer as a communication device, Science and Technology, April, 1968. Republished in SRC Research Report 61, Digital Equipment Corporation, 1990. (Starts on Page 21 of the PDF). Online PDF with thanks to Howard Rheingold.
- Rheingold, H. (1985). Tools for thought. howardrheingold.com. Online book.
- Turner, F. Where the counterculture met the new economy: the WELL and the origins of virtual community, Technology and Culture, 46.3, July 2005, 485-512. Online PDF with thanks to Howard Rheingold.
Week 2: Context/content
- Carr, N. (2020). From context collapse to content collapse. Rough Type. Online text.
- Hurst, M. (2020) Snapchat and content collapse. Creative Good. Online text.
- Hurst, M. (2020). The not so candid cameras. The Culture Crush. Online text.
- Vitak, J. The impact of context collapse and privacy on social network site disclosures. Journal of Broadcasting & Electronic Media, 56, 451-470. Online PDF.
Week 3: Privacy/agency
- Doctorow, C. (2012). The curious case of internet privacy. Technology Review. Online text.
- Zuboff, S. (2019). The age of surveillance capitalism: the fight for a human future at the new frontier of power. New York: Public Affairs. Reviewed by Carr, N. (2019). Thieves of experience: how Google and Fabcebook corrupted capitalism. LARB. Online text.
- Cyphers, B. and Doctorow, C. A legislative path to an inoperable internet. EFF.org. Online text.
- Bruder, J. & Maharidge, D. (2020). Surveillance capitalism and the internet of things. LitHub. Online text.
- Galloway, S. (2019). WeWTF. No Mercy/No Malice. Online text.
- Magnusson, G. (2020). How Silicon Valley will solve the trolley problem. magnusson.io. Online text.
- Mangalindan, J. P. (2015). In Silicon Valley, ‘unicorn’ is a dirty word. Mashable. Online text.
- McNamee, R. and Listi, O. (2019). Roger McNamee, Advisor to Mark Zuckerberg, on Facebook’s Infancy. LitHub. Online text.
- Munroe, R. (2010). Infrastructures.xkcd. Online comic.
- Net neutrality. EFF. Online text.
- Peck, S. (2019). Why OPSEC is for everyone, not just for people with something to hide – part II. Tripwire. Online text.
- Philip. GPT3 bot posed as a human on AskReddit for a week. kmeme. Online text.
- Stallman, R. (2002). Free software, free society. Boston: GNU Press, Free Software Foundation. Online PDF.
- Stoller, M. (2020). We’re all anti-monopolists now. Substack. Online text.
- Veliz, C. (2020). Under surveillance capitalism? LitHub. Online text.
- Wu, T. (2020). The Google case. Medium. Online text.
- Good Reports
- Ethical Net Resources
- Privacy Tools
- EFF Resources
- Dev Resources
Week 4: Social dilemmaThis week, there are only Additional Resources (optional reading) to give you time to do site housecleaning or to add to it if you want to.
- Douglass, F.Douglass, Frederick (1852). Oration, Delivered in Corinthian Hall, Rochester, July 5th, 1852. Rochester: Lee, Mann &co. Online text.
- Hughes, L. (1936). Let America be great again. Poetry.org. Online poem.
- Magnusson, G. (2020). How Silivon Valley will solve the trolley problem. magnusson.io. Online text.
- Thomas, R. (2019). Five things that scare me about AI. Fast.ai. Online text.
Week 5: Our virtual community garden
- John Spencer’s sketch on collaborative learning:
- American quilts as a visual representation of work that achieves creative coordination as you will try to this semester (be sure to scroll through to see some interesting varieties).
- Conference highlight: Danilo asking: “How do we know if what we write is ‘right’?” How do you know if what you read in the news is right? …If this course does its job, you will start thinking about what makes more or less useful and constructive information and knowledge. Kudos to Danilo for the question.
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Week 6: Social networks: communication, collapseOptional reading: Note: the reading is optional this week because some of you may want to take the time to look into Caulfield’s book for further insight into how to do your assignment.
- Caulfield, M. (2017). Web literacy for student fact-checkers. Pressbooks. Online book.
- Douthat, R. (2020). 10 Theses about cancel culture, NYT. Unlinked article.
- Foucault, M. (1980). Power/knowledge. Brighton/Sussex: The Harvester Press. Book listing. Also see Power-knowledge wikipedia entry. Online wiki entry.
- Golebiewski, M. & boyd, d. (2018). Data voids: where missing data can easily be exploited. Data&Society. Online text with link to primer download.
- Munger, K. et al. (2018). The effect of clickbait. Online PDF.
- Pausch, R. (2007). Randy Pausch’s last lecture: really achieving your childhood dreams.Carnegie Mellon. Online PDF – also available as a video on YouTube, which I refuse to link to. Included here for further reading into time management and to illustrate one possible set of strategies: it is important to understand what works for you. Some of Pausch’s approach is dated, and the practice of piling up email can be questioned (some prefer the zero-inbox strategy), but Pausch was a thoughtful and considerate professor.
- Putnam, R. (1995). Bowling alone: America’s declining social capital.Journal of Democracy 6:1, 65-78. Online article.
- Tufekci, Z. (2018). An avalanche of speech can bury democracy. Politico. Online article.
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Week 7: Social networks: bias & media literacyReading material:
- Arendt, H. (1972). Crises of the Republic. New York: Harourt Brace Jovanovich. On bias
- Ciampaglia, G. L. & Menczer, F. (2018) Biases make people vulnerable to misinformation spread by social media Online journal article, for those wanting to view technical writing. On bias.
- Kellner, D. & Share, J. (2005). Toward Critical Media Literacy: Core concepts, debates, organizations, and policy. Journal Discourse: Studies in the Cultural Politics of Education, (3), 26:3, 369-386. Unlinked journal article.
- Crichton, M. (2005). Why speculate. American Digest. Online speech transcription: NOTE, this is not the original source but a source of the speech on a website not ridden with dark JS. On bias
- Dror, I. (2020). Cognitive and Human Factors in Expert Decision Making:Six Fallacies and the Eight Sources of Bias. Analytical Chemistry 2020 92 (12), 7998-8004 DOI: 10.1021/acs.analchem.0c00704. Online journal article. On bias.
- Hurst, M. (2020). The not so candid cameras. Culture Crush. Online article: an example of critique; note, the second half addresses social action.
- Manoogian, J. (2018). Cognitive bias codex. Online graph. On bias: if you use this resource for the assignment, please look up the meaning of the terms you reflect on.
- McPherson, J. (2019). An interview with historian James McPherson on the New York Times’ 1619 Project. WSW. Online article.
- Skolnick, E. (2020). No way out. Culture Crush. Online article: an example of critique.
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Week 8: Participatory action researchThank you to those students who attended this week’s video conference. The syllabus was discussed and modified. Your assignment this week, worth 10 percent, will be an individual reflective post assessing this class and its content. This will aid preparation for your final and individual assignment.
A book connecting the outcome of today’s conference with the first lesson we had this semester is Carol Sanford’s No more feedback.
Reflection post prompts
Please reflect on the following aspects of class, sharing qualitative, descriptive assessment of what you liked/could be improved and why. Do not forget to initial your posts as they are to be done individually.
Note that no points will be given for posts that fail to include potential areas of improvement. Criticism is natural; good criticism points a way for change and growth.
These prompts are starting points: please add anything else you consider relevant in your responses.
1. Site design (layout, categories, pages, navigability, group access, concept) 2. Forum (rules, wheher a help or hindrance in collaborative learning; in articulation of new ideas) 3. Assignments (length, whether too easy or difficult, whether engaging or not) 4. Course objectives (whether 21st century skills are becoming clearer to you; whether course objectives [above, in the syllabus] are stated clearly enough) 5. Reading material (amount; selection; level) 6. Video lectures (helpful or not; length; delivery; presentation; topics) 7. Overall course experience (engaging? challenging?) 8. Topics (relevance; least and most favorite) – favorite topics may inform the topic set in the final assignment 9. Your own engagement with the course (self-evaluation is as valuable as course evaluation, and requires as much critical – and empathetic – skill; how much you consulted the syllabus, took notes, etc.) If this work may be used – anonymously – in the elaboration and research of future course design, please add a note at the bottom of your post saying: This post may be used for research purposes.
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The weekly video will be posted below. Note that it will only be available for one week, at which point it will be replaced by a new video.
This week’s video was replaced by a video conference.
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Link to the course forum:
This course will also use a forum, at
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