Mirabelli and your DC Ethnography “Learning to Serve: The Language and Literacy of Food Service Workers”
Mirabelli studies “multiliteracies” Addresses “the multiplicity of communication channels and the increasing saliency of cultural and linguistic diversity in the world today” (542).
What are some different literacies in your discourse communities?
Mirabelli discusses authority How does the menu establish and balance authority at the diner?
How is authority balanced and established in your DC?
Mirabelli’s Research Question?
Mirabelli asks.. “How language is spoken, read, or written in a restaurant may be vastly different from how it is used in the classroom” (541). “This chapter explores these constructed ways of ‘reading’ texts (and customers) along with the verbal, ‘performances’ and other manipulations of self-presentation that characterize interactive service work” (541).
How does Mirabelli begin his article? Breakdown the structure:
Looking at structure: Mirabelli (Introduction) Literacy and contemporary theory Methodology Lou’s Restaurant The Menu Conclusion
Student paper Break down the structure: -Introduction -Swales -Expertise
Remember Swales and the CARS model? Establish territory—Tell us what’s been said Claim centrality Make a topic generalization Review previous items of research Establish niche—Tell us what’s been missing Counter-claim Indicate a gap Raise a question Continue a tradition Occupy niche—Fill the gap Outline purposes Announce principal findings Indicate research-report structure
What about your structure? Introduction Jot down the names of the scholars you will refer to. Methodology Jot down what methods you will need to describe. Results/Discussion Decide what organization will best suit your argument and create subject headings. By Swales’s characteristics By questions (see Wardle) By community-specific topics (see Mirabelli) Let’s compare notes.
Let’s establish a territory I remember my first day as a Publix bagger two years ago. I went in thinking, “Shoot, any moron could put groceries in a bag.” On my first day I was paired with Dennis, a sixty-five-year-old bagger who’d been working for Publix for eight years. He didn’t say much, but he told me to watch him and, when I felt I was ready, to go ahead and take over for him. I then observed what to put with what, what to keep by itself, and what to double-bag. It was a little more complicated than I had thought and I was impressed by their means of communicating these rules to me. (topic generalization) Write about your DC. You could discuss your involvement, what outsiders may think about your DC, or something interesting that others may not know.
Let’s establish a territory… Publix is a discourse community. John Swales states that a discourse community has a broadly agreed set of common goals, has mechanisms of intercommunication of its members, uses its participatory mechanisms primarily to provide information and feedback, utilizes and hence possesses one or more genres in the communicative furtherance of its aims, has acquired some specific lexis, and has a threshold level of members with a suitable degree of relevant content and discoursal expertise (Swales 288-91). (reviewing previous items of research) Discuss what you know about discourse communities. Use at least two authors. You can discuss Swales and how he defines DCs, Wardle and authority, and/or Mirabelli and multiliteracies/authority.
Let’s establish a niche After reading Swales and his criteria, I realized that discourse communities are everywhere and I had never realized it. Even Publix, where I’ve worked as a bagger for two years, is a discourse community according to Swales’ criteria. (continuing a tradition) At home: Write a few sentences linking your DC to a prior definition of DCs. How is your community defined as a DC? Post on FB or bring to class.
Mirabelli Quiz What multi-literacies do members of Lou’s diner (such as Harvey) have to manage? How could managing these multi-literacies be more difficult than people would expect? How is the menu used to balance authority at Lou’s diner? How can you relate Mirabelli’s ethnography to the one that you will be writing? For example, Mirabelli focuses on the language (genres and lexis) of Lou’s diner, and you will be focusing on…?