The primary artifact I submitted for my Audio/Video Specialization badge was “Vitanzing,” an episode of the DWRL’s Zeugma podcast that I organized, recorded, produced, and published. That episode is downloadable via the preceding link and streamable via the embedded player below.
The episode features an interview with rhetorics scholar Victor Vitanza and was the last in a series of five interviews that I recorded at the 2014 Rhetoric Society of America conference, all of which were subsequently published on Zeugma‘s website. I highlight “Vitanzing” because it demonstrates the various ways in which I’ve learned to use and edit audio: in addition to the more standard interview portions, the episode includes more experimental excurses (cf. the 19:48 and 27:00 marks in the interview), and the interview itself incorporates various audio effects intended to add to and complicate the affective and scholarly issues directly addressed in the interview.
In addition to overseeing the series of which “Vitanzing” is a part, I served as project leader for the first season of Zeugma. I also added audio components to “Crossing Battle Lines,” an award-winning Kairos webtext published by the DWRL’s 2011-12 Immersive Environments group, and “An Encounter With Pedagogical (H)alterity,” my 2013 publication in the digital journal Hybrid Pedagogy.
Those various undertakings, which built on a year of undergraduate work in audio engineering and began as a hobby, have developed into a scholarly and professional interest. For instance, I recently launched my own rhetorical theory podcast entitled Rhetoricity. I see audio work as speaking to a number of current topoi in rhetoric scholarship, including work on remediation and multimodal digital literacies, calls to reunite speech and writing as rhetorical/pedagogical practices, and affect theory (e.g., the affective resonances of the recorded voice). Conducting interviews also allows me to network at conferences, giving me an opportunity and a reason to engage at length with experienced scholars in rhetoric and composition. Additionally, audio work has helped me establish connections with other graduate students and junior faculty undertaking similar projects. For instance, I was invited to contribute a guest segment to an episode of This Rhetorical Life, a podcast run by graduate students at Syracuse University, and correspond regularly with the scholars who run KairosCast, Plugs, Play, Pedagogy, and Writing Questions.
I have also incorporated audio components into the courses I teach. For more on this, see my lesson plan “Podcast/Paper: Having Students Do One Assignment in Multiple Media” on the HASTAC website.
Though audio work has been my main focus within this specialization, I have also worked extensively with video. My most involved video project was “Four Movements: Medi(t)ations on CCCC 2012,” a four-part video series I recorded at the 2012 Conference on College Composition and Communication as part of an Emerging Pedagogies travel grant from Pearson. I’ve also done video work for the DWRL: in addition to producing and editing video coverage of the lab’s Speaker Series and final showcase events in both 2013 and 2014, I livestreamed a lab workshop as part of the final project for the 2013-14 HASTAC rhetoric and composition working group.
In all, working with digital audio and video has allowed me to expand the scope of my scholarly and pedagogical practices, opening up kinds and modes of work that resonate with more established varieties of print scholarship but also push the structural boundaries of scholarly and pedagogical genres.