The poetics of computers: Composing relationships with technology

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This article describes a course with three primary goals: (1) to help students reflect on the complex relationship between humans and technology (developed within the cultural and historical context of the twentieth century) as portrayed in fiction, nonfiction, poetry, and films that focuses on technology topics; (2) to reflect - broadly, deeply, and from humanistic perspectives - on their own responsibility for shaping this relationship in contemporary contexts; and (3) to provide opportunities within which to practice composing this relationship in personal terms - expressing a personal understanding of humans and computers in language and images, poetry and prose, print and new-media contexts. In such an instructional context - while acquiring facility in making meaning within digital communication environment - students from different academic majors developed a critical perspective on the tools they used and became increasingly conscious about their power, as social agents, to shape the relationship between humans and computers. © 2003 Elsevier Science Inc. All rights reserved.

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Computers and Composition