Friday, May 27, 2011

A Connectivist Rhetoric

I suppose that I have already begun exploring the implications of Connectivism for rhetoric, so I might was well say so. I do not know if Connectivism as a learning theory can be a foundation for a rhetoric, but it certainly can inform rhetoric, so let's see how. Along the way, I should learn more about Connectivism and rhetoric. Nice.

Where does a Connectivist rhetoric begin? To my mind it begins with the simple observation that writing is a function of complex networking. I think complex networking is also at the core of Connectivism: the connections inherent in the name are an aspect of complex networking, which in its simplest expression is a dynamic arrangement of nodes and connections. Connectivism asserts, I believe, that knowledge and learning are functions of complex networking. This has always been the case for knowledge, learning, and writing, but modern information technology has made this networking structure intuitively obvious for even the most casual observer. We humans have bought into networking – especially in its most reified expression in the Internet – in the historical blinking of an eye, but we have not worked out the details of this new arrangement nor have we abandoned our old hierarchical structures. A Connectivist rhetoric might help us make this shift, or it might just provide me with a lot of fun. Or both.

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