Keep Austin WEirD (Reading Analysis 4)

Jenney Edbauer’a (Riceimg_3642’s) essay “Unframing Models of Public Distribution: From Rhetorical Situation to Rhetorical Ecologies” argues for the shift in thinking from a unilateral and stagnant thought process behind the reasoning for a particular constant, to examining much deeper into the organic and living web of what makes it what it is. For example, her example in fact, “Keep Austin Weird” is a slogan used hugely in the Austin and general Texas area, that has been appropriated by other aspects of Austin, such as private businesses, in order to attract more customers. A University of Texas in Austin business student sprouted a counter culture to this movement by selling t-shirts with the slogan “Keep Austin Normal” on the back, though counter culture being created within a college campus is hardly new. Edbauer (Rice) proposes several elements to the creation and maturation of this social movement beyond the traditional idea of it being brought about by the general public consensus of its popularity. She proposes that the multiple uses of the slogan, its appropriation, by small businesses, large businesses, music festivals, radio stations, universities, and even the local and state level government have all contributed to the culture and meaning behind “Keep Austin Weird.” She goes on to implore the audience to move beyond the unilateral frame of reference, one held in everyday settings, and to mature onto the future ideas of a multilateral process, one where ideas and factors are thought of and developed in a way the involves multiple parties and outstanding discussion.

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