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Describes how a technology, specifically the wireless, adheres to cultural values
Provides the first rhetorical analysis of Marconi's wireless explaining how this historical technology fits modernist values of the early 20th century
Shows how to apply a rhetorical lens to new technologies
This book examines the discourse surrounding the wireless, created by the Anglo-Italian inventor Guglielmo Marconi. The wireless excited early twentieth-century audiences before it even became a viable black box technology. The wireless adhered to modernist values—speed, efficiency, militarization, and progress. Language surrounding the wireless is a form of technical communication, overlooked by today’s practitioners. This book establishes a broader definition for technical communication by examining a selection of the discourse surrounding Marconi's wireless. The book’s main themes are the following: 1) technical communication is all discourse surrounding technology, 2) the field of technical communication (or technical writing) should incorporate analyses of discourse surrounding technologies into its epistemology, 3) the wireless is a product of the society from which it comes (early twentieth-century Western civilization), and 4) the discourse surrounding the wireless is infused with tropes of progress—speed, efficiency, evolution, and ahistoricity.
Content Level »Research
Keywords »Guglielmo Marconi - Marconi's Wireless - Modernism - New media technology - Positive popular press accounts - Rhetoric of Technical Communication - Science and Technology Studies - black box technology