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Text Type Conventions

Before you start your creative task,

please review the guidelines of the
genre of writing you have chosen so
that you can properly emulate it.

Theres about a million types of

texts. To name a few:
Electronic texts (such as social networking sites, discussion forums or blogs)
Encyclopedia entry
this is not an academic essay of the sort you write at school, but a poetic essay (something like a literary opinion column)
Guide book
Letter (formal/informal)
Magazine article
News report
Opinion column
Pastiche- a pastiche is a serious attempt to reproduce the style of another text
Radio broadcast
Set of instructions
Song lyric
Travel writing

So Far, We have covered:

Poem (Alabanza by Martin Espada and Sonrisas by Pat Mora)
Personal Essay (Mother Tongue by Amy Tan, On Liberty by John Stuart Mill)
News Article (The Definitive Slang Dictionary by Ben Zimmer, A Language Without
Limits by Deena Kamel, English grows into strange shapes when transplanted into
foreign soil by Ben Macintyre)
Song (Strange Fruit, by Billie Holliday and other protest songs)
Speech (Aint I a Woman by Sojourner Truth, Disappointment is the Lot of Women by
Lucy Stone, I Have a Dream by Martin Luther King, Jr.)
Blog (POC is Inherently a Racist Term by socialjusticefail and other blogs )
Open Letter (Open Letter To Kansas School Board and John Greenes An Open Letter to
Students Returning to School)
Slam (Touchscreen, by Marshall Soulful Jones and other slam poetry / spoken word)
Commercial (Census Commercials)
Novel (Animal Farm,by George Orwell)
Propaganda (Orals on Animal Farm)
Art (Christinas World, y Andrew Wyeth, Napalm Girl by Banksy and others in ART


Conveys emotion or ideas to audience

can be free verse or contain rhyme scheme
Considers auditory devices (rhythm)
Connotative diction and imagery
Other literary devices including symbolism
Employ a vast amount of figurative language
Title (usually)
Focuses on how it is said, not just what is being
May not follow traditional sentence structure

Personal Essay
Relies mostly on personal stories to
make points
Relevant to authors daily life
Has a message for the audience
Uses personal pronouns (I, me)
Paragraph format
Has an intro and conclusion
Often includes a call to action

News Article
1. Gives up-to-date information, quickly and clearly
2. Topical; concerned with the latest development
3. Short
4. As objective as possible
5. Gets straight to the point; formal style
6. Will be near the front of the newspaper or in the front
7. Will follow a pyramid structure: who, what, where, when,
why, how
8. Will not have a special ending
9. Not initiated by the newspaper; staff simply react to the

News Article
The reporter begins with the most
important facts in the first or lead-up
paragraph, which leads the reader
into the rest of the story. The less
important facts and background
Inverted PyramidLead, Important
details, other details

News Article
Types of leads:
Startling Statement
Question Lead
Developing a news story: Lead (opening
statement), topic, quotation, topic,

News Article
News Narrative vs. News Interview
News narratives tend to focus on themes i.e.
political strategy.
News interviews are interactional. The focus tends
not to be as thematic as news narratives although
themes are present in the asking and answering of
A news interview is an interactional game that
moves an interview in a particular direction, relying
on some questions to move the interview along,
while others questions subject prior responses to

News Article- Interview

News Interview Questions
Each question has an anticipated significance.
Some questions are relatively open-ended and allow
the interviewee maximum leeway to respond.
Other questions narrow the parameters of an
acceptable response and exert pressure on the
interviewee to answer in a particular way.
In this way, the sense and the significance of an
interviewees response depends in part on how it
deals with the agenda or positioning established by
the question (i.e. dutifully answered, resistant,

News Article- Interview

Significance of the interview interaction
The interview interaction game is played
differently by different people in different
An interviewers role can shift between
relative polite or deferential questioning to
aggressive and adversarial across
particular interviewers, interviewees, news
programs, broadcasting media, national
boundaries, or historical eras.

News Article- Interview

Adversarial vs Differential
One way of expressing adversarialness is via
opinionated or assertive questionssuch
questions display a preference for or
expectation for a certain type of response.
Encodings for these types of questions might
look like the following:
Didnt you? Arent you? Isnt it true that?
These questioning strategies embody a
strong preference for an affirmative answer.

Songs of Protest
The song clearly took a stance on a clearly defined social or political issue (as
perceived by the listeners of the era in which the song was released)
The song had (or implied) a call to action or predicted outcome. The call to
action could have been direct, such as fight! or it could have been a
prediction, like punishment is probably coming my way because I choose to
The song was (or still is) controversial, probably exposed the artist to criticism
(from either or both sides of the argument). Its not just popular opinion
The songs lyrics are not masked in too much poetry or metaphors, they just
say it or they at least go to a point of no return in the lyrics that can
define their point of view (for example, Bob Dylan warns Senators and
Congressmen, and Peter Tosh tells the gangster robbers he wont attend their
friends funeral)
But most importantly, theres a feeling captured in a true protest
song, you can feel it the second the song starts playing its a
feeling that grows stronger with the lyrics to captivate the audience
and inspires them into action.

1. present particular information, or a way to influence
and motivate groups to action.
2. unify and consolidate smaller groups or individuals to a
common cause.
No matter what the purpose of the speech, the particular
way in which a speech is received and interpreted by the
audience is influenced by the type of speech and the
language used. The audience also determines how the
speech is received due to their own individual and group
characteristics such as social class, culture, religion and
racial ties. Consider the context in which the speech was
delivered and received

Types of speeches:
Topicalthis speech splits the main topic into sub-topics. For example, a speech about changing catering
providers may involve discussion about different types of food and drink choices and their benefits.
Spatialthis type of speech follows a direction. For example, in a speech about planning a special event
such as a wedding, you could first discuss placement of the tables and chairs (including appropriate seating
for special guests at the front and less important guests at the rear) followed by discussion about the
entertainment and catering options.
Chronologicalthe topic is arranged by time. For example, in a speech about your rise to an important
position, you would begin with details about your humble roots and beginnings, followed by information about
your own personal growth over the years, then your current status. This could be followed by your future
Problem/solutionyou present a problem that needs to be solved and then a solution to that problem. This
type of organization is effective if you are trying to motivate your audience to take some kind of action. For
example, a speech describing the effect of global climate change and pollution on people and the
environment fits this organizational pattern, provided it lists the sources of the problem and describes what
can be done to stop it.
Comparativeyou compare and contrast different proposals or plans, usually to persuade the audience that
one plan or proposal is better. For example, in a presentation to a companys executives, you could compare
and contrast two different advertising proposals concerning a new product to convince the executives that
one proposal is better than the other.
Causal (both informative and persuasive)this type of speech shows cause/effect relationships. Often
the effect is discussed first, then the cause. A speech about natural disasters that describes how they occur
and their destructiveness fits this organizational pattern.
One focus of persuasion is the question of fact. This refers to something that we can know to be either true
or false, but right now we can argue about it: To persuade my audience that media violence causes real-life
Another focus of persuasion is the question of value. Here we argue something is right or wrong, moral or
immoral, or better or worse than another thing:To persuade my audience that one product is better than
Another focus of persuasion can be questions of policy: To persuade my audience that the ban on women in
combat should be lifted.

A blog (or web log) is either a discussion or informational
website that consists of discrete entries (posts) typically
displayed in reverse chronological order (the most recent post
appears first).
Usually blogs are the work of a single individual, and often
cover a single subject.
Author presents some form of commentary (either in words or
pictures or both)
The majority of blogs are interactive. They may be
responding to a different post and they allow users to leave
comments and respond to one another.
Blogging is a valuable form of social networking. Both the
author and the people commenting have a form of mass
communication with which to present and debate ideas.

Open Letter
An open letter is a letter addressed to either a
wide audience or a specific individual or group,
but is intended for public viewing. It is often
critical in nature, and follows the standard forms
of presenting and arguing an issue. Authors may
use humor or satire to drive home a point. Often
the writer addresses the audience before
presenting the argument, outlining the nature of
the complaint. Open letters originated as letters,
but have evolved to take the form of blogs,
videos, and other public forums.

Slam Poem
a spoken word poem that is composed and practiced to be
performed in front of a live audience. The audience is often
encouraged to participate by cheering when they hear an idea they
agree with or see as profound.
should be three minutes in length, memorized, and performed by
the author
usually free verse (no set rhyme scheme) and can use any poetic or
prose devices to create an effect on the reader.
can be done individually or in groups of two or four.
The subject of a slam poem varies, but the key ingredient is the
speakers passion. The topics are often touchy subjects or
controversial. The slam poetry stage is a place where people are
able to speak their mind, even if others disagree.
Slam poets choose words carefully, understanding the impact of
each word has the direct ability to make their audience feel.

A commercial is a short clip that is meant to
persuade or convince its audience.
The creator is very perceptive of audience
Commercials are tailored for who they are
intended for.
They use
visual devices (background, camera angle,
movements, words on screen)
Auditory techniques (Music, tone of voice)
Structural techniques (organization)
Verbal techniques (word choice, Literary devices)