take a piece of writing and translate into a different genre

Translating/Transcending Genre

Much like the chameleon, writers change colors to write in many different modes. But it is not enough to merely blend in—the chameleon must eat. For this writing project, we will be:

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•Synthesizing what we have learned so far about genre, conventions and audience •Analyzing our own writing choices
•Writing creatively through a critical understanding of process
•Reflecting on the limitations of genre and the development of your own writing

Assignment: For this assignment, you will take a piece of writing and translate it into a different genre. The actual translation will be 1 page long. You will also complete a 2 page analytical paper that explains why you chose to do this particular translation: how does the translation make you think differently about the original piece of writing? What does this translation reveal about understanding writing through the lens of genre?

For the translation: Pick a piece of writing (ideally around a page long or an excerpt of a longer piece) that has an identifiable genre. This could be academic, a piece of journalism, fiction, etc. After reading and understanding the piece within its own genre conventions and audience expectations, translate the writing completely into a different genre. Your translation must preserve the content and message of the original piece, while repurposing the ideas for a different context and audience. Some examples might be: turning a presidential speech into a pop song, turning an academic essay into a children’s book, turning a comic book into a dramatic monologue, turning a poem into a research paper, etc.

For the analytical essay: For this essay you will need to think critically about your writing process throughout the project. To this end, keep close track of brainstorms, freewrites, and drafts of the translation. Using ideas and insights from the course readings (i.e. quotations), reflect on the skills and techniques that are necessary to effectively translate between genres. Why did you choose to do this particular translation? Are there limitations to the genre paradigm? What is most useful for your own writing process?

1+2 = 3 Pages, 12 pt. Times New Roman, double spaced. Works Cited page.


McCloud, Scott. “Writing with Pictures” Andaluza, Gloria. “How to tame a wild tongue” Auster, Paul. “Why Write”

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