Jacquelyn Blain

Conventions

To me, the word genre always been referred to in books. For example, books have different genres like, non-fiction, fiction, fairytale, biography, etc. I did not know genre could refer to other things which is why it is a bit confusing for me.
From what I have seen so far, in a genre theres many different things to them. Such as movies, there are many different genres in movies, but they all share the fact that they fall under the category of movies.
A good way for me to write an educational narrative would be for me to write something that I am truly passionate about and have a good understanding of. The only thing, for me, in which I understand perfectly would be for me to write about myself.
A few questions I have that worry me about writing my own educational narrative is: Are their good methods towards writing an educational narrative? Can you ever be wrong when writing your own educational narrative? What is an educational narrative?
My concerns are getting genre and educational narrative mixed up with each other and their purpose for each. Like, what are we trying to get out of writing a personal narrative? Are genre and personal narrative the same thing? I would feel more comfortable getting some more clarification within both these two terms.

1 Comment

  1. Jacquelyn Blain

    Great questions! You’re making my brain hurt :-D.

    First, you can write about anything you want to. And, no; there’s no way to be wrong since it’s personal. In fact, as you say, an education narrative really is a personal narrative, kind of a sub-genre of the personal narrative, if you will. The thing that distinguishes it from other personal narratives is simply subject matter. All good personal narratives are personal, relatable, visual (you can see scenes and hear people etc, which we’ll talk about in class), and even passionate. The education narrative is, again, only its own genre by virtue of the content. So you absolutely can’t be wrong — just write the way you want to about any aspect of education that you’re passionate about, and you’ll be fine.

    Which brings me to this: it can be about an event, or a person, or a series of events that happened to you. OR it can be a full-on rant about the state of education in general and how you view it (of course, you’ll want to use examples from your own education to support your rant).

    Finally, genre is a strange word because it does in fact mean different things. To be honest, its meaning has evolved over the decades, especially once the rhetoric/composition people like me got hold of it because we started seeing that genres change over time depending on a whole lot of things. I mean, even horror with all its conventions like jump scares and spooky music has changed over time, depending on the person making the film or writing the book, etc. Sometimes there’s a lot of humor, which there didn’t used to be, because the creator sees a way to use it. Sometimes it’s set on a spaceship (omg “Alien” which scared the bejeebers out of me!) which means it’s horror mixed with science fiction. And trust me… the film studies people argue about what genre means all the time! So don’t feel bad ;-).

    Bottom line, the term is kind of flexible and hard to pin down. Fiction genres like horror etc are one way to look at it. The other way is looking at how various non-fiction written genres are used and in what situations, because they’re things we can choose to do certain jobs. Like email vs. text messaging (yes, those are genres!).

    However, if you simply think about what the content and/or conventions are, that’s mostly what we’re talking about when we say “genre.” At least, that’s the simplest definition.

    And if I’ve completely confused you (always a possibility with me), bring it up in class — we’ll be talking about it on Monday Sept 20.

    Great post!

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