OOSing Along (de Paris)

I read and commented on Amy’s Case Study on Freshman Composition MOOCs using Hardware/Software/Network theory, and on Jenny Moore’s Foucauldian analysis of La Leche Network.

I enjoyed Amy’s post because she is doing some interesting thinking about the components of networking as related to teaching and technology. It made me clarify my thinking related to hardware and software, particularly with regard to a single CPU and its internal bus and a router regulating nodes on a network. I think there are multiple ways of applying the network conceptĀ  related to pedagogy; the diameter of the network will be based on how you apply the concept. Is the classroom function as a network, or the course? What is the diagram of the network? Is it star/radial, tree, or mesh? These decisions matter in terms of visualizing a network as an analogy, which is part of what Foucault seems to be talking about with his interrogation of the choices, processes, relationships, and “unsaids” involved in discourse.

Jenny’s post was an excellent exploration of Foucault’s concept of the tree of enunciative formation as a network that maps how La Leche League functions as an organization with a National/International office and local branches. I appreciated how Jenny discussed the organization through discourse: through the 10 philosophical principles of La Leche, as opposed to an organizational chart. Although they mirror each other somewhat, Foucault was moving away from structure and into the dynamic relationship among principles engaged in discourse, and I think Jenny gets this distinction well. My only thought was that Foucault, I think, might chafe at the idea of this network being mappable as a “unity”. The map seems to be a moment in time; a monument or “capture” of the enunciative formation at a given moment, and not a “map” or “document” or “entity.”

I look forward to seeing where Jenny and Amy take their projects with further theory.

Image from: http://www.opulus.com/faqs/oos.asp (OOS means out-of-specification … which is an interesting angle to think about when applying a theory. Where might it go awry? )



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