Short Assignment #9 : Potential Genres Proposal

Michael Jackson’s obituary was a curious selection for sample reading. When imagining genres and styles, the newspaper-directed eulogy is not really something I would consider. As a genre, the obituary tends to do well at providing a short synopsis of a person’s achievements as well as reminding us what we all lost when the person passed away. I can’t help but think of a meditation that begins with “No man is an island”.

As for how successful the writing was, I’d call it a mixed bag. I feel like the author has a small degree of spite toward the King of Pop. Typically obituaries are written for the family and friends of the deceased but I get the distinct feeling that this piece was written partially so that we could have one last chuckle at the guy.

As for possible alternate genres for my research proposal, When I joked that one might call the Tweet a genre, I really had no intention of seriously advancing down that road until I realized how effective clickbait is in our current era. I think I would like to use a clickbait tweet as one of my 2 genres, that would lead to an obituary for the first legally recognized Artificial Intelligence to be granted person-hood.

Some challenges  I could imagine include writing a sufficiently catchy headline (I have some experience with Youtube but the formatting is slightly different). After that, telling a good story about the fight for person-hood might be a significant hurdle.


3 thoughts on “Short Assignment #9 : Potential Genres Proposal

  1. Hi Haile:
    I tend to agree with you regarding the Jackson obit. The venue and targeted audiences are important in that respect (can’t imagine the family as being the audience). Can you describe the genre’s elements in more detail?
    As to the genres, I’m glad we had our conversation. I did read your Open Letter to HC–while you were wrong about the election (who wasn’t?), you were prophetic in other respects. I’m fine with your choosing this format, inviting readers to comment (you didn’t share your doc, right?). The choice of obituary sounds interesting (an Obit for the HAL 9000?).

    • How was I wrong in my prediction? I believe I said she would lose to Trump if she didn’t concede to the democratic base and I was right about that.

      Either way, the Hilary Clinton open letter was open to comment. I don’t know if I sent the right one but I intended to send you the one with fewer responses because I was called some pretty nasty things, even by my own standard, (and as an amateur online political commentator/provocateur I’ve gotten some pretty gnarly responses) by both Hillary democrats and basically half the Republican base (there’s some 1984 level stuff going on out there) and I didn’t want to expose a professional contact to some of the soul-injuring filth that exists in the less-illuminated corners of the web. I’m a fairly militant free speech advocate so I don’t write for platforms that don’t allow reader responses.

      as for HAL… I haven’t actually watched or read any of Clarke’s work, though I’m a huge fan of some of his commentators. would you recommend I read A Space Odyssey (Praise the Sun, that word is not spelled at all as it sounds) or will the movie do?

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