Script This I Believe Engl 300

Script 300

This I Believe…

  • This I Believe in the importance of movement both physical and intellectual. Physical movement is when one moves their body by using their skeletal muscles. Examples of physical movement are going for walks, runs, working out on at the gym with lifting weights, riding a bike, stretching, really any way the body is set in motion is physical movement.
  • Intellectual movement is how mentally flexible someone can be. This means the ability to learn, adapt, change, create, innovate, build, think, emote, reason, rationalize, synthesize, analyze, communicate, make right connections, and power knowledge. It is also the ability to quickly make right decisions and predict good plans for the future. If we lacked intellectual movement, and our minds were still, we could not be the humans we are meant to be.
  • I have been a dancer my whole life. Dance challenged me physically because dance requires one to move their bodies in unique ways. Jumping, leaping, turning, and stretching are not common in the average day. Dance also challenged me intellectually remembering movements and corrections and applying them to my body. I had to make connections from my brain to my body. Recently, I have had to stop dancing due to an injury. I try to incorporate physical and intellectual movement into my daily routine but it is not the same as dancing every day. I have noticed my mind is not challenged in the same ways, my body is not pushed to the limits, and my overall health has seemed to change due to the lack of movement.
  • Similar to my situation, many athletes have the same issues once they retire or are out due to an injury. Multiple Olympic swimming champion Ian Thorpe, Celtic FC manager Neil Lennon, and double Olympic champion Dame Kelly Holmes are just a few athletes who have made their depression public after their retirement from professional sport. Boxer Sugar Ray Leonard quoted, “Nothing could satisfy me outside of the ring…there is nothing in my life that can compare to becoming a world champion, having your hand raised in that moment of glory with thousands, millions of people cheering you on.” Now, why do athletes feel this way? For many, exercising and competing has been a way of life since they were young and once that is over many do not know what to do. This is called Tunnel Vision Syndrome. This is what can cause depression. Furthermore, physical exercise can help ease depression and anxiety due to the release of endorphins. So when athletes stop playing a sport they miss out on the endorphins from lack of physical movement and they suffer from tunnel vision from stopping all of the intellectual movement related to their sport.
  • Finding ways to be active both physically and intellectually has numerous health benefits. It is a necessity that I, other retired athletes, and really everyone find ways to get the movement needed for bodies and minds. One issue that is present in today’s society is many people would rather sit and watch TV or Netflix or play video games than getting the movement they need. Dr. Levine from the Mayo Clinic says, “excess sitting is now linked with 35 diseases and conditions including obesity, hypertension, back pain, cancer, cardiovascular disease, and depression.” Going for walks at lunchtime, standing up and stretching, completing crossword puzzles, or going to the gym a couple times a week can really help one’s overall movement improve. Many cannot find the inspiration or willpower to start exercising; one solution would be to find a friend, spouse, or coworker who can help push each other. Dr. Levine says, “once people are up and moving, they never go back.” Health gets better with movement and productivity does as well.
  • The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services or HHS says less than 5% of adults participate in 30 minutes of physical activity a day and only 1 in 3 adults receive the recommended amount of physical activity each week. Children seem even worse! Nowadays, children spend more than 8 hours a day in front of a screen and only 1 in 3 children are physically active every day, according to the HHS. This lack of movement concerns me, especially for the children. The center for disease control and prevention or CDC states activity can have an impact on cognitive skills, attitudes, and academic behavior. Exercise increases oxygen flow to the brain, increases brain neurotransmitters, and helps to assure the survival of neurons in areas of the brain responsible for learning, memory, and higher thinking. Exercise also prevents the diseases and other issues, we discussed earlier, from occurring in children. Creativity has also seen a decrease in children because of the lack of exercise. The Washington Post says, researchers who have tracked children’s creativity for 50 years are seeing a significant decrease in creativity among children for the first time, especially younger children from kindergarten through sixth grade. This decline in creativity is thought to be due at least in part to the decline of play. Instead of having children play on iPads, play video games, and watch TV, we should make them get exercise as which will actually benefit them the most.
  • Another aspect of improving movement is turning off electronics once in a while. Time Magazine says Smartphones can be a valuable tool for getting fit with the countless amount of apps they have. They can count steps, play fitness videos, help to track our progress and connect us with workout buddies and coaches, both real-life and virtual. But when it comes to phone use during a workout, recent research suggests a few reasons to leave your device alone: Texting or talking on the phone while exercising can worsen balance and workout intensity. This is similar to computers and TVs, just turn it off and get some movement!
  • Our bodies and minds are built for movement and movement helps us to stay healthy. Making sure you get moving physically and intellectually can be really beneficial. I hope one day to get back to dancing, but for now, I am finding other ways of exercising that works for me. Some things are going for walks, taking a yoga class, going to the gym and those benefit me physically, Intellectually I challenge myself with reading and writing which I have grown to really like. And turning technology off once in a while really helps me and reminds me to get moving. Finding ways that work for you and things that can be incorporated every day, both physically and intellectually can really change your life for the better.


Word count: 1110

SSR #1 300

Nastasia Vasconcells

ENGL 300: Texts and Contexts

19 February 2018

Narratives Reflect Culture SSR#1


Chapter 3 of What Writing Does and How It Does It, discusses the theories and methods of discourse analysis. Relating discourse analysis to culture can be seen in numerous ways. One of the methods of analysis is the ethnography of communication, which “aims at describing how communication works within different cultures” (Bazerman and Prior p. 61). Culture influences language, listening, communicating, writing, and other literary elements. By using the ethnography of communication and other elements, culture can be connected to narratives. One narrative, in particular, would be Bootstraps that relates to culture. Papi the main character/narrator sees the change in culture when he moves from New York to California especially in school (Villanueva p.37). Many other narratives relate to culture and in many different ways.


In chapter 10 of What Writing Does and How It Does It, Bazerman and Prior discuss the concept of “rhetorical analysis or rhetorical criticism and how it can be understood as an effort to understand how people within specific social situations attempt to influence others through language” (p.280-281). Culture is based on social interactions and through literary elements such as language, people can see the impact that literature (amongst other elements) has on culture. Breaking down narratives and analyzing them, helps to see the reflection of culture.

Chapter 1 of Rhetorical Listening defines rhetorical listening as it “signifies a stance of openness that a person may choose to assume in relation to any person, text or culture” (Ratcliffe p.17). The chapter discusses how culture can create biases towards listening, and how it is acceptable since listening can be up for interpretation. Furthermore, this chapter reflects on cross-cultural communication that could create positive and negative interactions between people. Rhetorical listening should be a way to help people gain better communication skills, but the book even said it could not solve all of the world’s problems.

Culture can even be seen visually through dialect maps. Chapter 2 of Do you speak American? opens up this concept/idea by saying, “The earliest dialect studies looked for words particular to one region and drew lines to connect similarities of usage. From those findings, they produced the first dialect maps” (Macneil p.35). Dialect refers to the differences in languages depending on one’s culture and background. These maps showed how cultures are different but also how they connect. The book expands on how people say a word may be different or some cultures may have a new word completely similarly to the different words for a sandwich depending on the location. The maps also show how language changes and is changing throughout time and place. They relate the culture and the influence it has on language.

As stated in the above paragraph, change occurs frequently and many literary things change for cultural reasons. For example, in chapter 1 of Scrolling Forward Levy explains, “All this and more is happening, just to make sure that receipts will be produced that conform to cultural expectations” (p.19). Throughout this chapter, Levy explains the changes a receipt must go through to stay updated to the cultural norms. At one point in time a receipt was a human being and now it is a small piece of paper many disregard and discard. There is even the option to get a digital receipt so no paper is involved, which represents the digital movement. The receipt could be a symbol of the culture around the world and how it is always changing. Culture influenced the receipt to change as it influences many other elements to change.

A negative aspect of culture is stereotyping discussed in Chapter 2 of Rhetorical Listening. Ratcliffe explains, “When people’s identities are interpreted as identical in terms of a single identification (e.g., defined in terms of one TV ad) or in terms of a single cultural category (e.g., defined in terms of gender), then opportunities for stereotyping abound” (p.51). The book explains how identity is what people do with identifications and identifications are categorized in a situation that connects or finds commonalities in something exterior. These categories, however, create assumptions about oneself, others, and cultures. The book specifically uses the word “haunted” to explain the divide created by identification when people make or use stereotypes. Through rhetorical listening, it seems the author believes the boundaries can be blurred and the stereotypes can lessen in cultures.

Some cultures have classifications within literacy and orality. Bazerman and Prior explain, in chapter 8 of What Writing Does and How It Does It, the classifications. One of the classifications is “primary orality which suggests it be reserved as a classification for cultures (notice, not individuals) with no literacy” (Bazerman and Prior p. 203). Meaning a culture may use mainly oral communication rather than one with an emphasis on literacy. The book explains other classifications but primary orality challenges cultural norms the most. It also explains how spoken language and conversation compare to written language and conversation. It explores these differences and the complexity that arises. Also, explored is the rise of technology and how a culture does not usually use primary orality. Observing the different ways people communicate as the book explains relates to one’s culture.

In conclusion, each of the books links culture to a literary element. They show how culture influences many of these elements. Through listening, language, dialect maps, receipts, stereotypes, and classifications these books provide examples of the relations between literacy and culture.


  1. Does dialect differ in every single person? In Do you speak American, dialect maps are created by region, but people can be from multiple regions and therefore could people have a mixture of dialects? Everyone, especially in America, has rich cultural backgrounds so could everyone’s dialect be different?
  2. Could culture exist without stereotypes? Could everyone use elements learned such as rhetorical listening to ease stereotypes out? Or are stereotypes a negative but key factor in cultures?
  3. What do Bazerman and Prior (editors of What Writing Does and How it Does It) think is the best literary and oral classification a culture could have and use?

Word count: 1026

Works Cited

Bazerman, Charles, and Paul Prior. What Writing Does and How It Does It: an Introduction to Analyzing Texts and Textual Practices. Routledge, 2009.

Levy, David M. Scrolling Forward: Making Sense of Documents in the Digital Age. Arcade Publishing, 2016.

MacNeil, Robert, et al. Do You Speak American? a Companion to the PBS Television Series. Nan A. Talese/Doubleday, 2005.

Ratcliffe, Krista. Rhetorical Listening: Identification, Gender, Whiteness. Southern Illinois University Press, 2005.

Villanueva, Victor. Bootstraps: from an American Academic of Color. National Council of Teachers of English, 1993.

This I Believe Project Proposal

My project will be: This I Believe in the Importance of Movement. Nowadays people would rather sit around and watch TV or play video games than getting up and moving around. There are numerous health benefits to moving including physical, mental, and emotional. Movement includes going for walks, runs, doing jumping jacks, stretching, etc.

I have been a dancer my whole life and had to stop because of an injury. I try to get exercise when I can but it is not the same as dancing every day. I have noticed differences in my mind, body, and overall health due to this change in movement. Many professional athletes have reported changes in health, including depression, after retirement. Finding ways to exercise and move regularly, can help to prevent health issues.