Weekly Roundup: Week 9- Discursive Practices

Weekly Roundup: Week 9-Discursive Practices

In Rhetorical Theory Timothy Borchers explains DISCURSIVE PRACTICES and the rules, roles and power that accompany them.

Discursive practices “refers to the discourse that, because it follows particular rules or has passed appropriate tests, is understood to be true in culture” (Borchers 287)

He presents the following table: FullSizeRender-1.jpg

Borchers then goes on to apply the theory of discursive practice to Disneyland (290-1).  The rules, roles and power that function throughout Disneyland function in such away that they shape the experience had by the visitor (290-1).  Furthermore, the discursive practice that takes place at Disneyland impact the way in which the visitor is permitted to interact with he park (291).

Discursive rules, roles and practices result in predictability and trust.  The consumer is able to trust that the product is always the same.  When someone walks through the gates of Disney it is guaranteed that employees will appear and act in a certain manner.  There is wholesome fun and respect throughout the park.  The discursive practice results in Disneyland being known as the happiest place on earth.

When organizations lack discursive rules the result is a product that is not dependable and therefore can not be trusted as true.  An example of a system that lacks effective discursive practice is Facebook.

Screen Shot 2016-07-02 at 12.07.21 PM.png

When applied to the above table one can see that Facebook does not qualify as trusted discursive system:

Screen Shot 2016-07-02 at 12.04.37 PM.png

With consideration of the various aspects of discursive practice it is evident that Facebook does not rule or govern its user in such a way that structure and truth is guaranteed.  The validity of information shared is dependent on the person who chooses to share it.  Unlike Disneyland, Facebook carries no guarantee.  When you log on there is no telling what you will encounter.  There is potential for uplifting, truthful and interesting information– however, with this possibility is the risk of false information, criticism and offensive content.


Borchers, Timothy A. Rhetorical Theory: An Introduction. Long Grove, IL: Waveland, 2011. Print.






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