Genre Reflective Essay

1181 words - 5 pages

Genre Reflective Essay
It is not so surprising that every time I heard the word “genre”, I always thought about the most common genres we see in movies, library sections, or on the back of some of my favorite books; not realizing there is so much more to it than that. Genre; class or category, form or a technique, classification or grouping with limitations; there is so much to say about genre, whether it is about a book, movie, or music.
The word genre, a French word from 1770, especially used for “independent style” (genre). There are many important aspects of genre; it addresses the relationship between the author and the reader, the director and the viewer, the composer and the ...view middle of the document...

The book was one of the creepiest graphic novels of the year, a gut-wrenching book written to provide an open window for us to look at the behind the scenes of the fast-food restaurants (Spurlock). This was a unique way to put two completely different things together; a problem that is quite serious which we are all facing today, and a visual comedy approach to get the message across.
From reading some of the reader’s comments, I often felt such a strong agreement with the fact that iconography tends to take precedence over thematic identity (Chandler). It wasn’t something unexpected that I would see some people finding the material interesting because it contained graphics, but I have to say that it was a bit shocking to see that the majority of the readers had similar reaction - that is, they actually found the approach as an effective way to get the point across. Marissa said “If he were to write a simple book repeating that fast food is bad for you it would be nowhere near as popular is it is now” (Morris). Another reader mentioned “Providing a picture, along with the sarcasm, enhances the reader’s ability to see the situation as it really is” (Weitzel). While I agree that images seem to stick to people’s minds easier, and I can’t imagine a better version than Spurlock’s choice; I still can’t find myself feeling positively affected by these comical graphics and characters in the book. It is possible that it was an unexpected pair for me: the kind of information I was getting and the genre it was used to give me the information; like how it was once said: Genre is a bargain between media producers and media audiences — we can feel cheated if genres “trick” us (Chandler).
Selecting a genre depends on our purpose and the audience we want to reach. Spurlock, for example, wanted to reach out to Americans who heavily consume fast food. He wanted them to know how horrifying the fast food restaurant’s kitchens could get, how the employees of these restaurants were playing a role in what they ate, and show them the severity of the conditions. Majority of the population that eats more often at these restaurants could be said to be the young working adults, or students. And the reason for that could be what Pollan had mentioned in his book during the introduction, lacking a strong, stable culinary tradition in this country (Pollan 5). For this...

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