Standing Peachtree and Indigenous New Media

Course Overview

Course Overview

Indigenous knowledges and stories are mapped onto the land beneath your feet and mediated through oral and material modes. Indigenous knowledges and stories continue to be sovereign, embodied through various methods of meaning-making. This course focuses on the rhetorical practices of Native/American Indian communities and how those practices “make” meaning within indigenous communities. Considering a continuum of meaning-making practices, from ancient (such as petroglyphs) to precontact (such as weaving, wintercounts) to postcontact (such as creative and academic writing, music, video games, apps, comic books, and
other multimedia compositions), this course seeks to honor multiple ways of knowing, particularly through the lens of the three Rs: respect, reciprocity, and relationality.

This course also locates itself in local histories. Before Atlanta, there was Pakanahuili, or “Standing Peachtree.” This place was once located at where Peachtree Creek meets the Chattahoochee River— not too far from the Tech campus. Now, at that location, there stands a water treatment plant which provides water to the city. We will place institutional texts (such as archaeological reports and water works reports) into conversation with local oral histories and Indigenous rhetorical practices to constellate various ways that the story of Standing Peachtree has been, is, and could be mediated. Likewise, this focus in local land-based indigenous histories will foster conversations regarding sovereignty, survivance, and story. Who tells the stories? How are those stories told? In what ways do those stories demonstrate respect, reciprocity, and relationality as well as survivance and sovereignty?

This course is affiliated with the Serve-Learn-Sustain Program at Georgia Tech.

Georgia Tech General Education Outcomes for ENGL 1102

This course shares the following outcomes with all sections of ENGL 1102. You can read more about these outcomes here.

Primary Learning Goal

  • Communication: Demonstrate proficiency in the process of articulating and organizing rhetorical arguments in written, oral, visual, and nonverbal modes, using concrete support and conventional language.

Secondary Learning Goals

  • Critical Thinking: Judge factual claims and theories on the basis of evidence.
  • Humanities, Fine Arts, and Ethics: Describe relationships among languages, philosophies, cultures, literature, ethics, or the arts.

Course Specific Outcomes

Central Course Questions:

  • As meaning is made through media, how do you think content changes, shifts, and constellates? Why is this important?
  • Given the influence of media channels on the distribution and circulation of culturally-situated content, how do perceptions of identity change and converse across communities?
  • Consider how and why indigenous new media is being employed to educate, entertain, and advocate.
  • Create and compose in WOVEN modes that both engage and theorize the production of knowledges, rhetorics, and meanings.

SLS Outcomes

  • be able to identify relationships among ecological, social, and economic systems
  • be able to demonstrate skills needed to work effectively in different types of communities
  • be able to evaluate how decisions impact the sustainability of communities


  • Rebecca Roanhorse. Trail of Lightning (2018). ISBN: 1534413499. (Print and ebook available.)
  • Matt Dembicki. Trickster: Native American Tales (2010). ISBN: 9781555917241 (Print and ebook available.)
  • Amy Brazillier, Elizabeth Kleinfeld, Georgia Tech’s Writing and Communication Program. WOVENTextGeorgia Tech’s Bedford Book of Genres, Revised (2017). Bedford. ISBN: 131909998X. (Available only as ebook.)

Other course readings and texts will be provided through Canvas.

Please see Canvas for further course policies.