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Eric Chang

Mr. Breijak

ENG 1020 Section 33

8 December 2014

Project 5

            Throughout the class English 1020, I gained knowledge of several different learning outcomes. These learning outcomes are Writing, Reading, Researching, and Reflecting. In each of these learning outcomes, I will first explain my knowledge before going through this class. This will show my initial state. Using this initial state, readers can see my improvement. I will then talk about the strategies  I used to achieve these learning outcomes. However, there are several areas in learning outcomes that I did not achieve. As a result, I will notify these failures and explain why I failed to achieve these learning outcomes.

            The writing learning outcome consists of having a flexible writing process. My writing process begins with a spider web.  I first list topics that I will include and then begin to organize them into an outline. During this period, the essay is very flexible and topics will be changed. I usually only take about a minute to draw the spider web and then quickly rush to the outline. After the outline, I then begin to write the rough draft. I usually have writer's block, so I overcome this by just writing whatever comes in of my mind. This results in poor grammar and illogical sentences. After this process repeats for each section, I then go into revision mode. After reading through the first draft, I delete any sentences that do not need to be included. I then change awkward sentences until they are right. I sometimes repeat this step two to three times. Finally, I edit the paper for any grammatical issues and then turn it in as a final draft.

            I find that I should spend more time outlining my paper. If I thought more and researched more, I can then think of something to write and overcome writer's block. In addition, I want to change my writing process. I often spend a lot of time writing essays because I make two to three revisions. Instead, I should think before I write, and write a good meaningful sentence. Overall, I feel like the process is moderate but can be improved. My future plans to improve this is that I can try a different writing procedure. Another solution is that I can show my procedure to others so that they can critique it. Therefore, I would be able to know if my procedure is correct or not.

The Reading learning outcome consists of analyzing different types of media so that the information can be effectively used.

The genre critique project introduced me to analytical and critical strategies to read complex texts. Before this project, I did not use any of the strategies. One of the strategies I learned is annotation. Before, I would annotate anything I thought was important. I had no goal or purpose in mind when I was highlighting. This led to random information being highlighted. Instead, I learned there are specific objectives in annotating. These are highlighting evidence for author's audience, allies, and opponents. The evidence includes references to other authors, experts, witnesses, and groups. This is important because it allows me to understand the author's thesis and how other people view it. Another objective is to highlight information that is connected to the real world cases. This is important because it may help me explore the problem and invent possible solutions. Lastly, I need to list the main topic of each paragraph. This is crucial to critical reading because I can then understand how the author organized and structured his essay. Through this, I can group ideas together and clear see the author's view points, such as his stasis points, what he or she is most important, controversial. I can also then interpret the authors meaning. The next strategy important for reading. It is to constantly question while reading. Asking questions to demonstrate what I wonder. An important this is to use context during reading. Before this project, I assumed that context only referred to the text and the grammar the author used. However, by doing this project, I discovered that context also includes historical background of the author. But it also includes my expectations for the article. This is important because this context allows me to see my point of view on the author.

            In the research learning outcome, I learned to specifically evaluate and analyze various forms of texts. This can be seen in explicitly in Project 4. Before this project, I had some knowledge of research. In my high school, I frequently used Gale data bases in history projects. However, this project introduced to many other strategies to research more effectively. One of these strategies is using the advanced search. In high school I would rarely use this feature. In fact, when I first researched my topic about food deserts in Project 4, I searched up the term "food deserts". This was a very broad topic and the search engine listed several articles that had little to do with topic.  I then used the advance search engine and instead typed "food deserts" with another term "solutions" in addition with "Detroit" This brought in several different articles that were more focused. I was then able to evaluate them.

            A strategy to evaluating different articles is researching the author or professor of the article. This allows me to see how credible the author this. This then allows me to evaluate the article and see whether the article is worthy enough to be included in my paper. An example of this improvement in research. For example "In total, more than $73.2 million in loans and $12.1 million in grants were approved. Projects approved for financing were expected to bring 5,023 jobs and 1.67 million square feet of commercial space (PS Newswire 1)." In this example, I effectively illstrate my research was very effective in giving a statistic. Overall, this project helped me with creating a high quality paper where I can then give judgment that is effective because I understand the various aspects of the problem.

            Overall these projects improved my knowledge on how to write effectively. Although there are some learning outcomes that I have not fully mastered, I realized what I did wrong and I will try to improve these in the future. In conclusion, I state that I effectively learned how to become a better writer by understanding what is to be expected from the projects.






Project 4

You are what you eat." Although this quote by Jean Brillat-Savarin is not meant to be taken literally, it states how the food people eat will shape their minds and lives. This can be seen explicitly when one's diet is primarily comprised of unhealthy foods with little fresh fruits and vegetables. However, some people are forced to eat such unhealthy diets. The reason is that they live in a "food desert", an environment where there is little or no access to any healthy foods such as fresh fruits and vegetables.

            Detroit is considered a food desert and this is a huge problem. A recent study showed that Detroit’s 2008 adult obesity rate was 38.1%. Michigan’s rate was estimated to be 30.1%. In addition, the National Institutes of Health estimated that 7.8% of Americans have type 2 diabetes, but 13.5% of African Americans living in the east and southwest areas of Detroit have type 2 diabetes.

            In addition, there has been additional studies showing how Detroit is a food desert. Researcher Shannon had conducted a study researching the average distance of African American residents. She found out that in medium and large populations of African Americans where there is high poverty, African Americans must travel 1.10 to 1.15 miles further than populations with low percentage of African Americans and high poverty. This finding demonstrates that race is a big factor in accessibility to healthy food. Furthermore, she mentions in her previous research that the smaller distance between super markets correlates to a healthier diet.

            Daniel J. Rose also mentions that there is no access to healthy food because of the lack of public transportation. In his study he interviewed 47 participants. 34 of the participants said that they did not own an automobile. Of those 34 participants, only 4 lived with someone who did own an automobile. There are many other discrete barriers in obtaining food besides transportation. These include food quality, and emotional toll of the presence of security guards and bars to keep shopping carts inside the stores, and discriminatory conflicts when traveling to suburban areas where supermarkets were present.

            Not only do residents in Detroit suffer by not being able to find local supermarkets, but also they suffer from poor diversity in supermarkets. Rose's research demonstrates this. From his sample 96% of the residents expressed some form of dissatisfaction with at least one of the local grocery stores. 87% was related to price, 68% was related to food quality,66% was related to selection, 34% was related to service, and 30% was related to cleanliness. These results illustrate that not only do residents have no access to super markets, but they also suffer from having fewer healthy foods in the supermarkets. 

Although this is a problem in Detroit, there has been multiple initiatives to solve it. The first type of solution is giving a grant. This solution has been implemented in Detroit through a grant from the USDA. Around $2,160,000 were granted to local grocery stores that provide benefits. The grant also hopes to supplement low income families by providing the students with free lunches. They also plan to give families EBT (electronic benefit transfer) cards so that they could purchase food. The advantage of this solution is that it is very effective in the short run. It will immediately help the population and give residents immediate access to low income families. The major disadvantage with this solution is that it depends on an organization or government body that can continuously fund its grants. This fails to solve the long term problems of access to healthy foods because the grant does not directly address the problem. As a result, Detroit still suffers from the problems of being a food desert.

            Another type of solution that has been implemented to deal with these food deserts is to expand local grocery markets. An example of this is in the state New York. The Green Carts Initiative was implemented. This program in New York issued 1000 new permits to a new street class of mobile fruit and vegetable vendors in underserved areas. The Green carts were located in low income areas which were also identified as food deserts. The program's goal is to increase the consumption of healthy foods (Treuhaft 9). The program seems to be very successful. 80% of the vendors consider themselves to be very profitable or somewhat profitable. This is important because if a vendor is profitable it will stay in the area for a long time and thus gives people access to healthy food. Another statistic is that 50% of the vendors had stayed in the area for more than 2 years. This length of time demonstrates the long term success the program has.

            Although this program had much success, a disadvantage of this is that the carts tend to locate together which results in many carts congregating in one location. This creates inequality in some areas as some areas has an overabundance of carts while other areas have no carts.  In addition, many of the Green Carts are located in areas where there is easy access to mass transit or other shopping options. 95% are near a bus stop, 55 % are near a subway, 45% operate near a shopping district, 40 percent operate near another fruit and vegetable cart, and 29 percent operate near a supermarket.

            This same strategy is also being implemented in Detroit. Instead of having many vendors, Detroit is trying to expand its biggest grocery market, the Eastern Market. Charter One has been donating and giving grants to the Eastern Market. They hope that by giving the local farmers enough support, the city of Detroit will have adequate access to healthy food. The Green Cart Initiative has been successful in New York, but this may not work as well in Detroit because there is a relatively lack of public transportation.  Even if the market expanded, not everyone can reach the market. Some people are just too far. They lack the transportation to travel. Therefore, any improvement in transportation will also result in better access to quality food. In addition, the vendors of local grocery markets need to make a profit. Currently, the Eastern Market is dependent on volunteers and the grants from Charter One. In order to establish a long term solution, the local markets need to be self sustainable and this depends on a steady flow of customers.

            Finally, improving the economy is the final type of a solution to food deserts. By improving the economy, there would be less poverty which then results in less food deserts. This strategy was used in Pennsylvania, specifically the Pennsylvania Fresh Food Finance Initiative. This was a state wide program that was designed to attract grocery stores and supermarkets to moving in low income areas. It started in 2004 and ended in 2010. Overall, the policy was hailed as a success due to its flexibility. Both the obesity and disease rates after the program have decreased which confirms the success of the program.

            The objectives of the program was to stimulate investment in low income areas , remove financing obstacles and lower operating barriers for supermarkets in poor communities; reduce the high incidence of diet-related diseases by providing healthy food; create living wage jobs; and prepare and retain a qualified workforce. In total, more than $73.2 million in loans and $12.1 million in grants were approved. Projects approved for financing were expected to bring 5,023 jobs and 1.67 million square feet of commercial space.

            This is the best solution to the City of Detroit as it will help erase the problem of food deserts in the long term. However, this solution is not very effective in the short run because it requires a large investment from the government or a business. Furthermore, businesses want to seek profit, and Detroit will appear as a non-profitable area. Therefore, this solution requires a large investment and a change in the population in Detroit. However, the cycle of poverty often traps the people so that impoverished people have a difficult time getting out of poverty.

            Overall, the best solution to poor access to food is to stimulate growth in local grocery markets. In Detroit's case, the Eastern Market should be expanded. But instead of just focusing on the Eastern Market, other local markets need to open so that other low income areas can also be served. This is similar to how the Green Car Initiative spread throughout the state of New York.  Although, it requires much money to start up these markets, their benefits will pay in the long run and help improve the lives of many Detroit residents. This is a much more realistic goal then improving the economy of Detroit.

            It may be true that "we are what we eat", but we always need to keep in mind that we ultimately choose what we can eat. Detroit is not doomed to being stuck in a food desert. Several other states and cities have had this problem and have successfully solved it. There is still hope for Detroit to escape the desert and find an oasis where Detroit can thrive on.


Final Response 

1. The author is proposing to create a Global Health Workforce Reserve that will train nurses and physicians in low-resource settings. They will undergo a boot camp and learn the skills needed to treat and help stop the epidemic in other countries.

2. The proposal prioritizes the solution because it goes into detail why this solution will be helpful in stopping the problem. In this case, it is the lack of an efficient team that can stop epidemics such as Ebola.

 3. The audience understands the extent of Ebola and how deadly it is. They may also realize that their a health workers that are helping other countries. What they most likely do not know is that there are few workers and that the system is very inefficient in helping people. As a result, the author proposes a solution.

4. There is a stasis claim in this article, specifically a policy stasis claim. The claim is that the world should adopt a Global Health Workforce Reserve that can help other countries.

5. He does a notable job in stating that by enacting this proposal there will be a more efficient system that will be able to stop epidemics in other countries.

6.  The most persuasive aspect of the essay is the strong logos it gives of its solution. He states that the current strategy is very inefficient. He states that the new strategy will work well in building an adequate team to deal with epidemics.  


Project 3 Rough Draft

Eric Chang

ENG 1020

Mr. Breijak

10 November 2014

Video Games

            When the first video game, Computer Space, was released people were amazed on what technology can do. As time passed, video games have evolved into more complex games and have expanded into several different genres. These different genres range from action, adventure, plat-forming, etc. Each genre has its own characteristics and assumptions. In this paper, I hope to critique the video game genre, real time strategy games, which are also known as RTS games.

            RTS games are strategy games where players have full control over their video game character for the whole time. This is different from turn-based strategy games where players have control of their character when it is their turn. A classical example of an RTS game is strategy war games. Two players control an army and must manage and lead the army to destroy the opposing player. These games are typically very complex and requires much knowledge for players to be good at the game. A current popular example of an RTS game is StarCraft. StarCraft is a game placed in a science fictional setting where humans must fight against alien-like creatures. Although the game does have a single player feature, the main feature is its online multiplayer. Players can choose one of three races and command their armies and face each other. The objective is simple: destroy your opponent. Although this game's purpose is simple, there are many complex details. Players must develop strategies such as knowing which units to be trained in their armies, positioning strategies, and timing. This genre has been taken to such an extreme level that there are world competitions. In fact, countries such as Korea have treated this game as a sport, an E-sport specifically. Professional players are paid six-figures and practice at least 10 hours per day.

            What defines a RTS game from other video game genres is that there is strategy involved. Players must be able to plan their moves and have an in-depth knowledge of the game. This is different from other video game such as action games e.g. Call of Duty. In these games, players rely on fast reactions and gaming skills. Players do not need to think strategically. Another aspect of the RTS genre is that they usually include online multiplayer. This means that players can play against other real players from different areas. As a result, competitiveness is a crucial aspect of this genre. Finally, the overall purpose of the RTS game is to give players an enjoyable experience. This is also prevalent in other genres of video games.

            Although professional gaming is an aspect of RTS games, a large majority of the players are casual gamers. They do not try to be overly competitive and instead just try to have fun. In fact, game designers depend on this.The RTS genre has a mutual relationship between the players and the game designers. Players who like the game will convince his or her friends to purchase the game and spend even more time on it. As a result, game designers will obtain revenue and gain even more benefit. However, to maintain this relationship, the game designer should keep the player base in mind and try to appease them by constantly updating and creating new versions of the games. These new versions are called patches and they occur about a 6 month time period. Patches can include balancing issues where certain strategies that are deemed "unfair" are adjusted so that everyone has a fair chance.

            A strength of this genre is that it creates a discourse community within the player population. There are several websites dedicated to the game. These sites contain blogs where millions of people can ask questions, think of creative strategies, and try new combinations. This is important as this discussion makes players even more interested in the game. In the end, it creates a very enjoyable experience for the players, hence the large amount of people playing the game. This community is the result of the complexity of the genre. Players have the opportunity to try new strategies and combinations and have a better chance in winning their matches.

            Although the game has many strengths, there are several weaknesses. As the game got bigger and bigger, more people joined the gaming community. In the later stages, majority of the players are experienced and have much knowledge of the game. They tend to be aggressive and rude to newer players. In fact, many new players are pressured and do not want to play the game. For example, League of Legends is the most popular e-sport video game in the world. Despite its popularity, it is notoriously known for its unfriendly community. Team members will often insult you for bad plays, despite the fact that everyone makes mistakes. These little conflicts can become raging arguments. Another disadvantage of the genre is its competitive nature. The sole purpose of video games is to bring entertainment to the players. However, due to the competitive nature of RTS games, there is a winner and loser. Many times, the losers often feel disappointed. The main goal is not necessarily to have fun, but instead win. This then forces them to change their actions. Instead of thinking creative and innovative strategies, players will rely on strategies that currently deemed good. This is called the "metagame". The Metagame is the collective knowledge of current strategic and mechanical trends used and recognized as successful by the largest majority of participants, usually precipitated by recognition by those in the community which are regarded to be of the highest skill and/or most knowledgeable. This halts creativity. Instead people rely on this so much that they forget their purpose is to have fun and instead only care about winning. Another weakness of the RTS genre is that although new versions can be updated and used, the core structure will always remain the same. Not all players enjoy a strategy game. In fact, many other people like adventure and action video games. People criticize that RTS is always the same game, but just a re-hash of the same thing.

            The genre creates inequality between the game designers and the players. The game designers have the final say in what will happen as they are the ones creating the games. Players can only influence the designers and give advice. Individually, players cannot change the game. However, as a group if enough people are dissatisfied with a feature in the game, the game designers are forced to change and follow the players demands. The two groups are closely related and need to have a balance.

            Users can represent themselves by creating new strategies and combinations. They can also represent themselves on what play style they use. For example, an aggressive play style includes the player attacking the other player with little care for the risk. A defensive player would be cautious and would not take bigger risks. There is a spectrum for this and the wide range describes each player differently. However, the genre limits their true representation because the players must communicate through their gaming actions, and nothing else. However, some games do allow chat boxes so that players can communicate verbally.

            The players' needs are most served because the players are the ones who buy the game. Without the financial support, the game designers will have no incentive to form new games. My claim is that RTS genre represents a video game genre quite well. They are extremely popular, and there are over 1 million players worldwide.  These players are not the only ones who use the genres. Game designers also comprise of the other half of users. The RTS games are especially good at forming communities where people can share ideas and interact with each other. As more interest is developed, the game designers then release more content and entertain the players. However, as the RTS games become bigger and bigger there are several problems. These problems then begin to affect the community and start to have negative effects. Newer players often suffer some form of ridicule and will have to endure it. The poor community is great deviation from the true purpose of the video game genre, which is to have fun. There are several solutions to this, but the RTS genre is one of the few video game genres that has such a negative community.





Response 4

            Horror has always been a popular genre of movies that has a large fan base. However, some people cannot understand how these horror movies can be so entertaining when they do the opposite of entertain. Stephen King explains the reasons why people love horror movies. In the article "Why We Crave Horror Movies", Stephen King illustrates the modes by which horror movies are entertaining through his use of metaphors, repetition, tone and artistic appeals to logos, ethos, and pathos.

            Throughout the paper, King uses metaphors to help the audience understand the reasons why people love scary movies. He states "horror movies are like roller coasters" (King pg 1). Although many people may not watch scary movies, more people have ridden roller coasters. People understand why roller coasters are entertaining. The exhilaration of roller coasters is similar to watching scary movies. This connection allows the audience to understand the joy of watching scary films.

            Another rhetorical skill throughout the article is repetition. King constantly mentions the theme of insanity to state that people have a hidden side to them. This idea is evident when he states "If we are all insane, then sanity becomes a matter of degree" (King pg 1). Another example is "It may be that horror movies provide psychic relief on this level because this invitation to lapse into simplicity, irrationality and even outright madness is extended so rarely" (King pg 1). With repetition, the audience will be constantly reminded that people have a insane side to them. King reasons that we need to relieve this side. Therefore, he states that people watch scary movies to help release these trapped emotions.

            In addition, Stephen uses tone to establish a personal connection to the audience. Typically King uses a creepy and eerie tone. During the end of the article, he states "It was Lennon and McCartney who said that all you need is love, and I would agree with that. As long as you keep the gators fed" (King pg 2). This eerie tone is very informal. However, it creates emotion in the readers. He wants to disgust people and demonstrate the hidden psychotic side in everyone.

            Finally, King uses all forms of artistic appeal to compel the audience to agree with his thesis. First, ethos is evident in the paper. Stephen King is a famous horror story writer and understands the genre very well. As an author, he knows what exactly captivates his readers and this personal knowledge makes him a credible source. Second, pathos is used when he establishes the tone. King wants the audience to experience the same feeling as those who enjoy scary movies. Once the audience experiences this emotion, it is much easier for them to understand the reason why people like scary movies. Third, logos is used during his metaphors. King compares roller coasters to horror movies. Through logic, he illustrates how the people experience joy in horror movies, similar to how people enjoy roller coasters.

            Rhetorical skills are important for any writer. They are required so that the audience can understand the author's viewpoint. King reveals his argument through his metaphors between roller coasters and horror movies, repetition of insanity, and a disturbing tone. In addition, he used all three artistic appeals. By applying all of these into his article, King successfully explains why people love horror movies.


Project Two Rough Draft




Third Response


13 October 2014


     In 1970, Gore Vidal wrote an article in The New York Times. The article contained his opinion on how the USA fails to effectively control substance abuse. Gore used several rhetoric skills to support his argument. These skills include enthymemes, stasis claims , and artistic appeals. After reading the article, I believe that his argument was reasonable, but there are many logical fallacies that hurt his argument. In this paper I will go through and analyze each rhetoric skill and determine if it effectively supported his argument.

            Throughout the paper, Vidal used enthymemes.  He stated "Both the Bureau of Narcotics and the Mafia want strong laws against the sale and use of drugs because if drugs are sold at cost there would be no money in it for anyone" (pg 1).  First, the claim is that the Bureau of Narcotics and Mafia desire strict laws on the distribution of drugs. Second, the reason for the claim is that these illegal drugs would generate money. Third, the unstated premise is that the Bureau of Narcotics and the Mafia want to make profit. Finally, the grounds of this argument is Vidal's knowledge and research of the Bureau of Narcotics and the Mafia. This argument is valid because criminal organizations tend to be driven by profit. Therefore, if the US would legalize drugs, the price of drugs would dramatically decrease and less organizations would be interested in distributing drugs.

            In addition to enthymemes, Gore used stasis claims. An example is when he questioned "Is everyone reasonably sane?" (pg 1). This stasis claim is definitional because it argues the nature of mankind. Gore used this stasis question to support that everyone would reasonable react to the legalization of drugs and would not be addicted to drugs. As a result, this question would help enrich his argument.

            Gore also used the three artistic appeals, ethos, pathos, and logos. His ethos is immediately determined by looking at the source of his article, which is The New York Times. This was a credible newspaper since many editors have already examined the article before it was released. Another instance of ethos is when he stated " For the record, I have tried - once - almost every drug and liked none" (pg 1). In this quote he used his credit to prove that everybody would not like drugs. This argument, however, is wrong. He cannot simply use his own experience as an indicator for everyone else. Pathos is used when he claimed


                Last year when the supply of Mexican marijuana was slightly curtailed  by the Feds, the pushers got the kids hooked on heroin and deaths increased dramatically, particularly in New York.                Whose fault? Evil men like the Mafiosi? Permissive Dr. Spock? Wild-eyed Dr. Leary? No. (pg 1)


     Gore Vidal is trying to make the audience feel bad and blame the government. However, this argument is weak as he explicitly states that the Mexican pushers got the kids addicted to heroin, not the government. Finally logos was used throughout the article. However, there are several logical fallacies that hurt his argument. An example are hasty generalizations. Gore stated "Finally, if there was no money in it, the Bureau of Narcotics would wither away, something they are not about to do without a struggle" (pg 1). This is logically incorrect because he cannot automatically assume that if the drug business no longer had money, the Bureau of Narcotics would go away. There needs to be a reason to justify why the Mafia and Bureau of Narcotics would disappear.

            Overall the article has many valid rhetorical skills that help Gore Vidal present his argument. However, there are several logical fallacies that hurt his argument, thus making me to not fully believe in legalizing drugs.


Project One Intro



http://weknowmemes.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/03/what-if-i-told-you-friendzone.jpgFirst Project Intro.docx

Project One Introduction

            " You take the blue pill -- the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill -- you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes." (Morpheus, The Matrix). This iconic scene from The Matrix is where Morpheus informs Neo that he lives in a computer simulation. This quote has taken on a form of an internet meme, the Morpheus Matrix meme. It depicts Morpheus's face with the statement, What if I told you, in white bold text. The internet meme has become so accustomed that they believe that these five words was the actual quote from the movie. However, Morpheus never directly stated this, and it is merely a paraphrase. This is not the only meme that uses pop culture, but the Morpheus Matrix meme has its characteristic that differentiates it from other memes. These characteristics range from its surprising content, the various forms the meme has become, and its viral spread through reddit. All of these transform the community to view the famous movie in a much more different way, which makes this meme a special meme in its genre.






The Internet Meme as a Genre 


1. " You take the blue pill -- the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill -- you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes." (Morpheus, The Matrix). This is when Morpheus informs Neo how the human race is just a computer simulation.


2. A meme consists of a picture of GIF that often have two lines of short white bold text. The meme is also often very humorous. Memes often can range from any image from popular culture, such as movies, or even just drawings from Microsoft paint.


3. A square image or GIF always accompanies a meme. In any sub genre of memes, white bold text are on the top and the bottom of the meme. This is used to illustrate the point of the meme.


4. Memes use humor to entertain the internet community. Many of the memes, such as "Bad Luck Brian" meme are often relatable. This makes it so that others can understand the meme. The memes also begin to become more and more outrageous, which makes it entertaining.


A Type of Internet Meme as a Subgenre 


5.  My meme focuses on the Morpheus Matrix meme. The meme is often accompanied by text regarding a surprising or shocking discovery. Although the meme always has Morpheus from The Matrix as a picture, the meme has gone through different variations.

6. The reason for Morpheus being on the image is because it demonstrates how Morpheus changed Neo's life. This is why the content is shocking or surprising


7. One of these is the Cat matrix, where instead of Morpheus, it is a cat with sunglasses. As long as the content is still shocking the audience and the black shades are present, the internet community can still recognize this as a Matrix meme.




The Meme You Created



8. The meme obviously has Morpheus's face on it. This is the most classic picture of the meme.


9. The meme starts with usual "What if I told you". This instantly makes this a matrix meme, no matter what the picture is.


10. The content of the meme is quite surprising and against human intuition. Many people believe that the Aztecs would be older than Oxford, but technically, Oxford was founded in 1249, while Tenochtitlán(the first Aztec civilization) began in 1325.


11.  The Matrix meme is still considered a meme because it still contains a image from a movie and is often very humorous. What defines the Matrix meme from other memes is the content, the various forms, and the mind blowing aspect of it. All of these make this meme a memorable one. Unlike others, this meme will often create a paradigm shift, a change in point of view, so much that you could not look at it the same way. It's similar to Morpheus's quote " take the red pill -- you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes." Readers are informed a fact that could possibly change their lives and never make it the same.



Rough Draft'

The Blue and Red Pill, which one will you take?

" You take the blue pill -- the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. You take the red pill -- you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes." (Morpheus, The Matrix). This iconic scene from The Matrix is where Morpheus informs Neo that he lives in a computer simulation. Through the years, this scene has taken on a form of an internet meme, the Morpheus Matrix meme. This meme is only one of the many hundreds of memes out there.  However, it brings up a whole new genre to explore just like the red pill. This paper will examine the Matrix meme, what defines this meme, what makes it  unique, and recreate the meme to fully understand it.

             At first, memes just seem to be regular images, but they are much more than that. Memes have certain characteristics that clearly define them. The first characteristic is that all memes have a square image ranging from images from popular culture such as movies, to photos of photogenic men, GIFs, and drawings on Microsoft paint. The second characteristic is that all memes are accompanied by two lines of white bold text, one on the top and one on the bottom.

The third characteristic is that all of them become so popular after internet communities such as reddit, 4chan, 9gag, and meme center  overuse them. This then creates meaning into the meme and makes certain sub-genres different from just a normal picture with two lines of text. This defines a regular image from an actual meme. Even if the content was humorous, the audience has no attachment to it. It is only after these internet communities start using it and associating its content to something can a regular image become a standard meme.

            My meme is a sub-genre called the Morpheus Matrix meme. The first notable characteristic of this meme that differentiates it from other memes is the image. The picture is a face shot of Morpheus, a support character in the movie, The Matrix.  The meaning of the meme is supposed to state something shocking or life changing. This is similar to how Morpheus changed Neo's life, thus explaining the reason for Morpheus being on the picture. This meme fits the characteristics of a meme. It includes a picture and on the top and bottom are white bold text. Like other memes, this meme originated as a post in reddit by the user  "haveacigaro", in 2012. After this, many users in Reddit began using this image and substituting the text with other content. This then spread to other internet communities such as 9gag and 4chan. This sub-genre has certain characteristics that define a Matrix meme from others. The first characteristic is the content of the text. All Matrix memes start with the statement, what if I told you. It then usually follows up with a very surprising or life changing fact that shifts your view, also known as a paradigm shift. One cannot simply put white text on to Morpheus's face and call it a day. The second characteristic is the image. At first glance, the sub-genre seems to be just Morpheus's face. However, the meme has gone through many variations or sub-genres. One of these genres is called the Cat Morpheus meme. Unlike the Morpheus meme, this meme instead has a cat. This cat, though, has Morpheus's glasses and the content often involves life changing facts from a point of view of a cat. Here is an example. This makes the Matrix meme unique. Unlike other memes, ie Bad Luck Brian, the matrix is meme is not fixed to just one image. What is required is to have some resemblance of Morpheus, most commonly the shades. Looking at the Cat sub genre, the cat has the shades from Morpheus. In fact, you can even see Neo in the reflection. Thus a Matrix meme must have some form of Morpheus somewhere so that it can be clearly defined.

Listed below is a meme I created in order to understand this sub-genre.  


This meme fulfills the characteristics of its sub genres in several ways. First, it contains an image of Morpheus which is vital for the meme. Therefore, this meme falls under a sub-genre of just Morpheus. Second, the content of the meme is very surprising. It starts off with the phrase what if I told you, like all the other memes. Then the second phrase tends to be the punch line. People in general believe that the Aztecs is older than Oxford. We are often mis perceive this because we imagine Aztecs as being an ancient civilization that only used rocks and spears. On the other hand, Oxford seems to be so modern, it seems natural to be younger than the Aztecs. But Oxford was founded in 1249, while Tenochtitlán(the first Aztec civilization) began in 1325

            The Matrix meme is still considered a meme because it still contains a image from a movie and is often very humorous. What defines the Matrix meme from other memes is the content, the various forms, and the mind blowing aspect of it. All of these make this meme a memorable one. Unlike others, this meme will often create a paradigm shift, a change in point of view, so much that you could not look at it the same way. It's similar to Morpheus's quote " take the red pill -- you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes." Readers are informed a fact that could possibly change their lives and never make it the same.

Comments (3)

Adam Goryca said

at 12:44 pm on Sep 22, 2014

1. The thesis is at the end of the first paragraph. It states, "This paper will examine the Matrix meme, what defines this meme, what makes it unique, and recreate the meme to fully understand it."

2. Yes, throughout I think this paper clearly focuses on one purpose; to inform people of how memes work. With memes becoming so popular, I think this a very important lesson for everyone to learn.

3. The paper flows very fluently throughout. There aren't any unnecessary points being made as well.

4. When he states, "The third characteristic is that all of them become so popular after internet communities such as reddit, 4chan, 9gag, and meme center overuse them," I think it's to much of a general statement. I don't believe these few communities are the sole way for memes to become popular. There are plenty of other websites, like Facebook and Twitter, that are also responsible for the explosion in the popularity of a meme.

5. The strongest part is when he brings in examples like the Morpheus Cat. This being a feature not exclusive too the "Morpheus Matrix" meme, but also does not apply to the majority of other memes. Using a feature that is can not be used by others sets his paper apart.

6. The weakest part is that he doesn't explain his characteristics throughly enough. Being the main points of the paragraphs, there should be more than one sentence for each one.

7. Yes, he states very clearly what his sub genre is and what characteristics it has.

8. It was very well written. Good diction and grammar made the paper a very easy read.

9. I would give it a strong B. Its written very well, but without some elaboration on the main points I do not believe it deserves an A.

Kayla DeKoekkoek said

at 5:19 pm on Sep 22, 2014

1. The claim is that "This paper will examine the Matrix meme, what defines this meme, what makes it unique, and recreate the meme to fully understand it." This is a good thesis, just make sure that you are being clearr about all of your points. Make sure you are going into extreme detail about the definition of the meme, what makes the meme unique and recreating the meme so that you can fully understand it.

2. The paper's obvious purpose is to examine the Morpheus Matrix meme, but I am not sure how well you served your purpose. You never really gave us a reason as to why this analysis was important in any way. It is not enough just to tell us that you're analyzing this meme, you have to give us a reason to pay attention to your paper.

3. Your paragraphs seem to flow pretty nicely except when it comes to the Oxford vs Aztecs example. I feel like you could have inserted a better explained example in the paper, because the one you used you did not set up in the actual formation that you explained earlier in your paper, which can create a lot of unnecessary conflict and confusion within your paper.

4. "The third characteristic is that all of them become so popular after internet communities such as reddit, 4chan, 9gag, and meme center overuse them." is a general statement. If you're going to say this you have to have some proof to back it up.

5. You have very strong word choice and diction. Your paper for the most part has great flow, and good transitions.

Kayla DeKoekkoek said

at 5:19 pm on Sep 22, 2014

6. I'd say the weakest point of this paper has to be when you talk about the Aztecs vs. Oxford. I think you need to generate that example in actual meme form before you elaborate on it as much as you did. I think it could have easily gotten confused by a reader for just a random chunk of information within your paper.

7. You seem very knowledgeable when writing about this genre. You do show that you know what your sub-genre is.

8. Your paper is well written, the grammar is decent and there are little to no fragments.

9. I would give this paper a B. Even though you have written this essay well structure-wise, you could go into better, clearer detail about a few of your points.

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