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Brooke associates perspective with the rhetorical canon of Style and maintains that at its core, style sets the scene for the interface between humans and technologies.


    Perspective - Perspective is a method for displaying in the visual realm... Perspective is a method for displaying three-dimensional objects and/or scenes on a two-dimensional space... perspective presumes a viewer whose physical position mirrors the vanishing point. (Brook 120)


    Aristotle - reduction of style to grammar
    Friedrich Nietzche (1990) - definition of “truth”
        “A movable host of metaphors, metonymies, and anthropomorphisms: in short, a sum of human relations which have been poetically and rhetorically intensified, transferred, and embellished, and which, after long usage, seem to a people to be fixed, canonical, and binding (p. 84).” (Brook 124)
    Mary Hocks (2005) - visual rhetoric (audience stance, transparency, and hybridity)
        -locating style “grammatically” through conscious choices and usage
    Barbara Stafford (1998) - “linguistic turn of post-structuralism”

Kathleen Welch (1999) - Electric Rhetoric - role of technology in construction of author, text, and audience

Richard Lanham (1993) The Electronic Word - the at/through/(from?)  distinction

Scott McCloud (1994) Understanding Comics- an excellent resource on working with   visuals

Kristie Fleckenstein (2004) - “polymorphic literacy”

    “polymorphism underscores the flux between meaning and literacy, binding us philosopically and ethically to that fluidity and to the factors arresting fluidity” (Brooke 130)

Ricoeur (1997) - metaphor “destroys an old order of relations among ideas and creates a new one.... one must say metaphor bears information because it ‘redescribes’ reality.” (140)


  • “Ordinary language provides a kind of zero degree of rhetoric, the unmodified, minimally mediated access to the thing. Much like the believe that any sort of literary language is ‘ordinary language plus,’ for Aristotle, metaphor (and style and rhetoric more generally) are variations and deviations performed on the clarity of ordinary language.” (Brooke 119)
  • “Style has probably been the most productive canon for explorations of new media”...”[T]o speak of media is to speak of forms of expression” (Brooke 113).
  • Metaphor “sets the scene before our eyes.”--Ricoeur  (Brooke 125).
  • “[I]f language is no longer the only or even the central semiotic mode, then theories of language can at best offer explanations for one part of the communicational landscape only”-- Quote by Gunther Kress (Brooke 127)
  • Brooke talks about the immersive qualities of interfaces: “[A]lthough each element of the interface combines interaction and immersion--looking at and through--in different ways, those combinations change over the course of gameplay and cannot be taken as static” (158).
  • “What style does exceeds what it is and what style does extends beyond the verbal.” (126)
  • “Transparency and reflectivity do indeed exist on a continuum, but our own position along that continuum is never static.  To paraphrase Heraclitus, we never use the same interface twice.” (133)


There is a huge cultural component to the development of interfaces. Nietzsche points out that metaphorical relationships become “after long usage, seem to a people to be a fixed, canonical, and binding”  (Brooke 124). Brooke would maintain that metaphors, interface design, and indeed choices of style are more fluid than that.

Much can be gleaned from interface designs and the world view of those that develop them. Cynthia Selfe points out that perspective and style are not only decisions about what is shown, but what is not shown (133). The interface guides the user into the way she must interact with the technology and not the other way around.

The point of view or perspective of interface camera angles also simulates degrees of immersive or transparent entrances into virtual worlds.