Date of Award
Master of Arts
This project investigates what Mr. Fred Rogers referred to as "our kind of communication" in a 1969 Senate testimony wherein he was awarded twenty million dollars to fund continuation of his children's educational television program Mister Rogers' Neighborhood. I ask how "our kind of communication" manifests throughout the series' thirty-three year run and then contextualize the communicative mode's significance in the present day. I position this study as a communicative, philosophical inquiry which connects issues of pedagogy, rhetoric, epistemology, and ontology. First, I ground the study in relevant literature regarding mass media and (public) television, rhetorical televisual framing, an amended invitational rhetoric, epistemic rhetoric, and a turn toward epistemologies. Through ethical close reading in the spirit of post-qualitative inquiry, I observe four overarching patterns that create the inscape of Mr. Rogers's "kind of communication." Finally, centering resonance theory, I locate and illuminate a listening-based epistemology demonstrated by Mr. Rogers over time that promotes hope within the Western paradigm and promise for developing an ecology of knowledges.
dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.
Warfield, Olivia Marilee, ""Our Kind of Communication": Rhetorical Discoveries of a Resonant Communicative Philosophy on Mister Rogers' Neighborhood" (2020). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 2076.