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Foreword

O
nce again, it is my pleasure to welcome you to another edition of Culture Shock!, an online magazine on popular culture created by students in an introductory writing course I taught at MIT in the fall semester of 2008. The students wrote diligently throughout the semester, getting feedback from me and other class members in workshops and then revising all of their major assignments. We read about popular culture, watched videos about popular culture, and talked about popular culture, that fascinating subject which is our cultural surround and which, like the proverbial goldfish in its water, we must force ourselves to pay attention to. When the time came to put the magazine together, students served on editorial boards to decide what would be published, on design and production teams to create the website, on copyediting teams to proofread the essays submitted, and on a publicity team to promote public awareness of the magazine and to encourage readers to log on and read it. The writing the students did this semester covered many topics-music, the impact of e-communication on how we speak and write, internet trolling, computer hackers, fashion, food, martial arts in America, what it is to be cool. They have chosen what they believe is the best of that writing to include in this edition of Culture Shock! We hope you, our readers, enjoy the fruit of our efforts, and we hope that if you do, you will let us know!

Rebecca Blevins Faery, Ph.D

Director of First Year Writing

Writing & Humanistic Studies

MIT, Cambridge, MA

December 2008