Multimodality and genre
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Multimodality and genre book
This chapter introduces two closely interlinked concepts which are still too rarely applied to the problems and challenges of information design: ‘multimodality’ and ‘genre’. Multimodality is a general term applied to a range of approaches that focus on how diverse expressive resources – visual, verbal, graphical, pictorial, and so on – function together to form coherent messages. Genre provides principles for addressing the conventions and expectations operative in the design and interpretation of artefacts or performances and allows collections of such artefacts or performances to be grouped into socially recognizable categories. Although developed originally in the study of language and literature, genre is now being extended to apply usefully in ‘multimodal contexts’ also – precisely because of its contribution to characterizations of recipient expectations and of design conventions as socio-historically situated practices.