“Where Do Genres Come From?”

  • Carolyn R. Miller


This introductory chapter examines the nature of “emergence” as an explanatory concept for understanding genre innovation, contrasting it with the associated concept of “evolution,” which has also been used widely. In asking the question “Where do genres come from?” the author seeks to understand not only where they come from (that is, their antecedent conditions and causes), but also how they come about (that is, the social and material promoters of and motives for change), and why they “emerge” (that is, why their reception is seen as something new and different). A review of prior studies examines how genre has been conceived, how transformation is understood and documented, how causes and motives and conditions are characterized, and how the role of technological medium has been implicated.


Environmental Impact Statement Cultural Category Online Dispute Resolution Speech Genre Ontological Emergence 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Carolyn R. Miller
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of English (emerita)North Carolina State UniversityRaleigh, NCUSA

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