Questions to Ask of a Civic Artifact

A civic artifact is a human-made relic/phenomenon that frames the civic in a rhetorically compelling way.

Who “made” the artifact? (You can think about this in many ways: who consumes the artifact?; who challenged a commonplace by creating the artifact?; who benefits from the artifact?, etc.)

Why was the artifact necessary? (What was/is the artifact responding to?)

Has the need for the artifact changed over time?

Does the artifact have different meanings for different groups of people?

What commonplaces are embedded in the artifact? Or, how does the artifact comment on commonplaces?

What makes the artifact “civic?” How does the artifact frame the civic?