The egent "testifies with respect to the disaster. The egent in 'undertaker' of the disaster (the 'me' in memorial)" (p. 108). In Burkean terms, the egent is the agent, the doer, the subject. Importantly, the egent is not a professional. Ulmer writes, "The EmerAgency is a distributed, virtual, online consulting agency, meaning that emeragents (or simply, 'egent,' to signal that we are concerned with the changes affecting human agency in electracy) are self-declared consultants without portfolio" (p. xiii). The egents act; they build; they memorialize.
What’s important to note about the egent is that s/he acts without being directed. The egent acts on emotion and works from the punctum. As the item of ‘mourning’ suggests, Ulmer became an egent when he encountered a news story that created such powerful emotions that he felt compelled to act. An egent is a designer of what comes from and within that emotional affect. They are designers.
The egent most often speaks in middle voice, a voice directed not at an outward audience but at the egent herself. The egent recognizes the freedoms she is afforded because of the sacrifice of others. This use of middle voice is a way to acknowledge and expose the American value system that is the impetus for the MEmorial.
The egent is one key to effecting cultural change. It is emotion that drives the egent, as well as values. It is as if the egent can give form to the formless value through the process of MEmorial. The egent can recognize sacrifices as a tragedy. Ulmer has turned his graduate students into egents, always with the motivation to expose some sort of sacrifice.