Final Performance - voicing our unsaid concerns, thoughts, feelings, backgrounds

meggiekate's picture

            I was a little frustrated at first when I found out that we were going to meet last Sunday night simply because I didn’t want another thing I had to do during finals week. However, as my group started planning our performance and I heard what some other groups were doing, I stated to get a bit more excited. After seeing everyone on Sunday, I’m glad that we got to meet together one last time. It gave me more closure with this class and a sense of a support network because I know that class issues will come up for me throughout my time here. And while not a lot of my other friends around campus understand their own classism or care about general class issues, it’s really good to know that y’all do. I feel like I could probably turn to any one from this class if I need to talk to someone about a class issue I’m having.

 

            When first brainstorming ideas for our final performance, my group was kind of all over the place until we had a conversation about how we felt the semester had gone overall. We all got the feeling that although our classes had progressed in many ways, there were still feelings of discomfort and anxiety. These feelings existed both within our classes and around Bryn Mawr with other students. For our final performance, my group decided to try to tackle those topics that we’ve been too anxious or uncomfortable to discuss during this semester. To do so, we wanted everyone write something they had wanted to bring up in our discussions, but never felt comfortable doing so. During our actual presentation, it was modified to include within our classes and around campus as well. We had hoped to have enough time to have small group discussions about everything everyone wrote down, but our first part took a lot longer than we expected. I felt that what ending up happening was very fitting, as one of our group members talked about on Sunday. But to make sure that everyone’s voices are heard (or read in this case!), here’s a complete list of what everyone wrote:

 

 

  • It’s not my fault that I’m not poor, but it’s not my right to be rich.
  • Nothing CHANGES
  • Different perspectives derived from different human/social capital
  • Being from a rich neighborhood, but a relatively poor family. I feel like I’m in a no man’s land – not proud to be privileged but guilty of…
  • My mom is a single, disabled mother but has to work under the table because we don’t get enough money to support ourselves and my education
  • Personally, the disparity between my parents’ education and our current socioeconomic class
  • Financial aid
  • I feel like the way I dress affects the way that others perceive my class. I put a lot of effort into this.
  • Sometimes I feel like I don’t belong at Bryn Mawr because when it was first built it excluded people like me.
  • I’d be considered solidly upper-class but I didn’t know until this summer and my mother is still in denial.
  • Asian stereotype, Black, Racial
  • I’m totally comfortable about anything. Maybe I feel uncomfortable when others don’t feel the same way but we still have to talk about this issue.
  • I didn’t realize how quickly I am to judge
  • My own solidly middle-class background
  • Ethnicity (Different from Race J)
  • How wealthy I am – and what that means for my relations with others
  • How can I, as someone from the upper class, be so bothered by M. Carey’s notion of BMC as a rich girl school? I AM the rich girl.
  • The changes in my class status over time
  • I’m embarrassed about the social class in my county – it has one of the highest teen pregnancy rates in the state
  • It seems for the most part we spend a lot of time pretending we understand classes when in reality we have no idea what people go through.
  • Being on scholarship
  • Something I never brought up was as someone who is completely comfortable with my own class, it bothers me that I have friends from the same class that make me feel bad about being a part of that class.

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