culture

laik012's picture

How do we decide?

 

I always felt that what defines and makes up an identity very fascinating. Most often I associate identity with religion, language, physical features and to some extent their likings and passions (eg. Type of food, subject, music, etc.) I try my best never to believe in stereotypes but it is always fun sometimes to guess a person’s origin and what they associate themselves as. Few days ago, I met guy A in one of my class. He looked familiar and reminded me so much of my good friend from high school. I told myself at that time, if I had to guess, he must be a mix kid (half Asian and half White). From then on, I proceeded with class and didn’t bother to go further and ask since my curiosity is sometimes pathetic. The next day, I saw him again and told him he looked so much like my friend from Kazakhstan. He immediately told me his parents are from there but he was raised in America. I always wanted to learn Russian so I asked him whether he spoke the language, as soon as he said yes; he began teaching me some phrases. Without much thought, I told A that I really like his identity, he neither looks typically Asian nor White, speaks a European language but grew up in America. I told him that it’s funny how you like meat so much and love math. My Kazakh friend is so similar. He didn’t say much but appreciated that I knew so much about Central Asia.

 

nia.pike's picture

Final Web Event - Addressing Inclusiveness at Home at Bryn Mawr: A Seminar

Bryn Mawr is my home.

            That one phrase is so much more than the five words it contains. Now more than ever before. To me, a home is much more than four walls or a campus. Bryn Mawr is home to me because of its people, because of its community. It is here that I have become comfortable with who I am - my sexuality, my past, my life.

            When I first began to think about this final paper, I knew I wanted it to be about this place that means so much to me. Bryn Mawr. I also wanted to incorporate in parts of my other papers. As I reflected over my work and growth in this course, I realized I left my third paper open ended without a firm direction in terms of education for Wabash. During conversations (usually over food) with my friends, I began to see that Bryn Mawr also needs a new form of education. An education in inclusion. I began to think of my second paper on the inclusiveness/discrimination of the straight community within Bryn Mawr's community. I concluded Bryn Mawr needs an intervention.

nia.pike's picture

Fear of Feminist Indoctrination at All-Men's Colleges

            The phrase "feminism unbound" is strange to me. I thought at first I understood it, but when we began to discuss this phrase in class, I got even more confused. So I sat down to think about it on my own. I thought about the rigors of society, the boundaries have set for ourselves and others, the world we have been told should exist. As someone who has chosen to go to an all-women's college I know I follow certain boundaries within the walls of Bryn Mawr College, regulations the college sets for me. I began to think of similar institutions. A friend of mine also goes to a single-sex institution, Wabash College, an all-men's college in Indiana. Wabash sets regulations for its students as well. A potential new regulation is a gender studies graduation requirement. This debate struck a chord with me, especially when I discovered the contorted view of gender studies some members of the institution had created around this issue . . .

            "[The] wimpy, neutralized guys that gender feminists are trying to create:  men who are not committed to constructive struggle and conflict and fighting for a cause and coming out the winner." (Michaloski and Allman) This statement was made by Dr. David P. Kubiak, a Classics professor at Wabash College in relation to the debate at Wabash over the proposition of a gender studies graduation requirement.

nia.pike's picture

Breaking Down Boxes

I come from a conservative household in the South, where the discussions we are having in class and the readings we do for class would never be spoken about. These topics are taboo where I come from. Even though I'm from a large city, which is culturally very different than the rural south, there are still so many stigmas associated with not conforming to "norms." If one does not fit into a certain predetermined box, they are pushed to the edges of society, from which it is hard (but not impossible) to return from. During our exercise on Thursday, Ester drew a picture of me breaking out a box. That's a pretty accurate description of me. I do not think metaporphical, pre-determined boxes should have any part in society, in fact they hinder society. However, I honestly grew up in a box. It was a box with walls of expectations. I was never comfortable in that box. Yet it was not until I was old enough to think for and make significant decisions by myself that I began to question and tear apart my box. I wish I had begun this process earlier because I know now how much of an impact those walls had on me as a person. Our childhood molds us, but it does not make us who we are. I'm still discovering who I am, and am excited to have this class be a part of that journey.

Cathy's picture

very weak post that I was wondering if I should even post

So this week, in terms of ed placement I've been trying to discover more of Asian culture in relation to America. In my placement I figure out that I knew nothing of the Asian American experience even thought I want to honor everyone's diversity in my classroom someday. I wouldn't have picked up on this if it hadn't been for my suburban placement having only white and asian kids. I was taught to look at majority and minority balances in terms of possible difference and then I thought "Oh no, I want to teach at a suburban school someday, but white culture is easy to adapt to, what do I do with the Asians?" This was really weird for me because I pride myself on being multiculturally sensitive becuase of my backgrounds, and what was even weirder is that my best friend since 3rd grade is Viet, but I still don't feel like I know how her race and culture relate to her experience. For some reason, that racial experience has always been invisible to me, despite my exposure to literature about the Hmong in the US and other groups. I decided to reconsile this dissonace by bugging my asian friends to help me learn more and I hope to take an Asian American history/culture class before I graduate. I can't believe I didn't notice one of the biggest groups in America in my quest to be inclusive. I'm really embarressed about this, but at least now I know and I can work towards making that better. 

maddybeckmann's picture

Notes from class

February 12th, 2013 

How do you know the difference between abuse and discipline? 

Abuse                vs.                     Discipline 

Abuse 

Discipline 

excessive, beating, more force duration. long term, issues external to the child, impulsive, can it be cultural, less related to child, child cannot learn the system it is too arbitrary 

washing mouth out with soap, modify behaviors, hit spank, rational, no conflict across cultural setting-school/home/ grocery, varies by gender, child can learn system and succeed, rational lecturing explaining why 

types of Discipline: 

  • Threats 
  • writing lines
  • spanking 

Similarities? 

cyclical/cultural 

Traditional vs. Progressive Discipline 

Sarah Cunningham's picture

Bolivia passes law recognizing Mother Nature's rights!

I saw this on Facebook and thought y'all would be interested. Can't figure out how to share the link (except on Fb) but here's the text:

Cathy's picture

code switching between Bronx slang, kid Spanish, academic English and more.

I I like to write my posts in a cute little teal journal, accurately labled "thoughts." I wondered what the destiny of this book would be and I'm happy it's this. My entry started with three stick figure photos; the first was me being talked at by a teacher. The second was me talking to an adult and the third was me talking with a peer. The story then described an interaction I had with an older person in youth group. He asked me why I talked like a white person. At the time, that really bothered me, because it made me feel uncool and out of place. So then I would try to use more slang, but it didn't really help my "cool" cause becuase I sounded very off. This led me to think about the different languages I have to negotiate on any given day when I was little. With my mother I would have to speak Spanish, but my Spanish was never really eloquent, and then with friends I would have to use slang becuase my academic English freaked them out, and then with teachers I would have to use academic English. With language, I never really felt proficient with any of the three, but I'm starting to accept that all three of these are very much a part of the person I am today.  

maddybeckmann's picture

'Color Of Christ': A Story Of Race And Religion In America

Our discussion today reminded me of a story I listened to on NPR last week about the multiple perceptions of Jesus. It is really very interesting. This is the link:   

http://www.npr.org/2012/11/19/165473220/color-of-christ-a-story-of-race-and-religion-in-america

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