Tuesday, April 26, 2011
While interviewing the subject ,I had flash backs of various lessons and discussions we have had in class. It was like actually living out what I had already learned, and that’s always an eerie feeling. For me it was kind of like when you’re younger and your parents keep giving you the same advice, you’ve heard it so much you’re like yes I know. Then later on in life there comes a time where you actually experience what they were talking about, it changes your understanding completely. Interviewing Mary Kate was truly like experiencing my Teenagers in the Media course in real life. Her interview differed from all the other people I’ve interviewed simply because she mentioned the media. No one else who was interviewed mentioned television or movies expect for my one teenage interviewee.
My questions for the interview were generic standard questions about their sexuality and coming out or staying in the closet. Many people who were interviewed had friends as their support system for coming out. My teenage subject relied on MySpace, Ellen and Pretty Little Liars. I couldn’t believe what I was hearing when she was speaking. She explained that when she was first questioning her feelings she reached out to an older girl who had already came out as a bisexual. She advised her via a MySpace message, which she read out to me for the interview. The message helped her deal with her fear of coming out to her parents and her questioning her bisexuality.
Mary Kate also spoke about what helped her want to come out was that so many people on tv and movies were doing it. The media was her support system! I was in disbelief. The media made her feel like who she is was ok. She explained coming out to her mother wasn’t easy; she wasn’t very accepting at first and frankly didn’t believe her daughter. She luckly had her sisters present; whom she had already come out to, stand up for her and help explain to her mother that’s it’s ok to be gay. What she had stated in the interview was that her mom was raised in the 50’s and back then it was odd to be gay. She went on to explain that her sisters told her mom that now there are organizations for gay rights and they are legalizing gay marriages and that even Ellen was gay and everything she does is positive. This finally convinced the mom that it was ok to accept her daughter, since it’s everywhere in the media it’s ok.
This was the first interview I conducted for my project and it’s one that stands out to me. I’m still in disbelief how the media not only was the closeted bisexual’s support system but also used for comforting examples to the mother. But on the flip side the media has not helped Mary Kate come out to her dad. In fact one time she sat and watched Pretty Little Liars with him as an attempt to come out. When a lesbian scene came on he criticized it and said what’s wrong with these kids today. She then told herself, ok; maybe this isn’t a good time to come out. It’s sad, but it’s true. The media has been a medium that has created support for her sexuality and opposition. It’s just like real life, but in this subject’s case it’s most of her life.
Monday, March 28, 2011
TP#7: Extended Comment: Re: Dante's Hip-Hop and Colonialism: Recognition and Response IV Post - Ball
Colonialism means that small groups & individuals can't compete with the ideology & content of the mass media that those falling victim to have been designed to keep these ideologies in place.
One example that comes to mind is the N word, from -er to -a. The origin of this word is offensive & then used by the oppressed victims as part of their everyday vocabulary with a softer ending; therefore making it more acceptable because it's coming from the oppressed. It makes it so that the word still lives & it's origins to be subconsciously felt regardless of the party delivering the message. I think this is what the quote is referring to. Puppet style the oppressor controls the puppet & speaks for them thru while the puppets jaw moves.
This also brings me to another point. I've heard people say that black people can't be racist because racism means to oppress a race & blacks are the oppressed race. Is the same to be said about HipHop? They aren't doing any wrong only doing what they've been taught? I mean, it's complex. I myself grew up listening to underground HipHop & conscience music plus also being involved in the HipHop culture & ultimately my ideals and beliefs are the same but sometimes I have to give in to the mainstream ideologies of what HipHop is because it's all around me. It's part of my business word, we play commercial HipHop @ the club and sometimes I feel like a sell-out. But that is the game & it's my present reality. Do I know better? Yes. Can I single-handily change everyone else' perspective? I doubt it, so instead; I go with the flow that makesy cash flow. As I'm sure many 'successful' artist do. At the end of the day they know who they are and are only playing for the masses.
BTW Dante, I was confused about this too; glad I wasn't the only one. I'm going to go back & re-read as well as follow all the links so that I am fully prepared in class. See you all there!
Starting with Christine's 'secret education' being media, school & religion; the GLEE show mostly focuses on school and religious ideals but the content is delivered in media form.
From Raby's discourses 'at-risk' and 'social problem' stand out. The fact that one of the characters was in Juvie applies to both discourses. More specifically the gay-bashing can be viewed as a social problem and the general bullying and sex talks and activities can fall under the at-risk discourse explained by Raby.
Grinner's SCWAMP theory is also applied in this episode. The protagonist is a white male. The only religion portrayed is Christianity, some praying and celibacy is portrayed. Even the song the guys chose to preform was 'Living on a Prayer'. I can say that GLEE challenged able-bodies a bit by making one of the GLEE singers have a wheelchair. They also have what appears to be a mentally challenged girl as a cheerleader. Though her tasks are of those that the normal cheerleaders wouldn't preform, it's interesting to see their casting choice. Though I do believe the black girl on the show is a bit stereotypical. She has the loudest voice, moves with extra attitude when performing, wears HipHop-ish clothes, for example her gold boombox medallion stands out in my mind and she also uses slang. This is how I found that Grinner, Raby and Christensen related to GLEE.
Another part I wanted to discuss about this episode was femininity and masculinity. The professor specifically told the gay feminine character that he had to join the boys group, when there was a boy/girl division. Then it seems he thought about how it made the student feel and suggested the girls create a masculine performances and the boys a more feminine one. I was really looking forward to this. After viewing it, I was disappointed. My observation is that their representation of masculine females were females dressed as feminine male rock stars who wear long hair, tight clothes, make and already preform feminine dances. That was a bit funny.
Overall I enjoyed GLEE and the topics they touch. I will be purchasing the full first season and watching it sometime after this or next semester is over. Thanks for the exposure Professor Bogad.
Sunday, March 20, 2011
Tuesday, March 1, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Monday, February 21, 2011
"...ruling groups in a society actively seek to have their worldview accepted by all members of society as the universal way of thinking. Institutions such as schools, religion, and the media help the powerful exercise this cultural leadership since they are the sites where we produce and reproduce ways of thinking about society." p.166
"Hegemony, however, is not something that is permanent; it is neither 'done' nor unalterable. Gramsci (1971) understood hegemony as a process that was always in the making. To effectively wield power through consent, ideological work through cultural leadership was an ongoing necessity. The terrain of common sense and the natural must be continually reinforced because people’s actual experiences will lead them to question dominant ideological assumptions. People are active agents, and modern society is full of contradictions; therefore, hegemony can never be complete or final. Some people will not accept the basic hegemonic worldview, some people may resist it, and changing historical conditions will make certain aspects of hegemonic ideology untenable. Ultimately, Gramsci saw hegemony as a daily struggle about our underlying conceptions of the world, a struggle always subject to revision and opposition. Rulers, who try to maintain their power by defining the assumptions on which the society rests, work to bring stability and legitimacy and to incorporate potentially opposing forces into the basic ideological framework." p.167-168
These three quotes combined seem to carry a strong message. The simplest way I can interpret this text's meaning is that "cultural norms" ideologies can be taught or talked about via schools, religion and the media and that in order for them to be effective the agenda has to be pushed continuously, or one could be left comparing to one's own life and no longer relating or believing the presented "norm".
The way these quotes are relevant to the text is by first connecting it to a class example when we were talking about the windows and mirrors that teenagers must be provided with in their life experiences. If the image being feed to them are constantly windows, the need for a mirror are going to grow. Whether this is understood by the individual immediately or not, if the space is allowed for reflection the thought will eventually come forward.
In the text several media pieces that go against the 'ideal norms' are mentioned, including a PBS documentary titled, 'Tongues Untied' which is about a homosexual black gay man. When researching this piece, I came across a particular YouTube video that to me captured a "mirror" reaction. It may be viewed below:
This to me speaks volumes on what happens when someone's personal experience links up with what they see in the media. This should be the new continuos feeling, with media, at school and even through religion.
Mirrors should be the new communicators, who's ready to put some up?