Archive by Author

Reflection

4 Dec

When I first signed up for this course and it had no book I had no clue what to expect. Normally I look through the books of my classes to get a good feel on the material that we will be talking about. After being in this course it taught me a lot about society and how and media kind of brain washes people into thinking a certain way. Our world is slowly getting taken over by digital media which includes Facebook, Tv, Instagram, Twitter, movies, etc. While being exposed to all this media you get used to seeing certain stereotypes and turn them into Social Norms. Before taking this class I didn’t recognize that what I was seeing was a problem and that is was wrong. I was used to seeing that token black person because since my volleyball team has been predominately white for most of my life I am normally that token black person on the team or at a party. It was something that I was accustomed to. One thing that I really liked about this class is the fact that you should both perspectives and left it up to us to choose to learn something. For example we talked about what true beauty was and men and women are portrayed in the public. We had an article that we read in class that show us then men a portrayed in control or always dominating the woman. Women are seen as helpless and powerless, they need the men to come say them or tell them what to do. The most important thing I learned in this class to recognize what is wrong and become more aware about what is going on. For so many years I’ve never really analyzed and paid attention to shows that are throwing the stereotypes in my face because couldn’t recognize it. Now I try to watch shows that aren’t so stereotypical to change up the way I think as far as movies that tend to favor towards.

Me’Ashah Nicholson

Advocates for Youth

25 Nov

The organization I thought does a great job countering negativity is the organization called “Advocates for Youth. What this organization does is send out brochures and magazines about their program hoping to catch the attention of youth and help them make decision about sexual health that they don’t feel comfortable with talking about with their parents. A little history about this particular organization is since it’s founding in 1980, “Advocates for Youth has served as a bold voice and respected leader in the field of adolescent reproductive and sexual health. For more than three decades, the organization has worked tirelessly to promote effective adolescent reproductive and sexual health programs and policies in the United States and the global south. Below is a select list of the organization’s accomplishments spanning its 32-year history. Advocates for Youth is: One of the first organizations to put adolescents’ reproductive and sexual health needs on the agenda of the international family planning field, establishing the International Clearinghouse on Adolescent Fertility as early as 1980.” (advoatesforyouth.org) Their mission is to help young people make informed and responsible decision about their reproductive and sexual health. Advocates believe it can best serve the field by boldly advocating for a more positive and realistic approach to adolescent sexual health. The topics and issues they cover are on a broad variety spectrum and they are: Abstinence, Abstinence-Only-Until-Marriage Programs, Abortion, Sex Education, HIV, Adolescent Sexual Health, Teen pregnancy prevention, and more.

This particular organization reminds me of the Kristen Hatch “Here comes Honey Boo Boo” article just because in the article it talks about how the show is used to make fun of or cover up their poverty issues instead of exposing them. This particular organization talks about negative which are the uncomfortable sex topics like aids and STI’s just like the Hatch article does but instead of covering it up they switch it into something that is good and making good choice out of previous bad decisions. Hatch also states “Here Comes Honey Boo Boo invites audiences to respond with both admiration for Alana’s family, particularly her mother, Mama June, and with disgust at their behaviors.” So in the case of this organization it invites youth to look at each other previous bad decisions and admire those who have gone to this organization and has turned their lives around.

Me’Ashah Nicholson

Season 2 Organe is the New Black

27 Oct

Sister Jane is portrayed as a non stereotypical nun who forces her religious views on her inmates. She is actually the opposite of a stereotypical nun. She is not quite or soft-spoken but she is outgoing and has a dominant personality. In one of the episodes she ends up shares her story of how she got in prison by protesting and  forcing her religious views and becoming an activist. She doesn’t wear the nun head-piece or the cross around her neck. Sister Jane joined the church as a young woman in the 1960s. She was very dedicated to her service to the church and although she had a open view of faith she then got introduced to two other nuns who are activists. Since she is so forceful with her religious view she is kind of portrayed as the outcast of the inmates. No one really wants to be bothered with  her but they tolerate her because she is a work in progress just as the other inmates are.

In a episode of the “Orange is the New Black” the nun name Sister Jane Ingalls helps with services in the prison chapel. When Burset, a character from the episode finds out she is getting hormone pills, she tries to cozy up to the Sister to obtain some. Instead, the Sister tries to convince Burset to reconnect with her son. Jane is in prison for chaining herself in place at a nuclear weapons base during a political protest. In line with her faith, Jane accepts Sophia as a close friend . She is shown to be rather modernistic and “hip” in her faith and views. The second season reveals her past as a nun who became an activist but seemed more interested in her fame than doing genuine good works for God. It is revealed that she was dismissed by the Church for her actions, but that she has neglected to tell any of the other inmates. After joining Soso’s hunger strike, Sister Jane gets carried away and takes over, cutting out Leanne and Angie, before being hospitalized. After the incident, word gets out and a number of nuns gather at the prison and stage a sit-in while Caputo tries desperately to negotiate with Ingalls. She only relents after reaching an agreement with Red in the prison hospital—she would eat, but only if Red told the truth about the attack against her.

 This reminds me of the reading of the Kanthi Muslims Identity article  because it talks   how general market media construct identities of Islam and Muslims. It talks about Islam being a terrorist fundamentalist religion. In this case of sister Jane she is going against her religious character and forming a unsterotypically view of what a nun really is and acts like. 

Me’Ashah Nicholson

Blog #5

17 Oct

real-houswives.png (640×392)

“Season 5 of The Real Housewives of Atlanta follows NeNe as she embarks on a new adventure as a rising star in Hollywood. In the love department NeNe flirts with the idea of rekindling a romance with her ex, Gregg, meanwhile, new love is in the air for Kandi who has recently found herself a man. Focused on their expanding businesses, Cynthia dabbles into the world of pageants and Phaedra decides to create a fitness video. Our recently married Housewife Kim is also busy expanding her family, but manages to make it out for the ladies’ events — even ones where NeNe is the guest of honor. New Housewives Kenya and Porsha also join the mix and waste very little time stirring things up among this group of southern ladies.”

Kim, the white cast crew member her interaction with the other cast members is very slim to none. She is invited to a lot of their engagements but doesn’t attend many or only show up for a few minutes then leaves. Kim is with her family a lot so she hasn’t established a real relationship with cast. She did have a best friend in the cast her name was NeNe but they got into a argument that ended their friendship. Since the cast is predominately African American, race isn’t talked about very often but it is mostly from a black perspective. There are some cultural aspect shown during a few episodes. For example, visited the underground rail road (passage for slaves) and visited historically black museums . Yes there are stereotypes of the cast, especially since it is predominately black. For example, Many of the cast members have big butts and wears weave in their hair.I think this show is a great example of Class standings. Most of the cast members are upper class African Americans with good stability with economics. But as far as Kim the white cast member she is portrayed as the “White trash” because last season she had a “sugar daddy.” Since her having a sugar daddy conflicts with her class standings as a upper class white person, she struggled to show his face on TV and also shunned her black cast member of talking about him.

The one cast member that stands out to me the most is Kandi just because she is so independent. She is a great example of what it means to be a strong black woman because she supports herself and her daughter financially and she is a business women. She knows what she wants in life and she goes after it. Yes she just met a significant other but she doesn’t depend on him or expect him financially hold her down. I think i relate to her the most because she reminds me alot of myself. My mother raised me as a middle class African American so obviously Kandi is more higher social class than me but she is humble. She respects her mother and would do anything for her family. My family is very important to me and the level of respect that i have for my parent is just like hers. I just feel like were raised similarly and we have similar personality characteristic.

Me’Ashah Nicholson

Blog #4 Sterotypical Teenaged Girl

7 Oct

“Modern Family is an American TV sitcom on ABC on that is presented in mockumentary style. The fictional characters often talk directly into the camera instead talking to the people around them/ or by themselves. The show follows the lives of Jay Pritchett and his family, all of whom live in suburban Los Angeles. Pritchett’s family includes: his second wife, his stepson, and infant son, as well his two adult children and their spouses and children.” (wiki.org)

“Jay’s daughter Claire (Julie Bowen) is a homemaker married to Phil Dunphy, a real-estate agent and self-professed “cool dad”. They have three children: Haley, the stereotypical ditzy teenager.” (wiki.org) The possible implications of Haley being a stereotypical teenage girl is that she fits all the characteristics. Haley has the visible characteristic of being obsessed with her looks/ how she looks to others, she only talks to her friends (talks her phone all the time; non-stop), she is stuck up, emotional, only thinks about boys, and the thought of having a boyfriend.

I connected with this character in that I was the total opposite of her but exactly like her. I was an African American in a predominately white Catholic school.  The white girl at my school and the black girls at my school acted as if they were no different. That is why I can connect with the character because we as females all acted the same. When I got to high school was when I realized that started to act more like peers and conform into the stereotypical teenage girl just as Haley does except she white. When I got to high school where the guys were actually taller than me, was when I hit the teenage girl syndrome. I went from not caring about my appearance to getting my hair done, wearing makeup, and talking to my friends about boys, and even got a little bit emotional. Many people say that it is high school where people hit puberty and start to mature. High school is supposed to be where the big moments are to happen in life before you get to college. For example, someone getting their first kiss. In this particular case, the character Haley hasn’t fully matured yet but she is definitely going through that stage of finding who she is.  She acts as though she is a little embarrassed about her little sister and she doesn’t talk to her about anything going on in her life which is another example of a teenage girl. At the end of the day the character Haley is trying to find herself as a person through experiences she has a school or with friends. The only way Haley knows how to deal with what is going on with her is too act like the people around her. For example, she starts to see and pick up friend’s personality traits. So instead she acts like everyone else in the world and falling into that role of the stereotypical teenager.

In the article the “Themes of Whiteness in American Films” it says that, “Because film is a globally distributed form of mass communication, the whiteness themes, and the rhetorical strategies used to rationalize them, will have a broader impact than the rhetoric of whiteness deployed by individuals.” So this just that means that although her experience as a stereotypical teenage girl may vary from mine because of the whiteness of the character, because of the mass communication in the TV show how they camouflage the strategies used, it was able to impact me and my experience as a black stereotypical teenager and compare to Haley.

Me’Ashah Nicholson

NBC star hit show “The Voice” Blog #3

24 Sep
  

“The Voice is an American reality television singing competition broadcasted on NBC. The concept of the series is to find new singing talent, based solely on their voice through blind public auditions. The winner is determined viewers voting by cellphone, Internet, SMS text, and iTunes Store purchases of the audio-recorded artists’ vocal performances”. (nbc.org) “The show has a panel of four coaches who critique the artists’ performances. Each coach guides their teams of selected artists through the remainder of the season. They also compete to ensure that their act wins the competition, thus making them the winning coach. If the artist win the voice they receive $100,000 and a “record deal” with Universal Music Group for winning the competition.” (Wikipedia.com)

NBC uses “the Voice” as a great example of the Hero syndrome or someone of higher class reaching down and “saving” or helping someone of lower class pursue their dream as a singer. In this case the person of higher class would be the four famous celebrity coaches and the lower class would be the contestant trying out for “the Voice”. Many times before the singer goes on to audition NBC does a little background story on them. They show where they came from, why they are auditioning for the show, and how these four (higher class) coaches could change their lives if they turn their chair for them. I think that is a cue/ class dynamic in the show is the coaches. NBC views the coaches are higher power because the contestant future lies in the hands if they choose to turn their chair for them. The background story shows tragedies or struggles the contestant has faced in order to get where they are today to follow their dreams. In doing the back ground story the show gives the audience a clear visual of the contestant perspective of the competition. This reminds me of the article “Institutions That Fail, Narratives That Succeed: Television’s Community Realism Versus Cinema’s Neo-Liberal Hope”. Written by Jeffrey P. Jones. In the article he uses the example of the movies “Freedom Writers,” how a young woman from middle/ upper-class goes and teaches at in an urban/ rural high school area. There she teaches them that to overcome their struggles in life all they need to do is to believe in themselves and their inner feelings. Once they do that then things will get better. She is being the “hero” in this situation because it took someone of higher class looking in from outside the situation to help the student be successful. Another example great example the article used was the movie “We are Marshall.” The movie is about a community/ university that has lost hope after a tragic accident. Instead of cancelling the football program they hire someone of higher class and someone outside of the situation looking in to novitiate the community and university that they can redeem themselves and be successful just as they have been. Again the coach is the “hero” in this particular situation, someone of higher class reaching down and saving those in need of help.

Me’Ashah Nicholson

cosmopolitan vs sports magazine.

15 Sep

  vs.

Cosmopolitan is a worldwide international women’s magazine. “It was first published in 1886 and officially became a magazine for women late 1960s.”(cosmopolitan.com) Cosmopolitan magazine content vide is more relaxed and outgoing. It covers the typical women issues such as: relationships, sex, health, careers, self-improvement, celebrities, fashion and beauty. “Published by Hearst Magazine, Cosmopolitan has 64 international editions, is printed in 35 languages and is distributed in more than 110 countries.”(cosmopolitan.com)

“ESPN the Magazine is a biweekly sports magazine published by the ESPN sports network in Bristol, Connecticut. The first issue was published on March 11, 1998.” (ESPNmagazine.com) the main sports that ESPN magazine covers is: “Major League Baseball, National Basketball Association, National Football League, National Hockey League, college basketball, and college football.” (ESPNmagazine.com) The magazine typically takes a more light-hearted and amusing method to sporting news. It often covers player’s situations off the field and as a result suffer with their jobs.

The gender category for Cosmopolitan is women as stated above it is a targeted women’s magazine. Every Cosmo magazine has a celebrity woman on the cover of it. The celebrity looks flawless with beautiful hair and a great body, one thing that most women want in their lives. The magazine talks about women’s issues, relationships, and sex. There are not many guys who like to openly talk about their personal sex life and their prior/ previous relationship. Since this is a feminine magazine another gender it may interest is Homosexual Males. So basically women and homosexuals who are the targeted audience read the articles in the magazine talking about sex and try to apply it their current/ future relationships. Women are always easier to do things in general so this magazine will always capture women’s interest.

The gender category for the ESPN magazine is typically men or people who love sports. I wouldn’t say it is a male targeted magazine but since the topic of the magazine is sports it will always catch the attention of any male strolling past a magazine stand. Most men want know what’s going on in the sports world whether its family problems, stats, or little secrets professional sports players use before a game. As far as women go, there it does not get their attention as easily. Unless the woman is athletic or likes sports is the only time it may cause interest. As far as gender category goes Men are more likely to apply what the read in their social life because I’m sure when they have a guy’s night out ports will definitely come up as a topic of conversation. They won’t necessarily apply what they read from the article to themselves but definitely use it to their advantage if need be.

Blog #1 Me’Ashah Nicholson

3 Sep

After being newly informed about the relationship between mass media and perceived reality I can see how media is an image of ideology. Media has taken over our world in many cultures especially in American culture. In our everyday lives we turn to media to be our entertainment during our pass time and since it has become a social norm it affects how we see the world. In most movies when something bad is about to happen the scene becomes dramatic which is a great indication. For example, in the TV show “Team Wolf” every time the scene gets dark with fog and one person is walking by themselves through the dark, I know something is about to happen. Whether it’s an action scene between werewolf’s or someone about to get killed. Although werewolf’s are unrealistic if I was walking alone at night I am more likely to convince myself something bad was going to happen because of what I watched. It’s almost as if it triggers something in my mind to be on the lookout for something to happen. We as people turn to what we see on the TV and movie screens into our reality. A great example of this are the Victoria Secret commercials. It has an underlying message that the producers are trying to conveying without actual saying it. After reading the “Reading the Message between the Lion” article, I learned that this particular example is an example of a ritual paradigm. It is context going around the situation. So in this case, the message is that if a woman goes out and buys a Victoria secret bra that they will look as good as the models in the commercial. This example is also an example of the Social Identity Theory by Tajfel and Turner. Their theory talks about social comparisons and how we feel the need to compare ourselves to others so that we feel better about ourselves. The media is constantly painting an unrealistic picture in our minds that is supposed to be accepted as a social norm. Because it is so repetitive goes unnoticeable in American culture.