Saturday, September 20, 2003

There are way too many factors contributing to the formation of a person's perspective. The one that is the most dominant, though, is that person's past. It sounds so good to say let the yesterday be history and live your life today, but when I think about it, isn't it your past what has made the person you are today? Somethings that have happened, the paths you have walked, people you have encountered, mistakes you have made...they won't just vanish because you want to. They are all the components that shape your way of thinking and the decisions that you are making. This also applies to a country, a race of people, or even a family. Antigua was conquered by England and was a British colony for decades, and there is no way to turn this history around for the Antiguans to say "let's reform our country, to return it back when there was only blacks." For one thing, in some sort of way, Antigua was "upgraded" by the British. There was a big library when the British were in power, then it was destroyed when they left. In the book, Not even Kincaid, who has such a great disgust for colonalism, suggusted to remove the library and pretend that civilization has never reached Antigua. She hoped somebody whould repair it. This somebody would not be the British for sure, frankly, it would have to be the Antiguans. My point is, since the past is already there, the Antiguans can only move forward if they are willing to build on whatever there is left by the colonial government. If they choose to stay, or take a wrong turn, though, that is why we are reading The Small Place.

Friday, September 19, 2003

so i never wrote about "A Small Place". I thought that the passage wrote by her was very clever and persuasive. It had a hint of sarcasm in it that i loved. i think today, people are so wrapped up in watching TV and having that type of media tell stories in a way of third grade reading level. most of it isn't intriguing or pivoting. to be honest i haven't read in a long time and i found myself riveted to my seat. the art and beauty of the writing i think has been in some ways forgotten. more and more kids today never read fopr the enjoyment of it, i haven't in a long time. we should get back to that as a nation. we are so concerned with instant gratification in our society that people would rather watch a two hour movie than spend a couple of days reading a novel and opening up their minds and using it.

in regurds about what a few people said about not letting the past consume you, I agree with that. Holding a grudge about the past isnt a way to live. I was just saying it shouldnt be forgotten.

I plan to write my paper on Diversity and the issues we are facing today dealing with blendining in with people of other races and backgrounds. Im not sure if I will find a lot of resources for my paper, even though this is an issue that we deal with everyday. But the areas that I want to touch on are: The perspective of students facing a diversified world/evironment, and the problems with adjusting to environments different that what you are used to. I think that this issue is very important to us all and I would like to talk about this in my paper.

I think i should change my research paper topic because i dont think i'll be able to find much information about what im interested in writing about. I really love Indie music, that are mostly influenced by late 60's musicians. But how do i research that and what kind of questions with that propose? I was thinking i could definitely pull the "multiculturism" subject into my topic and see what kind of information i get out of that.
Uptown Minneapolis has some awesome local shows mostly on weekdays, if anyone is interested. My friends from home came up to visit me From Southeastern Wisconsin and we saw black eyes and q and not u at a local place in the uptown part. it was so awesome, but i realized how far away i am from them and how much i miss them.

ah yes, blogger. i dont really know what to write in regards to, i havent given too much thought into the book because my first impression of it was the way she wrote; which i hated. i hate to say i hate something and then dont give a reason for really disliking it, but i cant really back up my thoughts about it. As the book goes on, though, i get the concept of Kincaid being upset about the British culture invading her territory. Then she went off on a tantrom about the library, and quite frankly, i got annoyed.
I cant believe the weather yesterday went from like 80 to 50 in a matter of hours. I had to get out my winter sweaters and lots of blankets; guess im forced to deal with Minnesota's weather changes. Maybe i'll just blame Canada.

I agree with Kait, it's important to remember the things that happened in our past, but we can't let it consume our lives today. And with what Ashley said, I agree that nobody deserves to be forgotten. But sometimes I think people are remembering the past for the wrong reasons. I hate feeling that just because I'm caucasion, it's my fault that the Native Americans lost their land. Or that slaves were brought over from Africa. Yes, it did happen, I've never seen anyone try to deny it. But I would never have wished that upon someone, it was a very bad time in our nation's history and now that we've grown wiser and stronger, it's time that we let the grudges go. So why is it still brought up in such a negative way. In so many classrooms it's not just talked about to inform people of the past (which definitely needs to be done), it's talked about to point fingers at someone. Everyone's always looking to blame someone else. We need to focus on what our nation has become just as much as we focus on it's past. We're one of the most powerful countries in the world, yet we still can't come together as a nation. It makes me very doubtful that there will ever be peace throughout the world considering we still haven't conquered it in America.

Thursday, September 18, 2003

in regards to pauls post- write what you want and believe in... just make sure you proofread it if its emotional writing. if someones got a problem with your ideas and beliefs that is their problem, not yours. as long as your beliefs dont hurt anyone (such as believing that the school should be blown up or something) they are right... at least for you. everyone has there own beliefs, ideas, perspectives and thats what makes the world interesting. personally i enjoy when people throw out different ideas... sometimes it makes me think. also, it may have an impact on someone... it may help change someones mind about something or at least give them a different perspective. if someone is honestly offended by the ideas of another on this board or anywhere else in the world it is their duty to be responsible enough to deal with it in an honest and mature way

in regards to ashleys post... you say that we shouldnt let the past go. i disagree, but i think its more a disagreement on definiton or understandign of the phrase "to let hte past go." i fully believe that we should learn about the past and be aware of it... "those who are unaware of the past are doomed to repeat it"... or something like that. (if anyones got the exact right quote, please throw it out there). i think we should be aware of what has happened but we shouldnt let it consume the present. we need to live our lives NOW to the fullest extent possible for the most good possible. kincaid states, "As for what we were like before we met you, i know longer care. No periods of time over which my ancestors held sway, no documentation of complex civilisations, is any comfort to me. Even if i really came from people who were living like monkeys in trees, it was better to be that than what happened to me, what i became after i met you." this passage relly struck me. she is so angry and blameful that she is letting it consume her life. this comment tells me that she does not like herself and she blames others for it... she blames people who were not even alive in her lifetime. she needs to accept the past and get over it before she can start to live her life and like herself. that is what i think was meant when someone said that people need to get over the past... be aware of it but dont let it ruin your life. just my two cents.

Well, Ummm....back on "A Small Place" because I dont know what else to talk about. After I finished reading it, I realized I didn't like the ending. She didn't really conclude anything. And I guess that's because Antigua is still the same, and there was nothing to conclude about it, but I still didnt like the end. To reply to what some one said a couple of days ago about how people should let the past go. I totally disagree with that because if people just disreguarded the past and let go of all the wrong doings that have happened in the past, then what's to stop all that stuff from happening all over again. And what about the people who died so these people could have their freedoms, are we just supposed to disreguard them too? None of those people deserve to be forgotten about. Yes, the world would be a better place without racism, but its not like that, and it probably never will be, just because of the simple fact that people cant seem to get over themselves, and have a open mind. The world will never be free of racism.

I really like the idea of the rhetorical triangle. In my writing I am going to try to always assume that the reader is going to be asking themselves the questions about the message I am sending and about me as the writer. I know that in my writing I have always had the very bad habbit of running with strange ideas and not sticking to one topic and not using enough evidence to support my initial statements. Hopefully with knowledge of this triangle, I can question my own writing and find some order to my crazy, mixed up thoughts. I really like the question, "how can I enhance my cediblity and trustworthiness?" I think it is very important that for the writer to have evidence and facts to support their argument. This is what jordan was saying before, and I totally agree. Evidence is everything for an argument and it will win every time as long as the writer is passionate and persuasive in their presentation.

Referring to Paul's blog. I think you speak your mind to the fullest extent. Don't worry about how other people will react to your writing. As long as you rationally speak your mind and don't intentionally try to put someone down, no one can tell you wheter you are right or wrong. Put your view out there and others can put theres. We live in a world of controversy, not everybody is going to agree. You have to trust your heart and free yourself of all stereotypes and assumptions. You have to get the facts and try to understand the subject matter as best as you can.

Identity and Multiculturalism is difficult. Or at least sensitive. The topics we are working with are of such a nature that it is only too easy to throw ten pages of nothing but emotion into.
And are we safe behind our pens?
If I churn out a paper that is nothing but an emotionally charged argument that may very well and very likely be taken in a very negative way, what will happen?
We're encouraged to write of controversy, but to what extent can we truly speak our minds?
This was much easier in high school (obviously), I would always write of controversial issues, but the first rule to follow was: Make it so it attacks the supposed morally wrong issue, even if it means attacking your own viewpoints that you know to be held in contempt by society.
Finally we have freedom, but how far?
I've always been extremely leary with my sometimes extremist views.
Maybe I'm just paranoid.

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

I was thinking and I am going to change my topic, to something that I can keep up for ten pages and something that has a lot more information on it and is a more highly debated issue, the issues of pro life and pro choice and different issues of why aren't high schools participating more in sex ed and not providing thing and information that can possibly prevent a lot of pain and confusion for some poor lovesick teenager, I admit it is a really wide topic, but it is also a very pressing issue.
More needs to be done to inform teenagers about what they are going through and the possible consequences of their actions when they get too head over heels for some guy. I admit when you are a teenager things are very confusing and you don't always pay attention to the obvious, you get too entangled in your own feelings that are intense and you think that the only thing that matters at that time is doing what your body wants to do and I think that with more availability of birth control methods kids can be safer, because they preferably are going to do that anyways so they should be more informed and so the youth of tomorrow can make better decisions in their actions. I am pretty interested in this topic and I think that I will find a lot of sources and i am looking forward to writing this paper

Today is Wednesday and I am so tired from running to all of my classes, I was thinking a lot about the essay a small place and I think that jamakas point is a very clear one, the antiguans didn't ask for anyone to come in and take over their land, their government and corrupt their way of living and downsize it by making them seem like the ones that don't belong in such a beautiful place. To the antiguans the white or European race is the corrupt and bad race, they conquer and stick their noses in other peoples business and always think that their way is the right way. This has been happening ever since Columbus discovered and "settled" into and area that had already been settled. I think that even today with all of our liberties that the united states is known for is invading Iraq and trying to control their government and make it like our own, and I think that the reason that we invaded was a viable reason but we no longer have any reason to stay

Well, finaly I decided to conntribute to the Blogg!
I tough a lot abot "Small Place", I deffinetley had different kind if feelings during the reading process. I changed some of my opinions ,but other remain the same.
In general I think that the Kincaid aim was just to inform us about her side of the story. As Clancy said in class ,one and the same event can be seen rfom more than one point of vew, and this depend only on a what were the consiquenses of this event for each side.Every side has its pont of vew and it's own true. I think that it is hard to argue who is wright and who is wrong because everybady is right on his/her own way.
I also understand the way how the autor wrote the story .I think that that was the only way that she can make the reader to fell her pain and anger and to understand why they were so strong.
I thing that, ones, somebody say that: the real anger can be felt only if you trully love somthing or somebody, and I think taht Kincaid trully loves her country.

For class today, I have three objectives--three things I want you to learn:
  1. I want you to be able to discern the difference between popular magazines and scholarly journals.

  2. I want you to know that you cannot find magazine articles or journal articles in MNCAT. You can only find titles of journals, not individual articles.

  3. I want you to find at least two sources--one article and one book--that you can use for your research paper. They must be sources that the library has, so you'll need to make sure we have them.

To attain the first objective, we're going to look at some examples of popular and scholarly journals. Toward the second, we're going to go through two step-by-step processes.

To find a book:
  1. Go to the U of M libraries' homepage.

  2. Go to MNCAT, the library catalog.

  3. Under "Browse," type in your search terms (I'm using "interracial adoption") as mine.

  4. When you get to your search results, click around until you find a book that sounds relevant to your interest.

  5. Look to the right of your screen for "Location and call number." Click there to determine if the book is checked out or not.

To find a journal article:
  1. Go to the U of M libraries' homepage.

  2. Under "Articles and More," click "Indexes," which will take you here.

  3. Scroll down to the bottom and click "Expanded Academic Index."

  4. When you get there, type in your search terms.

  5. When you find an article that interests you, look at the title of the journal that the article is in (not the title of the article itself!). Highlight and copy the title of the journal.

  6. Open a new browser window.

  7. Go to MNCAT.

  8. Click in the "Browse for" field. Paste the title of the journal in there.

  9. Search, and see if we have the journal! If we do, write down which library it's in and go get it. If not, try again. (Note: The library might have an electronic version of the journal, in which case you can just go to the issue of the journal that your article is in, click on the title of the article in the table of contents, and print that baby out!!

And here's something you'll find convenient: If you would like to have a book delivered to Magrath Library from one of the libraries on the East Bank or West Bank, you can write down the author's name, title, call number, and location of the book and go to the library home page. Click "Ordering Materials," which will take you here. Scroll down until you see "Point to Point." Click on it. You'll get to this page. Login and tell them where you'd like your books delivered. I use this service all the time; it's very nice.

Finally, please tell me if you need any extra library help. I'll come and meet you at any of the libraries on a Saturday if you need me to; that's how very important I think it is for you to know how to use the library.

Tuesday, September 16, 2003

Antigua & Barbuda-History and Culture

I found this site pretty interesting regarding Antiguas history. I was surprised to find that Antigua was the first British colony to enforce immediate emancipation, instead of the 4 year waiting period the other British Colonies imposed. It didn't really benefit the freed slaves since they went right back to working on the sugar plantations.
I was also surprised to find that settlements on Antigua went as far back as 2400 B.C.

The site doesn't mention anything about the present condition of the locals, or mention anything about the locals actually. Wouldn't want to upset the tourist.

This is an idea about the A small Place. It's not a political rant or an emotionally charged argument. Sorry. It's just a thought about symbolism.
I have the feeling that the library that Kincaid speaks of so extensively is either a symbol or metaphor for Antigua.
Why not?
The library, like the colonization, was built by the British.
The library, though it was supposed to be for the public, Kincaid seems to suggest it was purposely for the British. (She speaks of being looked down upon in the library I believe)
The library (Antigua) is filled with British books (British culture)
When the earthquake (independence) struck, the library was destroyed. (no more colonization)
The library was ruined and no-one fixed it. (current state of corruption and dilapidation of the island)
What do you all think?
If you think that this might be a valid claim of symbolism in the library and want to use it in our rhetorical analysises, than do so. Thoughts should be free.

Monday, September 15, 2003

I totally agree with Jordan. I feel that this is a new world we are living in. I believe that now is the time to take action and be the leaders for the people younger than us. We need to teach them that being judgmental and assuming the worst about people you don't know is a very wrong thing to do. Our generation in very lucky. We have the chance to experience both sides of the story. By this I mean that some of our grandparents (or people that age) still have many racist issues and points of views. Many of our parents are the age of the baby boomers and this generation is much more open to other cultures and new people. Now it's our chance to let the walls between our races, religions, genders and all other barriers fall to the ground. And I believe that in the generations to come, the problem will hopefully only continue to become less of a disturbance in our everyday lives.

It seems that some people won't let the past go. Colonialism and slavery were horrible and changed the world forever, but no one living now was a part of all that and there is nothing you can do about it now. Instead of crying about the past and being racist, they should work towards the future and except people as equals. The color of your skin should have no bearing on anything. There should be no affirmative action. People should have equal opportunity everywhere. People have to let the past go and live in the present, we have to disregard those terrible deeds in the past if we ever want to live in a equal, racism free world. I believe that education is the cure for all of our woes. We need to get everybody in a school and i think into a college. Knowledge is power and if more people were educated i think all the corruption and wrongdoings would slowly diminish. Good values and morals must be instilled too.

Sunday, September 14, 2003

Tonight I had a really cool multicultural experience. I attended a Women's Jewish group. It was the very first meeting and there was only 6 of us there, 2 of which were not born Jewish. In the meeting, we took 15 minutes to draw out a spiritual timeline. Once we finished the drawings including stick people, scribbles and random lines connecting one genre of our lives to the other, we attempted to share with the group our spiritual history. I found it awesome that one of the woman that had just recently found that Judaism offered her the closest type of g-d relationship that she could find. She seemed even to have more knowledge of what she was looking for in a religion than I knew. This woman knew what she believed, what she felt and what history of people seemed to connect closely to her ideas. It was a great experience tonight, to share with these women our strengths and weaknesses in finding out more about ourselves and our spirituality.

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