Systems of Oppression and Suppressed Social Identities

By Eli Daniel In this course, systems of oppression are a common topic. While there is no cookie-cutter definition of this complex concept this post will help you gain a better understanding of the fundamentals of oppression while highlighting the institutionalized oppression present in our nation. Exploring college websites is a common activity for highContinue reading “Systems of Oppression and Suppressed Social Identities”

The Beauty in Change

By Reina Ackerberg Before writing this post, I took a moment to reflect on the norms and ideas I have learned throughout life from my own experiences and those I have been taught by my parents and siblings. Growing up in a family where a religion wasn’t practiced, I was invited to choose how IContinue reading “The Beauty in Change”

Lessons From Parvez and Ali

by Lily Liu While reading “My Son the Fanatic”, I found myself beginning to search for parts of the text that felt relatable to my own experiences. There are plenty of differences between the story of Ali and Parvez and mine: setting, family dynamics, and the origins of such conflicts, but the larger themes resonatedContinue reading “Lessons From Parvez and Ali”

Dear Others, Stop Telling Me What to Wear: “My Little Black Dress Doesn’t Mean Yes.”

by: Catherine Zhang Dear Mom, When you pulled me aside yesterday as I left for school and told me that my V-neck sweater was too low, you spoke to me that my identity only existed in the sphere of how much I displayed my body. You, who told me everyday of my life how perfectContinue reading “Dear Others, Stop Telling Me What to Wear: “My Little Black Dress Doesn’t Mean Yes.””

The Art of Growing Up a Girl: A Culture of Female Submission

The male gaze pictured above. By Catherine Zhang Roxane Gay’s anthology, Not That Bad, details short essays recounting stories of how she was violated in her youth in the experience of growing up a girl. Hauntingly enough, a theme of appreciation is specifically woven throughout her essay, “The Ways We Are Taught to Be aContinue reading “The Art of Growing Up a Girl: A Culture of Female Submission”

DIY Social Change: Deconstructing Gender is an Individual Responsibility

by Frederick Loew Coventry Patmore’s 1854 poem Angel in the House proposed an idea of what women should be like and shaped the gender norms of Victorian society. Patmore used his wife as an example, showing the people of Great Britain that a woman should be devoted to the family and submit to her husband’sContinue reading “DIY Social Change: Deconstructing Gender is an Individual Responsibility”

Society in Chains: Gender Promotes Male Toxicity

by Sage Marmet Thomas Page McBee’s article Amateur: How Do I Reconcile My Masculinity With The Toxicity of Men unpacks the ever-prevalent toxic male culture in today’s society, provoking men to question their role–or lack thereof–in deconstructing their pedestal. Toxic masculinity is constantly perpetuated, and even normalized today: dress codes in schools teach young menContinue reading “Society in Chains: Gender Promotes Male Toxicity”

Fanaticism—the Malignant Inflexibility of our Cultural Beliefs

By Taggert Smith Our discussion of Hanif Kureishi’s short story “My Son the Fanatic” spanned a wide range of topics, but by the end came to focus on the question of who was in the right—Parvez or his “fanatical” son Ali. To my view the tragic emotional divide of father and son implicates a cancerousContinue reading “Fanaticism—the Malignant Inflexibility of our Cultural Beliefs”

Bring Down the Cockrel: How to Dismantle Toxic Masculinity?

The Hahn/Cock by Katharina Fritsch in Trafalgar Square in London, among statues of prominent men in English history. By Taggert Smith September 14, 2020 In our class discussion of the shared terminology we will be using in this course, among concepts like feminism and the patriarchy, the term “toxic masculinity,” with its various associations andContinue reading “Bring Down the Cockrel: How to Dismantle Toxic Masculinity?”

The Right to Bare: Who Are We to Judge if a Woman Goes Topless?

by Jenna Thrasher September 11, 2020 During Thursday’s class, we spent some time analyzing a Steve Sack cartoon for the Star Tribune, titled “Police lineup, toplessness” edition. In the cartoon, an older woman is looking at topless suspects, with a police officer asking her, “Can you identify the nipples that offended you?” In a worldContinue reading “The Right to Bare: Who Are We to Judge if a Woman Goes Topless?”