The idea for the Being Fair project started right at home for me. Growing up watching Bengali television channels, I would always see commercials for skin lightening products. I never truly understood the big reason for these products and brushed off its massive impact. However, after doing research on how advertisements shape our lives and help spoon feed us ideas about the world earlier this year, I realized how much skin lightening commercials have affected my life. Subconsciously, they did impact my ideas about beauty and its connection to skin color. I wanted to learn more about the products, how they work scientifically, how it impacts skin around the world and why skin lightening is a multi billion dollar business today. However, I didn’t want to just state facts. Anyone can look up the negative effects of skin lightening creams.I wanted to share stories. After talking with fellow friends and students from SLA, I realized I was not alone. Many of them have also experienced ups and downs when it comes to loving their skin color. I wanted a platform and safe space where these stories were told and their voices were amplified. My website focuses on personal interviews and roundtable discussions accompanied by classic “Humans of New York” style portraits of the interviewee to go along with their words. This is a project about people’s relationship with their skin color and how they have or are coming to terms with loving it.
Shadeism. Directed by Nayani Thiyagarajah. Documentary. Refugee Productions, 2015.
This documentary identifies the issues that skin lightening brings upon communities, showing that the ideas of beauty and consequences of the ideal severely impact the relationship that one may have with their skin. This is a documentary that uses the voices of those who participated, all women of color who have realized how much their dark skin affect their daily lives. The stories drive the film, which is exactly the route that I want to direct my capstone. Through this documentary, I was able to see how a director and writer weaved in different stories, backgrounds and experiences to create a cohesive and compelling argument that makes the audience walk away with passion to change the issue.
“The Unfair and Lovely Campaign Is Embracing Darker Skin Tones.” Self, 14 March 2016, http://www.self.com/story/the-unfair-and-lovely-campaign-is-embracing-darker-skin-tones
This is a campaign, called Unfair and Lovely. They are working to actively change the narrative of what it means to be a darker skinned South Asian and also promoting self love. It is run by a community of darker skinned South Asians. They use their instagram account to share photos and stories of women who have suffered through oppression, hatred from others or just self confidence issues. This is an inspiration to me because they are South Asian women themselves, who have experiences similar situations to me. I want to use this resource in order to learn how to not just look at the negatives about this issue, but to see how other women are using this to grow as people and help others learn and evolve. In my project, I want to show how people are working to change the mindsets and how they stay positive.
Norwood, Kimberly Jade. Color matters : skin tone bias and the myth of a post-racial America. Routledge, 2014.
This book goes in depth, with some of the latest research on the issues of colorism and the discrimination that follows it. It talks about why this discrimination occurs, why lighter skin is preferred over darker skin and what implications this has for society and how far we still have to go. There is history, psychology and personal narratives weaved into this book. In my project, I wish to incorporate the issues of colorism that exist in America too, so it’s not just written off as another country or another community’s issue. It exists here, is very prevalent and will continue to affect us for years unless we take a stand. I want to use this resource to learn more about where it exists in our society and why it’s so well hidden. Then, in my project I want to expose the taboos of this topic and maybe even incorporate how media plays a role in our beliefs.
Women of Worth. She Leads. 2015-16. http://womenofworth.in/
Women of Worth is an organization based in India which through different workshops, conferences and seminars throughout schools and colleges in the country, tries to promote media literacy, redefine beauty, leadership development and more. One campaign, “Dark is Beautiful” specifically targets the issues of colorism and how to combat that in everyday life. On their website they have a blog that anyone can contribute to, with their own stories along with their events at different schools. They are partnered with She Leads, an organization that promotes confidence and leadership among women. This is an inspiration for my project because as a South Asian, even I want to know how they have been combating stereotypes and what different techniques they have been using to actively change the narrative, especially in a country so obsessed with light skin. I will use this source to give me ideas of how to reach out to different women about their stories and how to make sure their voices are heard.
Saint Louis, Catherine. “Creams Offering Lighter Skin May Bring Risks.” The New York Times, 15 Jan. 2010, http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/16/health/16skin.html
This article in The New York Times addresses the health risks that come with using skin lightening creams. Most users don’t know about the ingredients that are in them or what kind of damage they can cause. The idea that their skin can even be lightened overpowers any harm it can do. By the time they see the negative affects on their skin, it is often too late to turn back. Through my project, I don’t just want to state the issues that skin lightening can cause to one’s self esteem. I also want to prove through hard facts that these products are not healthy and will not even help one achieve what they are promised. Facts can be an extremely persuasive force, which is why I am so interested in adding it to my project.
Gabler, Roe Sam. “Dangers of skin whitening creams.” Chicago Tribune, 2010-15, http://www.chicagotribune.com/lifestyles/health/chi-skin-creams-safety-storygallery.html
This group of articles and studies show the different type of ingredients in the most popular skin whitening creams throughout the world and how they affect our skin. Specifically, they have a study that focused on the mercury levels in these creams. There is also an article on a bill in the U.S that calls for tighter restrictions on the ingredients that can be put in cosmetics. Again, I want to incorporate this information in different blog posts and weave it into the narratives. I also want to ask people if they know about the ingredients and what they can do to their skin and see how they feel about that. I mainly just want to have a big blog post that analyzes all the ingredients and prove with facts why it’s not healthy for our skin.
Dhillon, Komal Kaur. Brown Skin, White Dreams: Pigmentocracy in India. Dissertation, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 2015.
This source is a dissertation about the pigmentocracy that exists in India. Pigmentocracy is the preference to lighter skin in a society, which leads to privilege for one group and discrimination for another. In this paper, the author shows research of how this began during colonization and how it still exists in modern day India. With the help of this paper, I want to figure out the root of this issue and where it actually started. I also want to see why after so many years of independence, pigmentocracy still exists today and what that means for Indians and others around the world. I want to use the research in this paper to back up my narrative. This will be included in my personal blog post.
Ghose, Tia. Indians and Europeans Share 'Light-Skin' Mutation. Live Science, http://www.livescience.com/41040-skin-color-genes-identified-india.html
This article talks about how Indians and Europeans share a mutation that can cause light skin. They also found that this gene is more prevalent in North India, rather than South. The study also branches out to 54 other ethnic groups in the subcontinent and finds that some groups like people from Tibet do not show this gene at all. I want to incorporate this information along with more factual information in a blog post. I think it will be interesting to incorporate this into the interviews that I do to see how many people know about this/how much genetics influence skin color.
Jones, Trina. “The Significance of Skin Color in Asian and Asian-American Communities: Initial Reflections”. UC Irvine Law Review, 2013. http://www.law.uci.edu/lawreview/vol3/no4/Jones.pdf
In this paper, the author explores the pedestal that skin color is put on in Asian and Asian American communities and how that affects the relationship that people who are a part of those communities have with their skin. This paper also talks heavily about the role media plays in continuing to hold this message of fairer skin being “more beautiful” high and strong. It also focuses on how women are more likely to be held to these standards than men, especially when it comes to marriage and expectations of elders. I want to use how different Asian communities deal with this issue and how it exists today in a blog post about this issue exists in different communities. I will also weave it into different narratives that people share with me.
Hunter, Margaret. “The Persistent Problem of Colorism: Skin Tone, Status and Inequality”. Mills College, 2007. https://www.mills.edu/academics/faculty/soc/mhunter/The%20Persistent%20Problem%20of%20Colorism.pdfIn this paper, the author focuses on the different struggles and dynamics that exist in the United States in terms of skin color. It touches on a wide range of communities, such as African American, Hispanic and Asian. It does a detailed analysis of the history, why it still exists today and how it continues to shape the way we view our world. It also talks about the economic and political advantages that come with being light skinned. In my project, I want to incorporate this with any interviews I get of people who have been raised in the U.S and have immigrant parents, so I can compare their experiences and see if there are any similarities in their experiences.
Lily and Rifah
Our dish is a tomato and mozzarella salad.
15 grape tomatoes.
1⁄2 lb fresh mozzarella cheese
1⁄2 cup torn basil leaves.
3 tablespoons olive oil.
4 teaspoons balsamic vinegar.
kosher salt or sea salt, to taste.
Step 1:Place grape tomatoes , alternating with mozzarella slices, in a large bowl.
Step 2: Combine oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper in a jar with a tight-fitting lid; shake well. Drizzle over tomatoes and mozzarella
Step 3: Mix everything together
Step 4: Sprinkle in basil and mix
Step 5: Sprinkle basil on top
Step 6: Serve and enjoy
This meal is traditionally eaten by Italians on holidays and with cold sandwiches like hoagies. In our meal, two out of the six ingredients are whole foods while the rest are processed. Most of the ingredients are found in your own home like salt, pepper, and olive oil but if not they are affordable just as much as the tomatoes and mozzarella. These items are found at any local grocery store. If you would like to support small businesses or your local farmer’s market, then tomatoes and basil leaves can be bought there. This promotes sustainable farming, use of less pesticides and fertilizers and also helps them expand their business so their foods can reach more people in the community. However, all the other ingredients are usually mass produced and benefit bigger companies and corporations than anyone else. You could also grow the tomatoes and basil yourself, to save more money and also be more environmentally friendly!Overall, this recipe is relatively cheap since most of the ingredients can be found in every home. Altogether it would take about $10-15 to purchase the ingredients. All of the ingredients are healthy, so it wouldn’t be too big of a deal if you ate it every day. However, if you did decide to eat it every day, it would be important to lay off on the cheese because it could cause high cholesterol. However, if the levels are maintained and eaten along with a relatively healthy diet, it should not be a big deal. Hope you try this dish at home and enjoy it!
Science: What if I could make an educated guess on how you’re feeling? Sounds easy right? Just look at stuff like your expression and body language and just call an emotion? However, sometimes it is much harder than that. Researches at MIT have created a new system called an EQ radio. This device can predict people’s emotions with an 87% accuracy rate. The EQ radio is smaller than a wifi router. Imagine that! It monitors a person’s breathing and heartbeat wirelessly. This can all happen thanks to the low frequency radio waves that the radio emits. Then, waves are captured, separated and then these measurements are inserted into an algorithm and the person’s emotions are classified as excited, happy, angry or sad.
Society: The EQ radio is innovative because there is no need for the person being monitored to talk or emote for it to figure out how they are feeling. This can be useful in many ways. One potential use of the device is to recognize depression even before the person does. This can be extremely impactful in the process of getting help for the person’s emotional needs. Another potential use is applying them into “smart” homes, where the music played on the speakers are fine tuned to how the person is feeling. It can also help give live feedback to filmmakers while the audience watches their work. These are a few of the ways the device can be applied into the real world.
Self: I think that this device is truly amazing. Emotions are much deeper than just what we show. Sometimes we hide how we feel, sometimes we wish we could get help about how we felt and sometimes we don’t even know how we feel. A device like the EQ radio can really help people with their emotions. Whether that’s figuring out what it is or getting to an emotional problem before the person realizes it themselves. I hope to try out this one day myself!
Murnane, K. (2016, September 20). Scientists Can Use WiFi To Read Your Emotions. Retrieved October 13, 2016, from http://www.forbes.com/sites/kevinmurnane/2016/09/20/mits-csail-lab-creates-a-system-that-identifies-peoples-emotions-using-wireless-signals/#1b3366cb668d
Gent, E. (2016, October 4). Device Can Read Emotions By Bouncing Wireless Signals Off Your Body. Retrieved October 13, 2016, from http://www.livescience.com/56373-device-uses-wireless-signals-to-read-emotions.html
Poker face no more: MIT unveils device that reads human emotions (VIDEO, POLL). (2016, September 22). Retrieved October 13, 2016, from https://www.rt.com/viral/360226-emotions-mit-research-science/
A Comparison of "The Taming of the Shrew" and "Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhunia"
The play “The Taming of the Shrew”, explores the complexities of love and how it can eventually turn into marriage based in the past. On the other hand, the hindi film Humpty Sharma Ki Dulhania (Humpty Sharma’s Bride) takes a look at love and marriage in the 21st century. In the play and the movie, the parents have a huge say in the marriage part of their children’s love story. The parents in both stories wish to see their daughters secure financially. While there are similarities between the concerns the parents have about their daughters, the way that their concerns evolve and they come to a compromise throughout the stories are different.
In the play, Baptista is only concerned about the money that the suitors can offer his daughter. This idea doesn’t budge or change at all throughout the play. In the end, he’s happy that both his daughters were able to get married to such rich men and doesn’t really ask for much else. In the movie, Kavya’s (Humpty’s lover) father is unaccepting of Humpty’s financial situation. However, after getting to know Humpty and who he is, he changed his mind. These stories reflect that while fathers can still be concerned about financial security in marriage for their daughters, today they are more flexible and willing to accept marriage from a suitor with a good heart and personality.
“Faith, gentlemen, now I play a merchant’s part;
And venture madly on a desperate mart.”
(Act II, Scene i, 345-346)
In the quote, Baptista is referring to himself as a merchant. It’s almost as if his daughter’s marriage means he’s selling her, like a merchant would sell his goods in a marketplace. By this point in “Taming of the Shrew”, Petruchio convinced Baptista that his daughter has agreed to marry him and that they will be married by Sunday. Baptista is very happy. What else could he ask for? Petruchio had everything he wants which consists of money, money and even more money. By playing merchant and essentially “selling” his daughter, Baptista can rest assured that there will be plenty of money involved in this marriage.
In the film, Kavya’s father, Mr.Singh, finds himself in a dilemma. Her daughter loves Humpty, who doesn’t have much to amount for financially. However, her marriage is already fixed with a man who is the perfect match in his opinion. Mr.Singh tries to immediately break Kavya and Humpty’s relationship, but seeing his daughter’s persistence he gives Humpty a chance.
The conditions are simple. Humpty has to find just one reason why Kavya’s shouldn’t marry her fiance. This shows that even from the start, Kavya’s father is measuring Humpty on his brains and wit, not just his bank account. He wants to put Humpty in his shoes
“Fear not, Baptista, we will content you.”
(Act V, Scene ii, 139-140)
During this scene, Baptista finds out that Cambio is actually Lucentio. At first, he is completely outraged. He sternly asks why Lucentio married his daughter without his blessing. Vincentio comforts him, by promising that Baptista will be content with what Lucentio will be able to offer. Everyone in this time period knows that a father wants nothing more than a financially stable husband for his daughter. Vincentio understands and can promise money to Baptista, who’s now worried about this new identity reveal. After the promise, Baptista quickly forgives Lucentio for his trickery. Even though he knows nothing about Lucentio other than his finances, Baptista doesn’t mind his daughter’s marriage with him anymore and doesn’t ask any questions.
By the end of the film, Humpty realizes that there’s nothing wrong with Kavya’s fiance. In fact, he’s an amazing guy. However, there was no guarantee that the perfect suitor would make his daughter the happiest. He tells Mr.Singh that people weren’t created to be perfect. It is the strength and love of a relationship that helps make two people perfect. Still, Mr.Singh is not fully convinced. Kavya’s wedding with Angad proceeds.
It took his daughter to give Mr.Singh the final push towards acceptance. She doesn’t beg, just simply speaks her heart. Humpty and Kavya love each other very much and would figure the rest out. Humpty reminds Mr.Singh of himself as a young man. Once a simple mechanic when he met his wife and now a successful businessman. Soon enough Mr.Singh realizes that Humpty is the one for his daughter. Humpty is smart, sweet, humble and everything that one could ask for in a partner. Mr.Singh happily gets his daughter married to Humpty.
The simple fact that Mr.Singh gets his daughter married to Humpty even though his financial situation does not change throughout the movie shows reinforces the idea that the 21st century dad understands that there’s more than money to happiness to a marriage. Though initially Kavya’s dad doesn’t approve, he takes the time to listen to his daughter and her feelings. Per her request, he gets to know Humpty and eventually changes his mind. It’s all about what his daughter wishes for, finds happiness in and loves. By the end of the movie, everyone is ecstatic. Kavya gets Humpty, her father’s blessing and a fun filled wedding!
Behind all of the beautiful colors, saris and dialogues lies a patriarchy, where men are given the meaty roles and the women are left with the bones. Kangana Ranaut is determined to change that. A girl from a middle class family, often looked down upon simply for biology she can’t change. From a young age, she noticed the difference between the girls and boys in her family. Her brother was supposed to be the breadwinner, savior and everything else. She and her sister were an accident, in attempt of a son. She knew that her parents didn’t have many hopes for their daughters, except to one day get married and have children. She envied that her parents wished only success for her brother and didn’t turn around to encourage her and her sister to do the same. In this anger and frustration, she left her home and went out to follow her dreams.
It took her some time to breakthrough and figure out who she really was. She started from scratch and had a lot to learn. Putting her broken English into pieces and discovering acting changed her life. At only 17, she landed the leading role in a crime drama. The movie (Gangster)]was a box office success and Kangana made her mark as a raw and honest performer in the industry. Throughout her career, her most notable performances include a schizophrenic actress, drug addicted model and villainous shapeshifting mutant. She has time and time again proved her versatility, standing as a strong symbol of a hard working woman in the Bollywood industry. However, her film “Queen” had the biggest impact on audiences. In this film, she essayed the role of a young woman who gets dumped the day before her marriage and decides to go on her honeymoon by herself. It showcases the growth of Kangana’s character Rani and how she discovers who she is. The movie put spotlight on independent women and the importance of being yourself. Through her roles, Kangana has sent her fans and critics alike strong messages of feminism.
Kangana has always been known to speak her mind, without the fear of being politically correct. She has repeatedly talked about the disparity between her paycheck versus her contemporary male actors. She says, “[Men get paid] triple [the amount actresses do]. No one can guarantee the success of a film. So why such discrimination?” This is completely true. After the success of Queen, Kangana’s film Tanu Weds Manu Returns earned over $36 million at the box office which made it the most financially successful Bollywood film with a female protagonist. With each film and interview, Kangana is breaking all boundaries that are set for women and is actively helping to change things in the Indian film industry for women.
"'I Am A Bad-Ass,' Says Kangana On Feminism, Films And Fairness Creams: Full Transcript." NDTV.com. Web. 17 Mar. 2016.
March 23rd, 1987- Born in Himachal Pradesh, India
2003-4- Moved to Delhi at the age of 17
2006- Release of first film Gangster
2006- Filmfare Award for Best Female Debut
2006 - Release of Woh Lamhe where Kangana played a schizophrenic actress
2008- Release of Fashion where Kangana played a drug addicted model
2008- National Film Award and other accolades for role in Fashion
2011- Release of Tanu Weds Manu where Kangana played an independent college student
2013- Release of Krrish 3 where Kangana played a villainous shape shifting mutant which became one of bollywood’s highest grossing movies of all time
2014- Release of Queen where Kangana played a young woman who is dumped by her fiance who decides to go on her honeymoon herself
2014- National Film Award and other accolades for role in Queen
2015- Release of Tanu Weds Manu Returns where Kangana reprised the role
2016- National Award of Tanu Weds Manu Returns
Ever since I can remember, South Asian cinema has surrounded me. As a Bengali American, I have been heavily influenced by this media. So much so that you can call me a bollywood (our version of Hollywood) junkie. The color, costume, music and dramatic nature of the films have always captivated me. However, as I grew up I realized the power that the men in the industry have over mainstream bollywood content. Usually the actors play the main role, with the juicy storyline and amazing characterization. They’re the ones creating, evolving and simply living. On the other hand, the actresses are left to play the flowerpot or “love interest” roles. Enter Kangana, a breath of fresh air.
What inspired me the most about Kangana that from her very first film, she has been changing what it means to be a woman in a place like bollywood. She has almost always chosen roles a conventional actress would typically shy away from because they’re not a ticket to box office success. But she never feared the consequences that her brave decisions may bring. Sure, a few of her films did not work financially, but she has always been praised for her command over her role and strong presence. Her body of work proves her versatility and her eye for strong female oriented films and characters have helped bollywood open their eyes to a rather untapped pool of talent.
Kangana’s strong sense of feminism and want for gender equality is also very inspiring. While women all over the world struggle with the term feminist, she proudly wears it on her sleeve and loves sharing her views with the media and audience. This kind of exposure is extremely important. Bollywood is a billion dollar industry, with many eyes watching their favorite stars. By speaking out publicly about issues of gender equality, her voice reaches so many people. All of this about Kangana and more have inspired me to base my project on her. I hope that Kangana continues this amazing work throughout her career and the rest of her life!
More often than not, you keep silent because you’re afraid that the words you want to speak will not want to be heard. An unnatural silence, something that you had learned to master as the years had gone by. Thinking back, you know that not even half of the things you wanted to say have made its way through your lips. Teeth clenched, lips tight shut, gaze lowered, that is who you are. But who are you? Are you your everlasting silence or the words you never spoke? Growing up, you were always labeled the “shy” kid, who sits in the corner of the classroom and who silently gets her work done. The kind of kid you wouldn’t necessarily miss if they were absent, or really notice when they are sitting in the room. Raising your hand in class was a miracle, but only did so when you were absolutely sure you would be right. The euphoria that you’d feel after sharing your thoughts would be a highlight, something to cherish. You knew you wanted to do that more often, but your fear is bigger than your want, until one day...
“Class, it’s time to start thinking about a class president!” My fifth grade teacher Ms.Phillips asked, with her cheerful smile.
You clenched your hands tightly, just thinking about the position made you scared. You knew what class president really meant. It meant standing on the stage, in front of the entire grade and sharing your ideas of a better school with them. It meant communicating with different students, staff and parents in order to make your vision a reality. It meant getting over your shyness Rifah, you’re not ready for it. But your mind was already bustling with ideas. What if we could start a school recycling system? You had read that in a book somewhere and thought it could really help the entire school actively make a change. In what ways could we clean and beautify the school, to add more school spirit? How could we make our fifth grade graduation the most memorable moment of our lives?
“Remember, each fifth grade class elects two representatives from their class to run for the position. The person with the most votes out of all the class representatives becomes president and the person with the second most votes becomes vice president. The rest of the class representatives get put on the council and will be lots of help along the way. Anyone interested?”
You scanned the room and watched two or three brave kids raise their hand. Naturally, they were the “top kids”. No one called them that, but everyone knew it. They were the kids that actively participated, got good grades and had lots of friends as well. It was definitely going to be two of them, no doubt. Soon enough it was time to move on to math, english and then finally time to make your way back home. As you packed your belongings you couldn’t help but wish you raised your hand.
The next day before recess, your teacher stopped you at the door after the room had cleared, saying she had something to say. What could it be? Did you do something wrong recently? No, it couldn’t be that. She sat you down in a chair in front of her desk. “Rifah, have you thought about running for class president at all?” Ms.Phillips asked earnestly.
“I...I mean...I’m not too sure. I haven’t really thought about it.” You said, looking down at the ground. It was easier to lie when you didn’t look into her kind eyes.
“Well a couple students mentioned you’d be a great candidate. So if I were you, I’d think about it. You’d make a great one.”
“But I’m so quiet all the time. How can I be president?”
“Being class president is not just about making speeches and public speaking. It’s about identifying problems in our community, coming up with creative solutions and really connecting with your classmates. You possess qualities like intelligence and empathy that are needed in a leader. You may be on the shier side but that has never stopped you from helping a friend. Your classmates have recognized that and you should too. We can work on the speaking part together, no worries.”
You finally lifted your head from the ground and met her smile. Maybe you could actually do this. You went home that day and your parents were nothing but supportive of the idea. They helped you write your first speech, the one you’d be sharing with your class. This speech would be the deciding factor on which two students would be elected from your class. You wrote about a few promising ideas you had that would help make your school a better place like the recycling plan and a few beautification projects. You emphasized on the idea that this was not just about you, but the effort and dedication of the entire school community. You wanted to use your position to give classmates a voice in their education, to have their opinions and ideas heard. After practicing reading and rereading aloud with your parents, Ms.Phillips and even a few kind friends, the day finally came to present to the class. You were nervous as you stood at the front of twenty five other people. You shut your eyes for a second, thinking maybe you couldn’t do this. Maybe this was a bad idea Rifah. For you, this was as scary as Tim O'Brien in The Things They Carried going to Vietnam, out of his comfort zone and away from safety.
“Come on Rifah, you can do this.” A classmate said, cheering you on.
As you began to open your eyes, more and more people cheered you on, smiled and supported. You had never felt more safe to speak in your life. With a deep breath, you began the speech that won you one of the two nominations for class president. You were so happy that day and proud too. You did it. The girl that was afraid to raise her hand to ask to go to the bathroom just shared her ideas, dreams and aspirations with the entire class. But soon enough you were faced with a bigger feat, a speech in front of the whole grade, asking them for their vote for the position of the president. You were scared, but this time you knew you had the support of your classmates and teacher. You started your speech, nervous as usual. But as more people smiled, laughed at the new jokes you added and cheered when you said something they enjoyed, you gained your confidence. You didn’t end up becoming president or vice president, but being on the council was the best reward you could ever ask for. The role changed your life, honestly. It taught you it was okay to be shy but it is extremely important to speak up for yourself because your opinions are valid and important. Your ideas would change the entire game. You had that power. It took years to be confident in yourself and even today you aren’t fully, but you have grown to accept who you are and love that person. You have become more outgoing and talkative throughout the years. It’s probably because you’ve been quiet for so long that sometimes you can't keep your mouth shut! Just like how O’Brien has come to terms with going to war and accepted that it had shaped him greatly as a person.
Review of Highway (2014 Hindi Film)
By: Rifah Islam
“Highway” depicts a kidnapping of a secure and protected young girl named Veera. She is the daughter of a very rich and important man in the business industry who has political connections. In the beginning of the movie, she is getting married. There are festivities all around the house. Tired, bored and looking for adventure, the night before her wedding she calls her fiance and asks him to take her on a long drive on the highway. He is initially hesitant, but gives in after Veera persists. On their way home, they stop at a gas station. Veera gets out of the car to stretch but instead finds herself in the middle of gun shots. The gang involved captures her, knowing that she witnessed them robbing and take her away. Soon they realize whose daughter she is and they start to get nervous. One of her abductors Mahabir, however, is especially willing to do as much as he can to stay out of trouble. Mahabir, a friend and hostage Veera move from city to city to try to stay hidden. At first, Veera is met with physical abuse from the boys. She is extremely scared. Once she even manages to run away while they hide out, only having to run back because there’s nothing around miles and miles.
While venturing with her kidnapper Mahabir, Veera realizes that she has found more freedom through this kidnapping then she has had her whole life. Her relationship with Mahabir starts to strengthen and there is no longer abuse in the relationship. She begins to trust him so much that tells him about being molested by her uncle. When she told her mother, her mother made her promise not to tell anyone and did nothing in order to help her. Soon Mahabir realizes that he has fallen in love with her and tries to send her back home, but Veera refuses. She loved this newfound freedom and him. The two decide to continue to travel, eventually finding a house in a mountain village and spending a night there. The next morning, the police have found Mahabir and Veera. They shoot him and he dies. Veera is completely shocked and heartbroken. She is brought back home but can no longer stand her family and their hurtful antics. Veera ends up telling her family the truth about her uncle. She tells them she no longer wishes to live with them and has other plans instead. Flash forward, Veera has a job in a factory and buys a house in the mountains to live in. In the final scene, she remembers Mahabir and how the journey they took together changed her forever.
This movie does not meet the requirements of the Bechdel test. There are not two women with names who talk about something other than a man. In fact Veera is the only female character with a name in the movie who has lots of speaking time on screen. However, Highway does pass the Mako Mori test. Veera is a strong female character who gets her own narrative and doesn’t support a man’s story. The whole entire film is about her and her story. Her captor Mahabir is only a supporting character in her story. This film passes my version of an anti-gender bias test. The requirements of my test are
A strong female character
Who is given enough speaking and screen time to resolve their conflict
I think Highway passes my anti gender bias test. Veera is a power packed character who is able to resolve her conflict by the end of the film. Most of the scenes in the movie include her. In many ways, regardless if the movie passes the test or not, Veera is a feminist character. I think the final scene shows that especially, how she no longer cared about the consequences of telling her secret to the rest of her family and how she becomes an independent woman who lives off of her own work. It’s really inspiring and overall Highway was an amazing film.
He is the apple of his father’s eye, like a gift from his mother.
He was sent from the heavens to lift his family from burden.
He was loved and cherished, this was certain.
His eyes were curious, brimming with the possibility of what laid ahead.
His lips were rough, they never did learn to speak words of love.
His mind was sharp, slowly learning what it meant to be a man.
She was her father’s worry and her mother’s biggest mistake.
She was a punishment from the man upstairs.
She was thought to be fearful, quiet and scared.
One day she closed her eyes, opened her mouth, and spoke her mind.
All of humankind simply turned a blind eye.
Suspension is a common way to discipline students who commit an offense against the school’s code of conduct. To suspend a student simply means that they are not allowed to come to school for a certain amount of time because they broke a school rule. Most American school administrators believe that the use of suspension as a tool to discipline students is successful. However, contrary to popular belief, suspension is an extremely ineffective way to discipline students because it only creates a wider gap between them and their education.
One of the biggest flaws with the system of suspension is the lack of communication between the student and administrator. Even though a small meeting is conducted, where the cause of the suspension is discussed. However, it is not enriching enough to make a positive change for the student. After the short meeting, students are isolated from their school campus and are unable to work with their administrators to try to solve the problem that landed them with a suspension in the first place. Students do not learn anything constructive about what went wrong while they were absent. So, they end up in trouble again for similar reasons. Many times, students misbehave due to bullying, personal family issues or even a misunderstanding in the classroom. Instead of removing them from school, the administrator should try to talk with the student along with a psychologist and make them feel heard and understood. These feelings will help improve the student’s behavior. According to the National Association of School Psychologists, “School psychologists work with administrators to design, implement, and garner support for comprehensive school mental health programming, and school mental health programs have been shown to improve educational outcomes by reducing out-of-school suspensions…” By working with a professional who can truly understand the student, the root of the student’s problem can be found.
The system of suspension cause students to unnecessarily fall behind on school work due to missed classes. While the student's peers move onto new subjects in class, they are at home wasting time that could have been used productively. Instead, the student will have to make up the work at a later time while also trying to keep up with current school work. This causes a backup in the student’s academic progress. Suspension can also be harmful to the whole class’s academic success. According to Dignity in Schools, “Schools with high suspension rates score lower on state accountability tests and rank lower in National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) achievement rankings in mathematics, writing and reading than schools with lower suspension rates.” By being absent from even one class, vital class material is missed, making it hard to follow later lessons. So when students come back to school after a suspension, they are lost in many classes. This means that their teachers will have to spend more of their time teaching the same material again, instead of being able to move onto other topics and skills. These negative effects of suspension continue to widen the gap between students and their education.
Another huge flaw with the system of suspension is making students feel excluded and unwelcome in their own school community. After committing an offense, students need support from their school so they can understand where they went wrong and why they shouldn’t do it again. However, when they are suspended, they feel like they are not wanted and don’t belong. This feeling causes students to resort to other activities to pass time. In some cases this means criminal activity. According to Dignity in Schools, “...80 percent of youth incarcerated in a state facility had been suspended...from school.” Instead going to school, students are lured into situations that can possibly land them in jail, like drugs and dangerous gangs. Instead of being suspended, the students should be disciplined while still being able to attend their classes. This would make it so that students would have less time to fall into the trap of criminal activity and would help shorten the gap between them and their education.
When asked, administrators might say that suspension is an effective way to discipline students, but on closer inspection suspensions only ruin the delicate relationship between students and their education. The practice causes students to lose communication with administrators, fall behind academically and even feel unwelcome in their own school community. The best solution to this problem, as mentioned before, is by conducting an additional meeting between the student and administrator with a psychologist on board as well. This technique will also help bridge the gaps between the administrator and student, instead of students feeling resentful towards them and school in general for being punished. This kind of resolution would be a more useful way to spend their time, without creating a gap in the student's education. It could also help come up with a solution to the student’s initial problem.
School Psychologists: Improving Student and School Outcomes. N.p.: National Association of School Psychologists, 2011. School Psychologists: Improving Student and School Outcomes. National Association of School Psychologists. Web.
"Fact Sheet on School Discipline and the Pushout Problem." Fact Sheet on School Discipline and the Pushout Problem (2010): n. pag. Fact Sheet on School Discipline and the Pushout Problem. Dignity in Schools. Web.
In this revision, I worked the hardest on the conclusion paragraph. In the conclusion of my original 2fer, I just summarized and restated the thesis. In my revision, I tried including some potential solutions and why my thesis even matters. I also tried using sentence structure techniques learned in class, to make my conclusion stronger.
Climate Change Monologue Project
During this unit in World History, we learned and discussed about the global issue of climate change. We started by learning about what climate change is, how it began and why it is relevant. Climate change is basically the earth’s temperature getting warmer. This is mainly caused by human activities that require the release carbon dioxide and other gases into the earth’s atmosphere. This is relevant because climate change is negatively affecting and causing destruction to the earth and all those who inhabit it. In my monologue, my goals were to show the reality and negative effect of climate change first hand and actually make people feel upset about being the cause of it. I also wanted to inspire people to do something to bring change. I hope that my monologues reflect my goals and that you like them!
“Saving the Turtle”
Guess what? While I was on a predawn jog down the beach with my dad the other day, I almost stepped into this random hole in the sand. Since I’m only at the shore for a month during the summer, I had no idea what it was. When I took a closer look, I saw eggs inside it! My dad looked astonished from behind me. He told me that those were most probably sea turtle eggs. The eggs were so small! While my eyes skimmed the area, it landed on a huge dark shape just a couple steps away. I slowly stepped closer and it was a sea turtle itself! My excitement grew as I got even closer, but it was almost immediately gone. The sea turtle had a plastic bag, wrapped around its neck. Bits and pieces of the bag were around its mouth, indicated it had attempted to eat some of it. Now it looked too sick to move. I motioned my dad over and he examined the turtle. He told me he was going to contact a sea turtle rescue team and told me to wait right where I was. I softly brushed my fingers across the turtle, trying to comfort it. I’ve never felt so bad. This honestly could’ve been anyone’s plastic bag. God knows it could’ve even once been mine. When the rescue team finally came, they took the turtle away for treatment and told us they’d send us updates about its health. As soon as I got home, I did my research on sea turtles. Turns out, its not only the trash in the water that’s been harming them. It’s also climate change, a topic from last year’s history class. I didn’t really care about it then, but this has truly opened my eyes. Now I care beyond measure and I want everyone else to care too. I’ve been up all night waiting for their call, it still hasn’t come.
He’s dead. We got the call late at night, a whole day after we found him. They said that he was actually doing good when they first brought him back. In fact, he was getting better fast. Then the next second, he was gone. They said cases like this were probably the most heart breaking. They were absolutely right. I felt numb after I hung up and still do. I wish that I could do something, but there’s nothing I can do to bring him back to life. I remember so vividly, touching its slippery skin, looking into it’s glassy eyes, feeling its nervous heart rapidly thump. Now, its skin is no longer slippery, its glassy eyes are never to be opened again and it’s heart will not beat again. The rescue team informed me that the turtle was already half dead before it ate the plastic bag and they had confirmed my suspicions. This wasn't just a tragic death, it was a murder. It was insane to think, that I and just about everyone else played a part in the murder of this animal. The rising sea waters, rising temperatures, and so many other trends of climate are all things that are hurting them beyond repair, killing them even. We have to do something, right now. Or else we’ll be too late. Oh, what’s the use of asking? They haven’t done anything yet and probably never will unless... I guess I’ll have to do start the movement myself. I hope it’ll do at least the slightest bit of good.
“Let’s Make A Difference”
It’s been three months after the sea turtle’s death and I’m still not over it. To deal with my uncontrollable emotions, I've been putting all my effort into making sure an event like that never takes place. I started out by calling a couple of my friends over who had also agreed that climate change was an issue that we truly needed to shed light on before turtles became extinct. We started our mission by doing some research. Questions like ‘how does climate change affect turtles?’ needed to be answered before we could solve our problem. We learned that things like beaches where sea turtles nest were being eroded by rising sea levels, leaving little space for their eggs. Also, the rising temperature can be harmful to sea turtles too. The temperature of incubation establishes the sex of the egg. When the eggs are incubated in a warmer temperature, they are more likely to be female sea turtles. This will create an unequal ratio of male and female sea turtles. These are a few of the many problems they will face due to climate change. To solve this problem, we decided to get back in touch with the turtle rescue team to see what we could accomplish together. We've decided to hold a discussion at the next town council meeting, talk about our plans for the future and get feedback from the public and our community. We felt like our community was a good place to start, and we’d slowly build ourselves up and change the world. As I looked around the room at all of the hearts poured into this movement, I felt a little relieved. Maybe we really could save the sea turtles.
Password to watch video: climate
1. Tiene un carro.
2. Hay una garaje.
3. Hay un sala.
4. No hay una nevera.
5. Hay un estufa.6. Hay un concina.
A. What is negative space (explain this concept to a fourth grader that has never heard of it)
Negative space is all the empty space that surrounds the subject in a photograph or drawing.
B. Explain how you found negative space in 1. your cut out?, 2. in your stool drawing?
1. To find the negative space in my cut out, the template was helpful. The darker shades in the template was my negative space and the lighter was the positive space.
2. To find the negative space in the ‘stool drawing’, I was initially very confused. I didn’t know where to start, but then Ms.Hull gave me pointer. She said I should lightly sketch the stool . Then, I was to shade all around it which was the negative space. Thanks for the help Ms.Hull!
C. Why does it help an artist to see in negative space?
It helps an artist see negative space because it can make their image more appealing to the eye and adds a nice balanced look. The positive space in the drawing also defines the negative space.
D. How is negative space useful in creating art?
What is one thing that your learned specifically that you did not know before?
I learned many things throughout this project. However, the most helpful was learning the types of lines, which were horizontal, vertical and orthogonal.
How did leaning this thing (types of lines) make your drawings better?
Learning about the different types of lines made my drawing better because to complete the project we had to draw each type of line many times. Knowing and understanding what they were and how to draw them truly made it easier to draw and made my final product look neat and clean.
If you did this assignment again, what would you do differently?
If I did this assignment again, I’d be more efficient during my class work periods so I’d have less work to do later on. Also next time instead of folding my drawing, I would find a better way to store it. Due to the folding, I had to deal with a lot of crease marks which interfered with my drawing. In addition to those, I’d also try to be more patient with my drawing! Yes, sometimes it was stressful, but the more patient you are the better your final product will look!
What is your advice to someone who has never drawn a one point perspective drawing before?
My advice to someone who has never drawn a one point perspective drawing is to always keep an eye on the vanishing point! Without the vanishing point, your drawing may look really weird and your lines may be off. The vanishing point is a key tool in drawing an one point perspective drawing since all your lines end up going back to it.
What resource helped you the most and why?The slideshow was the resource that helped me the most because the instructions were very descriptive and the pictures were easy to see! They helped me to complete my project step by step.
¡Hola! Soy Rifah. Tengo quince años. Esta es una foto de mi familia. Mi familia simplemente mi padres y yo. Es pequeña pero mi familia es súper extraordinario. Yo soy una hija único. Soy muy sociable y simpática. Me gusta leer y escuchar música. Me encanta tomar fotos, café, y flores. Yo también lo quiero mi familia mucho. ¡Mi padres es muy adorables!
Mi mama se llama es Syeda. Es muy baja como yo. Además, ella es bastante guapa y amable. Mi mamá trabaja dura. Le gusta dormir y pasar un rato con amigas. También, le gusta escuchar musica. Me encanta ir de compras con mi mama. Mi mamá y yo cocinamos todos los días. Jugamos al monopoly los domingo. Hablamos mucho. Los fines de semana, vemos películas. Es muy divertido. Ella es muy comica. Mi mamá es de favorita color rojo y blanco. Es mi mejor amiga.
Nombre de mi padre es Shah. El es sociable y divertido. Mi padre es bastante listo. El es bueno en matemáticas. Mi padre es bien artístico y creativo. Además, a mi papá le gusta dibujar y escribir. Le gusta cantando! A veces mi papá cocina. El nunca duerme. Mi papá me ayudar a hacer la tarea. Mi papá y yo vemos la tele los sábado. Mi familia es increíblemente chevere!
Mi Favorita Escuela: Science Leadership Academy
Hola! ¿Qué tal? Me llamo Rifah Islam. Tengo quince años. Soy estudiante de Science Leadership Academy. Science Leadership Academy apodo es SLA. SLA está en Filadelfia. Está cerca de 7/11. Es súper organizada, bonita, y chévere! Hay más o menos quinientos estudiantes. Hay mucho profesores y profesoras. Hay cuatro pisos. SLA tenemos divertia clases y muy magnífica actividades. SLA tenemos conserjería. Participa en Modelo UN y comunidad participación porque son súper divertida! Tenemos debate también.
En SLA tenemos muchas clases! Mi favorita es inglés. Para tener éxito en inglés necesitamos participar activamente. Es muy fácil es por eso que me encanta! En la clase de inglés tenemos escribir, y leemos libros. También, tenemos hablamos con mi pareja. En inglés necesitamos un lápiz y el libro. Me encanta escribir! Además, mi profesor en inglés es muy cómico y talentoso No me gusta mucho bioquímica porque es muy difícil. Para tener éxito bioquímica necesitamos trabajar duro y prestar mucha atención. En bioquímica leemos bastante aburrida libros y escribimos apuntes. En bioquímica necesitamos la bata de laboratorio y la computadora.
En SLA tenemos mucho profesores. Son bastante amables y trabajadores. Mi inglés profesor es el Señor Kay. El Señor Kay es increíblemente cómico. Mi historia profesora es muy talentosa. La Señorita Jonas es de Filadelfia. Es muy creativa. Me encanta historia porque es fascinante. Historia es divertida! La Señorita Garvey es deportista. Usted le encanta baloncesto. La tecnología profesora es la Señorita Hull. Es le encanta surfear la red. La Señorita Hull es muy trabajadora. Me encanta mi profesores!
SLA es nunca aburrida. Lo que más me gusta de es estudiantes, profesores y clases! Me gusta mi clases. Mi favorita es inglés. Aprendemos mucho en SLA. SLA es muy divertida, bien chévere y más o menos loca! SLA es magnifica.