Saturday, July 16, 2011

Artificial Attractions

The topics discussed in class today were so very intriguing. I was honestly blown away at how much I yearned to keep the class session going. The highlights were: 1. How advertisements destroy self-esteem in women and promote violence. 2. Social norms and how they affect our everyday lives.

Today I participated a lot more than usual because I was so passionate about these subjects. I could actually relate to them and that gave me a better understanding of how they affect our communities.

Videos were shown of two women speakers who talked about the topics. I wasn’t able to catch the first speaker’s name, but she tied biology and social norms together. I had many of the same ideas that she discussed and was very excited to speak my mind when discussion time came around. There were some very interesting statistics I learned today such as people who have surgical operations performed on them just so that they could fit in with the social norms. I found it a bit nerve-wracking because I am a big believer in evolution. What if those “mutations” were actually advancements in the human population that we are compromising just because we want to blend in with other “normal people”? I expressed my idea and was pleased to find that others found my perspective interesting and as something that should be considered.

Another fascinating topic was advertisements and how they affect women and men in society. A woman named Jeanne Kilbourne was shown in a video where she expressed her ideas of how advertisements lower self-esteem in both women and men. Usually it is far worse for women because we often see images of “perfect women” in television commercials, magazines, billboards, etc. and it plants a seed of doubt within our minds that soon sprouts into low confidence. A large majority of women tend to want that almost unattainable “beauty,” and I find it funny because those images that are fed to us have been previously doctored and are, therefore, unrealistic depictions.

As the end of class neared, I wished that the conversation would never die down because it was so compelling to see other girls’ opinions on subjects that I am very interested in.

After class us Brown II cohorts met up with Ms. Williams at Providence Place. She took us to watch Harry Potter 7 which was amazingly interesting. It re-sparked my interest in the series and I will be re-reading all 7 books again. Mariko and I discussed the differences between what was written in the book and what was being depicted in the movie. The books always seem to be better.

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