Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Women and Voting.

Voting. It's a bloody and enduring battle for many groups of people to gain their right to vote. In the 1900's, it was time for another battle. The Progressive Era was a time of radical change in the United States. For women, it was a time of struggle, violence and discrimination as they fought for their right to vote in society dominated by men. We saw that reality in Iron-Jawed Angels, a movie that depicts the life of Alice Paul and her efforts and consequences of gaining rights for women.

During the day though, class was more hands-on than usual. We had a discussion about the readings we've had for homework each night. Several peers were chosen to facilitate our group, including Irene. She did an awesome job of keeping the class focused on the questions and not digressing.

The discussions are both a good and bad thing our class. Everyone in our class is an intelligent, active speaker and that's a dream for every teacher. However, at times--and I can tell by the look on Kisa's face--we talk TOO much. We'll easily start debating about something and then our class time runs short. Our professor has been trying harder to keep the responses as concise as possible, depending on the time. From this experience, I learned that when facilitating a group, it's important to keep track of the time. It's also good to let other, quieter students an opportunity to talk. So far, from my facilitating experiences, it's not a thing for me to do, but it can be at times.

In the afternoon, we watched a short documentary on the effects of racism. A group of students decided to do an an experiment with baby dolls and young school children. They were asked to choose between a white doll and a black doll and most chose the white one because it was more appealing. They've been taught that "white is always better".

It saddens me to see that popular culture still depicts being blue-eyed, white and thin is the ultimate person. There's nothing I have against poeple that fit that description, however, there are many other looks and skin tones and eye colors that are just as before. I realize that there is a lot we have to change about our society, especially when it comes to the subconscious mentality of people today. This internalized oppression is deeply embedded in our conscience and we, as a collective member of this nation and to a larger extent, the world, must work to change this.

In the afternoon, we spent the rest of class in the computer lab to continue researching our amazing woman and work on our Action Plan.

Like I mentioned above, we watched Iron Jawed Angels, a movie I've already seen before in my history class but nonetheless a great movie worth watching twice. I love the movie and I was inspired by Alice Paul by her deep passion of achieving equal status for women.

One thing I have learned about that particular struggle for rights though is that women were too focused on gaining just voting rights rather than equality as a while. Alice Paul also thought the same. Though women were finally enfranchised, there was still an imbalance in society. It continued after their victory and it still continues today. But I know that each generation has a different issue to work on and that includes us to continue fighting for women's rights.

Now, time for pizza.

1 comment:

  1. Lupe

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