The Right to Health

Is there a “right to health” and if so, are some people more deserving of “good” health and sanitation than others? This question, for most, has an obvious answer, no. However, history reveals a paradoxical tale, one where the term “environmental racism” emerges. Environmental racism refers to the systemically exposing minorities to environmental hazards while disproportionately denying them access to sources of ecological sustenance (such as clean water). Flint, Michigan, a city predominantly populated by Blacks, does not have clean drinking water. The water is not only unclean but the lead found in the city’s drinking water is so corrosive that it corrodes car parts. It appears that Snyder decided that saving cost at the cost of the health Blacks was more important. While this is tragic, this is a large phenomena throughout this country and the world at large. My project will analyze the Flint Water Crisis to determine how this was able to happen and why residents still do not have clean drinking water three years after lead was found in a resident’s home and in an elementary school. I will develop a model so that we can understand environmental racism at large (because this crisis is not the only instance of it. For an example, think of Hurricane Katrina). In order to prevent this from happening in the future, we must understand how it operates, the system that allows it to happen, and why we (the people) could not identify this sooner. My project aims this.

I Am Here To Evolve (remediation)

Whenever I work on my re-purposing project and simply think about my remediation project, my enthusiasm shoots through the roof! ☺️ I am ready to challenge myself with my final re-purposing project and remediation project, and evolve into a more conscious and tech-savvy individual. I am most excited about all of the power and freedom that I have with, what I think of as, my work and my creation. I am the sole decider of my journey and ideas, and I am passionate and ready to create something great! (Despite how uneasy choosing the right path for my projects can be).

challenges

 

 

For my remediation project, I decided to challenge myself as much as I can and create a “mash-up” video. My mash-up video will include three different types of visuals: a recording of someone dancing the choreography for my spoken word piece (re-purposing project); videos/images of various Ferguson and Black Lives Matter protests; videos/images of different cultural allusions that I refer to in my spoken word. Ultimately, my finished project should look something like the collaboration of the two videos (models) below:

(This is the original spoken word that is the inspiration for my own spoken word piece.)

(I actually saw this performance, along with two other works from Trisha Brown, and it was such a compelling and engaging performance.)

I will not create two separate videos or one video that shows one of the three types of visuals entirely and then moves on to the next two types. That’s boring. Instead, I will choose which visual is most effective at expressing my words, ideas, or point, at different stanzas and even different phrases and words in my spoken word. I will also be using my spoken word as background music to narrate the video; however, following my commitment of challenging myself and creating the best representation for my ideas that I can imagine, I will re-record my spoken word over the sounds of a live and raw African drum performance, as oppose to the instrumental used in my re-purposing.

To sum up all of the words prior to this point, I am ready to inspire and challenge myself to collaborate with technology as my creative outlet and representation of the points stressed in my spoken word and the message I am delivering. I am here, and ready, to evolve.

Triumphs and Challenges in My Drafting Adventure

Thus far, my drafting experience has been exciting (surprisingly). I find my topic so interesting and somewhat fluid across several different genres that researching has really become an adventure–a liberating, awe-inspiring adventure.

My successes in the process up until now have been, finding a model for how I envision at least ONE aspect of my final project, understanding what I plan to address, and most importantly discovering a voice in my writing very much alike the voice in the original piece that I am taking my inspiration from. (Listening to the YouTube video of the original piece that is inspiring below will give you an idea of the “voice” you will be receiving from my piece):

 

 

Although I have been (almost completely) enjoying my drafting process, I have a large problem . First, I am having problems figuring out how to incorporate both sides of my argument in a way that makes sense and “fits” with my project. Need some context on WHAT my project is? Well, I am performing a spoken word, similar to the topic in the video above, except I will take a different angle and argue that the revolution is being televised through social media in this Ferguson “era.”

What “opposing view” should I be taking with a topic and genre such as the one that I envision? And HOW am I supposed to incorporate the opposing view? If this were a paper, or a blog post, it would be simple. But, I have no idea how I am going to accomplish these two tasks.

What do you think?

 

30 Minutes of Genre Surfing

I did not began this exercise very excited or enthusiastic. Ten minutes into the assignment, I was already tired of searching for different  examples of writing in the internet and wanted to cut my thirty minutes really short; however, I closed my laptop and thought of a different approach to the assignment. Sitting at my kitchen table I scanned my environment and found tons of different examples, types, and genres of writing. Using this approach, the exercise became a fun and entertaining challenge. It was sort of a race against time to find as much cool stuff with words on it that I could! The list below is a somewhat lengthy (not really) list of writings found in my current environment and on the internet:


 

Environment:

  1. Seventh Generation Natural Dish Liquid – not an ordinary bottle of dish liquid. This bottle brags about how beneficial it is for its users, the environment, and how powerful it is on those tough grease stains.

Food:

  1. Froot Loops cereal box – covered in exciting nutritional information, ingredients, vitamins and minerals, and the distributor, for any froot loops lover to go crazy over.
  2. Lipton Pure Green Tea – attractive box,  that not only spills the nutrition facts, but also persuades any cares about their health, drinking tea, or saving the environment to drink it by informing how their “small cup can make a big difference” and by using a simple graph to show the benefits of regularly drinking tea.
  3. Skippy Natural Peanut Butter – not too exciting to look at until you notice the bold “No Need to Stir!” and know that the nutrition facts and “Did You Know?” section about how awesome natural peanut butter is is no longer important because you’ve finally found peanut butter that you don’t even need to stir!

Book:

  1. Technical Manual and Dictionary of Classical Ballet by Gail Grant – a title strong enough to put any non-dancer or someone who could care less about ballet to sleep; however, this book is like the Holy Grail to any dedicated or aspiring ballet dancers. Full of terms, illustrations, and a pronunciation guide, this book is a dancer’s informative ballet dictionary.

Physical:

  1. Refrigerator magnets – inspirational, self-made reminders, located in a great location to remind myself to “Build a diverse team of self-driving, creative, innovative people” every time I build a diverse turkey sandwich. Very motivational.

fridge 2

Informative:

  1. Proper Care and Feeding of a Water Disposal – very boring title, and conveniently posted on the inside of a cabinet that I don’t even use! Gives instructions and the do’s and don’t’s on how to use and trouble shoot a garbage disposal.

blah


 

Web

Social Media:

  1. Poorly Drawn Lines – funny “webcomic” on Tumblr. An ideal resource of giggles and laughs for that guy or gal who loves their comics and their blogs.
  2. Kanye on Having More Kids (comments) – over 800 funny, harsh, and fan-girlish responses to a YouTube video of Kanye West on the Ellen DeGeneres show talking about that married and father life. If you’re a West fan interested in what others have to say about the guy then you’ll probably have a field day in these comments. Or, if you just want a nice laugh, then you’ll probably enjoy them too. You’re welcome!

Education/Informative:

  1. CTools -My Workspace – the University of Michigan’s student most visited site. Contains upcoming campus events, and information on your personal workspace and proves that most of the irrelevant tabs on the left are actually relevant.
  2. U-M Library  – not too exciting, but the student’s guide and savior to completing research papers and projects. The homepage contains ton of helpful information about frequently used databases, upcoming events, random announcements, and the BEST resource on the entire site: the “Ask a Librarian” section.

Music:

  1. Work it by Missy Elliot lyrics – whenever you love a song so much that you HAVE to be able to recite the lyrics verbatim, or if you just wanna verify that Missy Elliot did in fact say that if you got a big a**, let her search it then  lyrics.com is where you’ll find yourself. Great for music fans and people searching for Drake lyrics to quote.

 

A lot of different genres and modes of writing can be found in thirty minutes.. Most of which you interact with every day and is right in front of you!

Repurposing Post

It was a great idea to work with someone to assist me with some ideas for the repurposing assignment. My partner was very conscious of my interest and what each paper originally hoped to receive. They were also VERY creative and open-minded about all of the possibilities for my Project. It was refreshing to  have my work viewed through different eyes and from a different perspective.

I want to pursue, not one, but TWO topics from the list that my partner developed! They are both very interesting and powerful and deciding between the two seems almost impossible. I believe that my partner developed these topics by not only looking at what I want to accomplish but, by also keeping in mind the original subject of each piece and thinking of ways to stay true to those subjects and choosing ideas that are relevant to them.

In the future, when soliciting advice I will be sure to communicate what I hope to achieve. This experience has encouraged me to think outside of comfort zone when choosing a topic and to never eliminate the wildest possibilities… Because they can be really great!

“What is Going On in These Pictures in My Mind?” -Joan Didion

Confusion-cartoon1

Most of the time, my mind is being invaded by both necessary and unnecessary thoughts and it makes it hard for me to distinguish between the two. To free myself from thoughts that reestablish past events and thoughts that drift away to what the thoughts of others are like. I write to establish and understand my thoughts. Joan Didion’s article, “Why I Write,” spoke directly to me. While reading, “I write entirely to find out what I’m thinking, what I’m looking at, what I see and what it means,” an epiphany overcame me and finally I understand why starting the writing process is difficult for me, but ending it is a release. It is a release from confusion, and once I complete my writing, or my thought, what’s left behind is a feeling of calmness.

Well, Hello Gorgeous

Hello There,

First, eye need you to know that eye look forward to working and growing with all of you Gateway homo sapiens.

My name is Christina Alexander, and this Sunday, January 18th, eye will be 20 years young. Eye am a proud Detroit native, a dancer of ten years, an eternal learner, sometimes a teacher, a queen, at times a calming sea, and a rambunctious storm at others.

Who am Eye?

What an odd question, and answering it is always an agonizing venture for me. Eye really don’t like the question because it leaves little for you to wonder and discover about me, and possibly even yourself,  and eye also am never really certain that eye know the answer myself. Eye like to believe that eye am a flower, or a butterfly, and like you, a living organism continuously growing, rapidly reproducing knowledge, and undergoing changes within due to surrounding environmental changes. If nothing else is true, eye know for sure that eye am fluid.

Eye like to read. To me, being able to read guarantees knowledge–the ability to know–and this is something that eye own and do not plan on giving away. Knowledge is power.

When it comes to what eye like to read, there is not one particular source or genre that eye prefer. Instead, it is the content that eye am interested in. Eye like to read things that advance my knowledge, things that tell me something new about the world, about myself, and/or about people. This is usually fulfilled by children books, rap, soul, and neo soul lyrics, and unorthodox authors such as Edgar Allan Poe and Sigmund Freud. Odd bunch, right? Eye am fully aware. Like myself, my reading collection is also very fluid; however, in all of these places, two things are common: eye am left in awe by the content and eye leave with at least one quote.