Project Update

Figuring out what I wanted to do for my final project was easy, but figuring out how I want to present it on my website is much more difficult. Originally, I had built a site on Wix that displayed a collage on the home page with images relating to my subject matter. My idea was that each image would link to a different tab on which some short essay (a few paragraphs) would discuss one of the several elements of my subject (i.e. bootycalls, “things,” romance in the media, etc.). Although I like the idea of breaking my writing up into segments based on content, I decided to create an entirely new site because the first felt disorganized, and didn’t represent my tone correctly. I think on this new site I want to have the tabs displayed on the homepage so readers can pick and choose which portions they’d like to read more directly. Currently, I’m debating whether I want to keep this collage format in any way, of if I’d rather just do a series of blog posts. The blog posts feel more fitting in a way because I want the tone to be conversational and personal, and I think with the images it could come off like I’m making some sort of statement or claim about how things should work, which isn’t my intention

When your plans have to change

One thing we discussed in class today was the circumstances under which your plans for the project have to change. For me, this change of plans arose with a set of interviews I had intended to conduct as part of my research about people’s attitudes about gender and gender roles. However, after finishing my psychology and history research, I realized that these interviews would be redundant and unnecessary in this section of my project; the larger studies cover the information that these interviews would produce, but on a much larger and more reliable level. In addition, it was noted in workshop that the project focuses too much on me personally, and that some distance would make the project more interesting and engaging. As a result, I decided to cut the interviews out for now.

However, interviews can provide thingsĀ that research cannot, such as nuance and the ability to interact with or contradict the research. Hopefully the interviews will ultimately be able to provide this, but in a different section of the project. In Ray’s words, I’m hoping this change of plans has a transformative effect, rather than an eliminatory effect.

My Case for Enrichment

I’m not totally sure if this counts as enrichment; however I’m prepared to plead my case as to why I believe it should.

As I’ve stated so many times before, I work for the Center for Campus Involvement and we host… well it doesn’t really matter at this point. The point of the whole intro is that there was an event tonight in honor of Native American Heritage Month hosted in part by CCI and so I was working. Basically I swiped MCards and then got to hear the lecture and get paid, which is a pretty sweet set up; I know.

Winona LaDuke
Image from http://voices.cla.umn.edu

Here we go:

So reason number 1: The speaker is an author.

Winona LaDuke was the guest speaker and thus is reason number 1 as to why tonight’s event should be recognized as enrichment. To elaborate, Winona LaDuke is an author (see that, she writes… it counts) who primarily focuses her attention on sustainability and the environment as well as how these issues pertain to Native American tribes today.

Reason #2: I learned a lot about this Earth and it’s resources (it’s dwindling resources at that) that I had previously little knowledge on. Sounds a lot like enrichment to me…

She talked first about her tribe and her experiences as a Native American environmentalist. She then went on to talk about the issues surrounding sustainability and the environment today. She started with the obvious issue of climate change and how it’s affecting crops and animals and the life this Earth sustains. It was all stuff I’d heard of, but never really cared too much about. Then she went on to talk about fracking and how this country is being torn up and burnt down to piles of sand and oil and toxic waste that is ruining our land and our water. Lastly, she discussed food supply and genetic engineering. She talked about how much of the food industry is about business, not really about nutrients at all. That’s actually pretty hard to argue against nowadays.

Finally, reason #3: I learned a new way to think about sustainability and how to spread the word about it.

She concluded with an interesting take on these issues. She basically made the claim that this climate change because of the way we are living today is inevitably going to happen; however, what you do about that change is up to you. I was expecting her to say, “Save the Earth!” or something very dramatic. But I was shocked when she started to talk about how the change is coming and learning to adapt is crucial to survival. One of her examples was corn and how there are hundreds, or possibly it was thousands, of types of corn that can be grown according to what type of soil you are using. Her whole point was that eventually, the country and the world would need to adapt to generating food and energy that is local and is sustainable simply because there won’t be an option for outsourcing once the oil is gone. Which by the way is fairly soon. Like very soon. I saw the graph so just trust me.

 

There’s that. Enrichment. Lots of new knowledge from a Native American activist, environmentalist, writer, former vice presidential candidate for the Green Party, and the list goes on and on. She’s a really inspiring and down to Earth person. You should all look her up now.

Thank you.