Before we even started to read Zone One by Colson Whitehead, I had a negatively biased opinion about the book. Personally, I’m not a fan of the zombie apocalyptic genre, so I assumed that I wouldn’t enjoy reading this. All I know about the living dead is that their main goal in “life” is to satisfy their hunger by eating brains or flesh. When I first started to read the book, I honestly hated it and it wasn’t because of the zombies (shocking)! Fortunately like the other books we’ve read in class, I’ve learned to appreciate the literature for the message it was trying to evoke. Read more
***Please be mindful and considerate of this post. It’s from personal experience and is a sensitive subject for me. I think it’s important to acknowledge racial tampering and distancing within a community, but I’m not here to receive pity from my experience with colorism (that’s a different conversation for another time). Thank you. Read more
For the past few weeks, I’ve been contemplating if I should write a blog post about consent. I didn’t want to come across as disrespectful. As a forewarning, I don’t want to seem insensitive to anyone who has experienced abuse by discussing controversial current events and making my own interpretations/connections to the past. In no way am I trying intentionally to single anyone out, but I would like to explain the “both/and” connection I made about how people use the time period to justify their actions and excuse their immoral behavior.
Before I even make my “both/and” connection, I’d like for you to guess which statement came from a recently exposed situation and which statement came from a past event.
- “Things were simple then. Informed consent was unheard of. No one asked me what I was doing. It was a wonderful time.”
- “I came of age in the 60’s and 70’s, when all the rules about behavior and workplaces were different. That was the culture then.”
As we’ve discussed in class, Racism, Medicine, and Literature are all interconnected and are incorporated in other fields of study beyond their boundaries. I’m a Political Science major and right now I’m taking a course on International Relations/Politics. So far in this course, we’ve learned how theorists view interactions between different states (term used for countries) across the globe and how these interactions impact others around them. I guess I’ve experience a ‘both/and’ situation between these two courses, especially when discussing medical volunteering pros and cons. In the International Politics, we’re reading The Essentials of International Relations by Karen A. Mingst and Ivan M. Arreguin-Toft. We’re focusing heavily on theories and the structure of the international system and how interactions with other states impact them for better or worse. The ‘both/and’ connection I made was about how these main theories (Realism, Liberalism, Radicalism, Constructivism, and Feminism) play a role in medical voluntarism. Before I explain how the theories apply to this controversial situation, I’ll define the meaning of each theory so you have background context of International Relations. Read more
Being enrolled in this Top Lit: Lit, Medicine, and Racism, I have learned that topics like race and medicine play a role in other aspects of society. I am also enrolled in a Civil Rights course for my Writing Seminar requirement as a freshman, so there have definitely been connections I’ve made between the two classes. What really inspired me to write this blog post is a word that we’ve discussed in this class that I just read in my Civil Rights class. In an excerpt by James Forman titled The Making of Black Revolutionaries, he interviewed Sam Block, a SNCC worker from the Mississippi Delta (**side note: please look up the book I’ve Got the Light of Freedom by Charles M. Payne if you’re interested in making more of a connection with the literature portion of this course). Forman wrote about Peacock’s experience of a town curfew in Clarksdale, Mississippi, which was one of the more dangerous parts of the South because of how outdated their ideologies were. Peacock recounts, “The meeting lasted until after midnight and this was past the curfew hours. All the Black people in Clarksdale had to be off the streets by twelve o’clock every night and we wondering if there would be trouble. The curfew system in Clarksdale seemed to me the most obnoxious insult to Black people I had ever encountered, something out of the slavery days. I was becoming inoculated against the horrors we had to suffer in the United States, yet new forms of insult and degradation could still leave me staggering” (Forman, Sam Block, The Making of Black Revolutionaries, 288). Can you guess where I made my connection?
From what I’ve learned these past few weeks in class is that Black people were never given a break from societal injustices aimed at them for hundreds of years. In the primary school systems, we were taught briefly about American Slavery and the Civil Rights Movement to get a general understanding of our history as a nation. However, no one really questioned other fields, like Biology and Literature, and how they are related to what we’ve learned in History class. Who knew that there are books published around the topics of medical enslavement and unauthorized experimentation. As the weeks go by, I’m sure that I’ll continue to be shocked and disgusted by what events occurred in the past, but for now, I can only hope that the torture finally ends in death. Read more