Y2K What is going on? The end of the world, that’s what! At least an apocalyptic ending is what I thought at 13 years old listening to the mass media, in addition to my friends in high school. A simple computer date change glitch caused thousands of people to flock to supermarkets to stock their homes, register for survival classes, and purchase more firearms. I, a very gullible and impressionable teenager, thought the very worst was coming. Because my mother and I were very poor, I started selling whatever I could of my things, board and video games, clothes, and even a gold cross I received as a First Communion gift; along with doing odd jobs to buy extra water and canned food, just in case this really was the end. Many times during this semester we have broached, as a class, the topic of what we would do in a time of crisis, and how we would handle it. In the case of 13 year old me, and several of my friends, full blown panic ensued. Relating this back to course concepts like waste, care, memory, forgetting, and performance every one of these was present in 1999. Continue reading “Y2K? What’s that?”
By: Cam Rustay and Neha Marolia
We would like to accredit the entire film team including: Clayton Smith, Caroline Mossel, Jennifer Bender, and Lily Cordera
One of my favorite Insomnia Film Festival viewings starred my friend Clayton Smith. His short film can be found here. Memory and forgetting played a role as I thoroughly enjoyed his film as a form of entertainment, or a performance. It wasn’t until the other day that I ran into him that I recognized the parallels between his film and course concepts. Continue reading “Drip…Drip…Graduation”
All semester I have been returning to Dr. McCoy’s word of caution about the seduction of scorn and by extension, returning to the scorn many communities receive in the wake of natural disasters for not leaving before disaster strikes. To start, I want to go all the way back to the “Dear Facebook Nation” post that Dr. McCoy shared early in the semester, a sort of “listicle” rant to those who pass harsh judgement on individuals who didn’t evacuate the effected areas of Hurricane Irma. These “rules” remind readers of the intricacies surrounding evacuation to remind fellow Facebookers from making scornful, snap judgments about the individuals who decided to stay (and I use the word decided very loosely).
Growing up, I’ve been fortunate enough to have an aunt who values and prioritizes listening to female artists in the music industry. These artists that she inevitably shares with me have some consistent qualities: they are brash, they are political, they are powerful. One artist that has left an imprint in my heart and mind is Ani DiFranco, an American poet, singer, songwriter, activist and owner and founder of Righteous Babe Records among other things. DiFranco has always had a way of instilling me with a sense of empowerment and insight, even when I was a young kid and didn’t exactly know what she was singing about.
Since writing about my experience at the wake/funeral services that I attended this past weekend, I have had an urge to talk about the body politic and what social factors are capable of altering it. Specifically, I would like to talk about the social implications on the subjectivity of post-mortem burial rights. An identity is only what the actions of the person make it. After someone becomes deceased, who has the right to speak for an identity that’s been, to society, used up? A person’s identity is only useful to society after death to remember; serving as an agency to the performance of memory – but it is too subjective to claim that everyone’s identity is “useful” in the grand scheme of things. Now, that’s not to say that identities are not important, because self-expression is important in everyone; but to further a societal gain, one’s identity must impact the factors that benefit a society. For example, my identity means nothing to someone who is involved in the Labour Party of the U.K. – they do not benefit from my existence, I do not benefit from theirs.
Imagine you’re a server at a downtown bar and grill in the city. It’s open until 3 am and the surrounding area has gone completely silent and dark by the time you and your co-workers lock the doors and say good night. You’ve made cash tips on a Friday night, and it’s just in time too. Your rent is due and you had to make some emergency payments for your school loans and also to buy the parts for your car. It wasn’t a big deal, though, as you were able to make repairs yourself and save yourself quite a bit of money. So you’ve got a fat wad of bills in your pocket as you make your way home, through a small but poorly lit park. You eventually come to realize there are footsteps accompanying your own, behind you. Before you can react, a sharp discomfort hits you in the back and you go down, helpless and in immense pain as someone goes through your pockets, taking all that money you needed to pay rent with and escaping into the darkness. Luckily, a bystander hears the commotion and calls for an ambulance which arrives within minutes. The medics put you on a stretcher and rush you to the nearest hospital, where you’re stitched up. You can’t stop shaking, no matter what you do.
Last week, Aidan and I talked before class about blog posting. He brought up an idea I thought was quite cool—writing a blog post about blog posting and memory. On Monday, I asked for his consent to write about this for my own blog post, to which he conceded. I’d like to use my last blog post of the semester to reflect on blog posting and how it contributes to our course concepts of memory and forgetting. Continue reading “On Blog Posting, Memory, and Performance”
I had this idea in the beginning of the semester but never wrote a blog post about it because I forgot amid the whirlwind of a semester; a lesson of remembering and forgetting that hits close to home. Nonetheless, I have my own personal experience with New Orleans that I think applies to our course concepts. Last spring, three of my friends and I drove the 20 hours down to New Orleans. Yes, the ride was long but the seventy-degree weather in the Gulf was an appreciated change from a Geneseo winter. While in New Orleans, though, I wasn’t really thinking about the city as a place where the country’s waste passes through. I was more interested in the unique architecture, storied history, wonderful weather, music, and culture rich foods, like prawns, jambalaya, and beignets. All of these aspects stood out much more than any negative connotation that accompanies the city r the devastation that occurred there. In so few words, waste wasn’t really on my mind during the vacation. I was unfortunately doing more forgetting than remembering. Continue reading “A Retroactive Lesson in Memory, Forgetting, and Waste”
I’ve always applied a big picture kind of view to anything I analyze, and lately I’ve been considering how the concept of churning permeates every facet of human development. I’ve already written about a lot of the issues I’m concerned about, but I also feel that I haven’t done justice to wealth disparity. I looked at the history of the human race and applied the cyclical perspective to the rise and fall in inequality throughout time. This is an extremely rough and broad view of Western history, mainly based off my prior knowledge, but my objective is to show just how prevalent the churn is, given the most rudimentary understanding of global history.
Continue reading “Unbroken Chain”
Throughout the semester, this course has demonstrated several points of focus that the English Department seems to be increasingly concerned with as of late: encouraging reflective writing, and establishing clear connections with Geneseo’s established Learning Outcomes.