i hope i've escaped my blogger's attack and this post goes on well as its the last lecture dr raihana is educating us on.
today we learnt about CULTURE CRITICISM
basically its interpretaing a text based on the cultures values in the text. culture criticism doesnt have its own theory like feminist criticism and reader responce.when dealing with culture criticism there are many aspects to it. literature is a window into a culture. eg. perhaps we're reading Harper Lee's "To Kill A Mockingbird". as a malaysian, i wont fully comprehend the african american society in the 1950s thats the setting of that story, so literature allows me to glance through their culture from an outsider's viewpoint to try and emphatize with the culture being potrayed in that story.

culture= deals with the interchange between the majority and minority groups
power struggle = politics of living within a cultural group eg. white supremacy over minorities
othering= separating oneself from other, connected to minorities
emphatize= to put yourself in the shoes' of another
marginalising= separation of cultural groups
racial profiling=reduces the identity of an individual to a certain ethnic group
white supremacy= africans and other minorities dont see themselves in the media, everyone views media from a white POV because the media is presented one sided from the white POV
binary= the opposites of people eg. 'they' & 'I' or 'dark' & 'light'
ellipsis= when some words are missing from a text
cultural hegemony= when one social group dominates over the other social groups
normalised racial attacks= the illusion is made real by the media when white supremacy keeps being potrayed, mental abuse and racial chants towards minorities, putting down another racial group to bring out the better in the other racial group

dr raihana showed us many clips showing how african americans are potrayed in the media and sadly they are put in the bad spotlight. amongst all the racial groups in america african americans suffer the worst form of discrimination.
we see that africans americans are loud and have this "in your face" personality, WHY???
its because their history is full of centuries of slavery and it has oppressed their rights and opinions so now i think they feel they want to show themselves as the polar opposites of how their enslaved past was. we also see them wearing the most obscene amounts of jewelry aka 'bling bling'. they never possesed wealth or any human rights being slaves in their past so now they want to show the media how far they've come since then. now this is just my opinion of how african americans are in the media

i would like to add that out of all the clips dr raihana showed us i was most horrified by the racial attacks on the african football players. i've seen how children choose white as good pretty and smart whereas black as bad ugly and dumb. but honestly this was my first time seeing the racial attacks on the football field. what makes it even worse is that the racial attacks are coming from these african football players own fans. its bad enough that these football players have to endure these racial attacks coming from the stadium but the fact is that its coming from their own fans??? honestly its just appaling. these african football players are proffesional and the top of their league and yet people throw bananas, spit at them and throw racial slurs their way. i mean honestly where has humanity gone. does our skin colour label us as who we are on the outside eventhough we're completely different on the inside? does our skin colour dictate how people perceive us eventhough we're human beings with more to us like our compassion and intelligence?

after the end of this lecture, i was left feeling disturbed and just down right pissed off with humanity. i mean i knew how the media racially profiles cultural groups but now i see to what extent. i knew subtley that the media has been potraying the "WHITE IS RIGHT" image to the world in the past few decades. but to see it still present and strongly represented now even in 2009, just saddens me that there is no racial harmony in the sence of media. i hope in the future or now i contribute in some way to change this outlook on minorities so that everyone is represented equally and there's no such thing as cultural hegemony.

thats all from me hope this wasnt too much for u guys to digest.
Arththi Sathananthar 15/9/09


alright, honestly for this post i have no clue where to begin coz i felt in today's class dr raihana drowned us with so much input my i felt i had CONFUSED scribbled on my forehead. it wasnt a horrid class it was just as interesting as usual just that there was lots to take in. ok before i start babbling about how perplexed i was lets get straight to it shall we

the focus was on GENDER CRITICISM
we dug deeper into FEMINIST CRITICISM
gender identities are based from
  1. personal experience eg. stages you go through in puberty
  1. public expectations eg. how society determines the way you look,dress,think,behave
CONSTRUCT = manmade, eg. man/woman, masculine/feminine
GOD GIVEN = whats been biologically given that determines ur anatomical gender

through John Mayer's song "Daughters" we learn that nurture, the way a woman was brought up can affect the way she behaves in society. also in snippet we saw of the autobiographical movie "Becoming Jane" on Jane Austen's life, women during the 19th period had no say in their life choices. they lived in a patriarchal society where everything was decided by their fathers' or their would be husbands'.

therefor femenist critism stems from
  1. the longing for equality among genders
  2. trying to bring an end to social injustice towards women
  3. breaking away from culture's expectations on women
however, we learnt that its not just women that are pressured to uphold the society's expectations, even men face this sort of pressure. what defines them as masculine? is it if they are dominant and abusive towards women? therefor both genders have to struggle to break out of the mould that society has placed on them.

i think the key concept of FEMINIST CRITICISM is that female writers want to dispel the viewpoint that women are voiceless and are just seen as mere objects. female writers and in this feminist criticism move, are trying prove through their work that women aren't just sexual objects but beings with opinions and emotions.

i know this post is really not organised and some of the ideas are scattered. hope you lot can decipher all this. sorry i think i'm having blogger's block or something

Arththi Sathananthar 8/9/09
Wow..How time flies..Firstly,i would like to say sorry i have not posted anything sooner..I'm having a tight schedule,what with my PSS assignment that had yet to be understand,my sketch and my Pesta Tanglung marketing stuff..Second thing is i would like to wish all muslim friends "Selamat Berpuasa"..Third thing is i would like to thank my group members of assignment 2 (RT,Daniel and Eliza) in guiding,supporting and helping me all along in the assignment when i'm feeling not very well at that time..I'm very delighted to be in the same group as you guys..Thanks..Not to forget also,i would like to thank Dr.Raihana in guiding us along the way and giving me the words of wisdom that makes me feel more confident now..Thanks Dr..

Finally,i'm going to talk about our class today..Today,we learned about gender identity which is divided into "private experince of oneself" which is a personal matter and "social/cultural demands/expectations on man/woman" which is a public matter..Gender represents feminist critism..We covered several new and old texts like John Mayer's "Daughters" , India Arie's "I'm not my hair" , Beyonce Knowles' "All the single ladies" and others..We learned what a man and woman's needs are and what are the expectations of them from the society..We also watch some clips where i found 1 of it very disturbing and condemning..It's about some advertisments that exploits women where women are seen selling of goods with their physical apperance and body parts such as their naked body and their miles-long leg..What does all this body parts got to do with products and goods ?? Women are also God-made creatures who needs respect,appreciation and everything else as men..

At the end of our class,we are given our third assignment which is on a story named "Appetizer" by Robert H.Abel..I'm happy to say we are staying in the same group as in assignment 2..We need to do a critical appraisal which includes at least 2 aspects of critical appreciation we have learned so far..We are to choose 2 aspects out of 3 which are "language and meaning" , "characterization, point of view and conflict" and "issues and the 'unsaid' "..And then, we need to put it all in a poster for presentation..Thus,RT, Daniel, Eliza and me are going to meet up at PTSL after class to study and discuss our latest assignment tomorrow..We'll do our best Dr.Raihana..That's all for now..Good night ^O^ everyone~


my my how time does fly.
i cant believe its week 9 already feels like just yerterday we were in class going through 'THE SNAKE' with dr raihana and just look at us now we've discussed figurative language, characterisation, POV, narrative voice, theme, and completed 2 assignments already.

so then we discussed reader response in the previous lecture.
so we've learnt that when we're critically analysing a literary work, its not just the context, form and author thats taken into consideration but also how the reader's response on the text. since the 60s literature has been more reader based and the author's purpose is ignored.

from a reader's response we can get
  1. reader brings text to life
  2. reader identifies the unsaid in a text
  3. each reader has a different POV "could be seen as"
  4. reader is the one that matters concerning the text
  5. reader connects and relates to text through past experiences and personal background
  6. reader can judge a text based on community( racial, religious, gender)
  7. reader needs to be more critical and observant

another interesting formula given by dr raihana TEXT+ READER = INTERPRETATION

other things i would like to highlight on

New Criticism & Formalism = literature based on text, text centred

Biographical Approach = author centred

Patriarchal Society = patriarch; leader of the community is a man

well i suppose this is a pretty in depth post hope it helps for our finals. thats all from me

Arththi Sathananthar 2/9/09

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