The Veil Unveiled

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In the book, Persepolis part 1, Marjane, the author of the book and little girl in the section of the book, talks about what it was like growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution.  She takes the reader back as she relives what it was like during the era of the veil.  She mentions that there were people that did not want to wear the veil and how there were demonstrations that involved people that were for and against the wearing of the veil.  She also mentioned beforehand that in 1980, the wearing of the veil became a requirement at her school.  Marjane talked about how at her school the students did not want to wear the veil because they did not understand its purpose.  She mentioned that she did not know what to think about the veil.  This was evident because she mainly talked about what was happening around her during the time of the veil.  She didnt really give her own opinion on the matter. 

I feel that Marjane uncovered some history behind the wearing of the veil in Iran for many people, including myself.  I had no idea as to why the veil was worn in that part of the world.  Most people assume that everyone who wears a veil, does so for religious reasons, which is probably the case in today’s society.  She made it clear that it was the result of the Cultural Revolution.  She also uncovered some things that many people would like to know.  For instance, i always knew that there had to be people that were opposed to wearing the veil, as well as many other cultural things.  And how there must have been some sort of conflict during this era regarding the changes.  I found this section of the book very interesting because i felt as if the author was very transparent and unafraid to let the readers know and get a glimpse of life during the Revolution during the time of the veil. 

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Comics as Novels?

When I would think about comics, the first thing that comes to my mind is that comics are about heroes and bad guys and made up fantasy characters, something along with Marvel Comics, DC Comics and Manga. The second thought about comics is about humor and cartoons, something along the lines of comic strips that you can find in newspaper and some comic books like Archie. It was easy to think of comics as such because of the mass influence and production Marvel Comics and DC Comics have. Very recently I discovered that there is much more to comics than action and fantasy: there is truth, anecdotes and great stories.

From someone who has never read a comic before, I must say that when reading Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi I was very impresses on how comic about a little girl (author) growing up in Iran could be so interesting. The first part, or book one, is about how she learned many things about society including norms, politics, and social classes. Satrapi’s childhood was very interesting and the book shows how she had to accept the norms set by her government and society. She was forced to wear a veil at school. teachers and other people could hurt her or more if she or other girls and women didn’t wear it. She learned about the separation of social classes. Her maid and a neighbor were having secret romance. When her maid was caught with the romance Satrapi was told that it was impossible for them to have a relationship “because in [Iran] [people] must stay within [their] own social class (37). She was so young to accept that norm but yet she was forced to accept because that was the society she was part of.

There are other great anecdotes and lesson and historic events the author had to learn and live through that makes the comic book very similar to a novel. When reading the book it felt as if I was reading a novel and not a book. The book has open my mind and to look at comics as more than action and superheroes and collecting every issue of a series. Now I know comics are more than just issues to read and collect. They could be great novels.

The persepolis

The Persepolis is a very interesting comic to read because it tells the story of a little girl and how she grows up.  The book starts off with Marjane Satrapi as ten years old saying she is not very popular and everyone else is much better than her in every way, as well as no one cares for her.  She believed that she was born in religion, and that religion was the answer to everything and God did everything for a reason.  She wanted to become a prophet when she grew up.  She told her teacher this and the teacher was concerned that she wanted to be prophet and she approached her parents.  After the teacher told her parents this, they saw nothing wrong with this.  It continues with Marjane’s story of what happened in her life and how she grew up with her parents, family, and school.  Everything does happen for a reason as she would put it.

Marjane tells her story of her being a kid in very interesting detail because she remembers everything that has happened to her as a child.  She tells everything from having positive thoughts to having really strong feeling of sadness, which happened a lot from what she wrote in the comic, from towards her family.  She believed that she if you were fourteen years old that that you are fully matured and you did not need your parents to support you anymore.  She has accurate details of what happen during the war, just like when they were being bombed and they had to hide in their shelter, created from their basement, to be protected from the bombing.  She did  a lot of illegal things because she did not care what would happen and apparently nothing scared her anymore after what she experienced.  Finally, there was a heart-warming ending to the first part of the book.

Art and Literature Combined

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My initial reaction to the comic book was, “Comics are for kids and superheroes, not adults”!  However, I later discovered that comics have contemporized literature by offering a more vivid, edgy format for an author to tell a story by entwining art and literature in a two or three-dimensional form.  The comic book has proven to be successful when reaching several adult readers when the subject is controversial, because it provides an authorial perspective to be visual.  This comical view is livelier when an author writes about the controversial political issues, personal tragedies, and many other cultural dramas.  The serious matter presented creatively through art and words appears to have opened an arena for an author to be open while reflecting their own perspectives freely.  This newfound freedom has further provided an authorial voice to release their thoughts that derives from very dark experience utilizing the combination of art and words either in first or even third person.  Other readers with similar life experiences such as suicide, abuse, cancer, and so forth, can reflect upon the experience in lighter form of literature and this has proving to be healing.

There are three ways we learn visual, auditory, and kinesics.  Therefore, another advantage to the comic books is the authorial voice having the graphical capability to tell a story in history, or politics that is creative in form that would be typically boring. Teachers are finding comic books are a successive tool to use when teaching a student that is visual learners, that before struggled in school.  The comic book is able to be captivate a student so that they can flourish in learning, because the graphical narrative forms.

Comic books have changed the way authors are able to reach their audience, a new and exciting era that is a booming business in the literal world.

Graphic Novels; Good or Bad?

Maus

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Nowadays, with books like 50 Shades of Grey, many readers ask “are books too graphic for some readers?” Some say yes and others simply say no. Many can argue that it is not good for a book to be that graphic, and how a teenager were to react if they pick it up and start reading. On the other hand, people say it’s what makes the book good, and a seller. Author Hillary Chute agrees to the fact that books aren’t books anymore and neither are comics with all the graphic writing there is in them. She talks about Spiegelman’s graphic novel Maus and describes how that novel is graphic. Chute the describes what Maus is about. It is about the author’s father’s experience in Auschwitz as a Jew in the holocaust. We can see where the graphic scenes might lead too since it is taking place during the holocaust. She also talks about how graphic novels are now gaining acceptance in the academy and press, since book two of Maus was published and won a “special” Pulitzer Prize. She mentions about how popular the graphic novel is compared to others. The book was a bestseller and has been translated into many languages.

 

Chute suggested that comics nowadays may be ideal to portray traumatic events and extreme circumstances. Like Maus talks about the author’s father as a Jew in a concentration cap during WWII. Chute says that these comics like these helps the author, artists and narrators express their meanings in a way that cant be described in other forms. According to Chute, these narrative techniques contradicts. She thinks that visual literacy is replacing a verbal literacy. Meaning that pictures are replacing texts since she also thinks pictures show more feelings and emotions than texts themselves do. She quoted, from a times magazine story that these graphic narratives or graphic novels are a growing importance. She says “Comics may be what novels used to be, an accessible, vernacular form with mass appeal” Are these graphic novels really necessary? Should they be allowed to be sold in bookstores where anyone, including a young teenager, can go up to them and start reading? Is Chute right on her opinions about these graphic novels?  

Violence in the Media

violentgameshttp://www.foxnews.com/tech/2013/09/12/training-simulation-mass-killers-often-share-obsession-with-violent-video-games/?cmpid=NL_SciTech

There are two sides to every argument. For the case whether or not the media has had an impact on causing children  to become more violent is more complicated then you would initially think. One side of the argument is that kids can benefit from the interactive battles by taking out their aggression in the “rageful fantasy.” Jones argues that these children playing the games projecting all their negative feelings such as anger, depression, or aggression is a healthy way to learn how to deal with these emotions in a controlled environment, or “creative violence.”

The other side to this argument is the idea that the violence surrounding the naïve minds of children can lead to antisocial behavior or even violence itself. In my opinion, I actually agree more with this side. Growing up I can remember playing the popular 90’s video game Mortal Combat on my Nintendo 64 with my two younger brothers. After finishing playing virtually, we would then usually turn the game into reality trying to imitate the same violent hits and kicks at each other as we had seen in the game. At the time it was just fun, but when we got in actual fights we often used the same techniques we had learned, causing an innocent fight to become something much more serious. Also, there is a lot of evidence linking young mass killers to violent video games. “You shoot a guy in ‘Doom’ and he gets back up. You have got to shoot the things in ‘Doom’ eight or nine times before it dies,” said Evan Ramsey in an online article for fox news, who killed two people at his Alaskan school. He is just one example compared to the hundreds of others out there.

Violence in the media is an every day occurrence from video games to what we see on television. Everything should be distributed in moderation, this applies to the exposure of violence seen by our youth as well. If parents do allow their children to be involved in such activities, then I believe there should be some restrictions set forth such as a time limit to enable the well being of our youth. If more precautions were to be taken, then there is less of a chance that something will go wrong.

Violence as an Aid?

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Many people believe that children exposed to violent media at a young age will develop anger issues and encourage them to participate in wrathful acts to harm society. I also used to be a skeptic of violent video games and comics, thinking it had a negative effect on how the adolescent mind matured. There have been studies conducted to monitor this behavior and the results, although fairly vague, may still be shocking.

The easy solution to this question is just to blame all violent acts on the use of slightly inappropriate media, but this is not the case. The studies that have been performed have had no positive result that individuals who partake in heinous crimes do so because of influences from any media source. While the idea of violent media causing real-life acts to be committed seems logical, there is still room for doubt.  In fact, those simulated and bloody games have been found to allow timid children to open up and build a self confidence that they have never contained before. Some even say that the violent media guides them to truly find themselves and discover their passion in life.

Adults need to teach young minds that is would be morally wrong to reenact anything they see on these games in a real life situation. Personally, I find that violence in media is useless. I was hesitant at first about the idea of allowing this cycle to be continued, but as long as these games are used responsibly, there should be no problem. If these guidelines are followed, then there might be a decline in the number of violent acts committed in cities today.

Is Violent Media good for Kids?

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I can see where both of the sides are coming from with the people who think it helps with kids and where you get considered as the “bad parent”. I honestly thin that it depends on the kid. I believe that for some kids violent media will make them try to act violent towards others and think that it’s okay because that is what media is telling them. For others they may see it as something to use to express their anger and get it out in away of an art like comics, writing, ect…

I do agree with the other when she says that if you use it in the right way then it could be used for a greater purpose than what some parents think that it really is for. Like she said “it’s helped hundreds of people for every one that it’s hurt” because “rage can be an energizing emotion.”. I do belive that it does help kids with their conflicts and what they are going through in their lives bringing it out in these violent characters.

Violence in Media

With the impending release of the latest installment of Grand Theft Auto, a game which has been mired in controversy since its original iteration in 1997, a national conversation regarding violence in the media will undoubtedly begin anew. For those unfamiliar with the game, it allows a player engage in a wide array of illicit activities and in general saturates the user with digital violence that opponents of violence in the media have pointed to as the decline of civilized entertainment that will eventually unravel our society unleashing a post apocalyptic wasteland of Thunderdome-esque proportions. Unlike the late 90s, however, statistical evidence has been collected demonstrating the exact opposite trend within American society. Simply put, criminal activity has decreased since 2002, even with all of the violence the average person is exposed to through entertainment media.

The Bureau of Justice Statistics released its annual report of criminal victimization for 2011 in October of 2012 and presents some clear findings on crime rates, namely a steady decrease in violent crimes and property crime. From 2002 to 2011 violent crime not including murder reported to the police dropped 32%, with violent crimes excluding murder not reported to the police but still occurring dropped 29%. Property crime, including motor vehicle theft, dropped 22% in reported crimes with a 15% drop thefts that took place but were not reported to the police. These statistics included victims ages 12 and older. These are incredibly strong downward trends indicating that violence in entertainment is not even remotely causing an increase in violent behavior within society.

Is violent media good for kids? Certainly not all subjects are appropriate for the very young, and entertainers have adopted rating systems to warn parents of potentially inappropriate content for just such a reason. However, to deny that violence is a part of our genetic and cultural history seems foolish and violent entertainment provides an outlet for people to explore their own nature. Ultimately, the increasing inclusion of violent content in media has not affected society in a negative way and will continue to play an important part in how we as a people tell stories worth hearing.

Understanding Self and Others Through Argument

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Arguments aid in the evaluation of one’s ideas and beliefs in a very real way. To make a proper argument one must look at a topic in a majorly objective way, which is something that a person is not naturally inclined to do. To make a good argument, many sides need to be presented and researched objectively. In doing honest research one must see some validity in other ideas, albeit with their goal in mind, asking “How can I use this opposition to strengthen rather than hinder my argument?” This process not only aids in personal growth, but helps in the process of becoming closer to others both in friendship and community. This does not mean surrendering one’s own views completely; for, after research one might very well, and often does, remain loyal to previous beliefs. It simply allows a better understanding of other world views and opinions, and therefore allows one to better understand other people and respect ideas outside of their own. When you can’t respect the beliefs and ideas of others you are listening without hearing.

To say that there are no other valid opinions is to say that an idea is either fact or personal preference. If it is fact, such as that the sky is blue, it is of course not a basis for argument. Nor is a subject argument if it is based on personal preference, such as a personal aversion to sushi. An attempt to find opposing argument to either of these would be futile. However, many things that a person believes to be true can be argued and often are.

Argument is so essential to personal growth in that it requires one to step outside of self and discover things that they would otherwise like to remain ignorant of. Argument forces one to look their ideas in the eye and question them and in doing this either reshape belief or make existing belief stronger. Without any doubt or research at any point, how can one claim a solid belief? Something can be claimed and paraded all day, but if one has not sat down and honestly evaluated their positions how they can say that they really believe anything at all? An idea that cannot be tested and remain solid is not really an idea at all. It is not right, it is not even wrong.

It Doesn’t Hurt To Read

IsMyInternetBackYet

http://invisiblebread.com/2011/03/held-back/

Mostly, I despise the internet. I try to avoid using it at all costs, but I end up using it every day. I am regularly looking up phone numbers for businesses, finding out the name of an actor from a new favorite film, or getting directions to a friend’s place. Rarely, do I use the internet for researching a paper because it is so frustrating to find reliable sources. I also have a serious case of over thinking every task put in front of me.

In the reading I found that there are many aspects to analyzing a website. I know that I have been taught to analyze web pages in a high school class which is why I only remember half of the steps. It is not all that hard to remember them since the process mostly involves using common sense and context clues to figure out if a source is reputable or not. I think using the internet can be extremely useful because of the quickness and ease it takes to highlight something you find on one page and research it in a new page.

At the moment, I prefer going to the library to find sources because “Most sources in a college library have been evaluated by a reference librarian” and having librarians around comforts me (291). I like having a real person to ask questions. Another thing I completely prefer to using a computer is reading ink from real paper. Reading articles online makes them feel temporary and fleeting to me. My brain doesn’t register the light or something.

Fortunately, with the help of this reading I can successfully research online using only the most current, accurate, and comprehensive sources. Now, when I look to the internet for assistance I will know exactly what I am looking for. Not to mention I won’t be wasting time looking through an outdated page or a page full of LIES. I am looking forward to using these observation skills to narrow my searches and ease my pain of internet use.

Brick of Paper

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Brick of Paper

As much as many of us run from books, and maybe even reading we’re stuck with it. From work, to school, to fun articles, reading is inevitable. It’s like a game of hide and seek that we usually lose. I have spent a great deal of time running away from sitting down and spending hours reading chapters and chapters of a book. This activity, as a child, was entertaining, but now has become boring and tedious. However, we can never run from text books. These are the books that all wish to get rid of, yet we are essentially married to these thick books when we come of age. Math texts, Government texts, English texts, we’re always being thrown another text book to read. Moreover these aren’t small reading assignments, they’re copious amounts of reading material to soak in, and later apply on an exam.

It would be okay if all we had to do was speed read and voila we got it all, but we must pay attention to what we’re reading the whole time. Text books have been an enemy to my days that I think I have off. They’re always there, and there is always something that needs to be read. No matter how much reading I do, there always seems to be more. Textbooks are like Marry Poppins magic bag, no matter how much you pull from them there is still and endless pool of knowledge waiting to be read. This being said there’s been the wonderful “invention” of eBooks, now one doesn’t have to do so much reading, one can just listen. However, not all textbooks have accompanying eBooks, so there’s still a great deal of reading to be done. I guess I’m fighting a losing battle; it may just be time to embrace textbooks, and the reading of them.