Two of the classes I am reading for this semester are Intro to Childhood and Youth Studies and World’s Fairs (the theme of my intro seminar course) and BOY do all of these readings have one thing in common!
Basically, racism, sexism, and imperialism are the foundations for pretty much everything we know and understand about the world! From hard to soft sciences, as much as we’d love to believe that scientific development can be trusted to help us better understand the world around us. Okay, not everyone believes in science anymore. But that is a paradigm shift in public skepticism that, in my opinion, is largely fueled by misinformation spread through digital platforms and I WILL SAY NO MORE ABOUT THAT SHIT TODAY.
Summary of Childhood and Youth studies this week: Childhood is a social construct that is still incredibly abstract, and the idea of childhood is modeled after the Western bourgeois childhood and largely ignores experiences of people deemed culturally inferior. Childhood is not a universal concept, and that becomes clear as we learn from children of other cultures and their relative temporal progressions.
A good comparison to make for Americans would be the experience of someone who was enslaved during their childhood versus your understanding of American childhood. This is especially useful for anyone who is wondering why teaching critical race theory is such a hot issue for education lawmakers.
Simply put, understanding how race relations in America have historically shaped the nation may alter romanticized notions of “American pride” in child citizens, especially in the south and Midwest. Consider the insidiousness of slavery and the Manifest Destiny as two major pieces of American history that are glossed over in our history classes. Suppressing or eliminating these vitally important parts of history might paint a certain group of people as a villainous, and that group of people wants to keep hold of their power. They can’t afford to look bad to anyone, especially not people like them!
What kinds of opinions will impressionable children form when they have more comprehensive knowledge of American history? How will this further shape the future of America? I think there’s a reason education keeps suffering in these red states: politicians want your kids to be dumb and racist because dumb, racist people vote for dumb, racist politicians whose platforms are based on hatred. 🙂
Summary of World’s Fair readings this week: World’s fairs were racist, imperialist dick measuring contests! Also, Walt Disney was both influenced by, and helped destroy interest in, world’s fairs.
Oh Disney, is there anything you don’t want to destroy, claim, and rebuild for yourself for tons of money and attention? 🙂
I love when my course readings overlap!
But DAMN is it infuriating to read about how white men basically fucked everything up for everyone else but them in basically every area ever since forever. Especially when you know these mfs are still doing it today! No offense. But if you can’t see that then you’re probably exactly the kind of person who doesn’t want critical race theory taught in your kids’ schools and I don’t even know how to change those people’s minds anyway.
School is hard. My eyeballs hurt.