Friday, December 9, 2011

Week 15

Week 15

Jodie and Laura

Last week marked our last week in Windhoek. We were able to celebrate and reflect on what we have learned and the different experience we have had during the presentation of our integrative projects. Our integrative projects were twenty-minute presentations given by us students in both individuals and groups and presented in a creative format of our choosing. We decided to write a little bit about what each of us did so that you can get an idea as to what some of the projects were.

Laura: My creative project was an audiocast that discussed white privilege. White privilege can be interpreted in a number of ways. But here is my understanding of it: Life is like a big bookshelf. The rights and civil liberties of my white forefathers have given me the ability to reach the top shelf. Sometimes its still a reach but I have a step stool that often times I don’t realize I’m standing on. While certain objects on that top shelf are still difficult for me to grasp, I am in the position to grab them if I have the skill to do so. That is white privilege.

I worked with Faye Terry and Leah Greenberg. While we trued to interview a number of Namibians who we believed would give us diverse perspectives, I feel we brought some preconceived notions into our interviews. We assumed that the Namibians we spoke with had heard of white privilege and had at least witnessed it in their own lives. While some did, others did not. We did discover, however, that those we interviewed saw privilege in areas we had never really thought about before. One example of this is tribal based privilege. This meaning privilege given to those of one tribe and denied to another.

I suppose at the end of the day we learned this: privilege of some sort or another exists around the world. It is only once we acknowledge our own privileges that we are truly able to confront justices in this world.

Jodie: I decided to work alone for my creative project, and after much consideration as what to do I decided that I wanted to do a series of progressive monologues showing my change in outlook on certain things. I started with a one entitled, “My Racism” which was a story from when I was in High School and I had some very racist thoughts. I then did a monologue that looked at my view on development and how what I used to think is beginning to change, especially since being here as shown me what my so called aide is really doing. The final monologue was about my view on Christianity. I have never really questioned my beliefs until this trip. Writing my monologues was very hard because I had to try and put words to my emotions of what I had learned over the semester.

Overall the feeling that I had was that I didn’t know where my place was, but I knew that I had one. I also knew that I had grown and changed in many ways. The thing that I value most from my integrative project is that it gave me a look into what has been going on in my head and heart. I was able to vocalize my changing and growth, which really helped me. I had not realized everything that I had learned this past semester until I started this project and I am grateful for it!

Both of us can’t believe how fast the semester went by and everything that we did this semester. It will be a part of our hearts and minds for years to come.

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