Skip to content

Kara DeMilio LOA

by on May 4, 2011
  1. Identify and develop a coherent analysis of women and gender in relation to significant issues-in this case, social media: Through this class, I have come to understand the ways in which social media tools can be used for feminist activism. In particular, feminist blogs and other social sites such as facebook, twitter, chat rooms etc. can be used as vehicles to disperse feminist knowledge quickly, efficiently and cross-culturally. These spaces also help foster a sense of empathy and community among women.
  2. Demonstrate understanding of social and/or cultural differences, inequalities, and/or relations of power: When the internet was created it was praised as a site where race, class, gender issues would not be a problem due to the relative anonymity of users. The knowledge that I have learned from this course as well as the “Theorizing the Web” Conference has helped me to understand that relations of power are very much present on the internet. I have also come to understand the ways in which social media technology is limited. There is a fairly homogenous group that is in power (has the most voice) which is problematic for several reasons. Deanna Zandt notes in her book Share This, “diversity in the social network sphere is critical for generating fresh perspectives on old problems” (19). If we don’t give voice to diverse populations, we are only serving to perpetuate the problem by casting people out into the digital margins. It is necessary that we work towards mapping those margins.
  3. Draw appropriately on a range of work in women’s studies scholarship, creative work, and theory (both from this class and other courses already taken): One of my favorite readings from this semester was Share This by Deanna Zandt. Zandt discusses the ways in which social media is revolutionizing the way that we communicate as well as the way that activists promote their cause. Social media technology is so promising because we can connect and share our lives with a more diverse and wider range of people. Zandt notes that this allows us to “create bonds of trust and empathy that lead us away from” apathy (x). One of my favorite aspects of this course was that it was not just about learning what others know, but creating new knowledge of our own through course readings, individual research and synthesis. For this course, we were required to do a semester long project which made use of social media to promote some form of activism. Through this process and completing course readings, I have been able to think critically about the ways in which knowledge is created. How has social media changed the face of feminist activism? How are structures of power created both in reality and online?
  4. Know how to document evidence and/or research (make good arguments and use proper citation practices): One of my favorite aspects about this course was that we did not have very many formal, written papers. Professor King required us to post our thoughts and comments as well as document the entirety of our project to the course blog. For my course research project, I created a sex work advocacy blog which introduced me to alternative forms of social media as well as documentation. This was a nice departure from my other women’s studies courses. By this point in time, all student should know how to write papers/bibliographies etc. Social media is changing the face of feminist activism and I believe that the knowledge that I have gained in this course is important for all women’s studies majors.
  5. Show competence in presentation skills: writing and other forms of presentation: As previously mentioned, Professor King did not require us to write conventional papers as I have to do in many of my other women’s studies courses. Most of our research was documented and presented with the use of social media tools such as wordpress, blogger etc. Before entering this class I had very limited knowledge about social media. I am also not the most computer savvy person around, which made this aspect of the course a bit challenging. We were also required to create a poster to present our project research at the “Theorizing the Web Conference”. Since it is not visually appealing to have a poster covered in text we were required to think outside of the box and come up with creative ways to our thoughts and research visually.
Leave a Comment

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: