Friday, January 16, 2009
Day 5: Thursday, January 15, 2009
Thank you for tuning in to our blog on our day-to-day experiences and journey through New Orleans, Louisiana. It’s Roxanne and Michele here to give you the 411 update of Thursday January 15, 2009, a day to remember, and HERE’S WHY:
This morning was amazing! After adjusting to the time, place and transportation differences, it was finally our “sleep in” day. No rushing for showers, no five girls in one mirror, and no makeup and blow dryers everywhere. We slowly got ready, ate breakfast, made lunches and moseyed on out to catch the famous street car.
While transferring from one street car to the next we met a older New Orleanian who was nice enough to share her personal stories with us….she shared how the buildings changed dramatically since when she was a little girl. The damage of the hurricane truly affected her so much she couldn’t recognize where to get off anymore.
When we finally got to our destination we were privileged enough to sit in on a guest speaker at NCCROW, Visiting Scholar Leisa Fearing, who spoke about her research on Feminist Participatory Media. She broke it down into three separate areas -- feminism, media, and participation. One definition of feminism is that women should be equal to men in three different areas: politically, economically, and socially, and this definition comes from the liberal feminist tradition. Media is defined as “information, experiences, and stuff,” or the things we use to create, share, and understand our world. Leisa explained that participation includes “mobile, sharing, creative, and capture,” which means that we’re not passive consumers of media any more; we’re sharing in it. Instead of thinking of media as something controlled by a few people, it is now truly something that we can all create. We learned that media has redefined itself recently and there are so many different ways that all people (with internet access) participate in it. One interesting fact was how 75% of 18-24 year old Americans have at least one social networking site. A website that us Californians were naïve to was Twitter.com . Twitter is another way of sharing information that helped those in New Orleans during Hurricane Gustav. They found this website to be more resourceful and helpful than the news in many cases. Media plays a tremendous role in spreading ideas, information, knowledge and contacts during extreme emergencies or disasters. All in all, Leisa’s talk was extremely helpful and we learned a lot. If you want more information on Leisa Fearing and her research on feminist participatory media, her e-mail is: Leisa@elf.net.
After our feminist lecture we met Jen Sachs, who was at the lecture as well. She was a primary organizer for V to the 10th, Eve Ensler’s 10th Anniversary of the Vagina Monologues, that took place in the Superdome in New Orleans last spring. She took time out of her day to speak with us about her role in participating in such a global feminist movement to end violence against women.
Everyone then dispersed to go take care of things that they needed to do for the day such as go to the library to read and do research, buy books at Borders (the Uptown location was once a funeral home), and others went for a late lunch.
At 6 o’clock we all met up in the hostel and ventured into the kitchen where we were overwhelmed with the aroma of a traditional New Orleans Southern meal! It included brisket, mashed potatoes, and pork ‘n’ beans. Everyone sat down and shared their own personal account of their day while eating such a delicious meal some had never tried before!
Shortly after dinner we resided back in our hostel bedroom to discuss readings and theories on race, class, and gender, aka “class time.”
Class should always be this FUN!
By the end of the night, some ventured off into the heart of New Orleans, the French Quarter to famous Café du Monde and enjoyed scrumptious beignets, nowhere to be found in the Bay. Jealous? =)
You are now aren’t you?
We hope you’ve enjoyed the last week’s blogs by our classmates Lauren, Keelia, Scarlett, Dora, Melissa, Stephanie L., Stephanie F., and Anne. Tune in tomorrow for Nikki and Alisha’s take on New Orleans!
As you would say it here in the South, Come Back Now Ya’ll!