شكرا (Thank You)

This has been one of my favorite classes at Trinity thus far, and I’m excited to see what’s to come since now I’m planning on minoring in Communication. For the last few days in this class, I would love to discuss Ms. Marvel more. I know it’s already planned for our next couple classes, but I really enjoyed her story. Maybe it’s because I’m a little self-involved and I love reading about characters who share a similar experience to me (minus the superpowers), but I’m interested in discussing the cultural and social difference between Kamala, her family, and her peers.

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Farewell COMM2302

With finals getting closer and Christmas looming, I am excited because that means I get to go back home, to Italy, for 2 weeks. Comforted by this sweet melancholy vibe, I look back at my first months in America and at Trinity. I had so many different experiences that I could probably write a book, but I don’t have that much time! Continue reading

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Kevin James’ Last Ride on a Winged Segway into the Sunset

Life’s greatest tragedy is the linearity of time.  I wrote that in a tumblr post when I broke up with my last girlfriend #notoverit.  I don’t know if I’d say the semester went by too fast, but I did feel like it went by fast.  I think I would enjoy reliving some Media Interpretation class periods, which is something I never thought I’d be able to say about a class.

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Time Flies When You’re Having Fun

My first semester in college flew by quickly. It feels like just yesterday I was searching for the Richardson Communications Center on the first day of school, and now we have just two more days of class. This semester I was enrolled in many great classes, and this one topped the list. It was the first true communications course I have taken, and I enjoyed it. I think a great option for future topics, of course, would be surveillance. In my opinion, it is a very relevant and exciting topic. Continue reading

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This class seemed to move far quicker than any others I’ve taken.  At the same time, I realize we’ve barely scratched the surface of media.  I do wish we had more time to go more in-depth with the topics that were introduced, which is why I decided to take more communication classes in the future.  For the remainder of the classes we have left, however, I hope we can discuss teens in media.  We spent a good amount of time analyzing teenagers in movies, but I think it’d be interesting to see where teens are in other medias.  Podcasts, books, TV shows, comics (Ms Marvel anyone?).

Speaking of Ms Marvel, it’s easy to recognize my favorite reading for this semester.  I loved applying the concepts we were learning in class (from Scott McCloud’s comic to the readings about ideology, and even some from Bernard Dick) to the lively Ms Marvel comic.  While I wish we had more time to discuss and analyze the messages about “useless teenagers” that were brought up, I think they were blatant enough to be understood clearly.  Overall, it was encouraging to read something that wasn’t condemning the world we live in to a fatal and destructive ending.

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Spoiler: In The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, planet Earth is simply a giant experiment created by mice (surprise: they’re aliens) attempting to discover what the Ultimate Answer to the Question of Life, The Universe, and Everything is.  

On the other hand, some of the readings we discussed weren’t as enthralling for me.  Nick Bostrom, specifically, was very hard for me to read.  All I could think about while reading Bostrom’s works was how real The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy could be.  Douglas Adams would get a kick out of thinking of how fake the Earth probably is.  But what came first? Bostrom’s cyclical analysis of living in simulations, or Douglas’ alien-mice?  It all depends on the simulation. (I actually looked this up, though.  Bostrom’s argument first circulated in August 2001, while Douglas unfortunately died in May 2001).  In the end, I understand Bostrom’s argument a little better than I did previously.  His three propositions (1. Humans aren’t smart enough to live long, 2. Our descendants won’t care about us, 3. We are the simulation) are all equally possible, which is the scariest part.

Either way, I’m not planning on thinking of living in a simulation in the near future.  However, I do plan on studying abroad next fall (Spain!).  Next year, though, I’ll be exploring the communication major, as well as filling out a few more Pathways credits.  I’m also taking two Spanish courses, one in film and the other about Latin American history, to work towards a Spanish major.  If I were to take COMM 2302 again, though, I’d really like to explore topics surrounding propaganda.  This election cycle has been crazy, and I’d like to understand political persuasion a little better.

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Full Circle, it’s Over Already?

It wasn’t too long ago that there were introductions being made on this blog and all the students were sharing a little about themselves. Now it is at the end of the semester and everyone is gearing up for finals. There was a lot that was interesting in this class and then some that were not so hot.

I really enjoyed the White Spaces readings that were presented in class. primarily because they offered examples as well as explain in depth that was easy to understand what they were talking about. Not only that but it also was a point of interest for me since it tied into one of the projects we had to do which I already have an interest in.  The reads gave me pointers that I never really thought about when producing such products and help me improve myself which is why I enjoyed it the most.

Although I enjoyed Scout McCloud’s readings since they were easy to understand and the visuals were used well to express his meaning. I found that the Freud reading was a bore and hard to follow.  Compared to Scout McCloud I felt like there was no purpose to the images and it just added to the confusion. Also I kind of just ignored whatever they tried to show since it didn’t explain its meaning well to me at least and just googled up the concepts that I already had a running understanding of. Though it did help me understand the Phallic Stages after reviewing it a few times and it reminded me about the whole penis envy that females supposedly have. Though I did find myself going to good to have a better understanding of what was going on since I felt the reading only gave you the tip of the iceberg.

I believe this class should focus more on one type of media and go more in-depth with said media instead of trying to cover all medias at once. For example we were talking about print and the next thing I know we were talking about films. This felt like we were just rushing and bouncing all over the place. By focusing on a specific media the students can have a greater understanding of said topic instead of a very, very broad understanding of several topics. Having a focus does benefit other topics since a lot of things talked about can translate over to other topics and thus focusing will allow more in-depth learning.

Next semester I plan to take some more media classes, expand my photography/graphic design skills, and possibly do some video projects with my work.  These are all things I have some experience in prior to the class and have just been reinforced by taking said class.  Over all the class was enjoyable and I think it should have more focus to be even better for future students.

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Reflections

One of the main topics that I would like to discuss would be the impact of 9/11 on American’s views. With this recent election, there seems to definitely be a rise of racism and anger in America. I would even go as far to say that there is in fact much hate that brews from within the confines of this country. “The Land of the Free” from my perspective appears to be neither welcomed nor supported. Therefore, I would enjoy analyzing the impacts of 9/11, which comes from the readings of Jack G. Shaheen, and observe if this event was the sole correlation to the anger that fills many American’s. I believe this topic to not only be very interesting, but essential for learning about the differences that exist not only nationally but also globally.

Personally, for me, I really enjoyed Richard Appignanesi’s Freud for Beginners. I have always been fascinated with the chemistry of the mind. I don’t only mean on a chemical level. While neurons firing are a very interesting subject, I also find a lot of interest in how humans interact with the world around them. While this Freudian reading doesn’t directly cover this, it does highlight the personality and ways of thinking that occur within the human mind.

In contrast, my least favorite reading of the semester was the Bernard Dick reading. Although his writing was extremely useful in our analytical papers, I found the reading to be dry and repetitive. This may also be because I read the article a 1000 times. I don’t discredit his writing at all; it was useful; I just found his style very dull.

My plans for next semester involve a lot of engineering classes. I am studying chemical engineering and I plan to delve deeper into that subject. I will not be taking any common curriculum classes because my entire schedule will be centered on engineering courses. At the same, I will also be in the midst of an awesome baseball season. This will also take up a tremendous amount of time, but the fun that I get from the game is definitely worth it. Dr. Delwiche, on a personal note, I really enjoyed the class. I think it definitely broadened my views of the scope of communications and its importance, while also making me a much better writer.

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