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The Guerilla Girls are anonymous avengers who use extreme visuals, provocative text, facts, and humor to expose sexism, racism and corruption in politics, art, film and pop culture since 1985. They mainly focus on issues of feminism in the arts and their goal is to encourage social change. The Guerilla girls serve as model activists for an entire world of supporters who get down and dirty to challenge the conventional common consensus and call them out on unfairness.

For over 20 years, The Guerilla Girls have contributed to worldwide communities through tours, appearances, projects, exhibitions, posters, books, videos, and interviews.
One of their most recent books is The Guerrilla Girls’ Hysterical Herstory of Hysteria and How it Was Cured, from Ancient times Until Now. Within 2001- 2005 one poster that circulated was the Free Women Artists of Europe poster. An action took place in the early 1990’s called Sorry Sweetie. You won’t get a job because most art departments don’t hire women/ Way to go, dude! Men dominate almost every art department in the U.S. You’re sure to get a job! at the CAA conference in New York. One sticker that was created in the very beginning of the Guerilla Girls campaign was the Women in America earn only 2/3 of what men do. Women artists earn only 1/3 of what men artists do. sticker. Throughout the 27 years they have lectures, performances and workshops and Universities such as NYU. Guerilla Girls do actions in front of Museums, such as the BRAINSTORMERS AND GUERRILLA GIRLS “GET MAD” OUTSIDE THE BRONX MUSEUM MAY 17, 2008, where it was an anti-feminist action as well portraying their representation of sexism not only feminism. They have been featured in several books, college newspapers, international press, in print and on radio and television. They won many awards such as the 1996 “Courageous Resister Award,” Refuse and Resist in New York City.

            People should know about them because they tell the mainstream “Official” story of the arts and then reveal the “Unofficial” story, which is often over looked. Most people consider the discrimination issues that the Guerilla Girls stand up for, hopeless. No one in power takes the blame for the inequality that occurs in places such as museums as they display the works of men more often than women’s. Guerillas Girls bring out the cold hard facts into the public eye.

The campaign uses creative visuals. Gorillas are portrayed in many which is a symbol originated by an insider accident or joke and for the purpose of concealing identities of protesters for career issues in the art world.

1. This picture degrades women just by its visual and the text adds depth to it by alluding specifically to the world of the Arts. This poster reminds me of our Media Lectures when we were introduced to ideas of Adam, Eve and Lilith. This image may have been more provocative if it portrayed a missionary position. But either way it works to portray the message that female artists are being discriminated against.

2. This image has a story behind it. This is an ad for a movie portraying sex symbols of that time that play ironic roles in a film which numerous symbolic allusions. For instance, Halle Berry plays an African-American civil rights activist, who founded the Feminist Party in 1971.

3. This visual not only includes a naked woman, but a headless woman. It is perfect for the Guerilla Girls cause. But this also reminded me of lecture when we addressed the fact that women’s heads are often left out of images as to say that is isn’t more important than their bodies.

Guerilla Girl addresses the people with power in the arts industry to aim for change and equality. They do this by also addressing the public to join their cause to promote change with increasing numbers. They use various strategies since they are a campaign group of nearly 30 years in existence.  Some of the earlier strategies were posters and lectures. They have expanded to a wide array of outreach strategies such as tours, appearances, projects, exhibitions, posters, books, videos, and interviews. They appeal to emotions of inequality and discrimination. They try to be proactive, raunchy, colorful, creative, and mysterious to grab attention and they find that this strategy actually works because it is what people remember (From an interview with Guerilla Girl). Definitely visits to Universities are successful because typically, youths of the future, education hungry, opinionated, people who are concerned about their world, innovators, activists, attend higher education. By spreading the Guerilla Girl cause to such a place, they are educated and recruiting to their cause. Many students are in the arts industry at these universities and can become victims of the discrimination Guerilla Girl is fighting against in the near future and students at universities feel motivated to join the campaign with their self-interests and future in mind. The posters are also successful in terms of easily reaching a broad audience across the world. Their posters are very creative and catchy.

        Personally, I would not become a Guerilla Girl because I do not have a firm stand on any one opinion. I am indifferent about many issues that they address. I am surely not a feminist either. I do like that they have been incorporating ideas pertaining to Men as well such as the MAD exhibition. I do think if the campaign was focusing more on general inequality and discrimination without a huge focus on feminism I would probably be more intrigued to join. I do love their creativity and raunchiness, both things that I do not consider my strong point in campaigning on such a controversial topic.

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Research, hard evidence to support our case

Interviews – We will be interviewing students and parents about their views of the education system.
For instance, one question would be
To a student:  “What is the current goal of most of your classes”?
To a parent: “How inspirational do you feel your child’s courses are towards them efficiently learning?”
We are narrowing down interviews to family and friends in the NY public school system.

Surveys – We will survey all public school students and parents we know on aimed issues, topics and questions to gather information, opinions, and show how many people are really concerned with the education system.

Campaigning, raising awareness by presenting facts & opinions for change

Pamphlets –
We will be handing out pamphlets to parents select Middle Schools in Bronx (Jaida & Vanessa) Brooklyn (Nour) and Queens (Geetanjali) after school dismisses students around 2-4 pm.
We hope this will help to reach various areas and activate reform.
Our goal is to raise awareness to parents that they are not alone when it comes to critiquing the education system and that they should be the ones to get involved toward change.
We want to raise awareness in middle school mostly for various reasons.
1- Parents are students are usually proactive together at this stage. In other words both parents and students would have opinions that matter on the education system, rather than just involved parents in elementary school, or overbearing, highly bias, opinionated high school students.
2- This is a critical time for most teens where they need to be inspired, influenced in the right way and develop interests through education.
3- This is a specific and targeting audience to enhance chances of change.

E-mails-
We will be reaching out to NYBOE and DEP through e-mail or phone calls to state our concerns and rebuttals about the current education system.

                 – PTA – We will inform the PTA of select schools through online sources or phone calls of our campaign to see if they are interested in spreading awareness and rooting for reform.

Our campaign will be documented by a slideshow with captions.

~ Geetanjali, Vanessa Lopez, Jaida Samuels, Nour Saudi

Worldwide, tobacco is one of the most prominent causes of preventable death. If we continue on our current path this poison will contribute to deaths of all ages exponentially. Sadly this is the effect, whether a person is a smoker or not, due to the harmful effects of second hand smoke that we are all aware of.
I believe just as companies target the younger generation in ads for sales, targeting them in no- smoking ads can also be effective.
I also believe this method would work best because I know it is hard to quit something that you have already experienced.
For instance, I am and was a vegetarian all my life, so I do not have any urge to try meat nor do I miss it. When I see people around me ,even just trying to fast for a period of time, let alone become a vegetarian for personal reasons, it is a struggle. So if we can persuade children to not even try a cigarette we can make progress.
Recently there has been a ban on smoking in  NYC public outdoor spaces and I have seen notices up around Hunter saying that smoking on campus even if its outdoors is prohibited.
Watching that video brought me rage. Even in the year 2011 someone has the ignorance to say “smoking outside, your not hurting anyone”. Has this person ever heard of second hand smoke?
Just as a smoker has the right to smoke a person walking in a public area has the right to breath in clean air.
Even with all of the steps taken to prevent smoking, as I am walking to school, even in to the doors of Hunter  I always get a whiff of tobacco smoke. And I can’t get away from it, it is the city, congested and packed, we both have to get somewhere by the same path so there really is no escape.
This presents a greater problem for me in the Spring, allergy season. I am so sensitive to smell during this time that even  if a person who was smoking before they got a train entered my cart I would start tearing and my chest would tighten up. It is a horrible feeling and it even surprises me that it happens so easily.
Non-smokers are concerned for their own health and the health of others, including smokers. Campaigning to save ones health will never be a bad, selfish, or in-useful  thing.
Also, so many people die for reasons that we cannot prevent and by dieases we have no cure for, and we all morn them and support institutions to help situations like these such a breast cancer. But here we have a completely preventable issue and we can not even have the decency to obey the law for the sake of it, and other peoples health.
The only way I see to successfully change the way the world views tobacco is by is by bypassing the arrogant old folks who are set in their bad habits and influence children to take the high road.
NYC Outdoor smoking ban begins
NY Times: Smoking Ban
~G. Belpat

In the 1850’s jeans were worn by the “hard- laboring people” and were “the signature of deprivation and sweat. During this time, one would not wear denim if they were wealthy. From the 20th century to now jeans have evolved into being owned not only by the working class but also by the wealthier people. They serve as an “escape from the regiment of the market place” and seen as an attire fit for “casual comfort”.

Personally, all my life I have agreed with the fact that denim clothing gives you casual comfort. From looking at old pictures of myself, I am always wearing some sort of denim clothing. When I was a toddler, you can find me playing in the backyard with jeans shorts. All through elementary, middle school, it was my everyday style to throw on a pair of jeans and a t-shirt unless it was a special occasion. With that said, denim is not something I would wear if I wanted to be really fancy.  For instance, if it was my birthday and I had to go to school I would probably wear a dress instead of jeans.  Throughout high school, when I started paying more attention to what I wore. Jeans allowed me to be dressy casual. I would wear jeans and a cute top to be more stylish than I was but still fully covered and comfortable. Now that I have started college, in my view, wearing jeans tells a whole different story. For example, I wear jeans to school if I don’t have to go to work that day. So, if someone were to really observe me they could probably assume things about me and my life. In my lifetime, jeans mainly pertained to ones lifestyle and style in general.

~G.Belpat

This map shows the split of the Church in Europe.
Lutheran corresponds to Martin Luther.
Calvinist corresponds to John Calvin.
Both men were iconic figures of the Protestant Reformation.
The Protestant Reformation was a 16th-century
religious movement  that began as an attempt to reform the Roman Catholic Church but instead led to the creation of Protestant churches.

~G. Belpat

Frankie Mae has come to realize the oppression she lives under after she has been rudely put down by her “superior” boss-man (pg20). Frankie Mae had tried her best to obtain an education and put it to use. She was ambitious, determined, and had a great sense of priorities, and in just one moment, all of that was erased. She became discouraged and saw no point in pursuing an education if she was going to be wrong anyway.
On the contrary, Frederick Douglass and Jose Yglesias did not let one instant completely erase what they strived for since the beginning. Frederick Douglass’s encounter with the realization of the oppression he lived under did scar him, but it did not put out his fire to fight.  The moment his master explained to his wife why slaves should not be granted education and how it was illegal was the moment Frederick heard aloud what sort of world he lived in. His response to that though was, “The very determination which he expressed to keep me in ignorance only rendered me the more resolute to seek intelligence”. Frederick Douglass was a strong man to never give up. Jose Yglesias was a strong enough of a man to realize that he did live under oppression from the start without him having any formal education (pg79). However that did not stop him from going on strike when he felt it was necessary.

          In contemporary society more and more people are looking toward the stories of Fredrick Douglass and finding the inspiration within them to pursue their dreams despite of the obstacles they face on an individual and communal level. Fredrick Douglass surely did not have all the media tools at hand when he rebelled against the norm and yet he found a way to make change for himself anyway. But today we have a lot more, and with these tools we should have no excuse. Even though media tools make it easier today, it is definitely not impossible without them.

The Digital Divide has become a popular term in our time however some argue that it doesn’t truly exists. Access to all of the modern day media tools are often provided for one to use in public facilities such as school, libraries and hey, even some McDonald’s offer you free Wi-Fi connection. If you think about it, the internet is used to even help the people who do not have access to it. For example, you constantly see fund raising sites advertising for donation in order to help a child who needs a computer for education in a third world country. And in reality, most people living in a third world country have more important things to worry about or even different priorities that make wanting or needing a computer or internet very far down on their list of things to do. A computer, internet and social media are surely a fast and easy way to get a message across, to learn, or to make change. But you are only reaching the people who have the same sources as you as well. So others ways are surely still effective. In our history, we overcame slavery without a single computer. Not having a computer did not effect that magnificent change. So today we should be able to accomplish way more with a publicly available computer or without a computer.
Links:
What Digital Divide?
The Real Digital Divide
An example of how the internet has changed modern group dynamic & why you don’t need to.

~G.Belpat

Every day when I wake up at get out of bed
I turn on the news to see what the weather man said
What should I wear?
How should I do my hair?
Should I go for the look of Christina Aguilera on “The Voice”?
Oh no! I’m late I don’t have much of a choice.
What’s going on today in the world?
At school, what kinds of stories will be whirled?
Oh right, that celebrity who passed away due to a drug addiction.
Oh my, what a role model depiction!


~ G
 Belpat 008