Do We Realize That We Are The Games We Play?

To reflect on the readings overall, I really enjoyed most of the readings that were assigned although some definitely more than others. My absolute favorite reading of the semester was Simulacra and Simulation by Jean Baudrillard. As a Sociology and Urban Studies major, it got into similar style writing and ideas, since Baudrillard was a sociologist and philosopher, in addition to the fact that I strongly agreed with the majority of the claims he was making.

The Sims video game series has been one of my favorite games since elementary school, and it speaks to Baudrillard's point about simulations and our lives. Maybe we are in fact the games that we play?

The Sims video game series has been one of my favorite games since elementary school, and it speaks to Baudrillard’s point about simulations and our lives. Maybe we are in fact the games that we play?

Now to discuss the negatives, my least favorite reading would have to be “Star Wars: A Myth for Our Time” because as a person that has only seen a few Star Wars movies a long time ago, as well as many of the others movies Gordon talks about, it was just so thoroughly removed from myself that it was hard to relate, retain, or care about this reading as much. Although I do know that I want to eventually watch all of the Star Wars and Star Trek series, I haven’t done that yet.

I did not particularly enjoy reading the reading by Gordon, but it still had some interesting parts. The part that I found the most interesting was “Burroughs’ heroes “Kill like maniacs,” they are still represented as clean. In other words, Burroughs lavish fantasies, no matter their unconscious content, are guilt- free for the reader; one can indulge oneself and still come away feeling innocent” (Gordon 317). I think that this idea was so interesting because I feel that it applies to multiple activities such as playing video games and paint ball, as well as various other genres of film especially horror movies. That is a statement that could reflect a major point of film popularity in general– it allows the audience to be somewhere else, viewing and being invested in other people’s problems and struggles, and yet at the end of the day they do not actually affect our lives.

Due to the fact that I truly found more of the sociological and philosophical readings the most interesting, I really wish that we could have a deeper class discussion about these readings or having a writing assignment on them where we can read each other’s thoughts because these are topics that really make people have to think very thoroughly about topics they may not regularly think about, such as life and the meaning of life. I also think that since this class is common curriculum a lot of these students do not get taught to think about topics like this in their regular classes. I think it would be fascinating to see various opinions and conclusions on simulations and life from interdisciplinary thinking. I fortunately get to take many classes that allow me to explore these topics. As a Sociology and Urban Studies major as I said earlier, with a Biology minor, I have the opportunity to discuss these topics from multiple angles, and I think that learning about it in a Communications class was a very unique experience. Next semester I am taking the classes: Evolution (BIOL 3435), HIV/AIDs (SOCI/ANTH 3381), Death & Dying (SOCI 3348), Sociological Imagination (SOCI 2335), and Asian Religions (1330). I am very excited for these classes. I think it will be great to take these courses to get a lot of my Sociology major out of the way before I study abroad in the Fall of 2014 semester. I am planning on going to Tokyo for that entire semester, and fortunately they have a lot of Urban Studies classes that I can take in order to count for my second major.

Enough about talking about myself though, let’s talk about the future of your class. As much as I think that opposing, or complimentary, class topics such as “heroes and villains” would be extremely interesting, you do run the risk of upsetting some people that they did not have the choice of which topic they are in. I also think since these are such narrow topics if someone really did not enjoy that topic it would/could get very boring over time. Topics such as conspiracies and some of the other topics you have done in the past are more broad and can allow for more of a variety in readings and examples. From the student perspective, I think that the concept of teenage identity would be the most interesting because you can tackle that from multiple themes: mental illness, family, relationships, sex, etc. And I love Perks of Being a Wallflower as a very important film out of this list for people to see if they have not already seen it. :]

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It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Christmas! But First…

With finals right around the corner and the mad dash to the holidays in full swing, it’s nice to take a moment to reflect on some highlights of the semester.

You can never go wrong with the crew of Serenity.

You can never go wrong with the crew of Serenity.

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These are not the conspiracies you are looking for

Our future, like Luke Skywalker's, cannot be seen with our eyes and lies beyond the horizon.

Our future, like Luke Skywalker’s, cannot be seen with our eyes and lies beyond the horizon.

This class is by far my favorite class of the semester. I enjoyed all of the conspiracy discussions and learning how ashamed I should be for my fellow Americans who actually believe reptiles run our country. I’m excited for the semester to end, as many of my classmates are as well. I won’t be happy to see the Media Interpretation class to be over since I won’t have any classes in the future that involve watching movies for class. If I could bring up any topics again from the class, I’d like to discuss genre theory again and discuss more about why viewers recognize particular features and tropes in genre films. The article about Star Wars by Andrew Gordon opened my eyes about the space opera genre, and I’d like to see how the sequels hold up to the theories presented here.

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I’m Ob-sessed.

I would really love to continue talking about feminism in media, and possibly discuss that video, “How the Media Failed Women.” I have started to become passionate about that subject, and talking about that along with Freud and all of his peculiar theories. I think feminism is a very important topic nowadays; and I enjoy discussing it with my peers also with the potential of enlightening them a bit.

I really enjoyed any of the readings by Chuck Klosterman. The first couple ones we read were interesting and entertaining like, “Ha ha, he said. Ha ha.” And, “It Will Shock You How Much It Never Happened.” His work is just very quirky and entertaining. It’s not dry, or a struggle to read. I’m interested in what he has to say, and I laugh at what he writes sometimes, which makes it more enjoyable. My least favorite readings were probably the ones that talked about food porn, like, “’Food Porn’ in Gastronomica” by Anne McBride. However, I liked that reading, I just found the subject weird, outlandish and distasteful. After reading some of the different people’s thoughts, I had to agree and disagree. For example, when Will Goldfarb was asked the question, “Is there such thing as food porn?” He responded, “No. It’s a meaningless, artificial term. Porn is a replacement for sex, while food is a consumable item. Except for the fact that they’re both on television I don’t see the two as related…” I agreed with his points. It was kind of a random article for this class. I just didn’t really feel that comfortable talking about that subject either.

I think it would be really cool to talk about book to movie adaptations/fandoms. Personally, I am obsessed with books that are being/have been turned into movies, like Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, Twilight, Percy Jackson, Divergent, and The Perks of Being a Wallflower etc. However, I do think that “teenage identity” would be very interesting as well, and would make for a very enjoyable class. From a student’s perspective, I would want to have a topic that I have opinions about and would be able to have a voice in class, because, personally, discussion is my favorite part about class. I think that these topics that everyone knows about, and most likely have an opinion about, would make for a very fun, interesting class, that I would really enjoy coming to. I also think another topic that’s similar to superhero vs. villain would be something like romance novels (made to movies) vs. whatever the opposite or counter argument would be. For example, Jane Austen vs. That could also lead into a type of feminism/changes in society through the age’s type of class. I think I would really enjoy talking about those (since Jane Austen is my all-time favorite author). I do like the contrasting subjects, but yes, as a student I would definitely be very jealous if the other class was studying the subject I like better. That really would change the whole experience of the class for me, because I would constantly be thinking, “I wish I was in the other class.” Plus, using the same theme for both sections would probably be easier on you as a professor, unless you don’t mind.

fandom mashup

I typed into Google “Fandom Mashup” and I found this combination of symbols from Harry Potter, The Hunger Games, Percy Jackson, The Maze Runner, Sherlock Holmes, and Doctor Who etc. I have seen the mockingjay in the deathly hallows symbol, but not the other fandoms in the holes, or the middle line turned into the trident.

As far as my plans for next semester, I plan on taking: Classical Mythology, Biological Impact and Issues, Principles of Microeconomics, Business Statistics, Early Modern Europe and Leadership for Sport Professionals. This will be my first 18 hour semester and first semester taking an 8:30 class. I am only a sophomore, but right now I am contemplating studying abroad. I really want to study abroad in the summer time, but I know it’s going to be a lot more expensive, because scholarships don’t apply and it’s harder to get financial aid. I really don’t want to miss things going on at Trinity during the school year, so summer would be ideal. My dream is to go to London, England; but I am willing to go anywhere in England, Ireland or Scotland (in that respective order). I’m not too thrilled about my classes next semester except my Leadership for Sport Professionals class. But I’m getting a lot of credits knocked out, which will be a big relief!

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/End

It’s so hard to believe that Monday will be our last class meeting! School seems so dreadfully long in the midst of it but looking back, it’s flown by. With the little time we have left, I think we should revisit conspiracy theories, since that is the theme of this semester, or talk more about simulations, a topic that is always a mind-bender for me. This was actually my last full semester on campus; next semester, I will be away on my senior accounting internship (first big girl job, ah!) until March 8th, party it up during spring break and come back for a “mini-mester” of two classes. I’ll be graduating in May 2014 but I’ll hopefully be coming back for my master’s in accountancy here at Trinity.

bkblow

We discussed this ad and its psychoanalytic symbolism in class (this is the closet image to food porn that I could find without feeling uncomfortable about sharing it on the class blog…)

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Looking Back to Pave the Way Forward

My favorite reading is “This is Emo”, from “Sex, Drugs, and Cocoa Puffs” by Chuck Klosterman.

During the final course period, I think it would be fun to go over the Trysted Tinnitus reading, “So where are the reptiles?”.  I thought that reading was very interesting, and that it was very well written.  My favorite reading of the semester was Chuck Klosterman’s “This is Emo.”  I liked this reading the most because I really like Klosterman’s writing style.  He is very funny in his writing, as well as very clear in what he is saying.  My least favorite reading of the semester would have to be the Jean Baudrillard reading, “Precession of simulacrae”.  I could not for the life of me understand what it was about, and he used big words that did not help the clarity of what he was saying.  I did find the bit about Disneyland and reality fairly interesting though.  It was interesting to consider Disneyland as a means to escape reality, instead of it just being an amusement park.

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‘Tis The End My Friends

Hej Allesammen! Den her post er desværre min sidste blog post!

Hi Everyone! This is my last post!

Freud For Beginners

Freud for Beginners

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