BC: Thanks for reading!
FC: WAC 2 0 1 2
1: First Day of WAC Class | September 27th
2: The natural BEAUTY of southern Thailand was stunning. | I am living out loud. I seize every moment and color my world. -I am Poem How I saw myself coming into college.
3: The night before I left for college, I remember my life feeling very surreal. After a busy day of last minute dorm shopping, packing up the car, and saying my last goodbyes to my friends, the night almost felt too quiet. It was a strange feeling. In one sense I felt my childhood slipping through my fingers, but in another sense, I felt it coming back to life. The same feeling I felt at four years old before I sang in front of hundreds of people was coming back to me. But this time, I embrace it. I acknowledge my fears but only let them push me forward. I take my insecurities at face value, but outweigh them by everything wonderful I see in myself. And I am faced by pressures everyday, but see them only as tests that solidify my values. I spent my last night sitting on my roof, staring up at the starry, night sky. Calm, serene, bliss. At that moment, I saw every memory in my life peace together. I saw strength, I saw beauty, I saw integrity. This was the day I learned who I am. -Passage from Memories Prose Poem
4: Participant Observation | September 25-30 | In his article, Smith refers to McCall and Simmons to describe participant observation as a “style of research that makes use of a number of methods and techniques.” It requires being aware of ones environment as well as the interactions between those within that environment and oneself. Through participant observation, one fully immerses their self in a situation. This allows for more accurate studies since the environment is less disturbed and the group's natural behaviors, conflicts, pressures, and values can be fully revealed. In my own quest to understand the concept of participant observation, I decided to observe a process I was participating in during this first week at UCLA. If you look at the photo to the right, you can see approximately fifty-five girls in matching clothing smiling at the camera. About an hour before taking this picture, we had just received our bids to be in the sorority, Alpha Phi. However, in order to receive that bid, every girl had to attend organized social gatherings that form the process of “rush.” I felt that by going through the process of rush, observing the participants, and taking into consideration the opinions of others not involved in Greek life, I was able to conduct my own research experiment and decide if being in a sorority is for me.
5: First Major Experience at UCLA | Sorority Rush
6: meaningful memories | Beating USC at the Rosebowl
7: meaningful memories | Parent Weekend
8: Three New Friends in WAC (Dance)
9: New Friends Around Campus
11: On Costuming and Presentation of Self | November 2 | ThroughPositiveEyes.org is an empowering and unique website focused on eliminating the stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS by giving viewers the opportunity to listen to the stories of individuals living with the disease, see the art that comes from it, and realize these people are not much different from themselves. The website opens to a page displaying animated self-portraits of twelve people who are all HIV positive. In the middle of the images is a short movie giving an introduction to those people and their stories. The first line of the clip gives insight as to what this website is all about as the first speaker states, “ I’m just trying to kill stereotypes and change the world one photo at a time.” -passage from Through Positive Eyes Critic In order to kill stereotypes, we must ultimately allow ourselves to become vulnerable, share our stories, and reveal who we are with the rest of the world. This image focuses on the costuming of daily life. Many people wear makeup as a mask to hide their insecurities and prevent others from seeing the real them. This includes me. I hope to grow comfortable in my own skin, allowing others to feel just as comfortable opening up to me.
12: On My Place in Society- Tableau Project | November 20 | "(Interculturalists) probe the confrontations, contradictions, ambivalences, fears, disruptions, disturbances, and difficulties arising when and where cultures collide, overlap, or pull away from each other." - Richard Schechner, "The Canon." Being half Persian, I walk the fine line of interculturalism in the same way Guillermo Gomez-Pena did. According to Schechner, this is "seen not as a disaster but as a fertile rift full of creative potential." This is an important part of who I am.
13: "We are all different but contributing to the same pull of American culture and society."
14: My family is my identity. My family is the best version of myself. | Everything I had gained from my parents and sister- the close community, support, and encouragement to pursue my dreams- I have taken with me as a part of my identity. My family dynamic has given me the confidence to go into the world determined, strong, and passionate about everything I do. With this confidence, I strive to create the same sense of love and community that I receive from my family anywhere I go.
15: Lacan was a French psychoanalyst and psychiatrist who contributed greatly to many philosophical topics, including the topic of identity. In Lacan’s The Mirror Stage, self identification is the moment when a baby around six months old, still floppy and dependent, can sit up and look at himself in the reflection of a mirror. It is during this moment that the baby is no longer an object, but is able to identify as an individual, seeing the better version of himself in that reflection. For me, that better version of myself is my family. When I look into that reflection, I see not only myself, but my mother, father, and sister too, combining both Lacan’s idea and Sellar’s idea of “allness.” - passage from paper on Identity | Who I Am
16: Who I Want to Be |Photo in the Style of Lacan's The Mirror Stage
17: "The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams." -Eleanor Roosevelt | I remember my dreams. I had this one dream when I was young that if I flap my arms hard enough, I could fly and swim through the air. Although gravity isn’t on my side with this one, my grandfather, who is my inspiration and role model, once told me, “What you can dream can be done, as long as your heart is in it.” I still flap my arms every once in a while in hopes of taking flight. I don’t give up too easily. -passage from I Remember Poem | "Look closely at the present you are constructing. It should look like the future you are dreaming." -Alice Walker | "Remember the past, plan for the future, but live for today." -St. Luke