Hello class! Consider this entry my official, virtual welcome to our online classroom. Though I have little experience administering blogs, I am excited about the potential for us to embark on this adventure together.
I'm going to use this entry as an example of the kind of posts and comments I'm looking for with regard to your blog assignments. We'll go over in greater detail how to use this blog and post entries of your own during class. For now, I'd like to share a piece of artwork from one of my favorites: Nina Katchadourian. This piece:
is entitled "Artificial Inseminations" (1998). You can find out more about Katchadourian and her work here.
I think you'll find that much of her work will resonate with our course topics and discussions, but with regard to this photograph, I'd like to ask about the literal connotations of "Artificial Inseminations." Here we see pictured a deliberately placed avian egg in a ceramic bowl, presumably submerged in water and accompanied by swimming tadpoles. We're familiar with what this image conjures: a sequestered, placid egg surrounded (ambushed?) by eager and active sperm. We will discuss the sexed and gendered metaphors of this trope when we read Martin's article, "The Egg and the Sperm." But for now, why do you think Katchadourian has displayed--and displaced--this otherwise familiar image as such? Does it speak to inter-species relations or engineered manipulations? Human mastery over nature? Evolution versus intelligent design? Is it a play on popular "reproduction"--that is, the way mass culture is replicated? What do you think?
So, in this example, you'll see I've asked plenty of evocative questions. In your posts, you're only obliged to ask one--but more are always generative! I'd also like you to relate your pop artifact and question to the week's topic or a specific reading from that week (which I haven't done here because our semester has just begun!). Should you choose to comment instead, make sure your answers express your opinions in relation to the week's reading(s) as well.
Best of luck to you all! I'm really looking forward to seeing what popular artifacts you'll integrate into this course!