Blog post Week 2

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The readings, class discussion and lecture has given me more knowledge in the area's of positionality and self-reflexivity. I now analyze my role and and how I make sense of the media I am consumed with. The way that I interpret certain things is different then how someone else seeing the same thing may interpret it. For example the discussion/debate that we had in class today about the ad that VW plans to use during the super bowl brought up several different perceptions. We all have a positionality when it comes to consuming the ad. In the class there were a few people who could see that ad as being racist, and others who did not associate racism with the ad. Personally after seeing the ad and hearing what people had to say about it, my reaction was similar to a lot of students. I think that the ad was not racist, people are quick to jump to the racism card when thats not the intention VW had when putting out the ad. To me its an add using a white man to speak like a black Jamaican man, which makes it amusing to watch. I associate Jamaicans being care free, easy going, happy people. If you buy their car you too can be like that. People are different, some things that offend me, might not offend the person next to me, not everyone can be pleased.
In the Berube reading, he examines his whiteness and self-reflexivity. He wants to examine the stereotype of the "classic" gay man; white, well to do and of middle to upper class (235). Race and class are not talked about amongst his fellow white gay friends. He has privileges being in this position as other gay men of different races and classes do not have. Berube was misunderstood by his fellow group members of the HIV Negative group that he wanted it to be exclusively white. Showing interpretations are not all the same.

2 Comments

Good post. I felt that the VW ad was racially/culturally insensitive. Some Jamaicans might find the stereotypical portrayal of them as happy and carefree insulting, somehow implying that they do not take anything seriously and are only about having fun and not worrying about responsibilities. As you said, though, you can't please everyone. It's hard to combine aspects unique to a particular culture with humor without offending at least one person!

I love when you said that you can't please everyone. This is so true, and I'm sure literally every media text that has ever been created has offended someone in some way, from Swiffer commercials offending women because women are the only people doing the cleaning, to a skittles commercial offending someone who can't taste because they literally can't "taste the rainbow". This commercial is no different. You're going to offend some people, and as we heard, many of those offended aren't even Jamaican. I have a feeling that this commercial will be discussed more after the Super Bowl. Like you, I see Jamaica as a fun loving place full of fun loving people, and I don't see how emulating that is offensive.

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This page contains a single entry by Marisa published on January 30, 2013 6:38 PM.

Bérubé, Positionality and Self-reflexivity - Week 2 was the previous entry in this blog.

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