Hey there, friends! How are you doing today? I hope you’re well and, if not, I hope brighter days head your way soon!
It’s been back to school for me and WHOO CHILE! I have been busy! So, naturally, as the onslaught of homework assignments has begun, I’ve needed some good distractions. Fortunately, I’ve found some great ones, and I’m here to tell you all about them!
So, in the past year and a half, I’ve kind of branched out in terms of what type of content I watch on YouTube. Mina Le’s self titled channel is one of the wonderful channels I’ve discovered and become obsessed with in that time. Mina’s videos cover fashion history and costuming and, despite the fact that those topics aren’t typically major interests of mine, her channel has become a favorite of mine. Mina just knows how to make every topic she covers so fun and interesting that it’s hard not to enjoy!
the power of myth
Oooooh it’s confession time y’all: I was supposed to read and/or watch The Power of Myth for my Anthropology I course two semesters ago, but I didn’t. Well, at least at the time I didn’t. Does it count that I’m slowly reading the transcript/book via audiobook now? No?? Let’s pretend it counts anyway!
Anyhoo, as I mentioned this originally was an assigned text that I didn’t read because I am neurodivergent and just the mere thought of online remote schooling makes me ✨super stressed and hella overwhelmed✨ and long story short I kinda got anxious and froze. BUT WHERE WERE WE? Oh yeah, The Power of Myth…I loved that anthropology course (regardless of my inability to complete a simple reading assignment) so much that I actually added an anthropology major to my degree and between that fact, the fact that my own mother highly recommended The Power of Myth, and my own interest the anthopology of mythology, folklore, and storytelling, I decided to finally take a listen to the audio. And—suprise, surprise—I’m really enjoying it.
The Power of Myth is a program originally recorded in video format in which renown folklorist (an anthropologist who studies mythology, folklore, and storytelling) Joseph Campbell is interviewed, largely about what the stories we tell and the themes which span cultures say about us as humans, both collectively and individually. It’s a fascinating interview, whether you’re interested in anthropology, writing and storytelling, and/or you’re just someone who loves stories. I will also say, as someone with depression and anxiety and who has been at a bit of a low point recently, listening to The Power of Myth helped me out a bit, as it helped me to contextualize my own struggles and feel less alone as I realized that many of the things I struggle with are things which human beings have struggled with since the dawn of creation.
khadija mbowe’s critical race theory video essay
So, if you’ve been paying any attention to US news even in the slightest, you may have notice the current shitstorm going down over students of any and all ages being taught what conservatives claim is “Critical Race Theory” (hint: this claim is factually and provably false.).
Now, I took an honors course last semester called “Principles of Sociology,” in which we…well, we learned about the principles of sociology. It was a fascinating and enlightening course and for me, as a disabled BIPOC woman living in poverty in the US, it was also incredibly validating. Honestly, I encourage all college students—regardless of race, gender, disability, and/or class—to take at least one sociology course during your time in school because I think it would be immensely eye opening for anyone and everyone.
Anyhoo! What I was getting at was that as someone who’s taken an honors college level sociology course, I do have a very basic idea of what Critical Race Theory (a.k.a. “CRT”) is and why it’s so important to learn about. So, you can understand why I was already interested in hearing Khadija’s take on the topic, seeing as I’m already a fan of her channel and she mentioned she has a sociology degree! And let’s just say I wasn’t disappointed!
Khadija does a really amazing job of breaking down the basics of CRT, as well as reviewing its history and addressing the concerns people seem to have and the benefits of learning about it. The video is engaging and enlightening and leaves you with plenty to think about. Khadija also leaves plenty of references and resources in the doobledoo, in case you’re interested in learning more and/or want to know where she got her information from!
bertie’s post on the ableist “inspiration porn” trope
Bertie of Luminosity Library has been doing an amazing series all about ableism in the world of books and their latest post on the ableist trope of “inspiration porn” is SO GOOD! It’s so refreshing and validating for me as a disabled member of the bookish community, to see a fellow disabled member of the bookish community speaking up on these topics. It’s sad that often times those of us who are disabled are completely overlooked in terms of “diversity efforts” in this community, but I’m so glad that Betrie decided to speak up!
Disabled people shouldn’t have to measure their success by whether or not able-bodied people will find us inspirational. Sometimes success is running a marathon, sometimes it’s getting out of bed.“Ableist Tropes 101: Inspiration Porn”
Bertie does a wonderful job of breaking down what the “inspiration porn” trope is, why it’s harmful, and how to avoid it in your writing. They go over the ableist ideas behind this often well-meaning trope and deconstruct those ideas point by point. For disabled readers, this post (as well as Bertie’s other posts in this series) is incredibly validating, and I’d imagine that for able bodied readers and writers, this post and the other are and will continue to be a valuable resource! There are some great quotes from “Ableist Tropes 101: Inspiration Porn,” and I’ve chosen to highlight a few so you get an idea of what the post is saying, but I truly hope you’ll actually go and check out the entirety of Bertie’s post, as well as the rest of their series, as it’s so vitally important!
Understand that being disabled is not a tragedy; it’s just who we are.“Ableist Tropes 101: Inspiration Porn”
So that’s all for today, friends! I hope you enjoyed and maybe found something new to love as well! Now, I’ve got a heap of homework to do, a bucket of tea that needs guzzling, and a pile of books that I will be reading in order to procrastinate on starting said heap of homework, so if you don’t mind, I’m gonna head out now. Until next time, friends…