Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Exploration 4 from Kirsten

From our discussions, I learned a lot more about the video. I learned that the sit-ins were mainly used to create a stir so that they could hopefully make the entire act more widespread. There was no violence for around two weeks when they first started the sit-ins, but then police finally became involved by removing the students that were at the sit-ins. Bernie Schweid says accurately in the video,"Most people did not take the sit-ins too seriously at the beginning," but once they realized that the students did have a cause, the news spread rapidly. Many other acts such as peaceful marches and freedom rides were also used to help black rights become more well known and to make an impact on society so that things would change. Personally I would take away from this how important it is to stand up (or sit down) for something you believe in. Without the drive and determination of all of the people involved in the freedom rights acts, nothing would have changed and we might still be in the closed-minded society that existed back in the 60's.

I researched Robert Kennedy, and found that in 1954, he joined the Senates permanent Subcommittee on Investigations as chief counsel for the Democratic minority. He wanted to help minorities gain equal rights and gave a speech to South African students pertaining to this goal. He managed his brothers campaign in 1960 and after John Kennedy was elected, Robert Kennedy became his U.S. attorney general and closest cabinet adviser. In 1968, five years after his brother was assassinated, Robert Kennedy ran for president against Eugene McCarthy, and was assassinated after his victory speech at the Ambassador Hotel in L.A.
Robert Kennedy announces MLK's death in a 1968 speech

For the short story, I chose the chapter Enemies. In this chapter, there seemed to be themes of underlying tension between the men in the group as well as some trust issues and deception. I found this to be strange since these men have already been through so much together, I wouldn't have thought they would have trust issues or want to blame/steal others items. Two of the men, Dave Jensen and Lee Strunk get into a fight because Jensen thinks Strunk has stolen his jackknife. He breaks Strunk's nose and is very concerned afterwards that Strunk may try to get back at him. In order to avoid this, Jensen breaks his own nose with a borrowed pistol and claims that they are even. I found that the writing was at its most powerful when the author describes how Jensen was "fighting two wars", the actual war and the war in his head against Struck. One question I have is why didn't Jensen just talk to Struck and apologize instead of worrying for a whole week and finally breaking his own nose to "settle the score"?

For the long story, I chose Sweetheart of the Song Tra Bong. In this chapter, there seems to be strong ideas of the Vietnamese world and the American world in comparison. The author shows these differences in a story where a man has his elementary sweetheart come to his relatively safe quarters for his comfort only to have her embrace the Vietnamese culture and eventually leave him. I found that the writing was at its best when the author was describing Mary Anne in the night with the "greenies". He had very descriptive detail that held the readers attention and made you feel like you could smell the scents he was describing. One question I have is why did Mary Anne think that what she was doing wasn't bad?

1 comment:

  1. I like how you included how if there were no brave students or sit-ins, the civil rights movement may have been very different. This is a really good point. I also agree with your thoughts on where the writing was at it's best. This scene was very detailed and important.


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