Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Exploration 4 from Phillip Wolf

Part One:
Through our discussions I learned a lot more about the hardships that protesters as well as normal people faced during the 60s. It resonated with me that people from almost every walk of life stood up for what they believed in and tried to stop the injustice. A quote that I noted during the video was when one of the narrators said the movement was "not looking for negros, but for American citizens interested in democracy". I thought that this quote really showed that they were not only "black" protests, but protests for all.

The topic from the video that I chose to research was Elijah Muhammad. During the 60s Muhammad was the leader of a group called the Nation of Islam, whose goal was to improve the spiritual, mental, social, and economic condition of African Americans in the US. As the leader of the group, Muhammad was able to attract nearly 30,000 thanks to Malcolm X, a famous figure who had quickly risen through the ranks. Muhammad's teachings in the NOI consisted of his own versions of Muslim scripture, saying blacks were the 'original' humans and labeling whites as 'evil'. Muhammad also preached the goal of the NOI to return the 'predominant superiority' of blacks across America. Many of Muhammad's teachings appealed to poor, young black males, and Muhammad embraced this by purchasing land and businesses for housing and employment of said young black males. His abstract teachings however lead to disagreements with Malcolm X, possibly the most notable member of the Nation of Islam. Muhammad also received criticism for using funds from the NOI to support his estimated 21 children, whom he had with at least five different woman.

Muhammad speaking with Malcolm X. A rift with Muhammad is said to be the reason X left the NOI.

Part Two:
How to Tell a True War Story:
I found this passage from the book very interesting. I enjoyed the different stories that O'Brien told in this passage because I have always enjoyed reading books about war. I found the theme of this passage interesting as well because it seemed that he liked to say that a true war story didn't actually have to be the truth. They didn't have to be about war, they were about experiences, and things that war led to. A quote in the chapter that stood out to me was "Though it's odd, you're never more alive than when you're almost dead". Another part I liked was when Rat Kiley wrote to his dead friends sister and she didn't reply, and he just kept calling her a "dumb cooze" even though there were so many other things he could've called her.

The Dentist:
This passage was very short but I thought that it did a good job of showing human nature, or at least the nature of men. Curt Lemon was deathly scared of dentists and had no shame in telling his comrades that he did not want to be checked out. When he did, he passed out and made himself look a bit like a wuss. After, he faked a toothache and practically forced the dentist to pull out a tooth. I liked this because it shows the reluctance for us to be made to look weak. This idea is especially prevalent in war, and is shown in other parts of the book. I thought this passage exemplified that idea and showed it in a much more innocent way than the men being brave in combat to show their masculinity.

1 comment:

  1. I agree with your reflection on "Dentist". Beautifully worded explanation!


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