Questions #1 and #3

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1.Preface: What stories had been “largely forgotten” by the western press, in this example? How do the highlights of the western press influence a sense of global memory/forgetting?

The Western media fails daily to report on certain subjects, people, and events. Some things get extreme, over the top coverage, while other things go completely unnoticed and, therefore, unknown. In Performing Democracy's Preface, the missing story of the Kurds is exemplified as an example of the Western media ignoring certain stories and voices. Other examples of the "forgotten spring" of people fighting for their freedom but forgotten by the Western media include women, mothers, and those who choose to voice their opinions, rights, and ideas in nonconventional ways. In choosing to overlook these stories and these voices, the Western media creates a bubble that is hard to break away from when one is so immersed in it. If these voices and stories continue to go untold, then the Western view of these cultures, people, and events will become skewed and biased towards the only stories that they have heard. The memory of these things doesn't have to be forgotten if they are never known in the first place.

3. What does it mean to protest through literature or with cultural forms? How are these forms of performing democracy?

 

Like we talked about in class, literature creates a way for those who have been oppressed or unheard to speak back to their oppressors. Their own personal stories of defeat, hurt, and abuse can lead to change so that others are not put through the same thing. Literature and personal stories have the ability to make people feel where facts and figures might not make as big an impact. Today, stories can be told in a multitude of places, not just in literature, and our generation is seeing the effect of this. From Twitter and Youtube aiding in protests, to Facebook letting people share the stories and photos of others in mere seconds, social media is playing a huge part in how people tell stories now. These new cultural forms are aiding in the spread of more stories without the media's help. People can upload videos of their own stories.  People can share other peoples' stories. People can live-tweet protests. In sharing the stories that often go ignored by the Western media, the people who protest with literature and social media are showing the world new ways to perform democracy.

Acacia Protsman

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