Sunday, August 30, 2009

If appearance is unimportant, what's wrong with this appearance? - Rose, The Mirror Has Two Faces

Introduction

Hello everyone, my name is Angie, and like many of you, this is my first time blogging. Although I almost created an entirely new blog when I attempted to complete our first assignment, I suspect I'm going to enjoy this immensely!

I am a non-traditional student, and a late bloomer. Although chronologically and physically speaking I am an adult, I am not ashamed to admit that I often struggle with the same issues I once faced as a girl. The truth is, some things never change, and quite often, we will have to face our past in order to advance into our future.

I enrolled in this course because I am pursuing a double-major at UCF in Sociology and Women Studies. My goal is to become a full-time advocate for victims of crime. I specifically want to help victims of human trafficking, and want to do all I can to educate and enlighten our society about the existence of this heinous crime.

Assignment

I enjoyed reading Sittenfeld's story as I was able to place myself in Anna's shoes. Although her character was unable to overcome her lack of self-confidence, I felt her story captured the angst of girlhood with clarity and depth. I identified with Anna, although I was pathetically inept at sports, and continue to be so to this day! However, I did find myself caught in the confusing world of double-standards.

I noticed that boys would often be praised for the same things girls would get reprimanded over; I never understood why. Sadly, this double-standard is still in existence today, although I am quite aware of the many reasons why it is allowed to flourish and prevail.

If Anna had been a boy, would her gym teacher have questioned her viciousness? I think not. Had Anna been a boy, he would have been praised for it, and encouraged to continue playing with the same fierce, testosterone laden aggression.

Anna was chastised for being unladylike and for failing to follow the unwritten, unpublished, set of rules that girls and women are expected to subscribe to on a daily basis. She was not supposed to excel at sports or display intelligence; in fact, she was expected to run away in fear from that big, scary, red ball!

The stories in Red stirred a multitude of emotions inside of me; everything from amusement to sadness. I caught glimpses of my thirteen year-old goddaughter in the story entitled Pediatrics, as she aspires to become a Pediatrician when she grows up. I love that she is so passionate about medicine and knows what she wants to do with her life; I only recently figured it out, and I am considerably older than she is.

Sometimes I wish I would have found my passion at a young age, like Mini, the mountain climber or my goddaughter, the Pediatrician did. I must confess, I felt envious of the fact that Mini's first love turned out to be such an enduring and passionate one.

Still, George Elliot said It's never too late to be what you might have been.

Thankfully, there is still enough of a girlish dreamer inside of this woman to believe him.


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