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The Lookout A Journal of Undergraduate Research At East Carolina University Volume 6, Issue 1

ISSN (Print): 2372-580X ISSN (Online): 2372-5834 Managing Editor: Donna Kain kaind@ecu.edu

Email: lookout@ecu.edu Website: www.ecu.edu/lookout

Copyright 2018 (c) Department of English, East Carolina University

Groups and Contributors

Project Management/ Production Team

Design Team

Elizabeth Johnson

Caroline Montaquila

Adrienne Steel

Kirsten Mackey

Emily Bolton

Ben Triplett

Michelle Powell

Elliot Dolan

Anne Sordillo

Alyssa Sullivan

Beth Martin-Godwin

Dylan Newitt Allen

Communications Team Marissa Bouchard

Social Media Team

Kiara Jenkins

Max Kilgore

Sydney Hunnell

Eliese Ashline

Madison Boone

Jordyn McDonald

Tania Parkins

Gussie Saunders

Zamir Sealy

Kathryn Dawson Caroline Schiess Angel Staton

Editor’s Note: Hello Readers! This is a journal of undergraduate research and creative writing dedicated to showcasing the writing prowess of students from all disciplines at East Carolina University. This journal includes research papers, literary analysis papers, poems and creative writing from various students in different disciplines at East Carolina University. In addition to writings, this issue includes record number of art pieces from students, more than has ever been included in this journal before which is very exciting. As a part of the editorial staff, our roles include designing of the journal and logo, editing each piece submitted, social media/marketing, website design as well as communication from us to the authors who submitted papers. In an effort to showcase all forms of writing and expression, our team changed the lookout from a simple research journal to one that knows no literary or artistic bounds. If this process interests you and you are interested in leaving your mark on the lookout as a student intern, consider taking English 3870 in the fall as it is the class the internship operates out of.

Table of Contents Creative Works And I Ate Every Damn One of Them. .......................................................................................................... 1 Look Around ...................................................................................................................................................... 5 Transformation .................................................................................................................................................. 6 Man In Bloom .................................................................................................................................................... 7 Chrono-logical .................................................................................................................................................... 8 Where’s the Party? ............................................................................................................................................. 9 Vacancy .............................................................................................................................................................10 Cardinal .............................................................................................................................................................11 Here ...................................................................................................................................................................12 Nature’s Poison ................................................................................................................................................15

Research Papers “Hey, Teacher! Leave Them Kids Alone” ...................................................................................................19 Breaking the Chains of Tradition in Bessie Head’s The Lovers ..................................................................37 Gender Roles in Frankenstein: Expectations and Realities of Mother Figures .......................................43 The Influence of Cultural Views on Homosexuality on the Characters in Giovanni’s Room .............49 Paolo Veronese’s The Feast in the House of Levi: Keeping with Decorum .................................................57 The Roles of Social Media in 21st Century Populisms: US Presidential Campaigns .............................65 The Countertop where Sitting Down was Standing Up ............................................................................77

Witches in Media: A Queer Feminist Exploration......................................................................................83 The CSI Effect and The Criminal Justice System .......................................................................................99 Combating 20th Century Terrorism ............................................................................................................ 103 Black Women’s Fight for Survival During Slavery .................................................................................. 111 Translating the Homeric Spirit.................................................................................................................... 121

Creative Works

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And I Ate Every Damn One of Them. John Goodie


y the time Private 1st Class Norman

had encountered some anti-Semitism in camp,

Fellman was liberated from the

not much but some, and I feared for what

horrid Nazi slave labor camp in

might happen down the line if somebody got

Berga, Germany, his 6'4" frame had wasted

hungry enough. That was one thought. The

away from 178 to 84 lbs. He had been one of

other thought was I had never been ashamed

352 men separated from the other thousands

of what I am, I was proud of what I am, and I

of American prisoners at Stalag IX, as an

guess I had more guts than brains, but I

American Jew, to be worked and starved to

decided to step forward, not to depend on

death at Berga. The Germans had ordered the

somebody else to hide my secret. As a result,

American commanders to have all the Jews in

we were sent to a restricted segregated

their units turn themselves in to them during

barracks, and in another week or so we found

the next morning roll call after they were

that we were part of a 352-man group, being

captured and driven by cattle car to the camp.

set off for a labor detachment. This group was

During World War II, an American dog tag

made up of Jews and other undesirables,

could indicate only one of three religions

mostly Catholic fellows. At any rate, we wound

through the inclusion of one letter: "P" for

up at this place called Berga Amelster after

Protestant, "C" for Catholic, or "H" for Jewish

another train ride, which equaled the first one.

(from the word, "Hebrew"), or "NO" to

I don't know how long it lasted, probably lasted

indicate no religious preference.

three or four days, five days. As we marched

Fellman said, “The barracks leader met with

down between two of these compounds on

the German commandant and some of the

either side of the road there were these mass of

officers and came back with the message that

humanity, skinny males, females, not kids, I

they knew that there were a percentage of Jews

never saw any kids, but these people, I

in this camp, and they wanted them to step

remember, had the biggest eyes you've ever

forward or else. And they took me aside,

seen in your life. They just looked like their

because I'm Jewish, and told me that they

whole faces were abominated, and they were

would gladly protect me, hide my dog tag. They

silent, quiet, not a word, not a sound spoken as

advised me strongly not to step forward, but I

we—352 Americans marched down. We were

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taken in for our first and only delousing, and

beatings, they put dirt in with the black powder

the place that we were deloused in fits all the

to suppress the explosions or let carts full of

records of what they use when they're

rock they were excavating tip over the side of

preparing for the ovens, jets all around the

the road, over the banks, to thwart the German

room. At that time, we didn't know anything

plans. Simple resistance. Incredible defiance.

about the gas ovens, or there would have been

Merciless beatings. Fellman saw many a man

a little more trepidation about going in there,

beaten to death by an enraged German for

not that we had a choice. But we were


deloused, and then we were assigned to

These prisoners were fed a loaf of

barracks, and we had these straw pallets that

black bread per day for four or five guys to

were loaded with lice, so the delousing didn't

share. It was made of oat flour with half the

last very long.”

volume being sawdust. And they were given nasty greasy soups to drink, sometimes called

At the time Fellman was drafted, and his unit had been trained, they were not aware of how bad the hatred and treatment of Jews had taken over Hitler’s Germany. The Germans tried to keep those camps secret. They did a pretty good job of that at Berga, as it went largely unknown during the war until it was almost over.

coffee, sometimes soup. They had no idea what they were made of; sometimes finding a piece of turnip or other root vegetable in the teacolored broth. Fellman said it was nasty, but something. They would be in line for the food with stacks of dead bodies in a pile less than twenty feet away. It was their friends, that they had been talking to the day before or perhaps one of whom they had memorized their family names, so they could find them after the war to

While being worked to death, the three

tell them what happened. Fellman said, “I

hundred fifty-two men chosen for the special

never could tell them how they died. I tried to

detail dug 17 tunnels in the ground for an

make it very dignified. They did not need to


know the details of the suffering.”




Germans were planning. They busted rock

The worst part of it was the thirst. They

using black powder sausages strung together

got very little water to drink, so they would eat

that the Germans made them create. After

snow and icicles off buildings, trucks, and

setting them off and exploding them against

trees, then sometimes get slammed with the

walls of rock in caves, they would haul the rock

butt of a German rifle just for that. At times of

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great hunger, they would eat grass if they could


dig to some through the snow or eat bark off

unforgettable,” he added.

the trees. The diarrhea would be green or black. Impossible




Unbearable thirst.






When the men of Berga were freed at last by American troops not expecting to see an American Prisoner of War Camp at that location, 100 days after their capture, the US

Norman Fellman had been drafted and

War Crimes investigators were appalled by

assigned to B Company, 275th Regiment of the

their condition. They were wasted to skeletons,

Army's 70th Division. In January in the year

in the fashion of death camp survivors. Ribs

1944, his infantry unit was ambushed by the

protruding. Eyes sunken. Shells of men. After being taken to a hospital, they fed

Germans in France during the Battle of the

them a little bit of liquids at a time until their

Bulge. Fellman said, "... we had scooped out

bodies could adjust to solid foods again. When

holes the best we could in the rock to try to

he was ready, the beautiful young nurse in the

hide, and we were pretty much out of ammo.

clean white dress asked Fellman, "What food

The Germans came around with the flame-

did you think of the most?"

throwing tanks at the base of the hill but had

“I dreamt of eggs,” Fellman replied.

evidently decided to bypass us initially. They

"How do you like them?" the nurse

had gone around us and were cleaning up when

questioned. "Every damn way you can make them,"

they came back to get us." Fellman stated his unit had three

he said.

choices - "we could freeze to death, we could

"So, she brought me a dozen, two over-

starve to death, or we could surrender. So, we

easy, two scrambled, two boiled, two every way

stacked up our weapons.” They ended up being

you could cook them. And I ate every damn

packed in rail cars, “called eight by tens,

one of them," Norman Fellman said, “It was

because they were designed to hold either eight

like the first day of my life.”

horses or forty men. The Germans would pack in 75-90 men. The guys in the middle died of

Private 1st Class Noman Fellman made

suffocation and would be held up dead in the

it home alive. He sat his family down one night

mass,” Fellman related, telling the stories for

soon thereafter and he said, “You can ask me

the first time in forty years or more, afraid

anything you want about my experiences in the

nobody would believe him and trying still to

war. And I will answer you the best I can. But

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then I ask that you never ever mention it

were hardened by Hitler’s ego and extreme

again,” Norman said to his family. And they

“Nationalism” causing them to separate and

followed his wishes. He returned to the

victimize people because of what they believed

University of Virginia where he met his wife

or what they looked like, their last names or

Bunny. Before he married her, he told her the

how they prayed. Let us all hope that

same thing and gave her the opportunity to ask

somehow, we as people can overcome this

him what she wanted about what he

hatred of others in our hearts and learn to be

experienced and saw, and why he had such

at Peace with each other.

excruciating nightmares. She accepted Norman as the good man that he was; she loved him. They married and had a natural child and adopted a set of twins, so they had a big happy family together.

There is so much more to Norman Fellman’s story and life than I could possibly tell here. He did a lot of things for other veterans later in his life and only passed away in 2014 at the age of ninety.

Although I know these things happen, and history is full of torture, slavery, and murder. But it is still very difficult for me that this level of cruelness can exist between men. The collective mentality of the German people, in this case, had hardened around Hitler’s lying words that incited the masses to such brutish group mentality. Their bigotry and cruelty knew no bounds, similar to the slavery practiced by the United States not too many years before this horror. Little by little the hearts of the people, seemingly normal people, Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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Look Around Lora Sager

“I am a Printmaking undergraduate, and a mother of two, a son and a daughter. Being a full-time student, mother and wife has proven to be an exciting challenge in my life, but overall, I enjoy juggling around everyone's scheduled; there was never a dull moment. I love details, so adding in lots of texture to a print has been loads of fun.�

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Transformation Caroline Montaquila

A metamorphosis Every little death begins Silver ribbons tangled around my fingers Hot breath on my skin I am burned to the ground, I am scattered to the wind I am reborn again and again and again

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Man In Bloom Dylan Newitt Allen

“Dylan Newitt Allen is an English major at ECU. He is from the small town of Erwin, NC, which was formally known as "The Denim Capital of the World." He enjoys writing poetry, visiting historical areas, and he finds comfort in the ocean. He went to Johnston Community College for art and describes his vision as "monochromatic, black and white, yet bursting with life.�

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Chrono-logical Adrienne Steele Beating like a heart, a rhythm based concept It’s as fake as air but as real as breathing Ticking, constricting, convicting It’s squeezing, discerning and I’m yearning, For more. Conceptual non-sense linked to my mortality, But with no morality it tilts its head Tocking, locking as I’m rocking backwards, it’s preened and powdered I’m the coward, I need more. Retrogressive in my actions I look behind me and see it moving forward It’s blind and pays no mind. I wind, reset, and 360 2 times too far and further into where I was before. Ricketing, and clicking, my mind versus time.

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Where’s the Party? Quinn Pagona

“I don't think I ever enjoyed making a finished piece of artwork like I did this one; it's a bit of an epiphany for me. I may be an aspiring tattoo artist, but if this makes me happy too then I'm chasing work as a printmaker as well. It's well worth chasing what makes you happy if you have the privilege to do so!”

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Vacancy Caroline Montaquila A broken home for a body A piece of flesh, rotting Sick and sweet and silent It wastes away The birthplace of new life Is decay

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Cardinal Dylan Newitt Allen

“Dylan Newitt Allen is an English major at ECU. He is from the small town of Erwin, NC, which was formally known as "The Denim Capital of the World." He enjoys writing poetry, visiting historical areas, and he finds comfort in the ocean. He went to Johnston Community College for art and describes his vision as "monochromatic, black and white, yet bursting with life.�

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Here Mary Myers


s I sat in the corner on an Urban

not made for a 12 year–old boy, and brush your

Outfitters look–alike sofa that was


actually bought at an Ikea store, I

After a twenty minute car ride, not

thought to myself, “Why am I here?” Two

counting the time it took us to stop at the

hours ago, I had been contently reading that

nearest gas station for Rolling Rock bottles and

Fitzgerald novel about rich people, the eyes of

Sour Patch Watermelons, we arrived. “We’re

God, and two eggs. I had a Friends mug filled

here!” she exclaimed with excitement as I gave

to the brim with medium roast coffee the color

her a half smile and an eye roll. I walked in

of a white girl’s foundation and a blanket that

behind her sluggishly like I would if I were

gave me the feeling of being under the covers

walking into a funeral of someone I didn’t

of one of those really fancy hotel beds. To

really know but my mother forced me to

anyone else this may seem like a boring

attend. I could hear the music from outside the

Saturday night, but to me it was normal, almost

front door, something I had heard on the radio

exciting. I was still in my clothes from earlier in

before but would never show up on my iTunes

the day when I was cleaning my house: leggings

playlists. The air inside smelled like burnt

and a Mutant Ninja Turtles t-shirt that I didn’t

popcorn because of the guy taking dab hits in

care about staining. If I had already showered

one of the bedrooms. Nicole grabbed my hand

and slipped into my flannel pajamas I don’t

and pulled me all the way to the kitchen

think I would be in this situation right now.

without stopping. She was heading for the

It was unusual for anyone to come to

cabinets to find a shot glass, I assumed, but the

my house since I live so far away from the city,

entryway was occupied by a small girl doing a

so when my friend Nicole knocked on my door

keg stand with the help of two boys that clearly

I immediately went into emergency mode.

saw the benefits of her getting drunk. We

“What’s wrong?” “Are you okay?” “Are Rory

quickly dodged in between three girls gossiping

and Emily okay?” “Is your dog okay?”

about their so called friend and made our way

“Can you chill the hell out please?” she

to the living room. I saw an empty seat on the

interrupted. “Everything is fine except for your

couch and grabbed it without hesitation. “I’m

boring life. Get up, get dressed into something

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going outside to find Rory.” she yelled over the rap song. “I’ll be here.” I replied, but she was already out of sight.

“No thanks.” I said in a monotoned voice. “Okay, well how about I get to know you then.” he proclaimed with no intentions of

I pulled out my phone and looked over

actually getting to know me, only me getting to

social media outlets for a solid ten minutes.

know him. He went on to tell me about how

When there was no app left to open, I put my

he turned 22 last month, he will graduate this

iPhone away and crossed my arms. No one in

winter with a child psychology degree but

the crowded room seemed to catch my

wants to open a new restaurant, and that he

attention enough for me to want to join in on

deejays for his frat parties sometimes. Matt, as

their conversations. One girl was yelling at

he told me to call him because he doesn’t like

what I assumed to be her boyfriend, claiming

Matthew, went on and on about himself. I

he cheated on her with some blonde. Another

learned that his favorite color is Carolina blue,

girl was taking selfies of herself as her friends

but he didn’t have the grades to get into that

cheered her on in the foreground. Ten feet

particular university, that he took family

from her left, a guy was using a woven basket

vacations to the mountains every year with his

as a bucket to catch his puke because he

father, mother, and three sisters, and that he is

couldn’t handle what was in his cup. No one

a Jets fan. He kept on slurring his words while

seemed to care that he was trashing this piece

talking and I kept on pretending to listen.

of decor which I found disturbing. My view of

“Yeah so that’s about it.” he said after twenty

the kitchen was blurred by two guys racing to

two long minutes of telling me about himself.

see who could chug their liquids the fastest. I

“Cool.” I mumbled with a head nod.

had my money on the one in the green collared

“You seem a little shy.” he stuttered as

shirt, although I also had him pegged as the

he nudged my shoulder with his hand and gave

next to misuse the wicker basket by the

me a wink.


“Sorry if I seem uninterested or

“Hey” a low voice said. A guy I didn’t

unimpressed, I just would rather be watching

know had made his way to the couch. Covered

an old 90’s sitcom or talking to my friends

in the beer he told me someone spilt on him

about dreams and global warming and saving

earlier, he smelt like a moldy, old bar. “Can I

the planet. Not really a small talk, smoking,

get you a drink? Or maybe you wanna dance.”

beer bonging kind of girl. I know your

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intentions are good, but honestly I’d rather be

a minute. It was one of those moments that the

somewhere else. I hope you understand.”

whole world is still. Everything had been so

“Then why are you here?” He seemed

chaotic and flustered that it felt good to be still.

to lose interest and told me he was going to get

The air was fresh from the summertime

a drink but never came back.

shower that fell earlier that day and the only

That question wouldn't leave my head.

sounds I could hear were the bullfrogs and

Why am I here? I had let someone convince me

crickets outside my car door. I sat there and

that my life of reading, relaxation, and being

just breathed until I got the energy to walk to

alone was boring and too grandma-like. I

the front door. As the knob turned, the

thought I needed adventure and interactions

brightness and openness of a clean, empty

but God, was I wrong. I decided I liked being

house became clear. It was peacefully tranquil.

a so-called hermit and that I desperately

I walked straight into the bathroom to start a

wanted to go home. I made my way through

shower. With the steam filling up the entire

the clouds of marijuana, groups of girls talking

room, I undressed and washed off the smell of

about their haters, and the sounds of the

alcohol and feeling of regret. After I dried off

Spotify playlist in order to find Nicole in the

I put on the grey flannel pajamas I wished I had

back yard. I pulled the keys out of her black

worn earlier in the night and rolled down my

and purple purse and told her I’d be in the car

bed sheets. I slipped in, pulled out a journal

when she was done. Those 37 minutes waiting

from underneath my pillow, and began to

for her were spent reading the free book I had

write. The entry was not about how I

download onto my phone, lounged in the

desperately felt out of place earlier in the night,

backseat. Countless people had walked past,

but rather how comfortable I was at the

some leaving, some coming, but to my relief

present moment. I reminded myself that right

none had stopped at the car to chat or check

here is where I felt like I belonged the most.

on me. When she finally trotted down the steps

Under blankets watching Netflix with my hair

headed to the car with a guy in hand she looked

up was just as thrilling to me as drinking out of

up and screamed “Oh, yay, you’re still here!” I

solo cups was to those fifty-some people I

could tell she was wasted by her body

interacted with earlier. I finished my entry and

movements alone.

put the journal back. As I laid my head on my

After countless red lights and jokes I

pillow, I thought, “I’m so glad I’m here.”

pretended to laugh at, I was finally home. I pulled up in the driveway and just sat there for

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Nature’s Poison Hunter Davis

“I am a senior at East Carolina University. My majors include art (double concentration of painting and printmaking), psychology, and pre-med. Within my printmaking concentration, I love etching because it allows for such fine detail and precision, which is something I strive for in my art.”

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Research Papers

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“Hey, Teacher! Leave Them Kids Alone”: The Wall Between Education and Intrusion, and Authority Outside the Classroom Dylan Newitt Allen


he Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, written by

“educational novel” from German; Bildung,

Scottish novelist Muriel Spark, is


described by many critics as her best

“novel” (Merriam-Webster 121). In English,

literary work. Published in 1961, the book

this is synonymous to that of a coming-of-age

follows Jean Brodie who, for her time in the

story (e.g., Plath’s The Bell Jar, Brontë’s Jane

early 1930s, was quite the Bohemian amongst

Eyre, etc.), and The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie

her educational co-workers. When Muriel

exemplifies these very elements. This tale of an

Sparks was a child, she spent two years in the

educator in her heyday focuses on the

classroom of Miss Christina Kay; this particular

malleable youth of six adolescent females and,

woman would go on to be the inspiration of

by examining this subject matter, Spark’s work

Spark’s character due to Christina Kay who


was “a first-rate teacher who encouraged her

education and intrusion. In chapter two, Miss

students along their chosen paths” (Hager 3).

Brodie states, “I follow my principles of

Nevertheless, Jean Brodie’s methodology in

education and give of my best in my prime”



(Spark 36). She goes into explaining that the

personal romance stories, classical studies, and

word ‘education’ comes from the Latin root e

provocatively touches on the notion of

of ex, which means out, and duco, which

fascism. Given the previous statement, the

translates to “I lead.” Jean Brodie then

question to be asked is, what commentary does

proceeds to elaborate on her personal

the novel postulate on the scholarly tutelage of

philosophy of how teaching is extracting born

Jean Brodie?

talent from a student’s soul. Following this




To comprehend Spark’s story, it must be







Bildungsroman, which, literally translates to

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ideology is her disapproval of those who say that education is merely filling a student’s head with information.

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She undermines Miss Mackay by saying

asserting her preferences over the pupil’s

they differ at the root and states the

opinion and she often dismisses what they

headmistress is not a great educator. Of course,

believe. By doing this, it limits the latent

what Jean Brodie is proposing is not a

possibilities growing within the girls that she

ridiculous argument, and there are others who

claims to want to develop. One example of this

would agree. In Betty Hoskin’s Ethics and

is the topic that arises regarding science and art.

Empathy in the Writing Center, Hoskins argues

The instructor says, “Art is greater than

that if campus writing centers are paper-

science. Art comes first, and then science”

centered and not student-centered (e.g.,

(Spark 24). Who is to say one of these girls has



a natural calling for biology or chemistry? Does

information), then this resource is nothing but

this not go against the instructor’s own

an assembly line of manufactured reports, thus

reasoning? Another occurrence of her blatant

neglecting potential writers. However, one

contradiction is when she says, “I’m putting

could question if Miss Brodie’s belief system

old heads on your young shoulders” (Sparks 5);

either follows this line or runs parallel to the

however, Brodie then adds, “This is nineteen

concept, because, while she does believe in

thirty-six. The age of chivalry is past” (6). It is

extracting the creative flare in a student, it

evident that the teacher is not sincere about

sometimes seems her intentions are less

either. So, what is her agenda then?








Arguably, Miss Brodie and her teaching

Unquestionably, Brodie does teach the girls

style is a symbol for fascism. Distinguished by

about a multitude of subjects and art forms; for

tyrannical views, fascism means a strong

instance, in chapter three, the instructor

gubernatorial system where there is no

introduces her pupils to a painting of Dante

tolerance for other beliefs, and it is Jean Brodie

meeting Beatrice, but it is based solely around

who epitomizes the latter. Often, the instructor

her experience and not a set lesson plan.

puts her beliefs over the individual; it is evident

Moreover, she inserts her political beliefs.

that she admires dictators such as Mussolini

Instead of teaching her students about

and desires to manipulate the students. Like

themes in Inferno or examining the political

most dictators, Jean Brodie is charismatic and

history behind the Florentine poet’s epic,

manipulates the emotions of those beneath

Brodie decides to discuss her encounter with a

her. A fine example of verboten views in the

young poet she met in Italy. Also, the teacher

classroom is at the beginning of the story when

often contradicts her own reasoning by

the teacher asks her students, “Who is the

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greatest Italian painter?” To which one girl

It is interesting that Muriel Sparks had

replies, “Leonardo da Vinci, Miss Brodie”

Jean Brodie explain the Latin roots of the word

(Sparks 7). Immediately, Brodie gives her


response by pejoratively telling the child that it

Chambers’s Twentieth Century Dictionary, “Duce”

is Giotto. The instructor adds, “He is my

means “leader” in Italian and comes from the

favorite” (8). By only allowing her opinion,

Latin root of “dux.” Furthermore, it is defined

Brodie is seizing power. Her goal is to do more

as “the title assumed by the Italian dictator

than create the crème de la crème, but to

Mussolini” (Geddie 325).





construct replicas of herself and extend her

In chapter two, Miss Brodie and her

prime through the students she claims to be

clan come to the end of the Meadows and



notice a group of Girl Guides; their leader

representation of her narcissism in chapter 5

insinuates that they are less than the Brodie set

when the narrator says, “Teddy Lloyd

by saying, “For who like that sort of thing …

continued reproducing Jean Brodie in his

that is the sort of thing they like” (Sparks 31).

paintings” (132). The instructor asks Sandy if

Shortly after, the narrator states, “Miss

Lloyd’s portraits still resemble her and when

Brodie’s disapproval of the Girl Guides had

Stranger responds in the affirmative, Brodie

jealousy in it” (31). Jean Brodie’s distain for the

replies, “Then all is well.” (132).

Girl Guides is because it is not centered on an




Jean Brodie’s admiration for Mussolini

individual, but more so a group of people with

impacts her teaching; this is clear seeing as a

a shared recreation. Her ideology in that

passage from Benito’s The Doctrine of Fascism

concrete components (i.e., math, science, etc.)

aligns to her philosophy:

are valued less than the students’ natural

Thus many of the practical expressions

abilities within themselves, echoes the same

of Fascism – such as party organization, system

notion as the Italian dictator. Shortly after

of education, discipline – can only be

crossing paths with the Girl Guides, Miss

understood when considered in relation to its

Brodie and her set come across a group of

general attitude toward life. A spiritual attitude

unemployed individuals. Miss Brodie tells her

(3). Fascism sees in the world not only those

girls they are waiting to receive dole and adds,

superficial, material aspects in which man

“You must all pray for the Unemployed, I will

appears as an individual, standing by himself,

write you out this special prayer for them”

self-centered … (Mussolini 2)

(Sparks 39). Of course, she goes on to praise Mussolini by stating the poverty issue in Italy

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has been solved. Sandy is moved by these

a sincere glimpse of compassion is seen when

people who do not have a job and the narrator

Monica Douglass refers to the jobless as “Idle”

says, “She wanted to cry as she always did when

(39) and Brodie corrects the notion of the men

she saw a street singer or beggar” (40); the girl

being lazy by saying, “In England they are

with the small eyes begins to use Mary as a

called the Unemployed” (39). But with this

scapegoat. This is an example of how fascism

said, one could argue Miss Brodie is

can bring out the fears in people and make

responsible for the scapegoating tactics as

them channel that anxiety onto others. For

there are numerous incidents in which Mary is

instance, how Hitler took advantage of


people’s anxiety regarding the collapsed

The victimization of Mary Macgregor

German economy by offering them convenient

is seen when the instructor says, “Sandy cannot

scapegoats (i.e., the Jews).

talk to you if you are so stupid and

According to The Familiar Attractions of

disagreeable” (Sparks 28); when Jean Brodie

Fascism in Muriel Spark’s The Prime of Miss Jean

claims that Americans speak nasally and

Brodie, Isobel Murray and Bob Tait say, “Miss

discovers Mary is not familiar with the adverb,

Brodie may be a born Fascist, as Sandy claims,

the teacher states, rather supercilious, “Stupid

but she is an instinctive and a relatively

as ever … Eunice? (47); towards the end of the

uncomprehending one.” They then add that

novel, even after her dismissal from Marcia

the “dedication and discipline, efficiency,

Blaine, the former educator writes in her letter,



“Perhaps Mary had nursed a grievance in her

charisma … [Jean Brodie] … remains blissfully

stupidity of mind” (135). Given the derision of

unaware of the bullying tactics he and his

Mary Macgregor, it is without a doubt Miss

henchmen ruthlessly employed” (qtd. in Suh

Brodie pulled from the fascist handbook and

87); it should also be noted that this moment is

mastered in the art of scapegoating. While the

occurring in the early 1930s before the racial

Mussolini aficionado is contemptible in her

laws hindering Jews was passed in 1938. Ann

desecration of Mary’s character, one must

Ashworth states, “Miss Brodie is culpably

consider the narrator is also guilty of

naïve in admiring Mussolini, but she is unaware

lambasting the school girl and takes the

of the persecutions, the enormity of the

mockery to another level by incorporating

treatment of the Jews, and the price of what

body shaming. The speaker refers to Mary as,

she supposes to be a Utopia that will end

“Lump-like and too stupid to invent something

unemployment” (qtd. in Suh 87). Furthermore,

… too stupid to even tell a lie” (8); the uncalled



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for imagery of Macgregor’s body is referenced

be through Sandy, because her non-existent

as, “Lumpy, with merely two eyes, a nose and

eyes, in a figurative sense, cannot see the entire

a mouth like a snowman (10); the narrator

picture; moreover, the last name Stranger could

mocks her knowledge of copulation by stating

represent how this omniscient voice telling the

Mary is, “too stupid to have any sex wits of her

story is, in fact, a stranger observing this literary

own” (52); finally, the person telling the story


says, “Even stupid Mary Macgregor amazed herself” (88).

Peter Robert Brown argues in his narrative theory titled “There's Something about

Since there is enough evidence to

Mary:” Narrative and Ethics in The Prime of Miss

prove the narrator’s guilt, is it safe to conclude

Jean Brodie that Spark’s intent is for readers to

the reader is dealing with a voice that is

consider Mary’s mistreatment by “ironically

unreliable and, because of this, one must

and satirically depicting the activity of narrating

consider if Miss Brodie’s depicted image is

and the often dubious authority on which it

accurate; despite her questionable appeal to

rests” (229), and goes on to add that the

fascism, perhaps Jean Brodie is simply like

Bildungsroman is commenting on the way

everyone else and is merely flawed. In

systematic regulations can “produce and

reference to Yunah Kae’s Sandy’s Narrativization

legitimate malevolent narratives that place

of Miss Brodie and the Narrator’s Collusion: The

limits on how individuals are interpreted”

Prime of Miss Jean Brodie as an Anti-Fascist Text,

(229). This is where things get complicated,

Pullin states:

because the reader must now suspend disbelief

Miss Brodie is instead narrativized

and view The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie in a meta

mainly through Sandy’s gaze, and it is because

sense. On the one hand, it very well might be


that the fascist zealot is not as corrupt as the



relies and

heavily colludes





reader is made to believe, or Jean Brodie really

narrativization through narrative techniques

is the epitome of corruption and that the

that Sandy appears as a the “moral reference

narrator, who uses Sandy as a conduit, has been

point for the reader” (qtd. in Kae 114).

tainted by Miss Brodie’s intrusion and fallen

At the very beginning of the novel, the

into the instructor’s cult-like charm. While the

narrator describes Sandy as having, “small,

narrative does seem to harshly agree with Miss



Brodie on Mary being a stupid person, there is

Considering Pullin’s point, it is possible Muriel

a point in the novel where the speaker

Sparks intended for the narrative focal point to

acknowledges the very thing Sandy’s teacher


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claims to be against; at the center of the novel,

Granted, if one is based on the moral standing

the narrator says:

of the narrator, Jean Brodie is not only an

The Kerr sisters took Miss Brodie’s

antagonist to the speaker, but herself. The

intrusion quite meekly, and they were so

woman in her prime is clearly anti-Catholic

unquestioning about any authority which

when she is described by the narrator as

imposed itself upon them was the very reason

thinking that those “who did not want to think

why they also did not hesitate later to answer

for themselves were Roman Catholics” (Sparks

the subsequent questions of Miss Gaunt

90). The narrator’s claim for Brodie’s

(Sparks 92).

disapproval for the Catholic church is proven

Here it is clear that Muriel Sparks is

when she says, “He is a Roman Catholic and I

both commenting on and satirizing the

don’t see how you have to do with a man who

mechanics of narrative structure; the audience,

can’t think for himself” (132). Clearly Jean

like the Kerr sisters, do not challenge Brodie’s

Brodie is an antagonist against Catholicism,

control in the same way that the reader accepts

and there is irony in that the one person she

the notion of a speaker.

bullied was named Mary, which the name of

One question the reader should

Jesus’ mother.

consider is whether Miss Jean Brodie is an

One theme touched on in The Prime of

antagonist or a protagonist. When it comes to

Miss Jean Brodie is religion, specifically

the leader of the Brodie set, it is easy to say she

Calvinism and Catholicism. The novel also

is the antagonist because of her treatment

touches on the idea of atheism as seen on page



36 when the narrator states that Jean Brodie

responsible for the Joyce Emily’s death, and

taught them there are some people who don’t



believe in either God or Allah. However,

conservative belief that education consists of

instead of commenting on if Miss Brodie is a

basic arithmetic and history. But in the

true atheist, Sparks explores the notion that the

perspective of a fascist, Jean Brodie is not only

instructor is suffering from the delusion that

a protagonist, but a champion as well.

she thinks of herself as a god. Near the very

Furthermore, if the teacher truly believes these

end of the book, the teacher christens herself

students have been adulterated with public

as Teddy Lloyd’s muse; this causes Sandy to

school intrusion, then she is also a protagonist

believe that Jean Brodie has arrogantly taken

in that sense; however, according to the

on the title of “the God of Calvin” (Sparks

narrator she has intruded on the Kerr sisters.

129). Furthermore, the Bohemian instructor


Mary, rails

being against


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does acknowledge God on page 90 and the

With the multitude of messages Muriel

audience learns Brodie does not doubt His

Sparks makes in her elegantly written novel, it

presence, but the teacher does feel as if she

is safe to say there are pros and cons in Miss

should not be held to the same moral conduct

Jean Brodie’s teaching style. One example of

as other Christians. As a matter of fact, Sandy

the latter was her own duplicity towards her

feels begins to feel that Miss Brodie “elected

girls which ultimately led to her downfall: One

herself to grace” (116). Brian W. Shaffer’s

of these being that her advocacy for lying to

Reading the Novel In English, 1950-2000, alludes

other teachers. This is evident on page 10 when

to the comparison between the teacher and

Jean Brodie is untruthful in telling Miss Mackay

Christ by saying that Sandy is a “schemer who

that the girls are crying over a history lesson;

becomes Miss Brodie’s Judas” (qtd. in Staffer


98); this is primarily due to Miss Stranger’s

commends them on playing along. Because she

betrayal, and it can even be said that Sandy is

taught the girls to be perfidious, the teacher



only has herself to blame. Also, she betrayed

Throughout the novel, Jean Brodie tries to

her children by not giving them the proper

figure out who backstabbed her and she never

education the students needed; however, it is

finds out. But was Miss Brodie actually betrayed

debatable that her intentions, while breeching

or did Sandy just put a stop to her?

the bailiwick of self-centeredness, was to bring









As previously stated, the teacher set

out who she believed them to be. Of course, it

herself up for her defeat. Miss Stranger says she

was often clouded by narcissism. But Brodie’s

is not interested in the problems of the world,

defense, she did expose them to different types

just “putting a stop to Miss Brodie.” The

of art that other girls at Marcia Blaine never

student’s reasoning for putting her foot down

heard of and showed them an outer world

so the inattentive instructor can no longer do

beyond the classroom. Furthermore, Miss

any damage. If Sandy’s intent was objective was

Brodie did succeed in extending prime and

to betray to Jean Brodie, then why did she stay

immortalizing herself, because even long after

in contact with the teacher post-Marcia Blaine?

her death she is talked about. Even the novel

Her ridiculous claims of betrayal put her

itself ends with the question of where Miss

narcissistic delusions in a perspective, because

Stranger received her literary and political

what did any of the students have to gain by

teachings and Sandy answers, “There was a

reporting her?

Miss Jean Brodie in her prime” (137). The message here is that no matter how great or

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terrible an educator might be, they will leave some sort of impression. Tragically, Miss Brodie left both a mark and a scar.

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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Works Cited "Bildungsroman." Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary, vol. 11, Springfield, Massachusetts, U.S.A., Merriam-Webster, 2007, p. 121. Brown, Peter Robert. "There's Something about Mary:" Narrative and Ethics in The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie.” Journal of Narrative Theory, Vol. 36, No. 2, 2006, pp. 228-253. Geddie, William. Chambers's Twentieth Century Dictionary. Rev. ed., with supplement. Edinburgh: W. & R. Chambers, 1959, p. 325 Kae, Yunah. "Sandy’s Narrativization of Miss Brodie and the Narrator’s Collusion: The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie as an Anti-Fascist Text Y." S-Space: SNU Open Respository, SNU Open Repository and Archive Seoul National University Library, sspace.snu.ac.kr/bitstream/10371/81470/1/07_Yunah%20Kae.pdf. Mussolini, Benito. "The Political and Social Doctrine of Fascism." San Jose State University, SJSU, www.sjsu.edu/people/james.lindahl/courses/Hum2B/s2/Mussolini-on-Doctrine-ofFascism.pdf. Shaffer, Brian W. Reading the Novel in English, 1950-2000. Malden, MA: Blackwell Pub., 2006. Spark, Muriel. About the Author. Meet Muriel Spark, by Hal Hager, 2009, pp. 3. Spark, Muriel. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie. Perennial Classics, 1999.

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The History, Features, and Signers of Black American Sign Language Aliaha Austin Abstract There is a misconception that speakers of spoken and signed dialects that differ from the Standard American English are deemed as ‘less proficient’ or ‘uneducated’. These attitudes, in regards to speakers of a dialect, stem from historical and societal views steeped deep in American history. There are many dialects of American English that include Appalachian English, Chicano English, and Black English (also known as African American English or AAE). As signed languages carry the same function as spoken language, dialects and variation among signers also exists. This paper will focus on one of dialects of American Sign Language (ASL) called Black American Sign Language (Black ASL). The history of deafness in America for white and black people will be examined to show how history, geography, and culture impact language variation. This paper will also address prejudice that may be associated with a dialect of a language and discuss how a variation in a language, whether spoken or signed, does not correlate to a deficit in language competence.



languages such as French Sign Language,

igned languages are defined as a




Language, and American Sign Language (ASL).

movements combined with facial

ASL is commonly found in America but is not

expressions and body postures” (Kent, 2003).

English-derived or English-based. Signed

In all languages, spoken and signed, the

languages are governed by the same linguistic

relationship between the sounds or signs of a

rules as spoken languages, but signed languages

language and the meaning associated with them

do not follow the same grammatical rules

are arbitrary. The signs or sounds of a language

leading to different word formations and

do not cause meaning, form, or function but

structures. Language can be used to identify

have meaning assigned to them (Fillmore &

social identity and this, in part, contributes to

Snow, 2000). There are various signed

why there are dialectal differences in language.








There is a standard, written form of English, Page | 29

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but there are also many dialects of English like

with them. ASL was created from a

Bahamian English, Chicano English, and

combination of French sign language and the

African American English. A dialect is a variety


of a language based on variance from person

Gallaudet, Gallaudet University was the first

to person, region to region, or culture to

college for the deaf and is the only deaf

culture. Dialects of a language are still rule

university in the world. Over time more

governed and systematic forms of language;

schools were started all around the United

they are not a separate language (Fillmore &

States teaching ASL as the primary language.

Snow, 2000). Just as with spoken languages,

Because deaf people were ostracized in

there are different dialects in each signed

America, they began to form their own

language. The purpose of this paper is to

communities that included deaf churches,

discuss the historical and communal influences

newspapers owned and published by the deaf,

on Black ASL as well as the differences and

and grocery stores. Sign language was the

similarities between spoken and written

primary form of communication for deaf

African American dialects. The differences in

people, but many believed that should not be

Black ASL and Standard ASL will be discussed

the case.



Named after

by studying the features of Black ASL– location, movement, hand shape, place of articulation, and other non-manual markers– and studying how these differences came about. This paper will also discuss the perception of different dialects of ASL versus Standard ASL and the future of Black ASL.

Oralism Alexander Graham Bell, known for the invention of the telephone, believed that sign language held deaf individuals back from being successful in a hearing world. He and others advocated for ‘oralism’, or learning how to speak and read lips, versus learning how to

History of American Sign Language

sign. Schools around America started to shift

To engage in a conversation about a

from teaching sign-language to focusing

dialect of ASL, the history of deafness in

heavily on teaching deaf children how to speak

America must first be discussed. Thomas

and read lips. This proved, in the long run, to

Gallaudet and Laurent Clerc founded the

be very destructive for many students who

American School for the Deaf in 1817.

were deemed “unsuccessful” in Oralism

Students came from all over to attend the

programs. Oralism programs showed to hinder

school and they brought their way of signing

many students from achieving their fullest

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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potential in the schools. Although sign

communities were segregated and, due to this

language has been identified as a legitimate

separation, different signs were formed

language today, it is still a highly controversial

(Higgins, 1987). Black students were exposed

topic in the deaf community. Many feel that

to sign language in the classroom but their

individuals should only sign or only speak.

experiences were different from those of white

Others feel that both oralism and signing are

deaf children because of unequal educational

acceptable forms of communication. People

facilities and lack of access to new information.

who deem ASL as their primary language

Oralism was the next step in deaf education

belong to the ‘Big D’ community while those

and was implemented throughout white

who choose to speak as their main form of

schools; however, it was not extended to the

communication belong to the ‘Little D’

majority of black deaf schools on the same

community (Kent, 2003).

level. This form of discrimination worked in favor for Black deaf students. Although they

Black American Sign Language While white deaf Americans were ostracized from hearing America, black deaf individuals were ostracized from white hearing America, black hearing America, and the white deaf community as well. The National Association of the Deaf (NAD) was founded to advocate for deaf society, however, they prohibited African Americans from joining. There was a fear that black members would keep the NAD from making advances in hearing America. Due to this, the NBDA, or National Black Deaf Advocates, community was formed to cater to the needs of deaf

were in inadequate facilities, they received a better, more understandable education because they were taught in ASL, versus being taught through spoken language (Baynton, 1996). Black students were still not allowed to go into higher education which limited the number of black deaf educators that were qualified to teach in deaf schools. There was a mixture of both black, white, hearing, and deaf educators at black schools and the differences became apparent in the dialectal differences of sign language as well as student’s different experiences in the different schools across the country.

African Americans (McCaskill, Lucas, Bayley, & Hill, 2011). While the first deaf school was

American Sign Language Variation

created in 1817, educational programs for

Social and geographical features cause

black deaf children were not created until the

language variation. Variation that distinguishes

mid-1850s (Stetten, 2014). Schools and

standard ASL and Black ASL occurred due to

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stated as “Put the shoes on the box.” In ASL,

(McCaskill et al., 2011). One of the most

a signer would say “Shoes, box, put on” (Jay,

noticeable differences is Black ASL signers

2011). While ASL is not English-based, there

seem to be more expressive than standard

are some signed languages that are based on

signers. Black ASL signers use two hands and


a larger amount of space when signing. Signers


of Black ASL also repeat words and phrases

Essential English, Signing Exact English, and

more than signers of standard ASL. The use of

Linguistics of Visual English. These systems

voiceless mouthing is less common in Black

are taught to students to encourage better

ASL, and there are also differences in signs

English skills and is preferred amongst

themselves (McCaskill et al., 2011). The word

students who prefer Oralism. ASL is favored

“chicken” in standard ASL is signed with the

amongst students who are culturally deaf,

pointer and thumb coming together at the side

meaning they favor signing over speaking

of the cheek while Black ASL signers sign

(McCaskill et al., 2011). ASL is sometimes seen

chicken with the pointer and thumb coming

as being used by less educated deaf individuals

together at the hips using both hands. While

and this perception amongst deaf individuals

the hand movement and shape are similar, the

has an impact on Black ASL signers. Because

place of articulation and number of hands used

ASL may not be as esteemed as other forms of

is different. Some signs like “flirt” and

signing, individuals who sign Black ASL can be

“pregnant” are completely different when

seen as being less proficient in the language or

comparing the dialects. These differences show

less knowledgeable about what is being signed

that language variation has occurred due to the

because of how it is signed.

English. systems

These include

signed Seeing

difference in communities and societies (Ingram, 2015).

African American English and Black American Sign Language

American Sign Language Syntax

There are many similarities between

ASL is not an English-based language

the spoken and signed dialects of Black

or English-derived language. ASL can be

English. Dr. Joseph Hill, a Professor in the

classified as an Object, Subject, and Verb

Profession of Deafness Programs at the

(OSV) language. The object is identified first,

University of North Carolina Greensboro, and

followed by the subject, and then the verb. For

co-author of book The Hidden Treasure of Black

example, in English, a command would be

ASL: Its History and Structure, says because

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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“black deaf people have been exposed to the

older speakers of AAE who “sound more like

same social elements that black hearing people

their regional contexts” (Wolfram and Ward,

enjoy and practice in their communities, it


makes sense that there are elements of black culture that appear in Black ASL such as religious practice, cooking, humor, musical entertainment, clothing, hairstyles, words and phrases that typically used in the black

Societal Views towards African American English and Black American Sign Language

communities, and protections against racism”

There is an association of the standard

(Stretten, 2014). Facial expressions and the

spoken and signed forms with whiteness. The

repetition of words or phrases while speaking

assumption is that signers and speakers of

are common in Black ASL and Black English.

Standard ASL and English are Caucasian. AAE

Another similarity is the perception of the

has been highly criticized as being “lazy” or

dialects in their perspective settings. Signers

“uneducated” amongst American English

will “code-switch” which has two meanings.

speakers. Black ASL signers face that same



criticism. In a study found in chapter 4 of the

standard/mainstream way when in formal

book The Hidden Treasure of Black ASL: Its

places but use Black ASL when with friends

History and Structure, signers of Black ASL

and family (Guggenheim, 1993). Speakers of

ranging in different ages were asked questions

AAE often do the same thing and speak one

about their own perception of Black ASL.

way in professional or academic settings and

Many of the older signers said they felt white

another way when around family and friends.

ASL was more advanced because “it was

Code-switching in a signing setting can also

difficult to understand”’ and “cleaner” than

refer to mouthing certain words or phrases

Black ASL (McCaskill et al., 2011).





whilst singing them and then not mouthing other words or phrases. Many young signers of


Black ASL incorporate more words and

American Sign Language has a unique

phrases that were created or started in spoken

lingual history in the United States. Black ASL

AAE (McCaskill et al., 2011). Research has

is particularly unique because of the historical

found that young speakers of AAE are similar.

factors that have affected the dialect. ASL

Young AAE speakers “sound more like their

became standardized after the creation of deaf

transregional urban AAE counterparts” than

schools in America during the early 1800s.

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Education of black deaf students began in the mid-1850s with segregated schools. Different signs came out of geographical and social isolation and through this came new studies to identify different formations of Black ASL when compared to the standard. Black ASL is just one of the many dialects of ASL but it has faced criticism because there are signs and sayings that differ from standard ASL. However, signers of Black ASL are not any less proficient in ASL, any less intelligent, or any less capable than signers of other dialects of ASL. Black ASL is indicative of the culture and community of which the signer grew up and is a form of expression unique to the signer. In recent years, there has been a rise of Black ASL amongst younger African American signers in America. This is due to a better understanding of what proficiency in a language is and an embrace of linguistic individuality amongst signers. Black ASL displays a history of black hearing and deaf communities. Studying the differences in dialects informs individuals of the significance of dialectal variation to the speakers, or signers, of the dialect. It also further supports that differences in languages do not indicate that speakers of a different dialect use a lesser form of communication or are






knowledge of their native language.

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Works Cited Baynton, D.C. (1996). Forbidden Signs: American Culture and the Campaign Against Sign Language. (pp. 46) Chicago, Illinois: University of Chicago Printing Press. Guggenheim, L. (1993). Ethnic variation in ASL: The signing of African Americans and how it is influenced by conversational topic. Communication Forum, 2, 51-76. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University. Higgins, P. (1987). Outsiders in a Hearing World: A Sociology of Deafness. (pp. 52) Beverly Hills: Sage. Jay, M. (2011). Don’t Just “Sign”...Communicate!: A Student’s Guide to Mastering ASL Grammar. (pp.90) Judea Media, LLC. Stretten,













https://splinternews.com/asl-and-black-asl-yes-theres-a-difference-1793840928 McCaskill, C., Lucas, C., Bayley, R., & Hill, J. (2011). The hidden treasure of Black ASL: Its history and structure. (pp. Washington, DC: Gallaudet University Press. Wolfram, W. & Ward, B. (2006). American Voices: How Dialects Differ from Coast to Coast. (pp. 231) Blackwell Publishing. Ingram,









https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FBxF3KGgIl4 Kent, D. (2003). American Sign Language. (pp. 9-25). Franklin Watts, a Division of Scholastic Inc.

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Breaking the Chains of Tradition in Bessie Head’s The Lovers Madison Boone


hroughout history, religion has given humans


society and geographic area that only worked

however, most religions require a

to separate man and woman, both still find

certain level of obedience from its disciples.

themselves in close quarters from the

This relationship of obedience can be seen in

beginning. The village has strict rules against

many widespread religions. Christians, for

men and woman living together as well as

example, follow the Ten Commandments and

arranged marriages; in most of these tribes the

the word of God; whereas, Muslims only eat

community works to benefit the entire group

certain foods based on their religious

rather than just themselves. Even marriage is

“instructions.” In any respect, this obedience

seen differently among the people of the

causes the individual to feel a part of something

village, “marriage itself seemed to have no



significance beyond a union for the production

contribution or sacrifices are important to their

of children” (Rosenberg 424). Despite the

eternal residency. However, some religions

religion pulling them into different directions

require more sacrifices and “rules” than others,

and their parents being completely against this

causing some individuals to break the chains

idea of “free choice,” Keaja and Tselane show

and make choices based on their personal will.

determination and independence in choosing

No short story portrays the battle between

their own future. Although Head writes this

tradition and self-resolve better than Bessie

short story in the genre of fiction, the events

Head’s The Lovers. Head uses the traditional

and traditions apparent throughout this love

beliefs and expectations shared in Southern

affair are factually present in South African

African tribes to exemplify the bravery






Although Tselane and Keaja lived in a



individuals can show when they choose to

Botswana, like most areas of South

follow their own path as well as the disdain that

Africa, is rich with culture and tradition,

comes from a community of worshippers who

making for a practical, realistic setting for The

act out of obedience.

Lovers. The beliefs of the tribe in Head’s short

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story portray some of the most vital traditions

always come before their own. This gave both

in African tribes; marriage traditions and the

individuals respect for their parents as well as

expectations of women in Southern African

learning how to follow strict orders. One of the

society. According to Moeti, not only do some

largest driving forces behind the village’s

Botswana traditions still involve arranged

obedience is fear; the fear of the crops not



yielding even the fear of exile. Head states, “If

“premarital council” to prepare the couple for

he broke the taboos at a personal and private

married life and their duties (Moeti, Bakadzi, et

level, death, sickness, and great misfortune

al. 248). Tselane rarely has an independent

would fall upon his family” (Rosenberg 431).

voice throughout the story, reflecting south

This suggests that an individual making any

African culture, her mother and father

choice that goes against the traditional

normally make the decisions around her day-

“guidelines” will face the consequences, on a

to-day life as well as her romantic relationship

communal level, therefore causing all to steer

status. Head even writes that, “There were

from independence for the sake of the entire

many periods in a man’s life when abstinence

community. Tselane and Keaja were both

from sexual relations was required; often this


abstinence had to be practiced communally”

adolescence, for example, Keaja has formed a

(Rosenberg 431). This aspect shows not only

somewhat open-minded relationship with his

the sacrifice of personal choice by married

father where they are comfortable conversing

couples but also the factor of the importance

about certain things that would be considered

of the village’s well-being over individual

taboo to Tselane’s family. Although Keaja’s

passion. The control of religion not only

family also believes in arranged marriages and

affects the relationship between Keaja and

the other traditional practices, his father

Tselane, but it has affected their everyday life

understands that Keaja is still young and

since childhood in terms of work, pleasure, and

logically realizes that it is safer to be open with

place in the community.

his son. On the other hand, Tselane has been










All disciples of any religion may not

conformed to an example of a daughter by her

share the same relationship with their God, but

father and mother—a young girl that should

all at least share the action of obedience to the

not question the tribe’s beliefs or disobey her

word and commandments of that creator.

parents. Tselane’s personality and place in her

Tselane and Keaja learned from a young age

family relates to the line, “If people felt any

that the ancestors and spirits needs would

personal unhappiness it was smothered and

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subdued and so life for the community

from the line, “He avoided his mother’s baleful

proceeded from day to day in peace and

stare and tight, deprived mouth” (Rosenberg

harmony” (Rosenberg 431). Although tradition

429). Keaja’s mother has become a symbol of

works against Tselane’s free will and romance,

disappointment and the impending future of

Keaja counteracts this by influencing her to

an arranged marriage for him, causing him to

think for herself and to begin making her own

desire a marriage with Tselane instead, in the


hopes he will not have to repeat his father’s

From their first meeting in the cave,

demise. Other than his mother becoming an

Tselane finds herself extremely curious of

inclination of the usual banal aspect of

Keaja, viewing him with immediate respect as

traditional life, Head uses many other motifs

stated by, “The young woman looked at his

and devices to help the reader interpret the

face with interest and marveled at the ease and

effects this style of life had on Keaja and

comfort she felt in his presence” (Rosenberg


424). This was of huge importance to Tselane’s

The most important symbol that

character throughout the story because of the

surrounded Tselane’s home was Mma-Monosi

simple fact that she never felt completely

because she represented the friendship and

comfortable and open in her own home, due

guidance that was important for Tselane to

to the leadership of her mother and the

experience before acquiring a household of her

unpredictability of her father’s orders. Keaja

own. Even Mma-Monosi quickly terminated

challenges her obedient commitment not only

the discussion of arranged marriage versus true

to her parents but also to her culture as a

love because she too held fear for herself and

whole, causing her to question if these

especially Tselane if anyone were to overhear.

traditions are truly the best for her. Tselane

On the other hand, Keaja’s father represented


and his

stability and support in his life because Keaja

outspokenness. Hhe seemsed to speak from a

was so distant from his mother, it was

place of deep understanding and logic, which

important for him to have a mentor as well

only helps to fuel their disobedience and self-

rather than someone to simply bark orders.

will. Tselane also causes Keaja to realize things

The illness that Tselane experienced, “I know

about his own life and family., Hhe and his

now what made me feel so ill. I was fighting my

father resent his mother and upon meeting

training” (Rosenberg 433). Her sickness

Tselane he believes that a true love may actually

symbolized the fear she felt for disobeying her

be possible. His resentment becomes obvious



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disappointment, anxiety, and fear of being free

legend that now surrounds the hill causes the

created the derogatory feeling which would

entire village to move away, “The hill from

could be enough to deter an individual from


going through with their independent decision.

embodiment of sinister forces which destroy



life” (Rosenberg 438). Seeing that Keaja and

community of strictly religious people is

Tselane created life from a disobedient

extremely difficult, and even dangerous at

standpoint, the revenge of the ancestors and

times. The most important motif occurring in

the land took life away from there. Their

the story is pregnancy Tselane and Keaja share


and as the baby continues to grow, so does the

dishonorable and their death is seen as an

yearning for change between the couple. The

example to other tribe members, filling them

baby not only represents the borrowed time

with the same fear Tselane felt and the

the couple has to inform their families, but also

prevention of other generations violating the

a bright future that Keaja and Tselane can

same cultural laws. Lastly, the effect of the

create together.

relationship caused Keaja and Tselane to build




Because of their pronouncement,










courage off one another creating an even

“Mother, I am expecting a child by the son of





Rra-Keaja” their fears were soon proven to be

Unfortunately, this courage cannot compare to

true when the couple was exiled for a period of

the binds the tradition holds over the tribe as a

time so that the village could recuperate after


this break in tradition. After all, the couple had broken the obedience as well as the honor of both families, but their bravery is to be respected. The death of Keaja and Tselane atop the hill in the Otse village illuminates how the believers usually associate negative things with breaking the rules and positive things with respecting the heritage. Therefore, Keaja and Tselane never stood a chance in most of the people’s eyes because they knew punishment would strike them for disregarding the importance of the village. The death and the

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Works Cited Moeti, Bakadzi, Setlhomo Koloi-Keaikitse, and Hildah L. Mokgolodi. "Married Women’s Lived Experiences on the Value of Traditional Premarital Counseling “Go Laya” on Marital Stability in Botswana." The Family Journal, vol. 25, no. 3, 2017, pp. 247-256. Rosenberg, Donna. World Literature: An Anthropology of Great Short Stories, Drama, and poetry. Lincolnwood, IL: NTC Publishing Group, 1992.

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Gender Roles in Frankenstein: Expectations and Realities of Mother Figures Kelsey Burroughs


lthough much has been said about

monster’s eyes, but clues in the story do show



us the dynamism and roundness of their

relationships between women and

character. It may have been Mary Shelley’s

men or mothers and children in Frankenstein,

intention to write women this way. Male

written by Mary Shelley in 1818, it seems as if

readers of the nineteenth century may not have

critics and readers may be stuck in a Freudian

noticed the little details Shelley attributes to

mindset. Freud wrote little on women and

women, but women readers may have.

dismissed them as hysterical. Similarly, women

Essentially, I would like to give Mary Shelley

and mothers serve only as sexual objects for

the benefit of the doubt in this essay. Mother

their sons and husbands in the Oedipus

figures such as Elizabeth, Caroline, “Mother

complex. Thus, it seems fair to say that Freud’s

Nature”, and even Victor’s female guardian

misogynistic view should not be the first choice

angel are held to unrealistic expectations by

of a scholar hoping to analyze gender in

male characters, but they subvert these

Frankenstein. True, there are discrepancies





between the desires of the male characters and

To define these expectations, readers

what female characters actually do, but it is

can look to the views on women (and their

possible that these desires are not sexual.

education) from Shelley’s time: “Fulfillment of

The desires for love, care, or affection

personal needs [was] … of scarcely any

do not necessarily have a deep-seated basis in

consequence at all,” because the beliefs

repressed sexual urges. Men in Frankenstein do

regarding education were still largely rooted in

have certain idealized versions of the women

the last century; the seventeenth century’s

in their lives; however, in the world of the

rationale being that, “a woman’s education

story, these women are real people who do not

must therefore be planned in relation to man ...

perfectly live up to the archetypes they are

To be pleasing in his sight … to make his life

placed in by patriarchal society. Readers mainly

pleasant and happy, these are the duties of

see these women through Victor or the

woman for all times” (Jean Jacques Rousseau

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qtd. in Victorian Women 16)1. Scholar Mary K.

not seem to associate the destructive power of

Patterson Thornburg also explains how

the lightning with Mother Nature, because

differences between expectations and realities

destruction is not a quality of women (women

of women unfolded:

are child-bearers and creators only). He

One must remember that a middle-

considers the forest a place of refuge, beauty

class woman of the early nineteenth century

and serenity. Nature is a provider for him and

performed domestic tasks that, even with the

the monster as well, whose “spirits were

helps of servants, demanded physical strength

elevated by the enchanting appearance of

and resilience … she was also familiar with

nature” (81). Victor and the monster do not see

crude sanitary facilities, with illness and death

that their perspective on Mother Nature is one-

… but the “delicacy” required of the feminine

sided. Even when the monster is “oppressed

woman … is inconsistent with the realities of

by cold” (72), he does not blame nature in the

women’s experience, and these realities were

same way that he exalts her many blessings

conventionally ignored in the fiction of the

upon him. Because Nature is a “mother,” she


fits one narrow definition for these men. That

It is with these ideas in mind that I

narrow definition can be summed up by the

propose that Mary Shelley did not fully ignore

Cult of True Womanhood, which defined the

the realities of her women characters.

lives of privileged white women during the

From the beginning of Shelley’s ghost

nineteenth century but also affected the lives of

story, Mother Nature is touted as a gentle, ever-

all women. The Cult of True Womanhood

present, awe-inspiring nurturer. Walton opens

restricted women’s roles to wife and mother,

his first letter, writing that “a cold northern

and established ideal traits such as “modesty,

breeze [plays] upon my cheeks … and fills me

purity, and domesticity” (Settles, et al 147). In

with delight” as he ventures further and further

addition, there are actual human mothers in the

on his journey (1). Ironically, the cold air is

novel whose characterizations seem to subvert

playful, encouraging, and reminiscent of a

gender stereotypes if readers will take the time

mother’s kiss on the cheek, instead of “biting”

to read closely.

or “disheartening.” Victor is also heavily

The other main mother of the story is

influenced by Mother Nature early on. The

Caroline. What many readers and critics focus

thunderstorm he encounters at age fifteen fills

on in her life is how she fits the “damsel in

him with wonder, “curiosity and delight” (22)


and changes the course of his studies. He does

Frankenstein “rescues” her after her father’s

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death. After she is “rescued” she becomes the

important for a women to be beautiful and

quintessential mother, a passive caregiver

complacent. However, as the above examples

whose only purpose is to uplift the men in her

demonstrate, Caroline was much more than

life. What much analysis seems to ignore is how

her beauty.

she works to support herself when her father is

Other women who seem to be

sick. She barely gets by because of the limited

complacent beauties who serve the men in

array of work available to her and her limited

their lives include Elizabeth, the Guardian

time, but she is an independent, single woman

Angel, and even the female monster who is

when readers first meet her. Victor tells us that

never created, only pondered upon and

“Caroline Beaufort possessed a mind of an

discussed. Much like Mother Nature and

uncommon mould, and her courage rose to

Victor’s birth mother, Caroline, these women

support her in her adversity. She procured

are more than they may initially seem. With

plain work...and by various means contrived to

Victor’s unnerving relationship with Elizabeth

earn a pittance,” (15). Being of an “uncommon

aside, it is easy to see what behaviors of hers

mould” (or mold in American English spelling)

are predictably “womanly.” As a child she is

means she is unique and “earning a pittance”

described as “thin and very fair” with “hair [of]

means she earns a wage to take care of herself,

the brightest living gold” and a “face so

which goes to show just how far outside the

expressive of sensibility and sweetness” (17).

ideal of passive femininity she was. Even as a

Later Victor describes her role in the family,

housewife, Caroline spends her time uplifting

exclaiming that, “the saintly soul of Elizabeth

other women whenever possible. For instance,

shone like a shrine-dedicated lamp” and “the

it is her decision to adopt Elizabeth. Not only

sweet glance of her celestial eyes were ever

does this act bring Elizabeth out of a destitute

there to bless and animate us” (19). Even Spark

household, but it lifts some of the burden the


poor family has as well. Because of Elizabeth’s

Character List as the “[embodiment of] the

good deed, they will have more resources for

novel’s motif of passive women, as she waits

their own children now that they have one less

patiently for Victor’s attention.” This may be

mouth to feed. From Victor’s perspective

superficially accurate, but some of her other

Caroline’s main features or greatest assets are

actions show that she is more than just passive.

her beauty and mild temperament. That’s what

For instance, she stands up for Justine in



chapter eight and courageously trusts Victor

probably have noticed, because it was

when he asks her to wait until after their


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marriage to learn his secret in chapter twenty-

the accusations against her. That means that it

two (through Victor’s letter, this behavior is

is perfectly plausible that she courageously

framed as “compliance,” but the point I am

took responsibility, knowing that she was

making is that the author’s tone does not

innocent, so that she could restore a sense of

necessarily align with Victor’s throughout the

justice in the community. Perhaps in her mind,


she chose to pay the price because someone The Guardian Angel, who only makes

needed to so and she didn’t want to see

a small appearance, is called a “she” and

someone else suffer wrongly. In other words,

behaves as a divine mother-figure for Victor. It

readers can justly paint Justine as a martyr and

is her job to guide his life toward success, just

Victor a coward and weakling, although those

like any other woman. His failures are seen as

roles would normally be reversed if Justine was

her inability to live up to his expectations.

a “typical” woman.

Instead of being responsible for his own

Next is the case of the woman monster.

actions, he puts the blame for his shortcomings

Despite the fact that she is never created, her

on a woman (the angel) and also allows another

role is largely thought out by Victor and the

woman, Justine, to take the punishment for his

monster alike. To the monster, she will serve as

wrongdoing when she is executed for the

a source of solace and affection. To Victor, she

murder of William (although the monster killed

could be the mother of tiny monster

William, Victor should be the one who takes

abominations. Victor decides that it would be

responsibility for his creation). This behavior is

too much of a risk to make her, because if she

not unusual for a man in the nineteenth century

successfully fills her role as a mother and

(or prior or more recently). In a patriarchal

partner, she will help the monster overpower

society, men are seen as being infallible while

Victor and humankind. She gets no chance at

women (and all minorities) are the cause of all

life (and no voice of her own) because of

problems. Subsequently, critics might argue

Victor’s worries. However, it is interesting to

that Justine and the Guardian Angel are just

think of her as a source of terror for Victor. In

fulfilling their roles as the subservient gender

this way, she holds some power over him and

when they are blamed for a man’s flaws.

she doesn’t even exist. The notion of her is that

However, there is something to be said about

potent. The same can be said about the

their (or at least Justine’s) bravery. Readers do

Guardian Angel; she may not even be real but

not get to see her side of the story, so it is

Victor sees her as having some sort of

difficult to say for certain how Justine handled

influence over his life.

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As has been stated, some may argue

but if we are persistent and trust Shelley as the

that the women of Frankenstein don’t have any

mother of Science Fiction and daughter of a

agency over themselves, and fit the strict


expectations set against women in Shelley’s

Wollstonecraft), then we can find the true

time. In some ways, that is true: the women of

treasure: well-rounded women in literature.





Frankenstein definitely aren’t the most fleshedout characters with dynamic and realistic


personalities and fair treatment as human

Although the Victorian Era did not

beings; however, there are traces of agency and

officially begin until a few years after

realness to each women. Scholar William

Frankenstein was published, the ideas about

Veeder agrees that Shelley does not just “reveal

women expressed in Victorian Women still

will and weakness in woman” and “Frankenstein

accurately represents life for women living in

takes part… in the revolt against authority

the decades of the nineteenth century prior to

which shakes the Romantic period and

Queen Victoria’s reign because the status quo

reverberates throughout Victoria’s reign…”

enforced by her reign was already well-

(159). His argument further supports the ideas


presented in this essay when he says that “our

The language in this essay is not trans-

response should not be criticism for what Mary

inclusive and focuses only on the gender binary

Shelley hid, but wonder at what she dared”

as it was understood in the nineteenth century

(159). This is why I give Mary Shelley the

western world.

benefit of the doubt. She uplifted women characters e within her means as a writer in the early 1800s. She didn’t have to give the characters any traits that subvert patriarchal rules. She could have written them in such as way that there was no room for interpretation about their behavior, and that would have probably been an easier task. Instead, readers today can find these iotas of rebellion in each woman or mother figure. It is as if Shelley has given us a treasure map to follow; it leads to a treasure room full of traps and phony jewels,

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Works Cited Hellerstein, Erna O., et al. Victorian Women. Stanford: Stanford University Press, 1981. Print Shaw, Susan M. and Janet Lee. Women’s Voices, Feminist Visions: Classic and Contemporary Readings. 5th ed. New York: McGraw-Hill, 2012. Print. Shelley, Mary. Frankenstein. Ed. Cadence Ward. New York: Dover Publication, 1994. Print. SparkNotes Editors. “SparkNote on Frankenstein.” SparkNotes.com. SparkNotes LLC. 2007. Web. 19 Feb. 2015. Thomburg, Mary K. Patterson. The Monster in the Mirror: Gender and the Sentimental/Gothic Myth in Frankenstein. Michigan: UMI Research Press, 1987. Print. Veeder, William. Mary Shelley and Frankenstein: The Fate of Androgyny. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1986. Print.

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The Influence of Cultural Views on Homosexuality on the Characters in Giovanni’s Room Jordan Crawford


he society one belongs to shapes

homosexuality was viewed unfavorably in the

their ideology. A person learns their

1950s. In fact, it was illegal to engage in

values from where they grow up, like

homosexual acts in some parts of the United

what they accept or what they see as taboo.

States until only recently. In 2003, the Supreme

There can be some complications to this. For

Court took on Lawrence v. Texas, and the result

instance, what if someone goes against their

of this case was monumental for homosexual

society’s accepted beliefs? Or what if they go

men and women:

along with what their society sees as taboo? In

In an opinion written by Justice

cases like these, people who partake in

Anthony Kennedy, the Court declared

practices that are contrary to their society’s

that John Geddes Lawrence and

beliefs are often forced into silence, ostracized,


or even punished. This concept is explored in

convicted under Texas's sodomy law

James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room. The novel

making consensual same-sex sexual

takes readers to 1950s-era France, where

activity illegal, are no longer sexual

David, an American, falls in

criminals. According to Lawrence,

love with Giovanni, an Italian man. To fully


understand the dynamic of David and

Garner are “entitled to respect for their

Giovanni and their romance, it is important to

private lives.” Therefore, Lawrence

delve into how the societies they belong to or

teaches, the State cannot “demean their

have belonged to would perceive their

existence or control their destiny” by

homosexuality, and how that affects the way

making private homosexual sexual

they perceive their homosexual relationship.

conduct a crime. The Constitution









Although the United States has made

affords lesbians and gay men “the full


right to engage in their conduct

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Joey, and eventually acts on them sexually, he

government,” and to engage in that

responds with intense feelings of confusion,


regret, and shame:





“dignity as free persons.” After

Joey’s body was brown, was

Lawrence, sodomy bans, and not the

sweaty, the most beautiful creation I

lesbians and gay men that they had

had ever seen till then. I would have

previously made outlaws, are “derelicts

touched him to wake him up but

on the waters of the law.” (Spindelman

something stopped me. I was suddenly


afraid. Perhaps it was because he was

Despite this leap towards gay rights, the fact

so innocent lying there, with such

that laws prohibiting consensual same-sex

perfect trust; perhaps it was because he

sexual contact were declared unconstitutional

was so much smaller than me; my own

as recently as 2003 is quite shocking. The same

body suddenly seemed gross and

can be said about same-sex marriage, which

crushing and the desire which was

was made legal in all fifty states in 2015 with

rising in me seemed monstrous. But,

Obergefell v. Hodges, which “held that the

above all, I was suddenly afraid. It was

marriage bans at issue not only violated the

borne in on me: But Joey is a boy.

Due Process Clause but also violated the Equal

(Baldwin 8-9)

Protection Clause” (Yoshino 148). The recent

The feelings David experiences in this

acceptance of homosexuality by Americans,

scene show how powerful homophobia in

while important for the progression of human

America was at the time. He is filled not only



with disgust and confusion because of his

homosexuality was reviled throughout the

actions, but also an intense fear – a fear that

United States’ history.

drives him to abandon Joey the next morning





The revulsion that nineteenth century

and worry about what his father would say:

Americans felt toward homosexuals was

“Then I thought of my father, who had no one



in the world but me, my mother having died

American upbringing has an influence on how

when I was little” (Baldwin 9). Here, David is

he perceives his homosexuality. David was

fearing his father’s reaction to his failure to live

raised in a society that did not accept

up to his ideal masculine role. David’s father

homosexuals under any circumstances, so

wishes for David to have a typical American

when he starts to have feelings for his friend,

life; to get married to a woman and have many




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children. This wish would be crushed if he

considerable influence over white, middle-class

were to find out about David’s homosexuality.

American women” (Bonaparte 6-7). Like

Fearing his father’s disappointment, David

housewives, David has no job and thus sees

buries his feelings deep within him, keeping

himself as the more effeminate partner, since

them secret and putting up a façade of

he is not the “man of the house.” He takes up

heterosexuality, and love with Hella in order to

housework in order to fulfill his end of the

give his father hope that he will one day achieve

relationship and feel important.

that masculine ideal his father craves for him to accomplish.

Italy is popularized by many forms of media as one of the most LGBTQIA friendly

In addition, when David begins his

places one could be. There is a prevalence of

relationship with Giovanni, David seems to

stories that focus on same-sex relationship in a

follow a traditional housewife role: “In the

positive light that take place in Italy, like the

beginning, I invented myself a kind of pleasure

2007 novel and 2017 film Call Me by Your Name;

in playing the housewife after Giovanni had

however, Italy’s acceptance of homosexuality

gone to work. I threw out the paper, the

may be simply a work of fiction. Italy is the

bottles, the fantastic accumulation of trash; I

only country in the Western world to have a

examined the contents of the innumerable

ban on gay marriage, although the country does

boxes and suitcases and disposed of them. But

recognize civil unions (Lipka). This implies that

I am not a housewife – men never can be

Italy’s past toward homosexuality has not been

housewives” (Baldwin 88). Since David had no

glamorous, especially with the heavy presence

job and stayed at home while Giovanni

of Catholicism throughout the peninsula’s

worked, he assumed the role of a housewife in

history. Italy’s culture is also focused on

order to accommodate Giovanni’s needs.

masculinity, especially when it comes to

David’s acquisition of the housewife role stems


from the culture of the early-nineteenth

Among some Italian fathers

century America he lived through. The

[the] ranking of responsibilities and

American housewife culture boomed in years

activities remains a main signifier of

following World War II. The continuation of


many women’s interest magazines, particularly

illustrate some real-life implications,

Ladies Home Journal, which “occupied an

Italian fathers who actively participate

important place in defining women’s roles in

in everyday childcare have to avail


themselves of a language that describes


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them as androgynous and emasculated,

job he depended on to keep him away from

as if caring cannot be attributed to

starvation. But this violence is shocking to

fathers. By that logic, providing care

David, like how violent male outbursts are

traditionally associated with women is

shocking to the partners of men that are too

an activity that decreases masculinity

dependent on their masculine identity and feel

and increases femininity. (Magaraggia

the need to lash out with violence when


stressed or enraged. This violence could also be

In a sense, there is a prevailing attitude among

the culmination of his many other frustrations

Italian men that implies that they are meant to

in life; his stressful job, his dead child, and his

be devoid of emotion and must forgo

culture’s disapproval of his relationship with

responsibilities that are typically or have

another man. His culture’s denial of same-sex

historically been delegated to women in an

relationships is a key factor in Giovanni’s

effort to ward off femininity. This attitude that

hyper-masculine nature. Despite the shame he

many Italian men hold can lead to disastrous

feels because of it, Giovanni continues his

effects for the people whom they have

sexual and romantic relationship with another

obligations toward.

man. In order to fight the shame, he makes his

Giovanni, the titular character of

homosexual relationship seem as heterosexual

Giovanni’s Room, is also heavily influenced by his

as he possibly can by implementing traditional

society’s culture, particularly the emphasis on

sex roles between him and David. As already



discussed, David occupies the role of a

masculinity is susceptibility to outbursts, often

housewife tasked with doing all the housework

violent ones. Giovanni has a violent outburst

throughout the day. On the other side of the

when David returns home to learn that

relationship, Giovanni occupies a traditional

Giovanni has been fired from Guillaume’s bar:

“man’s role.” He takes charge in the

“He turned back into the center of the room


and poured himself another cognac. He drank

generalized as being a man’s job, as

it at a breath, then suddenly took his glass and

demonstrated by his initiating of sex when he

hurled it with all his strength against the wall.

first takes David to his room:









It rang briefly and fell in a thousand pieces all

I knew I could not open the

over our bed, all over the floor” (Baldwin 106).

door, I knew it was too late; soon it was

The rage Giovanni feels is not entirely

too late to do anything but moan. He

unwarranted, since he has been fired from the

pulled me against him, putting himself

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into my arms as though he were giving

love, rainbow flags, closets and coming-out

me himself to carry, and slowly pulled

stories” (Provencher 2). This humongous push

me down with him to that bed. With

for gay acceptance led to Paris becoming one

everything in my screaming No! yet the

of the most gay-friendly cities in the world.

sum of me sighed Yes (Baldwin 64).

Anyone who has traveled there can attest to

He is also the only one in the couple with a job,

Paris’ thriving nightlife, complete with a large,

allowing him to fill the role of “breadwinner,”

active LGBTQIA community.

a moniker often delegated to men who has the




sole job in the family, if one were to subscribe

subconsciously, David and Giovanni of

to traditional sex roles. Also, his previously

Giovanni’s Room moved to France, and

discussed anger issues are strikingly similar to

specifically Paris, in order to escape the

an abusive husband’s, one who shocks his wife

ideologies of their cultures that are dangerous

into submission from fear, or causes his wife to

to their homosexual way of life. In the

leave him from fear (both of which happen to

beginning, it appears David comes to Paris in

Giovanni after his outburst). Giovanni’s

order to escape his homosexuality as shown by

masculinity and self-homophobia is his

his denial to chase after Giovanni with Jacques

ultimate downfall, both of which are caused by

at the first scene in the bar:

the influence of some aspects of his Italian culture.

Well, you may find this hard to believe, but, actually, I’m sort of queer

Unlike the United States and Italy,

for girls myself. If that was his sister

France is one of the leading countries for

looking so good, I’d invite her to have a

LGBTQIA rights in the world. Although, like

drink with us. I don’t spend money on

most countries, they were slow to fully legalize

men (Baldwin 30).

gay marriage in 2013 (The Economist), France

Eventually, however, his true feelings show

is a major proponent for gay rights. This is

through and he submits himself to love with

largely due to increased exposure to the French

Giovanni. In general, the acceptance of

public, like when the “mainstream French

homosexuality in Paris is seen throughout this

cinema… expanded beyond its drag-queen

novel, like with the very existence of

images ‘à la Cage aux folles’ of the 1970s to

Guillaume’s operational gay bar. Guillaume’s

present an increasingly visible cadre of ‘global

bar is packed with gay men openly discussing

gay imagery,’ which includes but is not limited

their sexuality:

to go-go boys, HIV + characters, gay teens in

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There were the usual paunchy,

happen to go against the grain. The United

bespectacled gentlemen with avid,

States’ and Italy’s less-than-favorable views on

sometimes despairing eyes, the usual,

homosexuality greatly impacted how David


and Giovanni view their sexuality and



boys… There were, of course les folles,

relationship. Essentially, the result is


always dressed in the most improbable

loathing expressed in different ways. Whether

combinations, screaming like parrots

it be the distribution of heteronormative

the details of their latest love affairs –

gender roles in a homosexual relationship or

their love affairs always seemed to be

the chase for a masculine ideal, the effects of

hilarious. Occasionally one would

negative cultural views on homosexuality can

swoop in, quite late in the evening, to

lead to some drastic consequences for

convey the news that he – but they

homosexual individuals.

always called each other “she” – had just spent the time with a celebrated movie star, or boxer. Then all of the others closed in on this newcomer and they looked like a peacock garden and sounded like a barnyard. (Baldwin 2627) The fact that these men can come into a public place and openly discuss their homosexual exploits with each other, apparently very loudly, shows how different France’s attitude toward homosexuality is compared to the United States and Italy. In David and Giovanni’s home countries, these acts would not be accepted, especially during the 1950s, but Paris is a place where they can be open and free without worrying about persecution. The way a culture views a particular aspect of life has significant influence on its citizens’ views of the world, especially if they

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Works Cited Baldwin, James. Giovanni’s Room. Vintage International, September 2013. Bonaparte, Margaret. "Reexamining the 1950s American Housewife: How Ladies Home Journal Challenged Domestic Expectations During the Postwar Period," 2014. Scripps Senior Theses. 368. http://scholarship.claremont.edu/scripps_theses/368 Lipka, Michael. “Where Europe Stands on Gay Marriage and Civil Unions.” Pew Research Center. June 30, 2017. http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/06/30/where-europe-standson-gay-marriage-and-civil-unions/ Magaraggia, Sveva. “Tensions between fatherhood and the social construction of masculinity in Italy.” Current Sociology. Vol 61, Issue 1, pp. 76 – 92. November 21, 2012. http://journals.sagepub.com.jproxy.lib.ecu.edu/doi/10.1177/0011392112464231 Provencher, Denis M.. Queer French : Globalization, Language, and Sexual Citizenship in France, Routledge, 2008. ProQuest Ebook Central, https://ebookcentral.proquest.com/lib/eastcarolina/detail.action?docID=438880. Rainbow warriors; gay marriage in france. (2013, Apr 27). The Economist, 407, 50-51. http://search.proquest.com.jproxy.lib.ecu.edu/docview/1346616239?accountid=10639 Spindelman, Marc. “Surviving Lawrence v. Texas.” Michigan Law Review, vol. 102, no. 7, 2004, pp. 1615–1667. JSTOR, JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/4141915. Yoshino, Kenji. "A New Birth of Freedom?: Obergefell V. Hodges." Harvard Law Review, vol. 129, no. 1, Nov. 2015, pp. 147-179. EBSCOhost, jproxy.lib.ecu.edu/login?url=http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx?direct=true&db=bth &AN=110959610&site=ehost-live&scope=site.

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Paolo Veronese’s The Feast in the House of Levi: Keeping with Decorum Bethany W. Martin-Godwin Abstract This paper offers an analysis of Paolo Veronese’s The Feast in the House of Levi and his subsequent appearance before the Inquisition due to this painting. It will include a summary of Paolo Veronese's life, a detailed analysis of the biblical episode and figures within the painting, Veronese's portrayal of sixteenth-century Venetian life within the painting, and an analysis of his trial before the Inquisition along with a brief historical context of the Inquisition. Keywords: Paolo Veronese, The Feast in the House of Levi, Inquisition, Reformation, CounterReformation

Turning Religion into

Paolo Veronese, his work The Feast in the House


of Levi, his trial before the Inquisition, and a

The art of Paolo Veronese is as seductive and haughty as his character and much more intellectual that is admitted.1" Paolo Veronese's

comprehensive discussion of those above.

Life of Paolo Veronese

paintings are huge, theatrical, and vastly

Paolo Veronese was an artist of the late

populated. Depicting allegorical, biblical, or

Italian Renaissance. Born Paolo Caliari in 1528,

historical subjects in splendid color, his art is

he was given the nickname “Veronese” based

inextricably linked to the idea of opulence and

on his birthplace of Verona. He was the son of

splendor in Renaissance Venice. One painting,


in particular, The Feast in the House of Levi,

Gabriele Bazaro. Receiving his foundation in

represents these ideals very clearly. This

art from his father, as a young man, he trained

painting, originally called Last Supper, caused

in painting in the workshop of his uncle,

quite a commotion, and even led to the

Antonio Badile. From Badile, Veronese

Inquisition accusing Veronese of heresy and,

derived a sound basic painting technique as

later, capital sin. This paper details the life of

well as a passion for paintings in which people

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and architecture were integrated. Before

Inquisition. Following his appearance in front

Veronese left Verona, it seems probable that


he had already fallen in love with his future

continued. He went on to paint other biblical

wife, the daughter of his master there and his

scenes along with multiple secular scenes and

first cousin. His first documented project was

portraits. He even traveled to Rome for a short

the decoration of Villa Soranzo at Treville

time but eventually made his way back to

which has since been destroyed. Veronese






remained in Verona until around 1552, when

Veronese died on April 19, 1588, from

he left to execute commissions in various

what appears to have been a fever contracted

northern Italian cities, including Mantua,

during a procession. He was buried with great

where he worked on an altarpiece for the

pomp and ceremony in San Sebastiano, the

cathedral along with other artists. In 1553, he

church where he had been the dominant

received the commission at the Venetian Ducal

artistic power for decades, and the focal point

Palace and moved to Venice. This important

of his social and artistic success. The epigraph

commission, also a collaboration, involved

affixed by his brother Benedetto and his

painting the partitioned ceiling of the Sala del

children sealed the family tomb, which had

Consiglio dei Dieci. In 1555, Veronese

been purchased as was customary for the

received the commission to decorate the

wealthy classes to ensure social visibility even

Church of San Sebastiano in Venice. Unlike his

in death. The stone reminds the viewer that

other projects, he worked on the decoration of

within the tomb lies the pictor celeberrimus, or the

the church entirely by himself over the span of

most famous painter.3 His studio was carried

about twenty years. The Church of San

on by his brother and two sons after his death.

Sebastiano later became his final resting place.

He had no significant pupils, but his influence

During the 1560s and 1570s, he produced large


allegorical canvases, arguably commissioned

particularly in the 18th century, when he was an

by, or painted for the imperial family in Vienna

inspiration to the masters of the second great

and Prague.2 Veronese's personal life was fairly

flowering of decorative painting in the city.4





uneventful. He married Elena Badile, the daughter of his former teacher, Antonio Badile, in 1566 and had five sons. In 1573, his painting The Feast in the House of Levi caused his famous appearance in front of the Italian

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Analysis of The Feast in the House of Levi In 1573, Veronese was commissioned by the Convent of Saints Giovanni e Paolo to Page | 58

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paint The Feast in the House of Levi. Originally

of contemporary Venetian costumes, are

called Last Supper, it was to be a replacement

moving, talking, and drinking, as if it were an

for a painting of the same name by Titian,

extravagant party thrown by a wealth host in

destroyed by a fire in 1571.5 The Feast in the

16th century Venice. Veronese incorporates

House of Levi shows a typical Veronese banquet:

the usual noblemen, servants, and onlookers as

colorful, hedonistic, and crowded with guests.

well as turbaned figures, dark-skinned servants,

The venue appears to be more akin to

dogs, a cat, and a dwarf jester with a parrot.

Renaissance architecture than Roman. It is a

Veronese also includes several men dressed as

classical style portico with a real wooden

Protestant German soldiers armed with

cornice as the roof. The cornice is supported


by giant painted Corinthian columns framed by

Like Veronese’s other banquets, The

Christian bronzes depicting beautiful angelic

Feast in the House of Levi is a carefully composed

forms. The columns create the look of a

mise en scene, which sets a serious religious

triptych filled at the sides with balustrades in

event in a modern context. Although the work

the foreground and architecture in the distance.

was intended to be a scene from the last supper

Directly in the center is a haloed Christ dressed

Christ has with his Apostles, its new identity -

in a shimmering light pink robe of the Biblical

a supper at which Christ sits down with

fashion. Christ is flanked by St. Peter to his

sinners- fits perfectly with the decadence and

right and the youthful St. John to his left. He is

sumptuous materialism on display. It gives

framed by the red attire worn by his host and

Veronese maximum scope to show off his

disciples. St. Peter divides the paschal lamb

luminous Renaissance color palette, to breathe

while Christ turns to St. John as if leaning in to

life into the monumental forms of the High

hear him speak. Judas, shrouded in shadow as

Renaissance. Although the composition is

was common in paintings of a Last Supper,

studded with symbolism, one cannot help

turns away as his attention is drawn towards a

feeling that its real point was to showcase the

dog by a servant. The dog is staring at a cat

pomp and grandeur of the Venetian Republic.6

under the table that appears to be rolling a bone around. Christ, Peter, and John's heads

Veronese’s Interrogation by the

are seen against the sky whereas the guests are


all seen against hazy architecture resembling Venice in the background. All around, a mass of animated figures, dressed in an assortment

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The display of luxury in Veronese's sacred scenes caused quite a commotion. On July 18, 1573, he was called before the Holy Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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Tribunal of the Inquisition on the charges of

names of which he borrowed.9 When asked, he

heresy, or an opinion contrary to orthodox

would call himself simply a painter of figures

religious doctrine. The source of irritation

and not a painter of biblical episodes. Upon

stemmed from Veronese crowding the scene

questioning, Veronese did admit that it was

with such irreverent figures as a jester with a

inappropriate to include jesters, drunkards,

parrot and a servant with a nosebleed. The root

Germans, dwarfs, and similar vulgarities in a

of the trouble with the Inquisition was the

Last Supper.10 He defended himself against

group of detested German soldiers and the

accusations of having inserted these heretical

difficulty in guessing which of the three

figures by appealing to the artistic license and

recorded Feasts the picture intended to

the need to fill up the spaces in the vast canvas

capture.7 The Inquisition felt as though

that would otherwise be left empty because so

Veronese, with his addition of so many

few figures were specifically mentioned by the

heretical figures, had not treated the subject


matter with the proper respect. Initially,

depicted. He argued the presence of German

Veronese feigned ignorance as to why he was

soldiers and the servants were to add

brought before a tribunal. He had been given

adornment. He also argued that "we painters

the command to change the dog in the

use the same license employed by poets and

foreground into the figure of Mary Magdalene,

madmen and I represented those halberdiers

thus implicitly converting the picture into the

because it seemed proper to me that the rich

episode where Christ encounters a repentant

and magnificent master of the house would

prostitute while feasting in the house of a

have such servants.11� Veronese continued to

Pharisee. Veronese stated, "I would have

defend his painting by stating he had only

happily done this and anything else for my and

followed what others, better than him, had

the sake of the painting, except that I did not

done. In saying this, he was referring to

believe that the figure of the Magdalene would

Michelangelo’s Last Judgement. Michelangelo’s

look good there.8"

painting depicts the figures of Christ, his





Veronese intended the title of the

Mother, St. John and St. Peter, and the court of

painting be Last Supper due to it replacing the

heaven, all nude, including the Virgin Mary, in

painting of the same name. He gave to many of

various attitudes not inspired by decorum. The

his paintings scriptural titles, but he certainly

judges defended Michelangelo against this false

never allowed himself to be troubled with the

statement saying that in a painting of the Last

spiritual significance of the incidents, the

Judgement there was no reason to paint clothes.12

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Most figures were nude, but the figure of the

of disillusionment and cynicism. He is

Virgin Mary was clothed as it would have been

described as a pious man but seeing a few of

sacrilege to depict her unclothed. Veronese

the figures he includes in his paintings, one

assured them he had no intention of heresy or

knows that piety did not fully extend to his

offending decorum. They gave Veronese three

paintings. His subject matter may have been

months to make changes in the painting at his

biblical, but the figures surrounding his subject

own expense, but he instead resorted to the

are the average citizens of Venice and not only


Christ and his Apostles.





Henceforth, it would go under the title The

The way Veronese infuses the wealth

Feast in the House of Levi, the episode where a

and grandeur of Renaissance Venice is also

wealthy man in the company of publicans and

flawless especially with The Feast in the House of






Levi. Venice, at the time, traded across the

Convent of Saints Giovanni e Paolo who had

Mediterranean East and West, as well as North

commissioned this work found no fault in the

towards Germany. Venice was an economic

painting,14 but due to the political climate of

intersection. There was a sense of enormous

Venice at the time nothing could be done to

wealth and privilege. He seems to want to draw

prevent the trial from taking place. With the

attention to the hypocrisy of modern society.

change of the title, Veronese was acquitted.

The wealthy, and, specifically, the Church were

This acquittal was largely due to the Inquisition

so concerned with the way they were viewed so

having never acquired in Venice the terrible

they would commission these grand pieces.

power it exercised elsewhere.

Commissioning these paintings was a way of telling the citizens of Venice they were pious as


well as rich. It was also a way to turn the public

Paolo Veronese is considered one of

eye back to the Church and away from the

the best artists of sixteenth-century Venice.

corruption within it. Veronese was painting

The amount of detail he packs into his vast

during the period known as the Reformation

paintings is astounding. Looking at detailed


images of The Feast in the House of Levi one can

Reformation, or Protestant Reformation, was a

see that the same amount of time was taken for

breaking away from the Catholic Church and

each figure. None of the figures are hazy or

the absolute power it held over the region.

rushed. They all have the same precise quality.

There were people, especially in Northern

One can see, as well, that Veronese had a sense

Europe that were beginning to question the

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church and its authority. Commissions like this one played a significant role in the Counter-


Reformation. These were an attempt by the

Veronese’s use of huge canvases and

Catholic Church to re-energize itself to deal

dynamic color palette placed him among the

with some of the corruption that had weakened

ranks of the greatest Venetian artists of the

it and to forcefully, push forward Catholicism.

High Renaissance. A majority of commissions

One can also see the impact of the

during the Renaissance were episodes from the

Reformation on Veronese's trial by the

Bible. Veronese found a way to depict a biblical

Inquisition. The Inquisition was formed by the

scene as well as the wealth that surrounded him

Catholic Church to combat Protestantism, but

in sixteenth-century Venice. Even though it

due to the political climate of Venice at the

caused him to be brought before the judges of

time, the Inquisition did not have much power.

the Italian Inquisition, wealth and grandeur

During Veronese's trial, all the judges could do

were a recurring theme in many of his

was threaten him with charges of heresy. This

paintings. He portrayed a sacred scene amid a

lack of power is likely the reason he was able to

contemporary crowd. For centuries, many

get away with only changing the name of the

artists have found a source of inspiration in the

painting. The only consequences of his trial


were a vast popularity and the increase in

Veronese's work.





demand for his work.

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Endnotes 1. Orliac, A., Chamot, M., & Gloeckner, A. (1940). Veronese. London: Hyperion. Pg. 6 2. Salomon, Xavier. “Paolo Veronese (Paolo Caliari) (1528–1588).” In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/vero/hd_vero.htm (November 2011) 3. Zamperini, A., & Crerar-Bromelow, G. (2014). Paolo Veronese. London: Thames & Hudson. Pg. 326 4. Chilvers, I.Veronese, Paolo. In The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists.: Oxford University Press. Retrieved 27 Nov. 2017, from http://www.oxfordreference.com.jproxy.lib.ecu.edu/view/10.1093/acref/9780191782763.001.0 001/acref-9780191782763-e-2550. 5. Ibid 6. Cocke, R., & Veronese, V. (2001). Paolo Veronese: piety and display in an age of religious reform. Aldershot, Hants., England: Ashgate. Pgs. 177-179. “The Feast in the House of Levi”, (n.d.) Encyclopedia of Art. Retrieved from http://www.visual-arts-cork.com/famouspaintings/feast-in-the-house-of-levi.htm 7.

“Feast in the House of Levi”, Haldane MacFall, A History of Painting. (1911). Pgs. 199-201. Retrieved from http://www.law.harvard.edu/faculty/martin/art_law/feast_in_the_house_of_levi.htm

8. Dr. Beth Harris and Dr. Steven Zucker, "Transcript of the trial of Veronese," in Smarthistory, August 9, 2015, accessed November 27, 2017, https://smarthistory.org/transcript-of-the-trialof-veronese/. 9. D'Anvers, N. (1904). Paolo Veronese. London: G. Newnes, limited. Pg. xiii

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10. Campbell, S. J., & Cole, M. W. (2012). Italian Renaissance art. New York, New York: Thames & Hudson Inc. Pg. 562 11. Ibid 12. Ibid 13. Ibid 14. Ibid

Other Sources Paolo Veronese. (2017). In EncyclopĂŚdia Britannica. Retrieved from http://academic.eb.com.jproxy.lib.ecu.edu/levels/collegiate/article/Paolo-Veronese/75138 Archer, Madeline Cirillo. (2005). Paolo Veronese. In C. Moose (Ed.), Great Lives from History: Renaissance & Early Modern Era, 1454-1600. Hackensack: Salem. Retrieved from https://online-salempress-com.jproxy.lib.ecu.edu

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The Roles of Social Media in 21st Century Populisms: US Presidential Campaigns George J. Hendrix Abstract Through the review of literature on populism, traditional and social media, and presidential campaigning in the United States, this article constructs a new view on the relationship between these three topics in the 21st century. Because the trends of online activity, on the part of both the citizen and the candidate, impact social media users’ self-informing and political engagement, the process of selecting a new US president has become more susceptible to various populist practices in this century than before. Key concepts include defining populism and its place within campaigning and media; presenting social media as a political tool and a dynamic personalized informer; and analyzing the US presidential elections since 2008.









populism may have a unique propensity to

characterized by their relationship

garner undue support and success in this

with social media. Since the early to

century, in part as a result of developing trends



mid-20th century, technological advancements

among the usage of social media.

in media have been harnessed by various

Through the analyses of Mazzoleni,

politicians to their advantage. More recently, a

Stewart, and Horsfield’s descriptions of

partisan mass media and now the introduction

populist movements and Cass Sunstein’s ideas

of social networking applications have become

on the “personalization” of social medias, I

the standard, all of which create a political

infer that yes, this may be the case. Mazzoleni,

spectacle to be consumed. I discuss how this

Stewart, and Horsfield’s work was written

(social) media spectacle relates to populism in

before the age of social media and the current

the 21st century, specifically to the “Trump

political climate, but by transferring their

phenomenon” in a context of its own relation

concepts onto the use of the internet in

to the Obama campaigns. This discussion

politics, rather than (or in addition to)

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traditional media, the contemporary age of

that articulates a chain of equivalence around

mobilization can be understood. Taking from

an empty signifier and defined by an

Jody Baumgartner, Stephen Farnsworth, and

antagonistic frontier.” Cas Mudde further

others’ publications, explanations of the

explains this definition as moral politics, the

methodologies from the past three US

“pure people” versus the “corrupt elite.” It is a

presidential campaigns serve to reinforce this

movement that forms its identity through

premise of social media as a necessary, or at the

passion, utilizing a charismatic leader who links

least relevant, component of 21st century

very different demands as a simple fix through


the will of the people and who creates the recognition of a common enemy or enemies

Defining Populism and Its Relation to Media To start, populism as a term is often misused or abused and may be difficult to be confined to an explicit definition. No consistent attributable ideology exists; from the end of WWII towards the turn of the century, populist movements around the globe have gradually moved from left- to right-wing positions, with some even claiming to be neither (Mazzoleni, Stewart, and Horsfield 4). Themes of opportunism or demagogy have been proposed as defining features as well, however this is not over-encompassing and could apply to various political campaigns instead. Attempts to define populism have rather taken a discursive route, focusing on passions and morality, antagonisms and empty signifiers (Mudde 5-6). An initial definition of this discourse is taken from Ernesto Laclau’s On Populist Reason,

(5-6). Now, for the intents and purposes of my paper, I focus solely on populism in the 21st century (within the US political theatre). By this time, populist movements definitely adhere to the above definitions. They also begin to be associated with right-wing positions and are undoubtedly characterized by a “media factor,” as maintained by Betz and Immerfall, 1998. Still not yet in the age of social media, the decades




contain a conservative-reactionary force that was distinguished from the fascist right and had especially “media-genic personal qualities.” These qualities are “… highly emotional, slogan-based,




combining verbal radicalism and symbolic politics with the tools of contemporary political marketing to disseminate their ideas among the electorate” (qtd. in Mazzoleni, Stewart, and Horsfield 3-5).

2005. Laclau claims “Populism is a discourse Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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condemning, is not important, for the public

populism describes how the movements are

becomes familiarized with the populist rhetoric

given their momentum through intense

regardless. In an air of boredom with the status

coverage by what has become a sensationalized

quo politics, the novelty and drama of the

mass media. The populist leaders have become

populist is once again sensationalized to

irresistible to journalists due to their novelty

normalcy and legitimacy. The third phase, the

and dramatic flair. Various strategies the

established phase, occurs after this legitimacy is

populists use to acquire and maintain media

achieved and the media begins to downplay the

attention, whether intentional or not, are

significance of a candidate and views him as

covered by Mazzoleni, Stewart, and Horsfield,

not a threat. Finally, if applicable, is the decline

and while written before the age of Trump, the

phase, which would be the loss of coverage for

parallels are uncanny. They detail identification

the individual and party (219-24).

as a media “underdog,” usage of unmediated

The pattern for populist movements is

forms of communication such as frequent

established and with the integration of social

intense rallies (or today the additional use of

media into campaigning, a new era must be

social media), and attacks on the media itself.

understood. The desires of eligible voters can

In addition, media outlets often focus on the

now be appealed to directly without the

“personalization” frame of issues, especially

traditional middle-man of radio, TV, and

various behavioral or spoken gaffes by populist

written press. Also, the ground-laying phase

leaders (230).

from before can now be produced from both

Mazzoleni, Stewart, and Horsfield

the tools of social media and the users

outline four phases of the media’s relationship

themselves. Populism has quickly entered a

with populist forces. First is the ground-laying

new age and my thoughts are that social media

step, which is the indirect increase of society’s

will begin and continue to produce populist

sense of psychological insecurities. Negative

movements and better enable their success

public opinions are exacerbated through the

compared to earlier in the century before social

sensationalizing of stories for a profit; this


allows for a populist movement to take advantage of the people’s fears. Next is the

Defining Social Media and

insurgent phase, when a populist candidate


starts to be given immense free coverage. The tone of the coverage, whether sympathetic or

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any hosting service that allows opinion to be

stemming from the usage of social media is

formed and shared, information to be spread,

detailed through the spreading of information

and audiences to be reached. An explanation is

and forming of opinions. Could a possible

needed as to why these new information tools

uniqueness borne to 21st century instances of

could have (or have had) a skewing effect on

populisms be correlated to a “breeding

democratic participation regarding ideological

ground” for populist movements among social

positioning and self-informing.

media and similar platforms? Ideas including

In this new millennium, previous

group polarizations, “cyber” cascades, online

sociological patterns may have precedent but

ideological targeting, and the force of false or

as society reforms, so must the methods of

misleading information could be associated

acquiring and giving knowledge and power. In

with methods to power plausibly utilized by a

the past, one’s architecture of control over

new contemporary populist incarnation.

forming a worldview was based in a public

Overall, being that this century has so far








One and










fundamentally around the use of the internet,


my discussion of social media will refer to

regularly among that which was sought out

various online platforms and the traffic therein.

(Sunstein 1-6). This was due in part to the

Search engines, media and news platforms, etc.

unique passage of information solely through

may be mentioned, but for this paper I cover

reputable and/or established general-interest

the “social media” tools that accrue the

intermediaries – newspapers, magazines, TV,

persistent attention of many.

This “social

and radio broadcasters. These third parties

media” refers to “Internet-based platforms

have been subdued by the special-interest

that allow the creation and exchange of user-

intermediaries of private social networking

generated content, usually using either mobile

applications, the “social media” (18-20). So

or web-based technologies”, as defined by

now the traditional news mediums are often

Helen Margetts et al in Political Turbulence: How

accessed through another online medium; this

Social Media Shape Collective Action. It would

online medium being both curtailed by the

especially incorporate major platforms such as

respective owners and administrators but also

Facebook and Twitter, but also Instagram and

through the “personalization” of the user

Snapchat, and to an extent sites like YouTube,


blogs, and forums. In essence, I am referring to

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Facebook (from the same poll, 67% of US

“personalization,” I introduce the idea of the

adults use Facebook, so possibly 44% of the

“DailyMe,” as used by Cass Sunstein in his

population is using Facebook explicitly for this


purpose) (126). This shift from direct access

Through the active sorting and

segregation of posts by the user himself and the


built-in algorithm of the platform to adjust the

personalized special-interest screens could be

feed according to the user’s behaviors, this user


effectively has created an echo chamber of self-

polarization and informational isolation among


participating parties.





removing many opposing posts that one could otherwise encounter.



intermediaries producing



Now, supposing the above claim to be

In addition to the

true, my proposition is one of whether this

influence users themselves have, is the ability

effect could relate to a rise of populist

to be ideologically targeted in this domain. As

tendencies. For if a polarized group discussing

previously mentioned, the built-in algorithms

in an echo chamber could cause a tide of

monitor the “clicking behavior” of users in

misinformation or emotional unrest with just

order to select posts more likely to be

enough influence to upset a status quo, it could

interacted with and make new suggestions in a


similar fashion. Along those lines, with targeted

propagandized post circulating in a certain

articles of information can come targeted

network managing to gain momentum through

political advertisements. The online medium,

an informational cascade, without need for

the “DailyMe,” we create for ourselves should

verification by exposed consumers, could

be quite capable of presenting to a certain

completely change the political atmosphere



among a group. Allcott and Gentzkow detail

compatible message from a political figure or

four potential social costs of the consumption
















Also from #Republic, according to a

consumers would fare for the worse due to

2016 poll by the Pew Research Center,

having less-accurate beliefs. Moreover, these

consumption of current events, politics, etc.

less-accurate beliefs may “…reduce positive

has been relocating to this personalized online

social externalities, undermining the ability of

sphere for a significant percentage of the

the democratic process to elect high-quality

population: with 59% of US adults getting this


information from Twitter and 66% from

misleading news pieces could cause consumers

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In addition, these false or

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to become even more skeptical of legitimate

To explain this qualitative shift in social

sources, blurring the lines between the real and

media usage, I take from Jody C. Baumgartner

the fake. Later on, these social results may

and Terri L. Towner’s The Internet and the 2016

initiate lacks of demand on the consumer’s part

Presidential Campaign, 2017. In this, the use of

and initiative of an established source’s part for


reporting that is unbiased, accurate, and

conceptualized along a continuum of user

reliable. These costs could only perpetuate the

threshold levels (156). These levels being: 1)

tendencies of polarization and psychological

information seeking (low threshold); 2)

malaise and uncertainty, plausible ingredients

interactive expression (medium threshold); and

for a populist catch-hold.

3) campaign engagement (high threshold). The





general trend has been from a high threshold

Analyzing US Presidential

in 2008, to a medium threshold in 2012, and

Campaigns Incorporating Social

finally a low threshold in 2016. Through a combination of lessening enthusiasm for

Media The



methodologies from the 2016 US presidential election should be viewed in a context of constructed reaction and result from the 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns. So as these two prior election seasons, 2016 saw social media as an additional requisite for reaching the electorate. However, while social media maintained, perhaps even increased, its quantitative presence, the quality of and manner of participation in its political usage undoubtedly had undergone a negative shift. Since 2008, the efforts by President Obama, and his opponents during his tenure, to shape this qualitative aspect of social media in politics laid the groundwork for President Trump’s online success, in turn setting a new precedent for future populist politics. Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

candidates and the candidates themselves exerting greater control over narrative and online voter engagement, the dynamic of popular mobilization on social media is a shift from active discourse to passive consumption of political information (157, 172). To quote Baumgartner, “[in 2008] voters actively engaged social media outside the context of formal campaign and party organizations.” They created their own content promoting a candidate to be shared and gathered campaign involvement from friends through their own social networks. Entering 2012, the public displayed less innovation and engagement on social media while the campaigns




strategies to exert greater control over narrative and voters’ online engagement. Essentially,

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social media had become “a new form of

The brevity feature of the 2016 US

passing entertainment.” By the 2016 campaign,

presidential election is not new, starting even

candidates were prone to "[flood] the social

before the Obama campaigns. Due to the

media zone with their own content, eclipsing

twenty-four/seven mass media news cycles,

the ability of voter-generated material to gain

brief sound bites became the more familiar

traction.” Campaigns would “…actively seek

presentations of politicians. Now, with the

to coordinate social media users' political

introduction of social media, especially twitter,

engagement through their organizations rather

compact messaging became an important

than having users take the initiative, as

political tool in and of itself. Twitter allows for,

occurred in 2008.” All the while “…voters

not exhaustively, brief campaign or poll

were less likely to create and disseminate their

updates, re-tweetable slogans such as “Hope

own material as they were more inclined to

and Change” or “Make America Great Again”,

monitor social media without comment or to

and especially recently, rapid-fire insults and

respond to material posted by campaign and

attacks that can help shape public opinion and

media elites” (153-55, 172).

policy (Farnsworth 7). These simple and often-

This rising passivity in conjunction

times emotional messages effortlessly grab the



attention of an easily distracted populous due


to their entertainment value. Campaign tweets

mediums to the personalized online could be

themselves also become news in mass media,

interpreted as detrimentally affecting eligible


voters’ political information efficacy, which is









“…the extent to which individuals believe they have






An unfortunate tendency of a tweet’s


brevity is the ease of turning negative. The

meaningfully engage in political participation”

“rapid-fire insults” mentioned before are

(Schill et al. 109). This ties in with Allcott and

evidenced by President Trump’s use of twitter

Gentzkow’s premise of social costs of

as a bully-pulpit. Outside the deliberate

misinformation. In addition, the brevity,

cynicism from candidates is also evident

negativity, personal or character focus, and

among online users themselves, especially in

“going public” aspects of the most recent

ideologically isolated rooms. An example:

social media campaign use are exploitative of

[A] study of 39 million political comments on

this political information efficacy, all serving as

Reddit from January 2015 to January 2017

archetypal methods of a populist environment.

found that an increasing number of offensive

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posts that focused on political content

tournament picks. For more policy specific

appeared leading up to the 2016 election, a

exercises, the Obama campaigns were keen on

trend not seen in nonpolitical posts from the

reaching out to the public to explain policy

same period. Those offensive posts… were


also more popular on the site (as measured by

additional use of YouTube videos and online

up-votes minus down-votes by those reacting



to the posts) than comments that were not



deemed offensive. … Rewarded behavior is

(Farnsworth 6).



through efforts,


the all


repeated behavior, and so the forwarding of

In comparison, the Trump campaign

nasty comments online should lead to even

especially focused on signs of adoration,

more such commentary on social media.

combining images of rallying supporters (and

(Farnsworth 135-36)

hyperbolic rhetoric to over quantify the extent




of this) and for example, an image of President

Horsfield’s first step of populist mobilization,

Trump addressing a joint session of Congress,

the “indirect increase of society’s sense of

with Vice President Pence and House Speaker



Ryan standing and applauding the new

cynicism and character negativity online which

president, on his White House page once in

caught and flourished among the right during

office (Farnsworth 131-33). In addition, his

Obama's campaigns and tenure possibly

colloquial social media messages left voters

enabled this practice under Trump towards a

with the impression that he was speaking

conservative populist electoral success.

directly to them. Moreover, candidate Trump




Maintaining a positive personality and

would “go public”, a two-step plan involving

character appearance is also an important tool

generating controversy and then attacking



journalists, the media as a whole, and fact

Obama utilized social media to this end to

checkers, cementing a personification as the

project himself as both the messenger calling

only one who could be trusted (Baumgartner

for 'hope and change' and the personification




of that mantra. He would regularly post

In summary of these social media

instances of his appearance on non-politically

techniques, "… posts were 'social-media-genic'

oriented programs showcasing a friendly and

and designed to be shared, clicked, and

empathetic demeanor or even a “regular-ness”

commented upon” (Schill 21). Through brevity

such as showcasing his college basketball

and a focus on the personal, populist

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and individual politicians now gain or lose

entertainment needed to gather a following in

favor through his or her online performance.

today’s political arena. Further, incivility and

The developing self-categorizing and passive-

the enablement of passivity online proved to be

consumptive trends in the online sphere are

a successful method for right-wing populism

significantly affecting the way eligible voters

whereas active engagement is more effective

prepare themselves to enact a properly

for those leaning left. These propositions were

informed participation in elections. From the

given credence in a research study by Jacob

Obama campaigns a decade ago to now the

Groshek and Karolina Koc-Michalska, 2017, in

surprise Trump election results, the political

“Helping populism win? Social media use, filter

spectacle on social media is undoubtedly a

bubbles, and support for populist presidential

powerful force in modern day populisms.

candidates in the 2016 US election campaign.”

Concluding Remarks Finally, the conjunction of social media and politics may have completely redefined the role of the citizen. During these past, and probable future, instances of contemporary populisms, political information has been commodified by social media. In other words, populism and social media now creates politics to be consumed. The reach of the political sphere has been expanded by social media to define a person’s subjectivity. This political subjectivity is becoming a commodity through the consumption of yourself by oneself online – the endpoint of the “DailyMe.” The majority of people’s opinions were kept to themselves before but are now shown externally through “likes” and sharing of posts. Modern





followings online through the use of hashtags

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Works Cited Allcott, Hunt, and Matthew Gentzkow. "Social media and fake news in the 2016 election." Journal of Economic Perspectives 31.2 (2017): 211-36. Web. 16 April 2018. Baumgartner, Jody C., and Terri L. Towner. The Internet and the 2016 Presidential Campaign. Rowman & Littlefield Publishing Group, Inc, Lanham, Maryland, 2017. Farnsworth, Stephen J., 1961. Presidential Communication and Character: White House News Management from Clinton and Cable to Twitter and Trump. Routledge, New York, NY, 2018. Gottfried, Jeffrey, and Elisa Shearer. 2016. “News Use across Social Media Platforms 2016.” Pew Research Center, May 26. http://www.journalism.org/2016/05/26/news-use-across-socialmedia-platforms-2016. Web. 21 Sept. 2018. Groshek, Jacob, and Karolina Koc-Michalska. "Helping populism win? Social media use, filter bubbles, and support for populist presidential candidates in the 2016 US election campaign." Information, Communication & Society 20.9 (2017): 1389-1407. Web. 21 Sept. 2018. Harcourt, Bernard E. Exposed: Desire and Disobedience in the Digital Age. Cambridge; London: Harvard University Press, 2015. Margetts, Helen, et al. Political Turbulence: How Social Media Shape Collective Action. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2016. Mazzoleni, Gianpietro, Julianne Stewart, and Bruce Horsfield, eds. The Media and Neo-Populism: A Contemporary Comparative Analysis. Westport: Praeger Publishers, 2003. Print. Praeger Ser. in Pol. Comm. Mudde, Cas, and Cristóbal Rovira Kaltwasser, eds. Populism in Europe and the Americas: Threat or Corrective for Democracy? Cambridge; New York: Cambridge University Press: 2012. Richardson, Glenn W., ed. Social Media and Politics: A New Way to Participate in the Political Process. Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger, 2017. Schill, Daniel J., and John A. Hendricks. The Presidency and Social Media: Discourse, Disruption, and Digital Democracy in the 2016 Presidential Election. Routledge, New York, NY, 2018.

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Sunstein, Cass R. #Republic: Divided Democracy in the Age of Social Media. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2017.

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The Countertop where Sitting Down was Standing Up Zak Kelly


he Greensboro sit in, as it has come

a bowling alley in the back. Today, it has been

to be known, was a protest by

bought and converted to a museum to

African American students of The

commemorate the actions which took place

North Carolina Agricultural and Technical

there on February 1, 1960 (Rothstein). Opened

College to be served in a “whites only” section

in 1929, the Woolworth’s lunch counter served

of Woolworth’s Diner. This protest played a

hungry patrons in downtown Greensboro at

significant role in gaining equality for all those

132 S. Elm St (Greensboro Public Library).

in the United States, showing how a movement

At this point in time in North Carolina,

to better the nation can start in a seemingly

Jim Crow laws were still in full effect,

routine place, such as a diner. Throughout the

segregating the counters between “whites

years, the actions taken at Woolworth’s have

only” sections and “colored sections.” This

gone down in history as a pivotal event in the

segregation had been in effect in North

Civil Rights Movement. Viewpoints on the

Carolina for as long as the establishment had

significance of this event will be scattered due

been opened. Jim Crow laws, named after

to different cultural and societal differences but

minstrel songs, refer to statutes not enacted by

the main takeaway is that the actions taken by

Southern state legislation, but implied by local

the participants of the Greensboro sit in have

customs to create racial separation where races

shaped where the United States is in terms of

were mixed (Wadelington). Jim Crow laws in

race relations. With the context of where race

the South engaged in the practice of actively

relations were in 1960’s America, it is amazing

segregating minorities in a slew of ways, from

to think that such an influential event towards

separating water fountains, to confining

combating oppression happened at a simple

African Americans to the upper decks during

diner countertop in North Carolina.

movies. They also confined African Americans

The “F.W. Woolworth Co. Diner” was a two-

to often dirtier and cramped countertops at

story structure complete with an area for eating

dining establishments, communicating their

and conversing with fellow patrons along with

place in a “white society” (Wadelington).

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Imagine having to enter establishments

charge (Hale). The next day they would show

through the back door and having to wait for

up with more colleagues, who would eventually

white patrons to be serviced first, just to

end up sitting in shifts so other protestors

receive subpar treatment.

This regulation

could sleep or go to class (Hale). Since the

through adherence to historical customs of the

“laws” were not actual legislation, nothing

area related being of color to being a second-

could be done to arrest the protestors. Gaining

class citizen.

local media attention, by the fifth of February

The seemingly normal countertop

about three hundred students accompanied the

that was used in the Woolworth’s Diner,

four attempting to receive service at the

separated into white and colored sections, was

“whites only” section (history.com). Gaining

the epicenter for civil protest felt throughout

national media attention at this point, copy-cat

the country. On February 1, 1960, four African

protests sprang up across the country to

American students from The North Carolina

combat the Jim Crow laws, spreading to fifty-

Agricultural and Technical College entered the














“Greensboro Four,” as they came to be

The spread began in North Carolina,

known, were Ezell Blair Jr., David Richmond,

with similar protests springing up in Winston-



Salem, Raleigh, Durham, and Charlotte (Hale).

(history.com). Influenced by Ghandi and the

Eventually this would branch out to different

Freedom Riders, they sat at the “whites only”

cities in different states including Lexington,

section of the diner and asked to be served a

Kentucky, Richmond, Virginia, and Nashville,

cup of coffee. After being denied service, the

Tennessee. While at the countertop, white

four were told to leave and give up their seats

customers began to get heated and would make

for white customers. They did not cooperate

obscene gestures to the peaceful protestors,

and politely refused to give up their seats until

even spitting on them and pouring food and

they were served. Authorities were called but

drink on them. This shows the acceptance of

were unable to arrest the four, who remained

racism in Civil Rights era North Carolina. The

in the seats until the diner closed (history.com).

disrespect needed to spit on someone or pour

They sat quietly as not to disturb the

beverages on their heads requires a fervent

peace, had money present to pay to avoid

belief that your ideals are more important than

loitering, and when the establishment was set


to close, they left as to avoid a trespassing

impressive though, was the ability of the




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protestors to hold back on verbal and physical

questions about why they are not treated

altercation, using silence as a weapon for

equally, it creates a panic by the predominant


demographic to stick to historical values. A profound impact the events at

Unfortunately, at this time, historical values

Woolworth’s had on a national scale was the

had created harmful stereotypes, bred of hate



and bigotry. Challenging the status quo in any

Coordinating Committee (SNCC) in April of

culture will often be faced with backlash from

1960 (history.com). Using the momentum of

those who believe traditionalist ideals.




the sit in movement, the SNCC would go on to




Simply looking at the artifact in


question, the segregated counter top, shows

throughout the country, organizing freedom

how these biases created an oppressive culture,

rides and rallies, even coordinating the historic,

which extended to many businesses.

“March on Washington,” where Martin Luther

Though segregation would not be

King Jr. gave his famous, “I Have a Dream,”

abolished until 1964, the Woolworth’s diners

speech (history.com). This committee would

would be completely integrated on July 26,

work alongside the National Association for

1960 (Hale). This meant that sections of the



diner would not be off limits to anyone due to

(NAACP) to push for the passage of the Civil

race, which challenged the implied cultural

Rights Act of 1964. This shows how the

rules. This angered many whites who were

movement in Greensboro had a profound

brought up in a society where segregation was

impact in creating organization for national

acceptable. Violence towards the protestors

reform. It is amazing to think that the

would be commonplace, usually ending in

simplistic behavior of sitting at the counter of

pushes and verbal abuse. The protestors would

a diner in Greensboro could gain such

go on to persevere through the beratement and

attention. The protest lead to the formation of

would ultimately provide a decisive victory in

organizations that would eventually contribute

the name of civil rights.




to disbanding racial segregation.






Seeing the reaction not only in North

desegregated counter top shows many things.

Carolina but in the whole United States shows

It shows how when nonviolent protest clashes

how controversial the idea of an integrated was

with an oppressive culture, it can create

at the time. When a “secondary citizen” tries to

contradictions in biased laws. For instance,

go against societal norms and begins asking

Woolworth’s diner would go on to stray away

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from Jim Crow laws to stay in business.

for different races. It should be inherently

Secondly, the symbol of the counter would be

understood that this movement was the ability

a starting point for focus on change to better

of an oppressed people to see something

abide by the promises of the constitution,

wrong with their country and having the

where all people are created equal. In a way, the

bravery and drive to seek change. The image of

actions that occurred at that counter had an

the counter with the context added provides a

impact on how America would view the term

distinct lesson to be learned, that what was

equality for the next fifty years.

happening in the United States at this time in

The power of the images of the counter

history was unbecoming of a free nation.

at the diner would spark media coverage, which

Coupled with the image, this story should

truly provided the backbone of the movement.

continue to be taught to show the evolution of

Images of civil unrest in response to the sit in

equality in our nation.

caused rights for African Americans to be seen in a new light. For years, African Americans lived in a society where cultural differences superseded individual equality but now seeing colored men and women in a “whites only” area gave the nation a wake-up call. It showed that colored individuals were tired of being treated as an inferior race. Sympathetic television coverage would give the protestors a

Fig. 1 The Greensboro Four sit at “whites only” section of Woolworths Diner (Edwards)

resource to get their vision of an equal America

Since Woolworth’s closing in 1993, the

out to the national public. In turn, this would

counter was seen as a significant historical

spark debate and cause controversial issues to

artifact that should be preserved and put on

be analyzed, paralleling the abolition of slavery.

display to show its context and tell a story.

One thing that should be addressed is the

After trying to obtain the artifact, it was

symbolism of the artifact. It shows the true

eventually donated by Woolworth in 1993 to

reason history is important. When we learn of

the Civil Rights Movement wing in the

different events in the past, we judge these

National Museum of American History in

occurrences with precedence to influence

Washington D.C. (americanhistory.edu). It is

future decisions. Imagine if Jim Crow laws

only a small section of the diner with four silver

were still in effect, causing crippling conditions

stools, two of which have a salmon seat and

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two that have green seats. Though it is only a

The picture posted above is projected on a

small section, it delivers the message and is

screen behind the counter and gives a sense

presented in a thought provoking manner.

that you’re looking through time. It definitely

I chose this artifact because I am

was a great experience. Not only is it displayed

passionate about history and was raised in a

in the Nation’s capital, but the original diner

household that humbled me. My parents

has been converted into a museum as well. It

taught me that other people have had it worse

goes to show how important this event was in

off than me, sometimes simply because they

the fact that it is immortalized throughout the

were African American. My family went on a


trip to Washington D.C. a few years ago, where

This artifact is more than just an object.

my dad took me to the National Museum of

It is a piece of American history that is a

American History. I remember walking

symbol of attrition for equality that has shaped

through the doors of the marble entrance and

the United States to what it is today. The

seeing an array of historical artifacts, each of

actions of the Greensboro Four and all those

which had a story pertaining to the progression

that protested at Woolworth’s diner show the

of our country. After touring around for a

amazing ability of the citizens of our country to

while, my dad took me to the Civil Rights wing

actively pursue change, seeking equality and

where we came across the section of the diner.

justice through analyzing the constitution. The

My father has always been fervent in teaching

symbolism transcends that of bigotry and spite,

me about the history of civil rights and has told

using peace and nonviolence to overcome

me many stories, both personal to his life and


more intrinsic in a national spotlight. I

separation. The beauty of this protest is that an

remember as a little kid seeing old pictures of

oppressed people were able to stand up for

my three-year-old dad and the rest of his family

their rights by taking a seat.




on the mall of Washington D.C. at the famous “I Have a Dream” speech by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. In person, the countertop exhibit in the museum pays tribute to the brave young men and women with different quotes posted around it and a plaque describing what happened, providing background information.

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Works Cited Edwards, Owen. “Courage at the Greensboro Lunch Counter.” Smithsonian.com, Smithsonian Institution, 1 Feb. 2010, www.smithsonianmag.com/smithsonian-institution/courage-at-thegreensboro-lunch-counter-4507661/. “Greensboro Library, NC.” 132 S. Elm Street F.W. Woolworth Building | Greensboro Library, NC, library.greensboro-nc.gov/research/north-carolina-collection/historical-walking-tour/132-selm-street-f-w-woolworth-building. “Greensboro Lunch Counter.” National Museum of American History, 5 July 2017, americanhistory.si.edu/exhibitions/greensboro-lunch-counter. Hale, Jordan. “The Greensboro Sit-Ins.” North Carolina History, nchistory.web.unc.edu/thegreensboro-sit-ins/. History.com Staff. “Greensboro Sit-In.” History.com, A&E Television Networks, 2010, www.history.com/topics/black-history/the-greensboro-sit-in. Rothstein, Edward. “In Greensboro, N.C., From Lunch Counter to Revolution.” The New York Times, The New York Times, 31 Jan. 2010, www.nytimes.com/2010/02/01/arts/design/01museum.html. Wadelington, Flora. “Segregation.” Segregation | NCpedia, www.ncpedia.org/history/20thCentury/segregation-1920s.

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Witches in Media: A Queer Feminist Exploration Kaitlyn Gael Ricks Abstract This paper is an addendum to the podcast “Witches” from Legendary: A Folklore Podcast. In the podcast, Kaitlyn Gael Ricks and Mads Whitmarsh-Jones explore legends, visual media depictions, and the intersection between witches and the queer community. “Witches in Media: A Queer Feminist Exploration” takes the podcast a step further, offering a broader scope of the intersection between witches and introduces queer theory by emphasizing the stereotypes of witches and how performance of power and belief as a witch is demonized by society in much the same way as the performance of gender and sexuality. “Double, double toil and trouble;

However, witches in contemporary media can

Fire burn and cauldron bubble.”

fit solidly into two camps: the bewitching

William Shakespeare, Macbeth

young woman-bursting with sex appeal and desired because of the good she does; and the

William Shakespeare introduced the

evil sorceress, who can be either beautiful and

Weird Sisters in Macbeth, but he was not the

young or hideous and old, but is always

first to capitalize on the concept of witches or

involved with evil. Throughout my podcast,

witchcraft. Witches are one of the most iconic

“Witches” from Legendary: A Folklore Podcast, I

characters throughout folklore and they exist in

emphasized folklore, particularly the urban

tales around the world. The witch is a common

legend of the Blair Witch and other media

monster in horror movies and supernatural

depictions of witches in film. But in this paper

shows, though not all depictions of witches are

further exploration into stereotypes of witches

monstrous. Witches tend to get a bad rap in

in popular culture is needed. My exploration of

most stories, typically depicted as women living

witches in the podcast is colored by my

outside of society. Witches are often described

interview with Mads Whitmarsh-Jones, a local

as someone to fear and respect, lest they find

Washington witch, who self-identifies as a

out and curse you for your impudence.

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witch and a member of the queer community1.

“performance” of self. This affiliation

The podcast offers a small snapshot of the

to the larger communal body requires,

overall interview process but does not

intrinsically, that woman sacrifice an

showcase the extensive exploration of witches

innate sense of self or part of self to

and queer theory that Mads and I explored.

concede to the dominant normative

This paper intends to offer a broader scope of

discourse. (Santos xiii)

the intersection between witches and queer


theory, primarily emphasizing the stereotypes


of witches and how performance of power and

constructions of what “woman” means

belief as a witch is demonized by society in

that are important. These norms are

much the same way as performance of gender

reinforced throughout media and

and sexuality have been.

“what emerges is a dominant tendency

I set out to discover what media




patriarchy, and





implies when it frames witches within a binary,

empowerment and agency by the

particularly media’s emphasis on women as


witches. However, in my exploration I


encountered my real source of concern-why are

monstrosity is buried within cultural

witches usually women in media? This question

constructs” (Santos xxii).

brings me to the intersection of witches in

Given the feminist lens necessary to

folklore and queer theory framed within a

analyze witches, I will be bringing queer theory

feminist lens. In the podcast I quote the

and feminism together by utilizing a queer


feminism, as detailed in Feminism is Queer: The

(male) means

culture,” that,

which “female

The female ontological self

Intimate Connection Between Queer and Feminist

exists within systems of power (e.g.,

Theory by Mimi Marinucci. Marinucci describes

patriarchal, heterosexual, etc.) and is

queer feminism as “The application of queer

judged and classified within these

notions of gender, sex, and sexuality to the

external systems and perception is

subject matter of feminist theory, and the

central when it comes to woman’s

simultaneous application of feminist notions of

Note: Mads Whitmarsh-Jones uses the pronouns they, them, their and prefers to be referenced by name as Mads. Their name and

pronouns will be honored accordingly in this paper.


Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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gender, sex, and sexuality to the subject matter

depictions as rather limiting and offensive.

of queer theory” (Marinucci 105). She goes on


to explain that the word ‘queer’ is often

essentialized in such a way. So, if these two

conflated with sex and sexuality, but “queer

depictions are limiting and offensive, why then

theory is a way of understanding not just sex

are some of these representations so relatable

and sexuality but also gender. Specifically,


queer theory avoids the binary and hierarchical

interpretations of witches in media represent



women trying to throw off the shackles of

concepts” (Marinucci 105). Marinucci also

societal pressure. In this way, these characters

explains that queer theory and feminist theory

often explore sexuality (either as an identity, or

typically analyze gender, sex, and sexuality.

in a pleasure-seeking capacity), confront power

Even if done so in different ways, there is a

dynamics and the inequality between genders

relationship between the two theories; “There


is thus an implicit connection between queer

stereotypical heteronormative behavior and

theory and feminist theory, and queer

social constructs in favor of a more authentic

feminism makes this connection more explicit”


(Marinucci 105). A queer feminist reading will

witchcraft and engaging in supernatural power.

allow for the intersection between the obvious

Furthermore, negative or evil representations

binary that the concept of “witch” forces, and

of witches in media have often been an attempt

the way in which media representations,

to suppress or demonize women within

particularly as stereotypes, essentialize and

society. This is due to socio-cultural fears of

villainize women.

female sexuality, reproductive power, and is a




Media representation of witches is of special interest to me as a feminist for rather obvious





















means to uphold patriarchal social hierarchies.

1. What’s a Witch?

women who are often demonized for their


power. As mentioned at the start of the

J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the

podcast, I consume a lot of witch-related

Sorcerer’s Stone

media, and as such, I wondered what is the impact of their depiction as either the hag or

The exploration of witches and

the buxom beauty and why does media rely so

witchcraft requires some definition. To define

heavily on such representations? I view both

someone as a witch requires an understanding

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of where witchcraft comes from. So, looking

anyone practicing and following this system of

toward faith systems and definitions of

belief, or even using this system to structure

witchcraft is essential. Mads defined witchcraft

one’s practice of witchcraft, can cause ire and

in the podcast as, “the action of asserting your

condemnation from a society that doesn’t find

will on the universe to effect a change”

these practices palatable. Christine Hoff

(“Witches” 20:17-20:23). They also explained

Kraemer in her essay “Gender and Sexuality in

that witches believe in many things. A witch’s

Contemporary Paganism” explains that Pagans

faith and/or belief system can range from

are diverse in their practices and beliefs, but

Pagan, Wiccan, Christian, Atheist, Jewish,


Buddhist, Agnostic, and more. Witchcraft is

themselves with the term “Pagan” as they

not defined by the belief system (or lack

believe definitions are at odds with their

thereof) of the user, though it can be

personal spirituality. There is a great deal of

influenced or shaped. Ultimately, if you want

diversity within Paganism but despite this

to determine whether someone is a witch or

diversity there are certain common attitudes,

not, you’ll have to ask. That being said, “Wicca

beliefs, and practices. Kraemer notes that

is a Pagan witchcraft tradition” (Lutwyche). By

“gender and sexuality are central theological

definition, all Wiccans are witches, though it is

issues for many contemporary Pagans; in fact,

important to note that not all witches follow

many Pagans came to the movement due to

Wicca. Witches can follow any faith system (or

issues with gender or sexuality in the religions

none at all), though most seem to fall under or

of their birth or in the wider culture” (391).

within the Pagan umbrella. The term Pagan has a long history of meaning, which has changed several times. Prior to the neo-pagan movement, Pagan “was used to describe the polytheistic […] preChristian folk religions of Europe and the Middle East” and “as an insult and a catch-all term for those who did not follow the three main Abrahamic faiths […] throughout the medieval and renaissance periods” (Lutwyche). Given that Paganism has been used as an insult and catch-all term, it’s not hard to believe that

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019





Issues with gender or sexuality are common themes for those struggling to deal with non-normative or deviant expressions, particularly when society, culture, and/or religion have proscriptive definitions of “right” versus “wrong.” As such, it is no shock that Berger, Leach, and Shaffer found that “as of 2003,






community self-identified as gay, lesbian, or bisexual – a percentage far higher than the population at large” (qtd. in Kraemer 397). From this snapshot alone, the intersection of Page | 86

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queer theory and witchcraft is rife with

inaccuracy is covered briefly in the podcast, but

possibility, simply due to the desire to throw

I will expand upon this issue. Women are not

off the constraints of the dominant discourse.

the only individuals who identify as witches or practice witchcraft. The name “witch” is not

2. Breaking Binaries

necessarily a gendered term, despite the

“This was dangerous talk—in these

assertion of works of fantasy throughout

enlightened times,

popular media. However, it is important to

a wise woman would never be too

analyze the binary position the term “witch”


has been saddled with. In media, a witch

The accusation of witchcraft had rid

connotes several different things, but mostly it

many men of an ugly wife

relies on stereotypes—signs and symbols

and yet more women of an

which serve to define a person (usually a

attractive rival.”

woman) as a witch. Cristina Santos writes in

Joss Alexander, Tainted Innocence

Unbecoming Female Monsters: Witches, Vampires, and Virgins that women are labeled and

Dominant discourse is the word of the day when it comes to witches. Witches by

signified as monstrous whenever they refuse to bend to the will of the dominant discourse:

definition live outside of dominant society,

The same can be said when

simply by utilizing and accessing powers which

investigating the factors affecting a

move beyond what is perceived as possible,


rational, or acceptable. Even those who believe

woman is not born monstrous but is

in power beyond the physical have historically

constructed as such. These causes can

condemned use of this power and has led to

come in the shape of institutionalized

the death of thousands of people accused of

ideologies and values just as much as


noninstitutionalized modes of social,





metaphysical power lies an exploration of


patriarchal power and heteronormativity.

expression, to name a few, that define

Witches are generally described as women in

a “norm” to which women are

media and historically, have been documented

expected to adhere as members of their

as women. However, demographics for

larger community. […] What happens

witches are extremely varied and are not at all

to women when they are not willing to

accurately depicted in popular media. The

compromise their authenticity and

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an action. Witches are queer, and by that, I

themselves with this collectivized

mean they queer things. By refusing to




conform, a witch challenges the idea of








demands from woman a subjugation of

categorization, and question prevailing binaries

not only the self but also of individual

and stereotypes—in short, witches queer

power and agency? What happens

themselves (Barker and Scheele 7, 10, 13-16).

when woman does not “perform” for the comfort level of those around her

3. Showcasing Sexuality,

but rather for own authenticity?

Stereotypes, and Subversion

(Santos xiii). Santos’ point holds true when compared to the way witches have been labeled and structured both in media and throughout history. As Mads noted in the podcast, women living in liminal spaces, such as the Blair Witch, Baba Yaga, and any other female characters living on the outskirts of society, but still within its confines, are vilified for their differences (“Witches” 26:50-30:30). As such, women who loved





spirituality or folk medicine (i.e., witchcraft) in defiance of the dominant religion, and women who refused to conform and marry—or better yet, left their spouses—are all women who must be demonized for their choices. I’d argue that a witch, by this definition, is simply a woman





However, such could be said of any witch of any identity or sexuality. Any reading of witches as female should thus be replaced by the term queer, not only as an identity, but primarily as

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

“Most books on witchcraft will tell you that witches work naked. This is because most books on witchcraft were written by men.” Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett, Good Omens The buxom beauty can be a positive or negative type of witch, depending on how she is defined. In the introduction of Unbecoming Female Monsters: Witches, Vampires, and Virgins, Figure 1.1 details archetypal monstrous representations of women. The crone, the witch, and the hag are defined as ugly, old, and overly intelligent women. This description fits well with most negative or evil depictions of witches. In the figure, beautiful, young, and expressive women are sirens or mermaids, while sexually powerful or promiscuous women are vampires, succubi, whores, and prostitutes (Santos xvii). Following the figure, Santos explains that “each of these women are

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‘archetypal’ insofar as they are recurring images

stereotypes have bled into other media

that are encountered throughout history;

versions of witches over time.

examples of this can be found in our earliest

It is interesting how Santos frames

oral traditions and mythologies” (Santos xvii).

various monstrous women as the crone, the

Stereotypical physical attributes of witches

witch, and the hag, because popular media has

range from good to bad depictions. A good

taken to incorporating young, beautiful,

witch is a conventionally attractive, slim, and

sexually powerful or promiscuous women as

delicately featured woman with an alluring, but

witches, who can be either good or bad. For

demure kind of beauty. A bad (evil or even just

example, in the TV series Charmed, the three

mischievous) witch is a haggard, sallow, and

Halliwell sisters are all fashionable, sexy, and

elderly witch with moles, crooked and/or

are designed to represent and capture an

missing teeth, and often a hunched or bowed

audience of modern women in their early teens



to thirties. Despite the attention paid to their

members of a coven, all of whom are in their

sexuality and physical attractiveness, the

20s, for her article “What Pop Culture Gets

charmed ones aren’t big-breasted bimbos

Right and Wrong About Witches, According to


a Real Coven.” The girls were asked to describe

admittedly, production does play up their

witches in media and “historically, they pointed

assets through wardrobe). These women are

out, representations have fallen into two basic

good witches who use their powers together,

categories: the ugly decrepit hag and the young

known as the power of three, to fight evil and

hypersexualized woman who exists for male

keep good in the world. Each sister is

consumption” (Shapiro). The girls identified

intelligent and capable in her own way and

two of the most iconic witches from popular

viewers are shown time and again that these

culture: “Probably one of the most popular

women are more than eye candy—they’re

early witches would be the Wicked Witch of

heroes. Throughout the series viewers watch

the West,” said Haleigh. “She’s very ugly

these women go through difficult work

especially in comparison to her sister, Glinda

experiences, both due to their constant demon

the Good Witch, who is very innocent and

fighting and their position as women in a

beautiful.” The witches from The Wizard of Oz


are easily identifiable as good and evil based off

stratification of the sexes within society and the

of their physical appearance. These visual












showcases not


the thwart

supernatural evil, but to subvert patriarchal

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control. The witches also question the Elders

hypersexualized, but I’d argue that they’re

and their “Whitelighters,” who act as a kind of

simply showcasing a healthy sexuality, one

guardian angel order, which in its own way is

which shouldn’t be disgraced or condemned,

responsible for controlling the actions and

simply because it’s exuberant and talked about

choices of the sisters. Time and again, the

without shame. In this way, the show subverts

sisters question the power “Whitelighters”

traditional expectations for female sexuality.

hold and rail against being controlled or handled.

Cristina Santos argues in Unbecoming Female Monsters that “women who chose to




rebel against the acquiescent and desexualized

exploration begins by asking the coven to name

role society has proscribed for them are

their favorite witches in media. Charmed is

promptly labeled as deviant” (Santos xvi). As

identified as a “very formative” representation

such, the Halliwell sisters as unashamed,

for Haleigh, who says “’Alyssa Milano’s

sexually active women are deviant by default.

character Phoebe was definitely the one who I

But to further their deviance is the fact that

gravitated towards, because she was the

each sister engages in sex and/or romantic

troublemaker, she didn’t do things by the book,


and she was also a little slutty.’ The girls all


laughed. ‘Actually, she was really slutty,’

youngest) beds and weds a demon; Piper (the

Haleigh conceded” (Shapiro). Haleigh is not


wrong—Phoebe was a sexually adventurous

“Whitelighter” against the Elders orders; Prue

individual for much of the series, seeking

(the eldest) undergoes an accidental magic

pleasure without hesitation—though I’d argue

mishap and is temporarily reassigned as a male,

that “slut” is an unnecessary pejorative which

and nearly beds a succubus; and Paige (the

vilifies female sexuality and plays its own role

youngest half-sister who comes into her

in the way women have historically been

powers after Prue’s death) dates and beds a

slandered and labeled “witch.” Regardless,

‘dark’ magic junkie. Every sister has had

Phoebe is not alone in this behavior, as every

relationships (romantic and sexual) with

Halliwell sister seeks out sex and romance in

dubious men, but it is the subtle way Charmed

their own way. Emphasis is placed on romantic

frames these moments that sets it apart. In all

entanglements, one-night encounters, and

moments of weakness, the sisters band

various other moments of female sexuality.

together and remind each other that their


mistakes do not define their person. Their







Volume 6, Issue 1|2019




ambiguous) sister)


men. and

Phoebe weds

(read: (the her

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choices to trust and love are acts of power and

the Sanderson sisters and uses her physical

a sign of their good nature, not a sign of

appearance and flirtatious personality to play

weakness or powerlessness. This is an

with men, and it is implied, to use them for

important distinction because most other

sexual gratification. Her overt physical beauty

examples of female sexuality, particularly with

aside, Sarah is an airhead, embodying the

powerful women such as witches, it is expected

“dumb blonde” stereotype to a T. Sarah’s

that they “know better” and “do better” than

greatest power derives from her ability to

any other average person betrayed by someone


they trusted.

numbers of them—through song. This is a





Beyond their sexuality, the Halliwell

powerful talent because the three sisters can

sisters dominate the screen as woman warriors

capture children and steal their youth and

by fighting demons and questioning the social


order of the material realm and that of the

The other two sisters are equally

Elders. They do not conform or bend to the

stereotypical in their presentation; the middle

will of others, but instead choose to forge their

sister Mary Sanderson is a large, plump woman,

own path. Ultimately, the Halliwell sisters are

who is quick to please her elder, more

engaging and relatable because their appeal is

intelligent sister Winifred Sanderson. Mary is

equally split between their goodness and their

the most conventional looking sister, as she is


plump, dark haired and rather non-descript.

Like Charmed, Disney’s cult classic from

She neither draws the eye for her shocking

1993, Hocus Pocus, showcases its own power of

beauty or alarming looks. Some of her power

three. The film follows three villainous sister

comes from her keen sense of smell and she



can track children with it; a special skill which

stereotypes and presentations of witches.

can be related to a blood hound or a truffle pig

There is Sarah Jessica Parker’s character, Sarah

(something her size seems to suggest). She is

Sanderson, the youngest sister who plays up

smarter than Sarah and is a far more competent

her good looks and siren-like voice. She is a

witch, but she is far too submissive and

hypersexualized character, and easily the most

obsequious to be a leader. That role falls to

conventionally attractive sister of the three,

Winifred, the eldest sister. Winifred, played by

with long blonde hair, pale skin, and fashion

Bette Midler, is the brains of the operation.

that purposefully shows off her cleavage and

Described as a hag and setting the film’s events

legs. Sarah is the most risqué dresser amongst

into motion, Winifred is a cruel, vain, and


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extremely intelligent witch, capable of keeping

darkness embraced her, and she willingly went

her two airhead sisters under control while

where she felt desired.

seeking her desires and practicing dark magic. She is the least attractive witch of them all, with

4. Good vs. Evil; Right vs. Wrong

exaggerated features such as wild red hair, buck


teeth, claw-like fingernails, and an eyebrow-less face. She is a startling creature to behold and her inherent meanness is codified by her appearance. Each sister represents a very obvious physical stereotype. These stereotypes are of great




perception of women is esoteric in that it is both the virgin/angel and the whore; the “airhead” and the “excessively intelligent”; it is the lack of and the excess of; but all determined by binary





difference and deviance from a socioculturally proscribed norm” (Santos xvi-xvii). Essentially, no matter how these characters were to present themselves or perform within society, it is the “excess of” their performance which marks them as witches. Winifred is incredibly vain and reacts violently when mocked for her appearance. The backstory behind her decision to sell her soul, gain dark magic powers, and turn to stealing life essence from children is never shown in the film; however, one could wager that perhaps her desire for power is rooted in her insecurities and experience as a liminal figure in society—perhaps it wasn’t so much that she sought out darkness, but that

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

“What if evil doesn’t really exist? What if evil is something dreamed up by man, and there is nothing to struggle against except our own limitations? The constant battle between our will, our desires, and our choices?” Libba Bray, Rebel Angels Witches have a long history, both through fictional folktales and in a non-fiction reality. People throughout history have been accused of witchcraft for various reasons, most of which are hinged on culture and society. However, despite the sociocultural setting, most of it boils down to one thing—fear (Santos 91). Linda McGuire explains: . . . in 1484, Pope Innocent VIII issued a papal bull declaring the existence of a new enemy who become known as witches. A mere two years later, the monks Kramer and Sprenger, in their work entitled the Malleus Maleficarum




Witches), in no uncertain terms gave the witch the form of a woman and soon the image of a witch became that

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of an old and threatening woman. (qtd.

women have taken the brunt of the accusations

in Santos 91)

and repercussions. This is entirely due to the

Witch-hunts ravaged through Europe

inequality within society, which generally puts

and early America, the most well-known case

men above women as far as trustworthiness,

being the horrible treatment of those tried for

protection under the law, and standards of

witchcraft in Salem, Massachusetts. The witch

behavior. Men are simply afforded more

was labeled the enemy and by correlation,

leeway than women within society.

women were further marginalized and curtailed

During witch-hunts, standards for right

within society. In Lewd Women and Wicked

vs. wrong were conflated with good vs. evil,

Witches, Marianne Hester argues that:

and depictions of witches have followed suit.



The Sanderson sisters in Hocus Pocus are an

construction of sexuality in terms of

excellent example of witches being conflated

women’s inferiority, the witch trials

with Satanism (a concept which is woefully

were part of the ongoing attempt by


men to maintain their power over

Shapiro’s interview, one of the witches, Brielle,



says that the Sanderson sisters are “’fun and


whimsical, but the one thing that really

thinking to show how witches—almost

bothered me was the idea that there’s a devil

exclusively women—can be seen as

behind a coven of witches and it’s got to be

victims of the oppression of a male-

some type of masculine evil presence. I mean,

dominated society. (Hester i)

that trope – it’s old and boring, and it’s just not

She also notes that the majority of

true. We’re so incredibly far removed from

people accused, prosecuted, imprisoned, and

that’” (Shapiro). Another witch, Yema Rose

executed due to a witchcraft conviction were

replies, “the idea that we’re dependent on the

women. In addition, they “tended to be a

patriarchy,’ to which Haleigh chimes in,

particular group of women: age, marital status,

“’Witches as just a servant for a man, doing a

kin relation to other ‘witches’, economic status,

man’s bidding…’” (Shapiro). The idea that

liaison with the Devil and sexual ‘deviance’ all

women are evil because and for men is yet

being important factors” (Hester 3). Despite

another controlling mechanism from society,

men having historically and currently practiced

which implies that even in their subversive

witchcraft and identified as witches (or various

behavior as witches, women can be controlled











permutations/gendered terms for the word),

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by men and therefore held under the thumb of

5. Queer(ing) Witches: A

the patriarchy.

(Non)Fictional Feminism

Granted, assuming a witch is evil in reality is a ridiculous assertion. Witches both historically and currently are peaceful and are generally practicing “alternative” methods of existence, one which is usually grounded in nature. Mads explains in the podcast that witchcraft is all about intent and will being projected. The Hollywoodized hocus pocus we run across on screen is hardly realistic. That being said, witches being conflated with Satanism is a significant problem, but they have also been believed to be “the scapegoat for natural disaster, failing crops, illness and other unexplainable evils, but there is also the idea of the female witch as doubly guilty because she is both a bad woman and evil” (Santos 139). Ultimately, good vs. evil is an effective framing technique for media, but it is an unrealistic and stereotypical depiction of a witch—one which has no basis in reality. These stereotypes have been conflated by religious extremism, which led to the witch-hunts from history, and have resulted in witches throughout popular media taking on the burden of centuries of religious hysteria.

“The first time I called myself a ‘Witch’ was the most magical moment of my life.” Margot Adler, Drawing Down the Moon When I set out to research witches, I was particularly interested in the intersection between witches and the queer community. A great number of people I know who are practicing witches identify somewhere within the queer community, and as such I’ve wondered if there is something about witchcraft





Interestingly, there are very few canonically queer identifying witches in media. The witches from Shapiro’s interview identified two specific instances, Willow and Tara from Buffy the Vampire Slayer, who meet in college and fall in love. Much of their magic is connected to their emotional bond and serves as a plot point during several episodes and leads to one of the “big bad” moments in the series. The second was Lafayette from True Blood. Interestingly, both series are mainly about vampires, but feature queer witches. Lafayette is of particular interest because as Haleigh notes in the interview, “’You don’t see male witches that frequently, so it was pretty cool that he was not only a male witch, but also a person of color and openly queer. That’s a rarity’” (Santos).

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The rareness of a male witch in media

being represented. Witches in media are

is something to stress because as Mads told us,

stereotypically women, but Donovan’s piece

people of all genders practice witchcraft. In

demonstrates that gender has little to do with

Moira Donovan’s article “How Witchcraft is

the practice or performance of witchcraft. In

Empowering Queer and Trans Young People”,

her closing paragraph, Donovan makes an

she interviews several individuals who identify

interesting claim:

as queer and who practice witchcraft. She

In Medieval Europe, the idea

asserts that “witchcraft is seeing a resurgence

of the witch was used as a weapon

among queer-identified young people seeking a

against the marginalized people, and

powerful identity that celebrates the freedom

the person most likely to be accused of

to choose who you are” (Donovan). This

witchcraft was the old crone at the edge

assertion aligns well with what Mads said

of the village.

during the podcast interview. Though of

But those roles have been

course, being a witch does not necessarily

reversed, and what was once used as a

mean being queer, it does as Mads put it,

weapon against marginalized people is



now working to defend them. Witches

Donovan’s interview with Gaudet details their

might still be on the edge, but they’re

feeling that “the capacity for witchcraft to

claiming that place for themselves, and



drawing power from an identity that

gender is what makes it appealing to a new

celebrates defiance while embracing

generation of witches,” while her interview

difference. After all, what is being a

with Jared Russell emphasizes that “dressing as

witch if not owning the right to be

a witch helps him find strength in the spiritual

yourself? (Donovan)

side of witchcraft—which he says includes

Donovan’s assertion is compelling for

spells, celebrating eight annual equinoxes, and

many reasons but is of special interest here

devising his own witchcraft tradition—and in

because it sees witchcraft in such a positive

challenging dominant expectations of gender”

light—one that defies typical representations

(Donovan). Her interview focuses primarily on

of witchcraft in media. This is overwhelmingly

individuals assigned male at birth, who

fraught with judgement and panic over right vs.

perform gender outside of stereotypical binary

wrong/good vs. evil.





gender expression. This is a compelling

Queer witches in media may be few

interview simply due to the demographics

and far between, but queer witches in actuality

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are abundant. Folktales, legends, and visual

Section Quotes:

media that depict witches as women are prolific and admittedly successful, because they emphasize power in ways that fulfill and reinforce the gender binary, heteronormativity, and the patriarchy. Witches certainly seem to be yet another byproduct of the male/female binary, where anyone who doesn’t necessarily fit the ideal framework for gender expression

Shakespeare, William. Macbeth.



Stephen Orgel, Penguin Books, 2016. Rowling, J. K. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone. Scholastic, 1997. Alexander, Joss. Tainted Innocence. Carina Press, 2012.

and/or gendered behavior is marginalized and

Pratchett, Terry, and Neil Gaiman. Good Omens:

liminal—in other words, a witch. However,

The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes

research and my interview with Mads implies

Nutter, Witch. Gollancz, 2015.

otherwise. In fact, it proves that the practice of witchcraft counters all stereotypes and symbols

Bray, Libba. Rebel Angels. Ember, 2012.


Adler, Margot. Drawing Down the Moon: Witches,

expectations, and defies categorization. I began

Druids, Goddess-Worshippers, and Other

my podcast and paper with Shakespeare’s

Pagans in America. Penguin Books,

Weird Sisters poem. Allow me to end in much






the same way, but with one small change: Double, double toil and trouble; Fire burn and cauldron bubble. Subvert the “normal” and move beyond Gendered binaries are just overdone.

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Works Cited Barker, Meg-John, and Julia Scheele. Queer: A Graphic History. Icon, 2016. Donovan, Moira. “How Witchcraft Is Empowering Queer and Trans Young People.” Vice, Vice Media LLC, 14 Aug. 2015, www.vice.com/en_us/article/zngyv9/queer-trans-people-takeaim-at-the-patriarchy-through-witchcraft. Hester, Marianne, 1955. Lewd Women and Wicked Witches: A Study of the Dynamics of Male Domination. Routledge, London; New York, 1992. Lutwyche, Jayne. “Pagan Beliefs: Nature, Druids and Witches.” BBC News, BBC, 14 Dec. 2012, www.bbc.co.uk/religion/0/20693321. Marinucci, Mimi. Feminism is Queer: The Intimate Connection between Queer and Feminist Theory. Silkworm Books, Chiang Mai. McGuire, Linda. “From Greek Myth to Medieval Witches: Infertile Women as Monstrous and Evil.” Monsters and the Monstrous 6th Global Conference, September 22– 24, 2008. Web. Kraemer, Christine H. "Gender and Sexuality in Contemporary Paganism." Religion Compass, vol. 6, no. 8, 2012, pp. 390-401. Ricks, Kaitlyn Gael, and Mads Whitmarsh-Jones. “Witches.” Legendary: A Folklore Podcast, 24 Apr. 2018, www.dropbox.com/s/hdw79x5hcjey1nv/WitchesPodcast.mp3?dl=0. Santos, Cristina, 1972. Unbecoming Female Monsters: Witches, Vampires, and Virgins. Lexington Books, Lanham, 2017. Shapiro, Lila. “What Pop Culture Gets Right and Wrong About Witches, According to a Real Coven.” Vulture, New York Media LLC, 31 Oct. 2017, www.vulture.com/2017/10/popculture-witchcraft-coven-roundtable.html.

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The CSI Effect and The Criminal Justice System Jamira Simmons


eople’s perception on how police

strongly than those who do not watch Crime

officers, detectives, and lawyers work

Shows as much, or do not like them at all.

in the criminal justice field is that

every day is an exciting, successful day at work,

Review of Literature

and that every case is effectively solved in one

The CSI Effect is believed to be

day (Robert, 2017). The public gets this

tremendously affecting innocent individuals,

impression from television shows that are

who are still fighting for their innocence, which

based on actors portraying detectives, forensic

is morally wrong (The CSI effect, 2010).

technicians, and lab technicians that help solve

Roberts (2017), expresses in his research that

criminal cases, which is called the CSI Effect.

experts stress that members of the jury may

According to Robbers (2008), a criminologist,

free guilty defendants because of the lack of

the CSI Effect is “the phenomenon in which

evidence that the prosecution fails to present.

jurors hold unrealistic expectations of forensic

In the media, there are stories where jurors

evidence and investigation techniques and have

specifically demand more forensic evidence.

an increased interest in the discipline of

This affects trials by limiting the chance of the

forensic science.” Even in the courtroom, the

prosecution even trying to build a case through

jurors are letting television cloud their

the evidence and witnesses. Many attorneys,

judgment about how and what evidence should

judges, and journalists have complained about

be presented at a trial. This data is very helpful

the effect of the CSI Effect, and how television

for lawyers, judges, and others in the criminal

is making jurors state to the judge that the

justice field that works with or in the

prosecution is not doing their job correctly


(Shelton, 2008). This is causing the trials to last

This article examines whether the

longer than normal.

people who love and consistently watch Crime

The CSI executive producer explains that they

Shows like CSI, let it affect their view on the

think that the audience knows that the things

Criminal Justice system. Sometimes, more

on the show are unrealistic. They feel as if they

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are not to blame for how the audience

Finally, 6.90% said they did not know what

interprets the show (Rath,2011). Although

they would expect of the prosecution. There

there are negative effects, there are also some

was some type of a relationship between

good effects out of this. Although the CSI

people who watch crime shows a lot or most

Effect is putting more pressure on the

of the time and getting the CSI Effect.

prosecution, it is also recruiting more people in the criminal justice field than ever before (Ericksen, 2017).

Discussion My rationale was supported in that people who binge watch crime shows or like


them a lot, do tend to get the CSI Effect of

To execute my research, I created an

expecting too much from the prosecution in

online survey consisting of 8 questions, and

the courtroom. However, there were eight

distributed it to 29 college students enrolled in

respondents who did not really watch crime

English 2201, and to 11 students that are

shows, but still developed the CSI Effect. This

members of a social, civic, and service Greek

could suggest that the CSI Effect could come

organizations on the campus of East Carolina

from not just crime shows, but from various

University. The questions were designed to get

shows that may have involved a courtroom or

a measure of college students’ perception of

trial episode. The most reasonable explanation

how the criminal justice system works, and

for my findings are that for the people who do

what they would expect from the prosecution

or have watched crime television shows, have

and defense if they were to serve jury duty,

learned about the process of a courtroom

based on what they see from television.

through television show and have or will develop some type of CSI Effect regarding to


jury duty. It may not be extreme; however, the

In my results I found that 51.72% of

crime television shows or reality shows has

respondents said that if they were on jury duty,

made some type of impact on their judgement



of the criminal justice system. My findings were

prosecution to present a lot of evidence.

not consistent to other researchers on this

34.48% said they would expect some evidence,

matter, because of the limitations that I had.

but would like the prosecution to have good

My research only lasted two weeks, but my

witnesses more than anything. 6.90% said they

findings do indicate that there needs to be

would just listen and go with their gut feeling.

further investigations.




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that this is fictional, and it does not always


reflect reality. Now that technology has

In conclusion, "The more sophisticated

evolved, social media and internet users have

technological devices that jurors had, the

many things to read and watch, and often the

higher their expectations for the prosecutors to

information is filled with false accusations and

present evidence," (Rath,2011). The more

content. So, based off my research I conclude

crime shows jurors watch, such as CSI, the

that the people who love and consistently

more they may confuse actualities with fiction

watch crime shows like CSI, let it affect their

within a courtroom and the criminal justice

view on the Criminal Justice system more

system. The reality is that it is important that

strongly than those who do not watch crime

television shows try to remind their viewers

shows as much, or do not like them at all.

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Works Cited Ericksen, Kristina. “Rasmussen College.” Rasmussen College - Regionally Accredited College Online and on Campus, 25 Jan. 2017, www.rasmussen.edu/degrees/justicestudies/blog/ways-csi-effect-is-altering-our-courtrooms/. Rath, Arun. “Is The 'CSI Effect' Influencing Courtrooms?” NPR, NPR, 5 Feb. 2011, www.npr.org/2011/02/06/133497696/is-the-csi-effect-influencing-courtrooms. Robbers, M. L. (2008). Blinded by Science: The Social Construction of Reality in Forensic Television Shows and its Effect on Criminal Jury Trials. Criminal Justice Policy Review, 19(1), 84-102. doi:10.1177/0887403407305982 Roberts, Michael. "How the CSI Effect Influences American Jurors." The Balance. October 06, 2017. Accessed March 12, 2018. https://www.thebalance.com/csi-effect-1669447 Shelton, Donald E. “The 'CSI Effect': Does It Really Exist?” National Institute of Justice, 17 Mar. 2008, www.nij.gov/journals/259/Pages/csi-effect.aspx “The "CSI effect".” The Economist, The Economist Newspaper, 24 Apr. 2010, www.economist.com/node/15949089.

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Combating 20th Century Terrorism in Balance with Civil Liberties, Human Security, and Radicalization Savanah Stevenson Abstract In today’s society, terrorism remains a worldwide discussion. The decisions and outcomes of ways to combat terrorism affect the lives of hundreds of thousands of people and in many ways that exceed just a safety perspective. The purpose of this analysis is the explore the topic of terrorism. The following will be analyzed with regard to the combatting of terrorism: the definition of terrorism and a brief history, theories, specifically human security, realism, and liberalism, the problems that occur with regard to combatting terrorism and lastly substitutes to these issues. The end state of this analysis will leave the reader with an improved understanding of terrorism and how/why civil liberties are threatened in some cases. The knowledge found in this analysis will extend the horizon of citizens who oppose operations that jeopardize their liberties in order to keep this nation protected and out of reach of terrorists and their acts of terror.


errorism has become a tireless issue






in today’s global society; however, it

terrorism is the “illegitimate or extra-normal

is not a fresh aspect of the world or

use of violence against noncombatants to

domestic affairs. Acts of terrorism have been

achieve political ends” (Bongar, 2007). History

happening since 1917 when a bombing in

has shown that terrorism can undermine

Wisconsin killed nine police officers. This

governments, spread disharmony in civil

event foreshadowed events, such as, the

society, weaken economic growth and stability,

Munich Massacre committed by the Palestinian

reverse and demoralize social development,

terrorist group, known as Black September.

and threaten peace and security.

This event resulted in the death of nine Israeli

Approaches to combat terrorism range

Olympic athletes and the Al-Qaeda terrorist

from securitization at a tactical level to public

attacks on September 11, 2001 that killed 2,996

policy resulting from strategic political agendas

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and the practices of deradicalization. The

of 1995 and the 9/11 attacks on the United

focus of this essay is to explore who and what

States. There are many ways terrorists attain

suffers from acts of terrorism, how we can

their goals such as bombing, bioterrorism,

protect and defend those affected attain a

kidnapping, assassination (Methods of Attack,

balance between freedom while combating

2016). The various reactions to domestic or

terrorism, security that does not immensely


alter our way of life, and the practices of

overreaction, acceptable and under reaction.

radicalization and deradicalization. Being able

An overreaction would be mass executions



and/or the imposing of Martial Law. An

committing to respecting civil liberties and

acceptable response would be widespread

remaining loyal to the values instilled in the

searches for terrorists and/or temporary

United States can be security beneficial (Dragu,

withdrawal of civil liberties. Moreover, of the

2016). If we fail to reach this balance of civil

three, under reaction is the main reason for the

liberty and guaranteed safety from terrorism,


those committing acts of terrorism will achieve

reactions include, but are not limited to, no

their goal of essentially changing our way of

effort to discourage terrorists and no


development of resources dedicated to combat










terrorism. Under reaction creates complacency,

Definition of Terrorism Terrorism



fosters the idea that acts of terrorism cannot illegal


indiscriminate act of violence. The goals of

be stopped, and permits the terrorists to achieve their objectives.

terrorism are multi-faceted and involve influencing political, religious, or ideological

Causes of Terrorism

centers of authority. According to The Strategies

Being able to identify the causes of

of Terrorism, there are five pressing goals of

terrorism is the leading factor behind being

terrorists. These goals are regime change,

able to combat terrorism. Among the reasons

territorial change, policy change, social control,

terrorism occurs, it happens from economic,

and status quo maintenance (Kydd and Walter,

political, and social factors. Out of the three

2006). Acts of terrorism can have domestic or

factors, economically driven terrorism occurs

international influences. Well-known examples

the most. Citizens who live in poverty are dealt



with hardships that may not be addressed.

incidents include the Oklahoma City Bombing

These citizens are deprived of the resources




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that they are entitled to which leads to acts of terrorism against those


Terrorism is seen to be a process and

(Newman, 2006). Those affected by socio-

not an event (El-Said, 2015). Radicalization is



the process in which an individual, usually

modernization (Krieger and Meierrieks, 2011).

young, is introduced to a belief that moves

Those who are affected negatively by

from moderate mainstream to extreme. This

modernization appeal to terrorists as they now

process is the transformation of

have motive and reason to commit acts of

attitudes, and perceptions leading to the

violence. From a political standpoint, weak and

adoption of an extremist ideology (Malthaner,

unstable governments have a negative impact

2017). During this process, people often share

on the citizens. The abusing of human rights is

the same background. This includes but is not

a direct reflection of the government’s


proceedings on how they see fit to combat

environment, sharing lifestyle values, having

terrorism. Terrorist organizations are able to

similar criminal records and more. As stated in

recruit the citizens who are not given a basic

the journal On the Radicalization Process,

standard of living from the government. Most

brainwashing is also a form of radicalization.

times, this is driven by citizens attempting to

This process often leads to terrorism because a

right the wrongs of the government. Lastly, the

person’s mind is cleared of previous beliefs and

social impact of terrorism is on a wide

filled with set beliefs of the terrorist group

spectrum. There are citizens who are not

(Leistedt, 2016). An example of this regards

provided with the right resources to obtain

the prosecution and sentencing of Charles

educations which can lead to unemployment

Manson. Charles Manson was a man who

and potentially face poverty. Amongst these

brainwashed his followers, mostly women, into

factors, a common trend is grievances. The

going on a killing spree for the race war in the

citizens who partake in terrorism are genuinely

late 1960s. Manson told these women all the

angry and feel wronged. Seeking for the

right things to make them believe the crimes of

wrongs to be right, these citizens turn to those

murder were right and had to be done, much

who are likeminded and have experienced


instances of faulty treatment.

contributing factor to radicalization is the role


















of media. Media, in some instances, can promote




aggression, and contribute to the developing

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war. The strategic answer is to pressure

technologies of the 20th century allow terrorists

governments that actively help or inactively

to commercialize their beliefs through the

tolerate terrorist organizations to follow

internet (Leistedt, 2016). These new forms of

actions that hinder terrorist groups from

technology can be used to commit acts of

operating in their sovereign areas through



force. The goal is to extinguish terrorist

Cyberterrorism can be the destruction of

organizations before they commit terrorist acts

communication lines and/or the hacking into

endangering innocent civilians.




systems to obtain intel to further contribute to

In contrast, the legal response views

their future attacks. Radicalization is the driving

terrorism as a criminal act and relies on the

force behind the participation in terrorism.

international and domestic law to arrest and try

Without this process, the extremists would

terrorists in a criminal arrangement. The

become lone wolves and may diminish their

difference between the two is one concentrates

extremist views to a more moderate level.

on reducing the potential that terrorists will lead to more victims, and the other on

Theories on Combating Domestic Terrorism When deliberating ways to combat domestic terrorism, there is a level of apprehension taken into account. Something taken into consideration about combating terrorism is whether or not an attack will occur again (Dragu, 2016). While considering ways to combat terrorism, politicians are constantly considering their own reputations at stake as they do not want to be blamed for future attacks. This kind of approach from politicians makes it easy for them to overlook the obstruction of civil liberties. Two main responses to terrorism are military action and legal method. The military

leveraging the law to defend the rights of people. Of the two, the military response allows the theory of human security to run its course. The goal of human security is to protect the well-being of

persons and

communities so that they can live free from terror, free and free to live in dignity (Human Security, 2011). This theory is the fundamental concept behind combating terrorism. The security of humans is seen on a universal spectrum as intimidations extend beyond international boundaries around the world. The uniting belief of global security is that every country has a duty to make every effort to guarantee the safety and security of its citizens.

response perceives terrorist attacks as acts of Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

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A common apprehension that arises

Peacebuilding Policy: Human Security, there

with regard to combating terrorism is that civil

are five principles of human security. Human

liberties, once disconnected, are often very

security is people-centered, comprehensive,

hard to fully reinstate. Civil liberties are



personal guarantees and freedoms that the

prevention-oriented (Human Security, 2011).

government cannot modify without the

In contrast to national security, the actors

agreement of the citizenry. Since the 9/11

involved are at various community levels

attacks, there has been a progressive loss of

including government, civil society, business,

civil liberties to sustain efforts to combat

academic, religious, media, and other actors

terrorism. For example, the Patriot Act of 2001

(Human Security, 2011). Another theory to

was created to intercept, detect, and obstruct

combat terrorism is realism. The realism

terrorism (Preserving Life & Liberty, n.d.).

theory approach argues that states will always

This act allowed the United States government

decide the option that reduces their costs and

to more easily acquire warrants to investigate

increases their benefits. In relation to


terrorism, a contemplative idea is that a realist

activities. Many argue that expanding the legal

believes in independence. In an unsafe world,

explanation to the use of wiretapping and

such as one with active terrorist organizations;

other forms of electronic surveillance to

to be independent could leave a state

oversee the general public is an invasion of a

susceptible to the terrorist organizations and

citizen's constitutional right of

terrorist attacks. Realists understand that there

Additionally, The Homeland Security Act of

is no ordinary harmony in the world and that

2002 was passed to enact new laws to prevent

the only just war is one that encourages the

terrorist attacks in the United States, reduce the

national interest. These theories have some

vulnerability of the United States to terrorism,

similarities and differences, but both structure

and minimize damage and assist in recovery for

the idea of terrorism. Furthermore, these

terrorist attacks that occur in the United States

theories present challenges to disputing

(Homeland Security Act, Patriot Act, Freedom

terrorism as well.

of Information Act, and HIM, 2010). These








two acts have set the conditions for the



Domestic Terrorism

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emergence of a “police state”. This “police state” is motivated by the government socially, economically, and politically. Securing the

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nation has succeeded the rights granted to

form of deradicalization is realizing that what

individual citizens by the Constitution. The

you are doing is wrong in regard to your beliefs.

nation thrives off of the civil liberties granted

Here arises a moral argument against the

to the citizens of the United States by the

wrongdoing of violent attacks.

Constitution and many of these liberties are disregarded or restricted in favor of public safety.

Alternatives to Combating Domestic Terrorism An alternative to combating terrorism would


be the practice of liberalism. Liberalism pushes

As stated before, terrorism is a process

to establish values of order, liberty, justice, and

and can be reversed (El-Said, 2015). It is argued

toleration into international relations. The

that radicalization and deradicalization do not

main decision behind liberalism is compromise

differ that much. They are both the process of

and cooperation. As stated in UNSW Law

altering and instilling an idea upon a person.

Journal: Balancing Liberties Against National

The difference is the kind of idea that is being

Security, civil liberties and security cannot be

instilled. In efforts of deradicalization, there is

balanced against each other (Michaelsen). With

the restoration of a lesser commitment to a

this being established, an idea of democratic

focal, ideological goal (Kruglanski, et al, 2014).

peace is recommended. Democratic peace

This kind of reduced commitment leads to a

states that democratic nations are unlikely to go

reduction in violence. In a particular situation,


a former major lieutenant in the Abu Sayyaf

democracies are unique (Muscato, n.d.).






Group (ASG), a violent jihadist group in the southern Philippines, deradicalized and further worked




(Kruglanski, et al, 2014). This man became unaffected by the routine terror attacks this group would seek on innocent civilians. He also began missing the finer things in life, such as, his family and professional activities. Similarly, individuals have simply lost interest in the radical behavior and long for the life they used to have and/or wish to have. Another

Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

Conclusion The history of terrorism dates back to before our era but it is still an important issue. With the help of citizens understanding the significance of human security leads to a nonviolent country. The theories; realism and human security shape the result of the understanding and combating of terrorism. Although civil liberties and security cannot be

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balanced without forfeiting portions of each,

diminishing of rights permitted to the citizens

liberalism is an approach that can ease the

of the United States.

Works Cited Bongar, B. M. (2007). Psychology of Terrorism. Oxford Univeristy Press. El-Said, H. (2015). New approaches to countering terrorism: Designing and evaluating counter radicalization and de-radicalization programs. New York;Houndmills, Basingstoke, Hampshire;: Palgrave Macmillan. Dragu, T. (2016). The moral hazard of terrorism prevention. The Journal of Politics, 79(1), 223-236. 10.1086/687589 Homeland Security Act, Patriot Act, Freedom of Information Act, and HIM. (2010, November). Retrieved November 27, 2017, from AHIMA: http://bok.ahima.org/doc?oid=106172#.WhyN4rSpn58 Human Security. (2011, November 4). Retrieved November 27, 2017, from 3P Human Security: http://3phumansecurity.org/site/component/content/article/34-projects/94-what-ishuman-security Krieger, T., & Meierrieks, D. (2011). What causes terrorism? Public Choice, 147(1/2), 3-27. 10.1007/s11127-010-9601-1 Kruglanski, Arie W, et al. (2014). “The Psychology of Radicalization and Deradicalization: How Significance Quest Impacts Violent Extremism.” Political Psychology, vol. 35, 2014, pp. 69–93., doi:10.1111/pops.12163. Kydd, A. H., & Walter, B. F. (2006). The strategies of terrorism. International Security, 31(1), 49-80. 10.1162/isec.2006.31.1.49 Leistedt, S. J. (2016). On the radicalization process. Journal of Forensic Sciences, 61(6), 1588-1591. 10.1111/1556-4029.13170 Malthaner, S. (2017). Radicalization: The evolution of an analytical paradigm. Archives Européennes De Sociologie, 58(3), 369. 10.1017/S0003975617000182

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Methods of Attack. (2016). Retrieved November 24, 2017, from US Legal: https://homelandsecurity.uslegal.com/terrorism/methods-of-attack/ Michaelsen, Christopher. "Balancing Civil Liberties Agaisnt National Security? Critique Of Counterterrorism Rhetoric." UNSW Law Journal, vol. 29. Muscato, C. (n.d.). Democratic Peace Theory: Definition & Overview. Retrieved November 20, 2017, from Study.com: http://study.com/academy/lesson/democratic-peace-theory-definitionoverview.html Newman, Edward. (2006) "Exploring the "Root Causes" of Terrorism." Studies in Conflict & Terrorism, vol. 29, no. 8, pp. 749-772., doi: 10.1080/10576100704069 Preserving Life & Liberty. (n.d.). Retrieved February 28, 2018, from Department of Justice: https://www.justice.gov/archive/ll/highlights.htm

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Black Women’s Fight for Survival During Slavery Chloe Thompson


ost of the narrative around

treated as such, thus impacting their lives

slavery in the United States and

differently. Female slaves were not given as

West Indies centers around the

much physically demanding jobs as their male

experiences of Black men, and their stories of

counterparts; they were in the kitchen, caring

survival and resistance; the most famous one

for the master’s children, cropping, and also

being the revolt led by Nat Turner in Virginia.

having to care for their own children and

During slavery, female slaves fought to survive

community all at the same time. Their skin tone

and resisted not only their master but the

was also a factor in the type of work they did.

institution of slavery as well. They were not as

Light-skinned female slaves had less physically

docile or inactive as stories make them seem.

demanding jobs, often working in the house or

They did what they could in ways people don't

being caregivers, while dark-skinned women

know about. Not only did they fight but they

worked in the fields (Keith and Herring).

still lived their lives any way they could. In

Women played a significant role in how the

these stories about Black women from this

plantation functioned. Within their own

time, they asserted autonomy and agency,

communities, they were leaders and nurturers.

which is often erased from their stories. When

The physical and psychological damage they

it comes to the slave stories that revolve

had to endure because they were women and

around women, they typically just talk about

the role they played forced them to be strong

the woman’s life in relation to family and rape,

for their family and community. They endured

but their lives were much more than that.

rape, physical abuse, and the breaking up of

How did Black women exist and resist

their families, which they had no way around.

the institution of slavery and patriarchy in a

When their families were broken up, they were

time when they had no rights as a woman or

expected to continue working while knowing

even as a human? During slavery, both

they may never see their husbands, children,

enslaved black men and women did not have

mothers, or fathers again. America practiced

agency or rights. They were property and

chattel slavery which encouraged rape and

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abuse of women. In chattel slavery, the title of

plays a huge role in deciding on if you will be

slave is passed down by the mother so when

seen as feminine because of how others are

female slaves were raped by their master, they

socialized. If a woman does not have the

were not only required to continue working but

qualities that society deems as feminine, i.e.

in many cases forced to birth their rapist’s child

long hair, light skin, petite, fragile, then she will

which provided more free labor for the master.

not be treated as such. Women who are

Under slavery, capitalism and patriarchy were

deemed as feminine are afforded certain help

working hand-in-hand, “… a slave-owner just

and the benefit of the doubt in many situations

as naturally put his bondwomen to work

than women who are perceived as masculine.

chopping cotton as washing, ironing, or

Women who are deemed feminine are allowed

cooking. Furthermore, in seeking to maximize

to be emotional, docile, weak, pretty, and soft.

the productivity of his entire labor force while

On the other hand, those who possess

reserving certain domestic task for women

masculine traits are not afforded any of those

exclusively” (Jones). Physical labor didn’t start

things. They are not allowed to be emotional

when they were teenagers or young adults, it

and must be strong, brave, hard, and rough.

started early and resulted in girls younger than

Slavery in the West Indies can help further

ten years old working. Hannah Davidson

explain what was happening during the

spoke about her time as a slave and how she

discussion for who should be feminine. A

was forced to care for her master’s children

woman’s race and class played a significant part

when she was just eight years old (Jones). The

in whether or not she would be afforded the

gender of people had a big influence on the

feminine identity. “Elite white females in slave

plantation and the outside world. The strict

society sought to exclude, on the basis of race,

gender roles the early Americans enforced

black and brown females from membership of

created the social norms about how women

the ideological institutions of womanhood and

should be.

femininity- and, by extension, access to socially

When people think about women, they think of femininity as a defining aspect to what

empowering designations such as ‘lady’ and ‘miss’” (Beckles).

a woman is. Femininity is how women choose

Mrs. Carmichael, a white woman who

to express and present themselves to society,

lived in Trinidad during the 1820s, wrote about

and it says a lot about them as a person, but

Black women being, “masculine, brutish and

their expression isn’t the only thing that defines


whether a woman is feminine or not. Society

Blackness and black features were looked at as

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being aggressive, violent, and ugly because of

This belief about black women became

anti-blackness. The conception of race as a

a social norm that has been hard to break even

means to divide and defend colonization and

though it’s been centuries since the 1800s. In

slavery has deemed blackness to be inferior,

present-day society, black women are still being

essentially savage-like in comparison to

faced with comments about their appearance

whiteness. Which is why they needed to be

while being denied their femininity and

saved from themselves and taught how to be

womanhood. This would explain why even

“civilized”. Masters would strip their slaves of

today Black women are painted as “aggressive”

their real names, give them European Christian

in the media, and why Serena Williams is called

names, and forced them to practice Christianity

a “brute” by publications and compared to a

rather than their native religion. This explains

horse by the LA Times. A New York Times

why Mrs. Carmichael can believe that Black

article even described, Viola Davis as being

women are, “masculine, brutish…” since that

“less classically beautiful” (Duggan). The fact

is what blackness was deemed to be. The

that black female celebrities are facing this begs

exclusion of Black women from being

the question what kind of treatment are

feminine had serious social implications

average black women facing? They do not have

because if people believed them to be

the resources to be as outspoken as celebrities.

masculine they were treated as such. Black

On online forums like Twitter and YouTube,

women were Black enough to be a slave,

people still feel the need to comment on black

because blackness was deemed bad and ugly,

women’s existence; from their appearance to

but not woman enough to be afforded

their opinions and many face constant online

femininity. Thus, since Black women are not

harassment. A study by Pew Research found

feminine or ladylike then the things they faced

that 1 in 4 Black Americans face online

under those institutions was deemed fine

harassment because people are targeting them

because they essentially were not womanly in

for being black (Duggan). The idea that black

the same way white women were. They did not

women are not feminine and denying them

matter and were subjected to things that a

womanhood has been used to defend how they

white lady would never be subjected to. Since

are being treated. Often times, black women

Black women were not deemed feminine they

were stereotyped as being the Jezebel, a woman

were not treated with the same care or dignity

who seduces and lures men, a whore. This

that was given to White women.

stereotype caused them to be fetishized, hypersexualized, and raped by white men

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(Ferris State University). Under patriarchy, a

tactic. At the end of the video, “Fictional

whore is not a feminine woman deserving of

Tubman uses the slave’s master’s sexual desire

respect because she is sexual, thus she deserves

for her to negotiate emancipation for herself

to be mistreated.

and others. She purposefully enters into a

Although femininity and womanhood are not the only defining things in the human

sexual micro-economy to secure freedom” (Lindsay).

female experience. A woman’s sexuality is

The history of slavery is wrenched in

another major component in a woman’s life.

darkness; so much of it centers around how



people suffered under the institution and not

orientation, but also how they chose to express

how many found ways to resist or use it to

themselves sexually, is something that black

survive under it. Harriet Tubman is looked up

women have been expressing since the

as a hero in American history, so the idea of

beginning of time. Black women are sexual

her being a sexual being is too uncomfortable

beings with their own sexuality. Their sexual

for people to fathom. Sexual violence at the

agency and reproductive rights are almost not

hands of slave-owners to their female slaves

even touched in discussions about black

was a reality and there is no denying it; however

women during slavery. This is a complex and

stories about sexual violence are slightly one-

uncomfortable discussion about the “role sex,

sided. In some cases, Black women may have

sexuality, sexual economies, and sexual

used sex to gain more agency and freedom. In

violence” during slavery. In 2013, a video

the famous case about, Mary Price, a slave

posted on All Def Digital YouTube channel

from the West Indies who tried to use her

shared a video titled, “The Harriet Tubman Sex

sexual relationship with Captain Abbot to earn

Tape,” and was a satirical video portraying

money and buy her freedom, she entered

Harriet Tubman as being a sexual aggressor,

sexual relationships with another free man in

using sex and blackmail to free the slaves. The

hopes of becoming free in the end (Smith).

video faced quick backlash resulting in Russell

Unfortunately for her, the relationships did not

Simmons the President of All Def Digital, to

end in her favor and she was still enslaved. It

take the video down from the YouTube

took her to showing her body to abolitionist in

Channel and issue an apology statement within

London to prove that she was being harmed

24 hours. What many critics left out from their

for her to actually gain freedom.




analysis is the possibility of black women using

Another example of Black women

sex for not only liberation, but also as a survival

using their sexual relationships with white men

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is the case of Phibbah. Thomas Thistlewood,

family, they were still expected to reproduce.

who owned Phibbah, often raped his slaves but

They were not getting in relationships with

gave money to women who didn’t fight back

these men to start a family and settle down

and she used that to her advantage (The Diary

though, they were getting in relationships to

of Thomas Thistlewood). Phibbah used her

gain freedom and resources.

sexual relationship with her master, Thomas

In another case of Black women

Thistlewood, to not only alleviate her life but

asserting their agency that might be hard for

also the life of her son, who he was the father

people to grasp is free women petitioning to

of. Being in a sexual relationship with

become slaves. Since freedom is what most

Thistlewood allowed her to live in the main

Black women were searching for, becoming

house and receive education for her and her

enslaved is pretty absurd. Why would a person

son, as well as money. The use of sex work as

want to become a slave, especially if they’ve

survival helped Black women to gain freedom

been free? In many cases free Black women

was actually so common that in the U.K. they

petitioned to be enslaved to white men. There

tried to raise the price of buying your freedom

are inadequate amount of stories but some

(Smith). Women who had sexual relations with

cases seemed to deal with women not wanting

their owner had more access and freedom,

to leave the state they were in or because they

whether it be living in the big house, receiving

were possibly in a relationship with the person

gifts, or just having a higher status among other

they petitioned for. In many cases the women

slaves. These women were being exploited at

had children, they were over the age of

the hands of white men but in the end that very

eighteen and in their prime childbearing years,

exploitation helped them gained freedom.

and also the men they petitioned for had no

Women are not supposed to be sexual,

history of owning slaves. In Texas, a free

especially not having multiple sex partners and

woman named Ann Jackson petitioned herself

having sex out of wedlock. They also are not

to become a slave to W.C. Lewis in 1858

supposed to use their bodies for sex either

(West). In Wake County, North Carolina,

unless it is for reproductive purposes.

Elizabeth Chavers who was twenty-six years

Patriarchy teaches girls that their goal should

old petitioned for her and her child to be

be to find a man and start a family, where for

enslaved by Benjamin Graham, a thirty-four-

them that wasn’t the case. Although female

year-old who was unmarried and never owned

slaves were not afforded the full opportunity of

slaves. Documents about Chavers list her as

settling down because the possibility of broken

being from a “mulatto” household, while

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Graham did not have a job listed and lived with

knew and had a relationship with it shielded

another family (West). This would suggest that

them from having to fend on their own.

Graham was possibly poor and because of that

Interracial marriages were also illegal at that

interacted with people of color more often. In

time, this allowed for them to stay close as a

Mississippi, Ann Archie, aged twenty-two,

family and hide under the radar. The use of sex

petitioned to for her and her child to be

work allowed them to accumulate money to

enslaved by Andrew Caldwell, “whom your

buy their freedom or to receive access to things

petitioner has long been acquainted and whom

because of close relationships with white men.

she would prefer to live together with her

There were many forms of resistance

offspring as slaves” (West). In another case,

done by women during this time to rebel

Lavinia Napper petitioned to be enslaved by

against not only the institution of slavery but

Edwin Smith in 1858, then in 1860 under

patriarchal views on how a woman and mother

records, he is listed as having one slave, a black

should behave. Autonomy over a person's

female aged nineteen, which is believed to be

reproduction is something one might hear

her. In New Orleans in 1859, Elizabeth Jones

about now when dealing with debates over

traveled to Louisiana, where laws restricted her

abortion but might not expect to hear when

from staying. In order to stay in New Orleans,

talking about slaves or women during the

being a slave was her only way, so Jones

Antebellum period. Many people might not

petitioned to become John Musselman’s slave.

know that infanticide was used as a tool of

There is no history on their relationship (West).

resistance. A trial that shook the country was

Discussions about Black Americans

the trial of Margaret Garner, who nearly

and slavery often leave out small parts and are


not always genuine. There were Black people

(Weisenburger). Garner and her family were in

who did own slaves, but that doesn’t mean they

the process of running away to Ohio but were

participated in the capitalistic aspect. In many

caught by their owner. After realizing that they

cases, free Black people owned their husbands,

had been caught, Garner grabbed a knife and

wives, and children to keep their family close.

killed her daughter, while crying she said, “she

These women did what they had to do to,

would rather see her children dead than return

whether that be sex work or going into slavery

to slavery” (Weisenburger). Women had their

as a mean of survival. It was their way of

altruistic motives to save their children from

protecting themselves and their offspring. By

having to live in the horrible conditions they

petitioning to be enslaved with a man they

had to endure. Infanticide was their way of

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fighting back against slavery by not providing

The last kind of acts of resistance was

more bodies to be used. Under patriarchy,

the group organized and orchestrated events

woman and mothers are not supposed to do

like slave revolts and the Underground

such a thing, they are supposed to care, raise

Railroad. Black women were participating in

and nurture them. But how can a mother care

everyday acts of resistance such as feeding

for her children if she is living under the

runaways, refusing to work and even delaying

conditions of slavery? How is she able to raise

their work (Schwarz). These acts may seem

and nurture them in that kind of environment?

simple but in the big picture they were really

Saving their children might not have been their

monumental. Sheltering and feeding runaway

only reason either, under slavery women had

slaves was a crime, but that didn’t stop them.

no rights to their children, at any moment they

Refusing to work or even delaying work was

could be taken and sold to someone else, killing

huge. Refusing work was disrupting their

them could have been a way for them to

owner’s means of income and profit. These are

control the fate of their child. Another reason

all very dangerous acts of resistance that could

for them killing their offspring may have been

have gotten them killed or beaten. Harriet

rooted in revenge. In the case of rape at the

Tubman, known for leading slaves to freedom

hands of their owner or being forced to breed

as the conductor of the Underground Railroad,

with other slaves, killing was a way for them to

was “Moses” for her people. Between 1850 to

stick it to their owner, that they will not be

1860 she made 19 trips to and from Canada

forced to do anything and will assert their


autonomy. Asserting their autonomy was bold

(“Underground Railroad”).






not only as a woman but especially as a slave.

Slavery was not black-and-white; there

They weren't allowed to make decisions about

were gray areas that make the discussion of

themselves or children; they didn't have a

history even more complex, as it requires

choice. These women endured things that

context for certain issues. From an outside

women in the present could not even imagine,

perspective, people might think that slaves did

so their reasons for killing their child are their

not fight back. They were enslaved for so long

reasons. It would be disingenuous to judge

and seemed to be living relatively simply

them and their actions considering no one

because stories about slave revolts are often

from the present lived their life and saw what

erased from history. In reality, there were many

they went through.

slave revolts and slaves, particularly female slaves, existed and lived in their own ways.

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They fought back in ways that they could,

to find any kind of freedom. Freedom wasn’t

engaging in sex work to save money, requesting

just about being legally free, but even rising

to be slaves to protect themselves and children,

above their status as a slave. They defined their

and even killing their children for altruistic or

freedom, by doing what they needed to do in

egotistic reasons. In every instance of

their situation.

resistance, these women were risking their lives

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Works Cited Beckles, Hilary McD. "Historicizing Slavery in West Indian Feminism." Feminist Review 59 (1998): 34-56. Http://www.jstor.org/stable/1395722. Web. Callahan, Yesha. "Viola Davis Responds to Being Called 'Less Classically Beautiful': 'You Define You'." The Grapevine. September 26, 2014. Accessed November 20, 2017. https://thegrapevine.theroot.com/viola-davis-responds-to-being-called-lessclassically1790885743. Duggan, Maeve “1 in 4 black Americans have faced online harassment because of their race” Pew Research. July 25, 1971. Accessed November 13, 2018. The Diary of Thomas Thistlewood Ferris State University. “The Jezebel Stereotype” Accessed November 13, 2018. https://ferris.edu/HTMLS/news/jimcrow/jezebel/index.htm Gayle T. Tate (1993) Political Consciousness and Resistance Among Black Antebellum Women,Thompson 12 Women & Politics, 13:1, 67-89, DOI: 10.1300/J014v13n01_04 Jensen, Loucynda. "Searching the Silence: Finding Black Women’s Resistance to Slavery in Antebellum U.S. History." McNair Scholars Online Journal 2, no. 1 (2006): 135-61. doi:10.15760/mcnair.2006.135 https://muse.jhu.edu/ (accessed October 17, 2017) Jones, Jacquline. "My Mother Was Much of a Woman": Black Women, Work, and the Family under Slavery."" Feminist Studies 8.2 (1982): 235-69.10.2307/3177562. Web. 20 Sept. 2017. Keith, V., & Herring, C. (1991). Skin Tone and Stratification in the Black Community.

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American Journal of Sociology, 97(3), 760-778. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/2781783 "LA Times Gets Dragged For Comparing Serena Williams to a Horse." BET.com. December 15, 2015. Accessed November 27, 2017. https://www.bet.com/news/sports/2015/12/15/sports-illustrated-drawsbacklashforserena-williams.html?cid=pinterest Smith, Katrina Songanett. In search of something akin to freedom: black women, slavery, and power. Master's thesis, Florida State University, 2007. Tallahassee, 2007. Schwarz, Joel. "Everyday resistance to slavery far more common than believed, historian says."UW News. November 22, 2004. Accessed November 30, 2017. http://www.washington.edu/news/2004/11/22/everyday-resistance-to-slaveryfarmorecommon-than-believed-historian-says/. Treva B. Lindsey and Jessica Marie Johnson. "Searching for Climax: Black Erotic Lives in Slavery and Freedom." Meridians: feminism, race, transnationalism 12, no. 2 (2014): 169-195. "Underground Railroad." Accessed December 18, 2017. Weisenburger, Steven. Modern Medea: a family story of slavery and child-murder from the Old South. New York, NY: Hill and Wang, 1999 West, Emily. Family or Freedom: People of Color in the Antebellum South. New Directions in Southern History. University Press of Kentucky, 2012.

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Translating the Homeric Spirit: The Iliad through Victorianism and Postmodernism in Tennyson and Lombardo’s Translations Garrett Yarbrough


ust as themes of war, anger, societal

on the scientific world by the Industrial

station, and reconciliation have remained

Revolution’s peak between 1820 and 1840

timeless since Homer’s Iliad in Archaic

(Rahn 2011). Their questioning of the natural

Greece, so too has the relevance of the Iliad

and societal tradition blurred the border

adapted with each period. The morality of its

between the Romantic period and twentieth

narrative and from its alterations as an oral

century, spurring the Modernist movement

poem from an archaic language becomes

that lashed out at austerity following the

interpretive when translated into English and

Victorians, the Postmodernists responding

has allowed for vastly different perspectives of

identically to Modernism’s formalism. This

the Iliad depending on which period it was

created overlap between the influences that

translated during (Green 2012). By comparing


Alfred Lord Tennyson’s poetic translations

translations. As such, the commonalities

and Stanley Lombardo’s oral performance, the


contrasting conventions can illustrate how the

philosophies form the backbone of their

climate of both literary movements affected

similar opinion on Homeric translation, yet

the translations and their stances on Iliadic

their stylistic differences are defined by their

themes like war and heroism.

respective cultural periods.

Tennyson Tennyson

and and

Lombardo’s Lombardo’s

The Victorian literary movement took

Alfred Lord Tennyson’s poetic style

place during Queen Victoria’s reign in Britain;

exemplified the intermediary aspect of the

(1837-1901) however, the Victorian era’s

Victorian period. Much of his early inspiration

themes were transitionary in that it was torn

came from Romantic figures like Keats, who

between the natural world influences of the

also inspired the Victorian flair for Greek

Romantic movement that characterized the

classicism (Hebron 2014). Romanticism’s

early nineteenth century and the shifting focus

Greek fixation permeated much of Tennyson’s

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poetry, influencing him as child when “Pope’s

although Postmodernism opposes Modernism

Homer’s Iliad became a favourite of mine and


I wrote hundreds and hundreds of lines in the

defying storytelling, and extensive usage of

regular Popeian metre, nay even could


improvise them” (Pearsall 2008, p.129).

interpretation (Lewis 2002). Postmodernism

Throughout the nineteenth century, classical

relies on the understanding of its own period

translators rejected translations that did not

and literary themes leading up to itself,

adhere to the literalness that the epic’s original

encouraging active reading through these

voice called for, Tennyson being the outlier for

themes. This results in heavy influence building

“taking a view” with his blank verse

from previous periods, creating a cumulative

translations of the Iliad (Reynolds 2011, p.212-

relevancy in Lombardo’s Iliad.

increasing for

intertextuality, ironic



213). It is evident Tennyson’s aim by

Dr. Stanley Lombardo was first

translating selections of the Iliad was to relate

exposed to classical literature through the same

the Iliad to his own period by using Victorian

Romantic era writers as Tennyson—Keats,

blank verse to preserve Homeric romanticism

Coleridge, and Wordsworth—as stepping

in a changing world. Lombardo’s translation

stones to interpreting the original Greek texts

shares this motive, substituting Postmodern

(Leddy 2003). Lombardo has frequently cited

conventions instead.

Ezra Pound’s view of cultural translation being

Stanley Lombardo’s 1997 translation of

a driving force in his own portrayal of Homer

the Iliad similarly drew inspiration from the

in the form of colloquial American English and

literary movement that preceded him—the


Modern period’s Ezra Pound. As an imagist

performing his translation, Lombardo says that

and poet, Pound shared Modernist sentiments

he would match the rhythm of the natural

that broke from Realism’s strict formalism and

speaking voice approach, “very definitely from

used symbolism and classical allusions as

Pound” (Leddy 2003). Both Tennyson and

Tennyson did to exhibit a higher level of

Lombardo place themselves firmly in Pope’s

contemporary consciousness in Pound’s motto

“modernist” camp of translation since they

“Make it new” (Childs 2008, p.4). Postmodern

both accommodate the Iliad narrative for their

literature continues Modernism’s breakaway

own eras by “writing for poets,” according to

from Realism and runs with several Modernist

Lombardo (Leddy 2003), translating Homer’s

themes, such as allusive writing, experimental

soul how “perhaps none but a poet could do


it,” said Tennyson (Pearsall 2008, p.152). They



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both strive to capture the elusive spirit of the

poetry created Arnold’s “noble” reading of the

author over a precise transliteration, as poets


first and translators second.






Mid-nineteenth century critic and

language of epic poetry to colloquial American

translator Matthew Arnold described the four

vernacular, Lombardo approached Arnold’s

traits of a prime Homeric translation “rapidity,

tenets more scientifically than Tennyson. He

plainness, directness, and nobility” (Verity


2012). Arnold himself opted to sacrifice

hexameter, noticing the Greek’s dactylic verses

“nobility” by keeping true to Homer’s

were analogous to anapestic tetrameter in

original’s hexameter. Archaic hexameter is

modern English (Leddy 2003). Lombardo

unnatural for English and results in obtuse

asserts that natural speech in English is

verses attempting to match Homer’s intended


lyricism but lose the spirit of the original. Here,

translation returned to Homer’s intended form

language becomes the main difference between

as oral presentation would be closer in English



in some ways than poetic renditions: “I think

Tennyson did not see any merit in sticking to

of the line as an American line of poetry, based

“barbarous hexameters.” He said the strained

on...breath. The rhythm is not simply the

efforts of translators like Arnold showed that

phrasing and the colometry and the line

“their failure have [sic.] gone far to prove the

endings, the rhythm is based on...strongly

impossibility of the task,” instead finding the

rhythmic natural speech” (Leddy 2003).

missing “beauty of poetic diction and feeling”

Both Tennyson and Lombardo wanted to

in blank verse (Tennyson 1897, p.15).

capture the impact that the Iliad’s delivery had

Tennyson’s two notable translations from the

on the reader, but by adhering to the relevant

Iliad, “Achilles Over the Trench,” and

conventions of their time. Tennyson wished to

“Specimen of a Translation of the Iliad in

capture the classical imagery and atmosphere

Blank Verse,” are written in Tennyson’s

through his blank verse poetry. Lombardo

Victorian blank in order to convey the

wanted to capture a snappier cinematic Homer

grandeur of Homer’s epic scenes. Although he

and could do so through blunt vernacular—

did not keep to Victorianism’s rigid adherence

language more relevant to the Postmodern

to formalism, Tennyson illustrated that

reader than Tennyson’s that catered to an elitist

translating the narrative to contemporary

audience. Tennyson’s Victorian style allowed













him to capture the nobility of Homer more

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than Lombardo’s Postmodern rendition while

Wince with pain. (Lombardo 1997,

staying direct, but Lombardo stayed truer to

Book XVIII Lines 231-238)

the rapidity, plainness, and directness while going for a different kind of poetry. By

Lombardo’s language is colloquial,

comparing their corresponding texts, a sense of

direct, and plain like Postmodern poetry tends



to be while Tennyson’s is truly Victorian as the


entire poem is one romanticized and winding





Postmodern Arnold’s

becomes apparent. Tennyson translated Book XVIII lines

stanza: For like the clear voice when a trumpet

198-247 in the Iliad into his “experiment”


“Achilles Over the Trench,” in which Achilles

Blown by the fierce beleaguerers of a

is granted armor by Iris and his voice alone


causes chaos and twelve deaths among the

So rang the clear voice of Æakidês;

Trojans so that Patroclus’ body could be

And when the brazen cry of Æakidês

reclaimed. Lombardo breaks this passage up

Was heard among the Trojans, all their

into a series of digestible stanzas according to


event and speech, like modern poetry is cleanly

Were troubled... (Tennyson 1880,



He yelled, and behind him Pallas Athena




Amplified his voice, and shock waves

take precedence over the scene in order to

Reverberated through the Trojan

characterize its characters, bringing the


audience closer to the narrative. Tennyson does not include any dialogue, but rather

You have heard the piercing sound of

explains the effect that the character’s ethos


has on the scene, giving the reader a sense of

When squadrons come to destroy a

the epic battle. This difference is evident when






sensibilities. Tennyson omitted the context for The Greek's voice was like that,

Achilles receiving the armor from Iris, which

Speaking bronze that made each

Lombardo provided:

Trojan heart

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the conventions of their times carry the “How can I go to war? They have my

narrative in different directions through


language. Tennyson’s Achilles is a Victorian

And my mother told me not to arm

legend, his ethos speaks for himself. In the



Until with my own eyes I see her come

antagonists are blurred, and characters become



With fine weapons from Hephaestus.”


(Lombardo 1997, Book XVIII Lines

humility and is more relatable. The Victorian


translation does not provide the reader a




protagonists their






chance to question its characters, but the Tennyson omits the dialogue because direct

romanticism of its scenes supports their power,

speech from a hero like Achilles would

i.e., the twelve Trojans that died from their fear

undermine the ethos that his words hold.

of Achilles’ voice (Tennyson 1880, p.181)

Achilles complaining of his would not appeal

(Lombardo 1997, Book XVIII Lines 246-247).

to the fearless warrior the Victorians would


want. Lombardo’s version shows that Achilles

characterization and resonance with the reader

needs help since he is only human, and

relies on Victorian reverence of classic ethos.

Postmodern readers would find it noble that

Lombardo’s Achilles is simply a man in

even the most courageous hero acknowledges

leadership, and his direct words and actions

they need the support of others. But by



including the Homeric elements, similes like










Postmodern imagery



minimalism generalizes

(Lombardo, Book XVIII Line 234), the

This begs the question if Lombardo’s

dramatic monologues, and epithets like

Postmodern translation can create the impact

“Achilles, the great runner,” Lombardo is

of epic poetry that the spirit of Homer’s carried

closer to translating Homer according to

and Tennyson’s embodied. Upon inspecting



characterization, the Iliad’s staple similes and

Tennyson’s language in order to connect with

imagery surrounding battle come to the

the characters as people over myth.

forefront. To capture the essence of the Iliad’s





Both Tennyson and Lombardo say the

characters, Tennyson has a heavier focus on

same things in the translation superficially, but

imagery while Lombardo uses his colloquial

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language to focus on Homeric elements like

p.120). Tennyson does not characterize Hector









We'll not let them board their ships at

characterization than the divine presence he


gave Achilles in “Achilles Over the Trench.”

Or without a fight. Let them each have

Tennyson does not emphasize the narrative,

a wound

but rather the tone and image of the moment.

From an arrow or spear to brood over

Tennyson further deviates from Homeric

at home,

intent after omitting monologues and epithets

A going-away present as they jump on

and deprives Hector of character. Hector’s

their ships,

ethos clearly lacks the “brazen cry” and

And a lesson to others not to make war

“boundless panic” inspired by Achilles’ speech

on Troy

in the prior poem (Tennyson 1880, p.180). As

Heralds should proclaim throughout

these are the only two translations of

the city

Tennyson’s Iliad, it feels that Tennyson’s focus

That boys and greybeards bivouac

was always on the imagery that the scene


provided so the reader could imbibe in Homer

All around the city on our god-built

than contemplate Homer’s text.

walls. (Lombardo 1997, Book VIII Lines 522-529)

Lombardo adheres to Homer more than Tennyson does in his passage and gives the reader a better sense of the narrative

I wish I were as sure


Of immortality and eternal youth

characterization. Lombardo does not use any

And honor like Apollo's and Pallas

Homeric metaphor here, but instead lets


Hector speak for himself through monologue.

As I am that this is a black day for the

He is not “roaring” like Tennyson’s Hector, he

Greeks." (Lombardo 1997, Book VIII

is more pensive but hopeful for victory out of

Lines 548-551).

necessity; they are protecting their “god-built”

A pillar of characterization in Homer’

homes, the “boys and greybeards” (Lombardo,

original was the extensive use of metaphor and

Book VII Lines 538-539) alike fighting to expel

simile, yet Tennyson’s only instance in his

the Greeks from Troy rather than a desire for

“Specimen” poem was “So Hector said, and

glory. Postmodern literature utilizes morally

sea-like roar’d his host” (Tennyson 1865,

gray characters and dilemmas (Lewis 2002), so

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Lombardo’s translation considers Hector’s

century in rhythm as Tennyson’s translation of

side, voicing concern for what he was fighting

the passage is:

for: “I wish I were as sure/Of immortality and eternal youth/And honor like Apollo’s and

As when in heaven the stars about the

Pallas Athena’s/As I am that this is a black day


for the Greeks” (Lombardo, Book VII Lines

Look beautiful, when all the winds are

548-551). Hector is holding out hope for his


men yet he knows they are on the wrong side

And every height comes out, and

of divine favor, but they have no other choice

jutting peak

but to fight.

And valley, and the immeasurable

Tennyson uses solely imagery to carry


the scene rather than any exposition, but he

Break open to their highest, and all the

does use simile and metaphor to characterize


Achilles and Hector with these images.

Shine, and the Shepherd gladdens in

However, Lombardo does translate some of

his heart: (Tennyson 1865, p.120-121)

the spirit of Homer’s epic language by italicizing the longer similes that he said

The difference in imagery can be attributed

“develop a poetic life of their own”

significantly to the literary conventions of the

(SeniorLearn 2004):

translators’ respective periods. The imagery

Stars: crowds of them in the sky, sharp

Tennyson employs is clearly Victorian when it

In the moonglow when the windfalls

comes to the sense of industrial progress

And all the cliffs and hills and peaks

according to the natural world, and his

Stand out and the air shears down

naturalistic emphasis. Much of the imagery in

From heaven, and all the stars are

his “Specimen” translation revolves around the


landscape’s elements, like the “blazing” fires,

And the watching shepherd smiles.

how the “winds are laid,” the “immeasurable

(Lombardo 1997, Book VIII, Lines

heavens,” the “jutting peak/And valley,” and


how the “towers of Troy,/A thousand on the plain” juxtapose human interaction with the

Lombardo’s approach to Homeric imagery is not as verbose and nineteenth-

landscape (Tennyson 1865, p.120-121). Instead, reminiscent

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Lombardo’s of





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movement, focusing on singular moments to

iconic [moment] in American culture that

express the essence of a scene (Davidson 1997,


p.11-13). Lombardo’s text comes off as

(SeniorLearn 2004). When comparing themes

cinematic, being in the present tense and

of war, heroism, and suffering to Tennyson’s

stating the sight with active verbs like the air

generation, the Victorians were going into a

that “shears down” and the “crowds” of stars

newborn globalized world without knowing

“sharp” in the sky (Lombardo 1997, Book VIII

the tragedy of modern total warfare. They

Lines 565-570). Tennyson’s blank verse

looked to Homer’s classic heroes for proof that

abstractly describes this beauty through

war hardly changed and their future nobility

Victorian conventions, using the past-tense

was certain.





with many commas and direct narration rather

Tennyson’s poems focus on the

than Lombardo’s visual approach. Tennyson’s

prominent figures like Achilles and Hector,

imagery centers on the ineffability of the

always referring to the soldiers as “they” or the

beauty in the “immeasurable heavens” that

number of them, like the twelve that died from

“open to their highest” while the shepherd

Achilles’ chaos or the fifty that either just “sat”

“gladdens in his heart” (Tennyson 1865, p.120-

or “cheered,” (Tennyson 1865, p.120-121)

121). With Ezra Pound’s significant influence

never personalized actions. While Tennyson

on Lombardo’s writing and the advent of film,

keeps the ranks vague, Lombardo’s Hector

cinematic/imagist influences on Homeric

addresses them as “Trojans, Dardanians, and

imagery would be relevant for a Postmodern

allies,” with lives outside of war when he says



“For tonight, we will take care of ourselves”

mysticism. Victorians were just emerging into

(Lines 509, 538), a fraternity recognized in

industrialized science, and scientific inquiry

modern war that Tennyson neglects since wars

into distant space would enrapture them more

before the Victorians were fought by numbers.

than readers decades after the moon landing.

Tennyson’s comfort in the glorification of



For readers in 1997, themes in war

traditional warfare and elite leadership is

stories carry different tones than those from

understandable since during his lifetime,

1865-1880. When viewing the Iliad in hindsight

Britain was the greatest military power in the

of twentieth century warfare, Lombardo said

world and was “a great source of pride for its

“The vision of the gods, the sublimity of the

people” (Internet 2). Consequently, Britain was

universe, the tragic nature of human suffering

also the least militarized, with a standing army

is what I'm thinking of...representing [an]

smaller and less influential to the public than

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those of France, Prussia, Austria, or Russia. So,

prestige of war experienced by the Greeks and

at the advent of modern warfare, this

Victorians shifted to conversations of suffering

conception was shattered by the shocking

following the World Wars, nuclear paranoia,

defeat at Crimea and in the Boer Wars.

and the disillusioned Vietnam-era, which

In his two translations, Tennyson

Lombardo experienced being born in 1943. In

hardly mentions the emotions of the soldiers

Postmodernism, consideration of damage to

or their hardships, except for the “dread” the

the human psyche over the glory that lured

Trojans experienced “knowing the griefs at

young men to war replaced Victorian ideals of

hand” against the divinely-empowered Achilles

phalanx prestige in Homer’s time (Dickson

(Tennyson 1880, p.180), and the “glorying”


Hector’s men enjoyed at “bridge of war.” (Tennyson






language, narrative and thematic focus between


Victorian and Postmodern conventions is clear

greybeards” (Lines 528-529) guarding the

when looking back at the treatment of


to protect their homes.

Homeric simile in Tennyson’s “Specimen of a

Lombardo makes it a point to emphasize the

Translation of the Iliad in Blank Verse,”

soldiers’ feelings surrounding the themes of

“Achilles Over the Trench,” and Lombardo’s

heroism and wartime suffering present in


Homer’s Iliad. Tennyson romanticizes these

translations are winded and naturalistic—

elements, describing how the Trojans and

relevant for Victorians—but by utilizing the

horses “sat fifty in the blaze of the burning

Postmodern conventions of non-traditional

fire/...stood/Hard by their chariots, waiting

narration, a malleable definition of genre, and

for the dawn” (Tennyson 1865, p.120-121).

humanistic values, Lombardo redefined the

This difference in periodic conventions is

Iliad’s narrative and thematic relevance. He

present in the Trojans’ reactions to Achilles in

kept the text intact according to the elements

battle. The Trojans in Tennyson’s poem were

of Homeric oral tradition without completely

“troubled” and “sheer-astounded” (Tennyson

sacrificing the Greek spirit by trading

1880, p.180), but the Trojans in Lombardo’s

Tennyson’s flowery Victorian poetry for

passage had “eyes wide with fear,/And their

character-driven poignancy—better suited for

drivers went numb when they saw/The fire

a Postmodern audience.




The main ideological differences of



above Achilles’ head” (Lombardo 1997, Book XVIII Lines 240-241). The romanticized

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Works Cited Primary Sources Homer and Stanley Lombardo. 1997. Iliad. Indianapolis: Hackett. Tennyson, Alfred Lord. 1880. “Achilles Over the Trench.” In Ballads and Other Poems. London: C.K. Paul, 179-181. Tennyson, Alfred Lord. 1865. “Specimen of a Translation of the Iliad in Blank Verse.” In Enoch Arden, &c. Boston: Ticknor and Fields, 120-121.

Secondary Sources Childs, P. 2008. Modernism. London: Routledge. Davidson, M. 1997. Ghostlier Demarcations: Modern Poetry and the Material Word. Oakland: University of California Press. Dickson, K. 2004. “War in (Another) New Context: Postmodernism.” The Journal of Conflict Studies 24. https://journals.lib.unb.ca/index.php/jcs/article/view/203/360. Consulted 29.3.18. Green, P. 2012. “Homer Now.” The New Republic. https://newrepublic.com/article/103920/homer-the-iliad-translations. Consulted 29.3.18. Hebron, S. 2014. “The Romantics and Classical Greece.” The British Library. https://www.bl.uk/romantics-and-victorians/articles/the-romantics-and-classical-greece. Consulted 29.3.18. Internet 1. “Victorian Literature.” The Literature Network. http://www.onlineliterature.com/periods/victorian.php. Consulted 29.3.18. Leddy, M and Lombardo, S. 2003. Jacket Magazine 21. http://jacketmagazine.com/21/leddy-lombiv.html. Consulted 29.3.18. Lewis, B. 2002. Postmodernism and Literature: The Routledge Companion to Postmodernism. New York: Routledge.

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Pearsall, C. 2008. Tennyson’s Rapture: Transformation in the Victorian Dramatic Monologue. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Rahn, J. 2011. “Victorians: War.” English Heritage Press Office. http://www.englishheritage.org.uk/learn/story-of-england/victorian/war/. Consulted 29.3.18. Reynolds, M. 2011. The Poetry of Translation: From Chaucer & Petrarch to Homer & Logue. Oxford: Oxford University Press. Suzuki, R. 1996. “Translation in the 1790's: a Means of Creating a Like Existence and/or Restoring the Original.” Romanticism on the Net 2. https://www.erudit.org/en/journals/ron/1996n2-ron414/005718ar/. Consulted 29.3.18. Tennyson, H. 1897. Alfred Lord Tennyson; a Memoir by his Son. New York: The Macmillan Company. Verity, A. 2012. “Who Needs Another Translation of Homer’s Iliad?” Oxford University Press’s Academic Insights for the Thinking World. https://blog.oup.com/2012/11/who-needsanother-translation-of-homers-iliad/. Consulted 29.3.18.

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Volume 6, Issue 1|2019

The Lookout: A Journal of Undergraduate Research at ECU  

Student work produced and published by students at East Carolina University.

The Lookout: A Journal of Undergraduate Research at ECU  

Student work produced and published by students at East Carolina University.