Monday, April 9, 2012

I Know how you Feel

For Friday morning, please post your EE research question and an associated knowledge question, then do the same for the next research question on the list I sent you.  Remember to craft KQs that are not content specific.  Feel free to collaborate on this process.
For Monday, let's continue our discussion of emotion as a way of knowing.  Watch this video of Jane Elliot's experiment in discrimination.  How does emotion shape the ways we define and use the lessons of this piece?  Next, watch this skit from the first season of Saturday Night Live, in which a job interviewer (Chevy Chase) administers a word association test to a prospective employee (Richard Pryor).  What makes this skit funny?  How are your emotions manipulated?  To what extent does it rely on certain assumptions about the audience's morality? [a word of caution: the language in this skit is, necessarily, strong]  At the end of your comment, please write a knowledge question derived from one of the videos.


  1. My EE Research Topic: Which household product and work surface can one use to most efficaciously kill bacteria in pork?

    Related Knowledge Question: To what extent can one have control over what occurs in their surroundings?

    Mary's EE Research Topic: What are the differences between the literary techniques used in 'The Awakening' and 'Madame Bovary?'

    Related Knowledge Question: How can perception affect one's views on differing topics?

  2. My EE Question: How did Fidel Castro’s rule affect or influence the music of Cuba?

    A Related KI: To what extent is it possible to reverse change?

    SaskiaTOK's EE Question: Which household product and work surface can one use to most efficaciously kill bacteria in pork?

    A Related KI: How can one change or movement effect an outcome?

  3. My EE question: How accurately did American perception mirror what Castro was doing in Cuba during his dictatorship?

    My KQ: How accurate does one's perception mirror reality?

    TO's EE question: How do the painting Along the River During Qingming Festival and two of its remakes differ?

    KQ: To what extent does a copy differ from its original?

  4. My EE Question:
    What impact did the Gulf oil spill have on animals and plants?
    My KQ: To what extent does reason justify natural causes?
    Alysha's EE question:A comparison of French and American media coverage of Haiti, both before and after the earthquake (before, during, and after).
    KQ: To what extent is knowledge or knowing limited to sense of perception?

  5. My EE question: How do linguistics and cultural differences affect the ways African immigrants assimilate in French culture?
    MY KQ: How does assimilation affect knowledge?

    Sara's EE question: How have the impressions of Illuminati influenced modern adolescents?
    Sara's KQ: To what extend is knowledge influenced by interpretations?

  6. My topic is: The Tolerance of Islam in France. A related knowledge question is How powerful is reason over emotion?

    The topic undermine was: A Comparison of clean- up efforts of industrial accidents in a European nation and the U.S. A related knowledge question is What determines how important something is?

  7. MY TOPIC: How has the coverage of Haiti by French and American media differed, and how did each change vis-a-vis the earthquake?
    KQ: In what ways can perception alter facts?

    TOPIC BELOW: How accurately did American perception mirror what Castro was doing in Cuba during his dictatorship?
    KQ: To what extent can interpretations be accurate?

  8. My research topic: Comparison of clean-up efforts of industrial accidents in a European nation and the U.S.
    Its knowledge question: How do the use and simple possession of knowledge differ (due to emotion)?

    Kate's research topic: How did Fidel Castro’s rule affect or influence the music of Cuba?
    Its knowledge question: Can knowledge be influenced?

  9. My research topic: How have the impressions of the Illuminati influenced adolescents?

    -How does belief influence experience?

    The tolerance of Islam in France:

    -How does faith alter perception?

  10. Research Question: What are the differences between the literary techniques used in The

    Awakening and Madame Bovary?

    KI: How does one's knowledge influence another?

    Emilie's Research Question: What impact did the Gulf oil spill have on animals and plants?

    KI: To what extent does perception influence one's surroundings?

  11. How do the painting Along the River During Qingming Festival and two of its remakes differ?

    To what extend can art influence a culture in a same way as another culture

    How do linguistic and cultural differences affect the ways African immigrants assimilate in French culture?

    How can a culture be influenced if there is no such thing called language?

  12. After watching Jane Elliott's piece, I was apolled at the way the kids starting hating each other automatically- they reminded me of little brainwashed robot minions who, when given a target, were quick to attack their target at any possible chance. Emotion surely shapes and defines the lessons we learn in this piece because we know that seeing such prejudice may make the majority of us angry or outraged, thus allowing us to take in and pay more close, in depth attention to the reactions of the children.

    In the second video, I personally didn't find it all too hilarious- but that's just me. I think that others may have found it so funny because the characters were different races basically calling each other racist names, fueled by the other person's reaction. At the end, the man basically passes the test and gets offered the most money to be a janitor with a few weeks off. This is because he proved himself to the boss, and instilled fear in him. My emotions are manipulated because I was shocked to hear the two going at it with such strong, offensive words yet hearing the audience laugh. I immidiately took the colored man's side because the words he was recieving from the white boss were quite explicit, but the man caught on and ended up saying the opposite word to everything the boss told him. It does raise a question about the extent of the audience's morality, because they were laughing at two men using racist terms. To me, it seemed like there was no issue of morality at the time it was being filmed because hearing such things today would be against the morals of many. To me, morality within a society as a whole can change depending on the time period, so I assume that at this time, racism wasn't really a moral issue.
    How does experience alter reasoning?

  13. In the first video, emotion on the viewer's part is important and quite telling: I found myself angry and even in denial. The experiment's concrete indisputable nature as well as the strength of its simplicity makes emotions inescapable. I agree with everything Sara-Sara said on the video as well.

    I suppose the humour in the second video comes from the balanced responses the job interviewer receives which he clearly isn't expecting. I was slightly confused, as was Sara-Sara, about what exactly made this skit that funny. I don't agree with her that the audience's lack of morals is what made the skit funny to them, but rather that they weren't expecting it to be a two-way street. What I found most striking was that I was familiar with most of the slurs against blacks but unfamiliar with the insults to whites. Other than that, I wasn't sure how to feel about the skit other than taking the side of the black man.
    And, because someone had to make this knowledge issue, how can emotion affect perception? Can one perceive without emotion?

  14. ...or, I should say, without resulting emotion.

  15. Having an emotional and ethical tie to the first video, I believe that my perception of the study is slightly skewed. I think that the lessons learned in this piece can never be re-learned, and the experiment is something that can no longer be done. Although I felt sorry for the children in the video, I thought this was an incessantly interesting experiment. The fact that the children that were told they were inferior immediately fell into their roles was shocking. Their grades worsened, their attitudes turned sour, the children slowly deteriorated (in a way). The lessons of this piece are incredibly powerful, demonstrating how the slightest difference in humans can make them inferior, instantly forcing them to be at a certain level in society. It also shows that as soon as people believe that they are below another human being, they instantly play the role that they are told to play. They are inferior and hence they become inferior.
    I think that the skit is funny because it is based on assumption. To begin with, there is a racial difference between the interviewer and the possible employee. When the word association begins, the words seem rather harmless. But as soon as the interviewer says a comment that can potentially be race-related, every word after that makes the possible employee believe that he must associate the words with racial discrimination. Your emotions are manipulated because the viewer also believes the same thing as the possible employee. The viewer thinks that the words need to be associated with race, and then instantly believe that the employer is hence racist. The assumption about the audience is that they are anti-racist and will thus comprehend how the employer might be offensive. It was interesting how quickly my emotions were able to switch when the employer made a comment that I disagreed with.

    Knowledge issue: How can perception sway one’s emotions?

  16. Emotion shapes the way we define and use the lessons of the video because the way we feel about the lesson will clearly establish whether or not we will hold the lesson of the video to be important. For example, if I was emotionally detached form the video, I would not hold the lesson of discrimination's power to be worthy of my attention.

    As for the skit, the delayed agression of Chevy Chase is funny because Richard Pryor is immediately offended by some of the words Chase presents him. Given that this is a Saturday Night Live skit, our emotions are immediately manipulated because its supposed to be comedy, something to laugh about and not take too seriously. When it comes to comedy, the audiences morality is compromised. Everything and anything can show up on the stage and even if there are people in the room that don't accept the joke, there will always be other people that will.So, the skit relies on whether or not the audience is willing to see the skit as a comedy piece.

    Knowledge Question tailored to the Jane Elliot video: When is knowledge dangerous? What makes something bad?

  17. In the first video, I feel that emotion is a very important way of how different individuals might define and use the lesson of this piece. In my opinion, I think that people who have ever felt less than another group of people would probably see the true meaning of the lesson; someone who feels as if they are better than any group of people probably would not get as much from Jane Elliot's experiment.
    In the skit I'm not so sure I understood the true humor of the skit like Sara-Sara and Anna. My emotions were manipulated because I didn't know whether to take sides or understand that this is only a joke trying to prove a point by using such strong, racist terms towards each other. However, like Sara-Sara and Anna, I was finding myself siding with the black man. It was also interesting how he seemed to repeat himself using racist terms speaking to the white man, but there seemed to be no repeats for racist terms towards the black man. I feel like the assumption about the audience is that most of them understand that what the interviewer said to the black man was wrong and extremely offensive.
    KQ: In what ways do ethics change one's perception?

  18. I was really quite fascinated by this unique experiment. To be quite honest I was horrified of the way the students took the experiment so seriously. Just as the teacher had mentioned, these once charming and adorable kids, became hurtful and monstrous within just a few hours. This just goes to show that prejudice and racism can take different forms. Even in the minds of innocent children. So emotions most certainly shape the ways we define and use the lesson in this piece. The emotion of disgust and sadness comes into play as one watches the movie.These types of emotions then lead us to define the lesson as an example of the power of discrimination. This experiment gives people the chance to realize what it feels like to be marginalized.

    What makes this skit funny might be the way in which both characters react to one another's comments. The viewer can immediately tell that the interview is going to be very awkward. Like many of the other girls said, our emotions are manipulated because this is supposed to be an SNL skit. If this is a comedy show, than the skit must be funny despite what is said (one might think). But I found this skit to be disturbing, because a very offensive racist slurs were being used as a comedy tool.
    To a large extent this skit relies on the audiences' morality. The audience is on the black man's side because they are clapping and laughing at the remarks he makes in response to the employer's offensive words.
    KI (skit): To what extent can morality be changed?

  19. I was also shocked by how quickly the opinions of the children changed and how quickly they started to treat each other differently. I keep trying to place myself in the shoes of one of the children- either brown or blue eyed- to see how this experiment would have affected me and I really cannot fathom. I would like to think that I would have been skeptical but at 8 years old, I think I would have gone for what my teacher told me. I also felt odd about what Elliot was doing to the children- I have a funny feeling about manipulating such young children in a possibly negative way like that. Then again- I guess, in society now, children are manipulated just in a different way...
    I thnk that the humor comes from the interviewer was using vocabulary that would be insulting to the African American man and in return, the interviewee was responding with names insulting to white people. I really didn't know what side to pick either, I was angry with the interviewer for using the terms he was yet I disliked the way the interviewee was responding to him. I was very torn.The skit relys on the fact that the audience sees humor in racial insults. If they did not, they might not find the skit funny.

    KI: What is the line for what is considered "too far"?

  20. My emotions shape the way I use to lessons learned because if I feel a negative emotion, I’ll refuse the information being given.
    What makes this skit funny was that the employee didn’t really know what the interviewer was saying at first and was then shocked by his later words. What also made it funny was that the interviewer didn’t seem to notice at first that the employee was offended, so the entire time the employee was aware and serious, while the interviewer was not. Eventually the prospective employee ran out of words to say, which made it funnier because when the interviewer said “Nigger” the employee said “Dead (I’m not sure what the word was)” which showed that the situation got more serious. My emotions are manipulated because I know that it’s wrong, but laughing at it gives it the sense that it’s ok even though it’s not. It makes the assumption that the audience would be comfortable enough to laugh at something like this.
    Knowledge Question:
    How can one’s emotions influence their perception on daily interactions?

  21. What a fascinating experience just a third grade teacher can carry out on kids. This really showed me that power is part of human need; it does not matter how young one is, the desire for power is a natural human need. This leads me into what really grasped my attention, which was when the teacher decided to switch power and instead give it all to the brown-eyed kids, like the presenter said, one would think they would understand what it is like being on the bottom and for that reason they would be more compassionate to the blue-eyed kids. But nothing close to that happened, instead they acted the same way, with the same amount of hatred the blue-eyed kids had treated them with before. This really show how much damage the possession of power can cause. This makes me think of a popular saying "When the love of power overcomes the power of love, then the world shall know true peace". This I think ties in nicely with this specific experiment the teacher conducted.
    As for the second video, I think I had a language and culture barrier problem, as for I did not get the meaning of the joke or message that the video wanted to put across. But I did notice that it was very insulting for the African American man, because the words he responded to the white man was degrading to the black man.
    KI: To what extent does perception influence our morality?

  22. In the experiment, I think it is the common sense of the idea "blue eyes are better, don't talk to the brown eyes" makes the discrimination so strong and concrete, the differences itself is not the point, but when everybody recognize the idea, the discrimination begins. The girls mentioned that she felt, she "hated" the pressure that her peers gave her and she felt sad about how she was ""not good" but "bad" in between her friends, and the unity of the idea is making her feel extremely disappointed.
    In the second video, the he keep saying stronger words to the interviewer to make him feel better because of insulting the person who is insulting, to not lose the argument, battle of his pride.

    KQ: HOw can emotion determine ourselves one way but not the other?

  23. In the first video, the students of Jane Eliot are manipulated into believing that they are either superior or inferior to another group due to eye color. I guess I was not as shocked because we talked about this experiment in class. What did surprise me a little was that the people who were considered inferior at first turned exactly like the first groups of superiors, when they were declared superiors. In this piece, the emotions of the kids defined their behaviors. It doesn’t feel good to be looked down on for something that you have no control over.
    This Saturday Night Live skit is funny for different reasons. The first reason is that a conversation such as the one between Richard and Chevy is likely to happen. The actors, to my opinion are showing how ignorant it is to say such discriminating words to another race. Also, the skit is funny because it is almost always good to laugh at one’s pain, which morals is needed to know that the words used in this skit is painful. My emotions are manipulated into thinking that the skit is funny. If this was in real life, I would not have laughed but gotten mad. Same with the audience; I’m assuming to a large extend that the audience have morals but Saturday Night Live is a show that was made to be funny.
    Knowledge Question: How do emotions define one’s state of being?


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