Critical Essay 3 - Regalado 1 Sam Regalado Professor Park...

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Regalado 1 Sam Regalado Professor Park Sociology 3501 15 December 2009 Critical Essay Exam #3 1. In our world of fast motion and increased telecommunication, there are certainly many spectacles to see. They are wonderful to watch displays about anything put on by various people everywhere. One of the most famous spectacles ever to watch was the circus. However, today circuses and exotic animals seem less spectacular because of the vast amount of information and knowledge that regularly circulates thanks to forms of media like the internet and television. Yet, there are still many spectacles existing in our society. They now exist in a less than wonderful way. Highly noticeable, they go overlooked because they have become so much a part of normal society. The mere fact that they are so grossly immoral though is what makes them spectacles. In Chrys Ingraham’s book, White Wedding , she discusses her own definition of spectacles. To Ingraham, a “spectacle” is “all that once was directly lived [that] has become mere representation” (Ingraham, 112). This means that many normal practices in everyday society are no longer lived out. Instead, those common institutions now represent normalcy’s that once existed. Nowadays, these representations of an older society pose a threat to social relations like “love, community, commitment, and family” (112). At the same time, these representations or “spectacles” reinforce other practices that have become new normalcies within society today. Ingraham uses a very common practice to illustrate this. Weddings she says have
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Regalado 2 more to do, “with the romancing of heterosexuality in the interests of capitalism” than it does with forming a strong emotional bond between two people in love (112). In Dorothy Roberts’s book, Killing the Black Body , she discusses many “spectacles” that fit perfectly into Ingraham’s definition. The “spectacles” Roberts discusses are immoral issues that surround the stinting of African reproduction, specifically African-Americans. Three specific “spectacles” Roberts points out are first, that birth control and contraceptives have been unfairly forced upon African-American mothers. Second, that reproduction to black mothers is a crime. She discusses many accounts where black mothers are unfairly treated and separated from their families because of other problems, namely drugs and abuse charges. Finally, she discusses how welfare in the United States unfairly treats African-Americans and tries to stint reproduction on the basis that it puts unnecessary stress on the welfare system. To Roberts, these and many other forms of discrimination against blacks in the United States are deeply embedded in society. They have become representations, “spectacles.” They are no more or less than a continuing on of a former institution – slavery. Perhaps the biggest problem or “spectacle” in modern society deals with birth control.
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This note was uploaded on 03/07/2011 for the course SOCIOLOGY 3501 taught by Professor Park during the Spring '11 term at Minnesota.

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Critical Essay 3 - Regalado 1 Sam Regalado Professor Park...

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