Wednesday, January 7, 2009

one

We can learn a lot from crayons, they are all different colors but they live together in the same box.
one highlight of the past weekend was checking out the exhibit at the cleveland museum of natural history entitled race: are we so different? the exhibit is a project of the american anthropological association and explores the complex and ever changing meaning of race. through a variety of interactive exhibits the project examines the historical, social, geographical and experiential aspects of 'race.'

sunday was the exhibit's last day in cleveland. the project is a touring exhibit and the stop in cleveland was midway through its tour. after cleveland the exhibit will be in cincinnati for a few months, then it will move on to philly, l.a., st.louis, new orleans, kalamazoo, boston, and finally ends in washington d.c. perhaps it will be installed as a feature at the smithsonian's natural history museum.

the idea that race is socially constructed may be a difficult concept for some to accept and understand. the exhibit does an excellent job at explaining what this idea means. the project has a website that sets out to do what the touring exhibit does. although the website is excellent, it lacks the interactive aspect of touring the exhibit in person. I don't recall ever attending a museum exhibition where I had talked and exchanged ideas with strangers as much as I did with this exhibit.

creed's one

7 comments:

R.L. Bourges said...

An exhibition that fosters discussion is a good thing. (Does the exhibition include any of the DNA evidence to demonstrate what a social construct 'race' truly is?)

On a personal level, I find this interesting for two other reasons: I almost used the word 'Discrimination' as the title for my blogpost today. I meant it in the initial sense of the ability to make fine distinctions, then realized most people would relate to its racially-skewed connotation (be that a positive or a negative skewing).

The second reason: in one of the revisions I did on a story I've set in the States, I realized I'd totally omitted mentioning 'color' as a distinguishing feature between my characters. Had to go back and work it in, wherever it seemed relevant to the story line. Which, frankly, is not as often as most people might think.

Megan said...

Not coming to LA until next September (sigh) but will be right down the street at Exposition Park, so yay! Into my gmail calendar it goes!

Nan said...

Lucky, lucky you to have attended such an important exhibit! Did you see our friend, Dennis there? :<)

Barbara said...

Although we have a long way to go in learning about race, at least they are no longer teaching (as they were when my father was in school in the 1920's) that there is a natural hierarchy of intelligence among the various races with -- you guessed it -- Caucasians on top!

Squirrel said...

I think somethings up with the connection - i can't see your post picture!

Merle Sneed said...

I would love to see the exhibit, but alas Hooterville ranks even lower than Kalamazoo.

Barbara said...

I'm in total awe that you can seat that many people for dinner!

And you did raise a few thought-provoking questions today. I wonder who I would call...