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Week 1--Welcome to the Dinner Party

Anne Dalke's picture
Welcome to the course forum area for Critical Feminist Studies, a course at Bryn Mawr. This is an interestingly different kind of place for writing, and may take some getting used to, but I hope you'll come to value it as much as students in other courses have.

The first thing to keep in mind is that its not a place for "formal writing" or "finished thoughts." It's a place for thoughts-in-progress, for what you're thinking (whether you know it or not) on your way to what you think next. Imagine that you're not worrying about "writing" but instead that you're just talking to some people you've met. This is a "conversation" place, a place to find out what you're thinking yourself, and what other people are thinking, so you can help them think and they can help you think. The idea is that your "thoughts in progress" can help others with their thinking, and theirs can help you with yours.

So who are you writing for? Primarily for yourself, and for others in our course, both the undergrads who are taking it on campus and the alums who are joining us on-line. But also for the world. This is a "public" forum, so people anywhere on the web might look in. That's the second thing to keep in mind here. You're writing for yourself, for others in the class, AND for others you might or might not know. So, your thoughts in progress can contribute to the thoughts in progress of LOTS of people. The web is giving increasing reality to the idea that there can actually evolve a world community, and you're part of helping to bring that about.

I'm glad to have you along, and hope you value/enjoy sharing an exploration of critical feminist studies.To get started, what do you make of the image copied below? Post some of your thoughts. Looking forward to seeing where we go with this and ...


kgbrown's picture

The Dinner Party

When we were asked to write about the image of Sojourner Truth's plate from The Dinner Party, I was unsure of the purpose of the assignment and where it would lead. I found myself describing the three faces, their different aspects, but not really commenting on the way that the three faces related to each other. After finding out that these three faces were all representative of one woman, Sojourner Truth, I started to consider the way that the three faces relate and how they come together to form one image, which I had not really considered as a whole until then. In class, I also learned that the image of the three faces was in fact part of a series of plates with laibia as their subject and that the plate that represented Sojourner Truth was the only one that did not take this form. I began to think about the choice that Judy Chicago had made in not representing Truth's image as parallel to that of the other women at the table. Growing up in the era of third wave feminism, it seems to me that choosing to represent women by their more distinctive qualities, like their face, or by attempting to represent the different sides of a woman's character, Judy Chicago perhaps did more for Truth than she did for the other women at the table. I find that I can see more of Truth in her plate than I can see of the other women with their plates. I certainly think that Judy Chicago was able to show much more emotion and really capture more of Truth's personality because she used faces instead of laibia. However, I do find the lack of similairity between Truth's plate and that of the other women to be puzzling. The non-congruency seems to make Truth's plate stand out even more. I am curious to explore the racial implications that were suggested in class as a possible reason as to the difference in Truth's plate, though I am not sure how to discuss this issue on my own.
Dawn's picture

Satire and Feminism

In my opinion, Woolf's tone in Three Guineas is amusing, but it has an edge. This is a satirical piece, because it is a comment directed toward men of money in order to show how ridiculous they are for not supporting women's education and professional organizations. Here they are, worried about the war, but they are refusing to do two things tha tcould prevent war. Although satires generally lend themselves to be humorous, and this one is due to exaggeration, it is not written lightheartedly. Strong language shows how important these issues are to Woolf. As we said in class, Woolf is an angry woman, and this comes through in her writing style.

So far, reading Three Guineas has been somewhat challenging, because I have been attempting to consider a feminist perspective, although Woolf seems to have rejected the term. Many people identify with or have at least considered the idea of feminism without being able to explain it, or without really knowing what it is for themselves. I admit, I am one of them. One reason I eblieve that it is difficult to pinpoint a definition/interpretation is because it is a fluid one. The role, perception, treatment, rights, etc. of women in a society changes as a culture changes. "Meaning is context-bound and context is boundless," (Jonathan Culler). First, it is possible to read Three Guineas with the sentiment tha tWoolf had felt when writing the piece by looking at it from her cultural context. It is also possible to cinsider it in relation to what we consider feminism today. That was brought in to the exercise of giving out personal three guineas. I gave mine in support of the same ideals tha tWoolf had, because I didn't really look at it from my modern perspective. I realize now that I'm not entirely sure what that is at the moment, but I hope to find out thorugh more consideration/analysis of the subject. That is my goal: I'll figure out what I really want my guineas to support.

skumar's picture

The Image vis a vis Three Guineas

As a newbie to the Critical Feminist Studies course, I do not have much to post on except for my interpretation of the posted image and Three Guineas. I read Three Guineas first, and then looked at the image, an image of three expressions (no reason for this particular order). Upon viewing the image, I, too, thought it was an image of women. Perhaps it was because, as mpottash mentioned in her post, the nature of a feminist class that presupposed that this image was one of women. I think another part of the reason I was quick to assume it was a representation of women was due to the fact that the faces show emotion and self-expression—a quality ordinarily attributed to women.

In the image, it is clear that the face on the left is crying and the face on the left is full of anger and disgust (I say this because of her closed fist). The face in the middle, one that resembles a sort of tribal mask, is hard to interpret. The face lacks expression, or any other form of emotion. I see the face in the middle as a single woman and the two faces on the left and right as a visual representation of the two modes of this woman’s personality—sad, grieving(L) and forceful, dominating ( R ). The circle around the faces illustrates the fact that women are enclosed, suppressed.

I do not possess any knowledge or understanding of art or how to go about interpreting art, but I can say with confidence that I have never seen any type of drawing, painting or illustration with a man expressing any sort of emotion. In this regard, one comes to accept that women are more expressive of their feelings than are men, who detach themselves from any means of self-expression. At this point, I would like to integrate my reading of Three Guineas.

There is a point in Book One where Woolf questions why women do not fight in war. She says there is: “some glory, some necessity, some satisfaction in fighting which [women] have never felt of enjoyed (Woolf 4).” When I read this, it distinguished men as being cold-hearted and distant, people who find pleasure in brutality that is war. From this one of Woolf’s quotes, I extracted that women are more emotionally affected than are men, thus clarifying my assumption that the image is one of self-expressing women.

Expressing your feelings is a quality that is, arguably, not a callous one to have. I do not understand, then, why it is made out to be.

jlustick's picture

It is not until the final

It is not until the final third of the book that Woolf actually stops to address the word “feminist.” Woolf claims that this word lacks meaning and is now “dead” and “corrupt.” She celebrates the opportunity to burn the word, seemingly overjoyed that there is no longer the need for feminists, those individuals “who champion the rights of women” (101). However, given the emphasis that Woolf puts on women’s education and professional opportunities, I would argue that she herself remains a feminist.  Like many women at Bryn Mawr, Woolf presents “feminist” as a negative label, equating is with a person who is overly aggressive in her attempts to achieve women’s rights, or even female superiority. Perhaps it is Woolf’s overarching movement towards total gender equality that keeps her from being a feminist. Still, why does Woolf reject the word “feminist” and not simply redefine it? Should we follow suit? I wonder if Woolf would approve of today’s use of “feminist.”

I was also interested in Woolf’s discussion of secrecy on page 120. Here and in other parts of the text, she seems to suggest that women participate in a sort of covert operation. But isn’t such passive aggressiveness another kind of violence? Paradoxically, it seems that Woolf is prepared to stage a sort of war against the status quo and current passion for war.  Does she expect that this revolution will not be violent? That no one will be hurt, no institutions will be destroyed? I think that Woolf needs to look more critically at her proposal so as to understand the ways in which her recommendations may not be welcome with open arms. In order to effectively create change, she must address the resistance and acknowledge that she too is staging a war.

hope's picture

i think that the Sojourner

i think that the Sojourner Truth plate we viewed in class would have been a greater tribute to Sojourner Truthwithout the controversy about its difference from the other plates in the collection. the image on the plate was highly symbolic, and i wonder if the plates representing the female body have as much of a story behind them. i understand that representing the only african american women in the exibit differently than the white women turned many african americans off to the exibit, but without the element of race, being given a face would seem to me more of an honor than a slight.
jlustick's picture

It is not until the

It is not until the final third of the book that Woolf actually stops to address the word “feminist.” Woolf claims that this word lacks meaning and is now “dead” and “corrupt.” She celebrates the opportunity to burn the word, seemingly overjoyed that there is no longer the need for feminists, those individuals “who champion the rights of women” (101). However, given the emphasis that Woolf puts on women’s education and professional opportunities, I would argue that she herself remains a feminist.  Like many women at Bryn Mawr, Woolf presents “feminist” as a negative label, equating is with a person who is overly aggressive in her attempts to achieve women’s rights, or even female superiority. Perhaps it is Woolf’s overarching movement towards total gender equality that keeps her from being a feminist. Still, why does Woolf reject the word “feminist” and not simply redefine it? Should we follow suit? I wonder if Woolf would approve of today’s use of “feminist.”

I was also interested in Woolf’s discussion of secrecy on page 120. Here and in other parts of the text, she seems to suggest that women participate in a sort of covert operation. But isn’t such passive aggressiveness another kind of violence? Paradoxically, it seems that Woolf is prepared to stage a sort of war against the status quo and current passion for war.  Does she expect that this revolution will not be violent? That no one will be hurt, no institutions will be destroyed? I think that Woolf needs to look more critically at her proposal so as to understand the ways in which her recommendations may not be welcome with open arms. In order to effectively create change, she must address the resistance and acknowledge that she too is staging a war.

sarina's picture

I was surprised to learn

I was surprised to learn that the image presentedon the first day of class was from The Dinner Party. I’d read about the exhibitpreviously in the New York Times and found it fascinating. Somehow, I stillwouldn’t have placed this image in that exhibit, even after being told it was aplate. I find it shocking that Judy Chicago made Sojourner Truth’s plate sodifferent from the others (no female anatomy reference in the shape orpicture). It makes me understand why some people (particularly African Americanwomen) don’t want to identify with the feminism movement, and would ratherchose the womanism (womynism for some, perhaps?) movement.

I wonder how Virginia Woolf would feel about thatmovement. I’d need to learn more about it to really answer that question, buther desire to get rid of the word feminism certainly indicates towards “yes”.Woolf was ahead of Judy Chicago in the trend towards including minorities into feminism,as she talked of a school that included people regardless of religion. I neverthought about it this way before, but I am starting to question if feminism ismore than a focus on gender equality, but equality in general. Right now, Idefine it as concerning gender issues exclusively; perhaps I will change mymind later in the course.

So much of the Three Guineas unexpectedly stillapplied today, despite the publishing date of 1938. Woolf’s writing about theneed to remove biases from sources you read (particularly news sources) ringsespecially true today with the anonymity available on the internet. I oftenthink it’s better to read a source with a known bias than one that pretends tobe completely unbiased. By simple selection of information, a source hasinherent bias (here I am particularly thinking of news sources). 


hpolak's picture

I found the opening exercise

I found the opening exercise to be unique, and particularly fitting for the nature of the class. It was interesting to hear how people interpreted the image of Sojourner Truth knowing nothing about it, and without basing their opinion on those of their classmates.

I thought it was interesting that Sojourner Truth's portrayal on the plate was different from all of the other plates sitting at the Dinner Party. She was the only one that had a face, as opposed to being illustrated by a vagina. Perhaps this is because she was very different from most other female activists of her time. Her speech "Ain't I a Woman" describes her personal experience; no one waited on her or treated her like a lady. She struggled with the same physical labor as her male counterparts, and dealt with great hardship in her life. The three faces of Sojourner Truth may represent her complex identity as a black woman, a former slave, and a feminist.

anorton's picture

Thoughts on The Dinner Party and Three Guineas

My initial notes on the Sojourner Truth plate were gendered indeed: I saw the face on the left as distinctly masculine, though I could not figure out the tear, as "emotion" is stereotypically depicted as feminine. Both the face on the right and the middle face proved more difficult to gender. I figured that both were masks and, as such, could be disguising a person of either gender. Even knowing the artist's intended gender of all three faces, I still cannot rid the image of the left face as a male's; though I have figured out why. The curving line of black that separates the two side-facing faces from the center one acts as hair, especially where it comes down from the crown of the right face's head. Above the mask of the middle face is more black, which could represent hair, edged by a sort of crown. The left fact, however, does not have this same potential feature. If indeed the three faces are all versions of one woman, it leads me to question the significance of the black portions of the image.

The face in the center has an air of cleverness or confidence: it is as if the face knows something that the other two faces, looking off to the sides, do not know. We, as the viewers, have either the potentially difficult task of trying to figure out what the middle face knows, or the uncomfortable position of watching this face scheme behind the backs of the other two faces.

I have worked with Woolf's essays in the past as part of an independently-designed essay. As such, I did not have access to the expertise of an English professor or fellow students of English to help me determine her tone. So much of her writing seems mocking from the perspective of a 21st century reader—almost reminiscent of Swift's "A Modest Proposal." The way she refers to her gender and class as "educated men's daughters" or "sisters" of educated male contemporaries is so self-deprecating that it seems a joke. There are other areas of the text that also seem humorous: her frequent reminders about the shortness of time the (imaginary) addressees of her letters have, for example. So, I am wondering what those better acquainted with Woolf or with her time period believe is going on here. Is Woolf completely serious in these essays, or are they meant to have a humorous edge?

aeaston's picture


Today, reading Three Guineas, I definitely experienced some confusion and then gratification. Here's something from my notes...

What is feminism? It's so elusive to me. I always thought of feminism as a celebration of women and their rights. Woolf says you must free yourself from unreal loyalties such as sex pride. Then is feminism not a fight for women but a fight to eradicate the distinction between men and women? 

Here's where my question is answered...

" Our claim was no claim of women's rights only, it was larger and deeper; it was a claim for the rights of all- all men and women- to the respect in their persons of the great principles of Justice and Equality and Liberty," (Woolf 102). 

Woolf defines a feminist as someone who champions the rights of women, but because women earned the only right, which is to earn a living, the word has become obsolete. She calls the word- corrupt, vicious, dead, and a corpse which she wants to cremate. I found myself agreeing with Woolf. In the past I found it hard to understand feminism. I thought it only stood for women's rights. It didn't make sense to me. It felt like a discrimination. Folly on top of folly. I want to believe that feminism is not necessarily a fight just for women's rights but a fight to eradicate the distinction between sex, nationality, etc.

Sarah Kaufman's picture

First Critical Fem. Studies Class

The two things that grabbed me most about the art displayed were:

The two beings appeared to be male and female, the male being on the left and female being on the left. However, the being I perceived to be male was crying and closing his eyes while the being I perceived to be female was raising her fist and vocalizing her anger. These two reactions are usually portrayed on the body of the opposite genders, males being more likely to be aggressive and physical with their anger and females being more likely to react passively aggressively and inwardly emotional. The flat symbol in the middle I took for a government, complacent and unaware of "commonpeople's" frustrations.

Some things I found interesting in the Woolf:

At the beginning, she mentions that war is a strictly man's action, and men perform it for three main reasons: 1.) a profession; 2.) a source of happiness and excitement; and 3.) an outlet for "manly" qualities. It is interesting then, that she uses this argument that war is an outlet for manly qualities in order to explain why "patriotism" is a different concept altogether for women than for men. She says "we think differently because we were born differently," possibly bringing the "reasoning" of "biology" into the differences of perceptions of war between men and women. She goes on to write that the more "opinions" on war and politics we hear, the more "confusing" it becomes for us (the reasons for going to war) because we cannot understand the "impulses, motives, or the morality" men have for going to war. Again, a very "we were BORN biologically different, so we think differently about politics" view. She also states that women are "made up of body, brain and and spirit," "whose body, brain and spirit have been so differently trained and are so differently influenced by memory and tradition" than men. By grounding this argument about the different perceptions of patriotism and war between genders in biological/innate wording, I believe that Woolf might be making it impossible to find any sort of political agency. Quite possibly, her goal is for women to find empowerment outside of political agency because as she states later, women should have an "indirect" influence on politics by associating with men personally and making the men want to "shine through their eyes."

Now that women have clear political agency and are very much involved in the political process, it is interesting to see Woolf's philosophy shine through the current American government. Woolf argues women are able to earn their own living, and this right gives them a different "influence" which allows them to "remove the charm element" from their arguments. They can "declare their genuine likes and dislikes" and "criticize." Can women in our government criticize without being overtly criticized?

aaclh's picture

Reaction to Woolf's Three Guineas

My initial reaction was surprise. I was surprised at how satirical/sarcastic (perhaps I mean some other word here) her writing style was. At the beginning I wondered how she could interest me when she lived in such a different time – a time when women could hardly have a profession (other than marriage), own property, etc. I'm not sure exactly which of her arguments convinced me that she had ideas relevant to today. Perhaps it was her own use of history and biographies to support her own arguments (for example, p. 66).

I have a question: Why is this book addressed to people of money? It is because Woolf is such a person and thinks that is who she can address? I don't know much about Woolf.

I found interesting the idea that poverty can be a teacher. What does that say about me going to BMC?

I also found interesting the idea that it could be valuable (I know, passive) to women to remain outside of men's society. I am not convinced, but need to think about it more. Also, I know part of the reason I came to BMC was to act more 'like a man' and to fit into men's society more easily. Now I wonder if this is such a desirable thing.

I have another question: Do women see the world differently than men? Woolf portrayed it this way. I think sometimes I have thought this and other times have vehemently disagreed.

stephanie2's picture

First Class and Thoughts

I thought our first class was very interesting and dynamic. I loved the potluck discussion we had and the interpretations of the images.  I have never taken a class that started with such an icebreaker. 

In reference to the Dinner Party by Judy Chicago, I was surprised that the image shown to us was the face of Sojourner Truth.  Once it was explained, it made sense. But I would never have expected that piece to represent one woman because it seemed so universal. Also, I think it's interesting that Sojourner Truth was the only woman honored at the dinner party with a face-like plate, instead of a plate celebrating the female body. I did not and still do not know what to make of that, but it sure does have some interesting implications and I would love to know why Chicago honored Sojourner Truth the way she did.

On another note, I was struck when it was mentioned that the mission of Bryn Mawr College was to make women be like men, or something along those lines. It seemed so odd because I would think that the college's mission would have been intellectual equality between the sexes without the 'if you can't beat them, join them' mentality. 

In terms of the waves of feminism, I feel as if I identify with the second wave the most, but I am unsure. I never considered myself a feminist, but I have been called so by others with the 'negative' or stereotypical definition of a feminist in mind. It irritates me a little as to how the word feminist still has a negative connotation. Nevertheless, I think feminism, once claimed, can be a wonderful thing.

Emily Bock's picture

The Dinner Party

After our first class together, and learning more about the slide we saw initially, it occurred to me that many of us attempted to "gender" the faces on the plate. It just feels like as a society, we more often than not are trained to feel more comfortable if we can label or assign uncomplicated, simple identities (goes back to the dichotomy of male/female) to others individuals. Or at least that's what I'm thinking...

After hearing that Sojourner Truth's plate was that of the only woman of color at the table (at least that's what I seemed to hear in class), and also that hers lacked the 3rd dimension and content that the others had, I was feeling disappointed. I had to bear in mind, however, that it seems like the advent of multicultural/multinational feminism feels like it is a more modern concept. In any case, it felt disappointing that there was some type of stratification present in the media at "The Dinner Party." The fact that all of the plates were shaped into vulvas except for Sojourner Truth's shows that Judy Chicago, whether intentionally or unintentionally, made some type of differentiation between Truth & all of the rest of the women represented at the table. Why couldn't Chicago find a way to make the representation more diverse? More vibrant? I'm not trying to undermine the accomplishments or influence of the other women represented at the table, but wouldn't the magnitude of the display only have been greater if there could have been more of a wide array of achievements/interests/backgrounds?

Also, thinking about the idea of BMC of a 1st wave feminist institution, I can't decide how I feel about that. I know that when I was applying to college, I considered attending BMC because of the idea of women studying/achieving/living in community with women was a really powerful idea. I didn't think of it at all in terms of men. But after raising that, does that mean that women studying in league with men can't have as powerful an experience in academia when we're thinking in terms of some woman-identified feminism? I don't know if that question makes sense, so feel free to call me out on it if it doesn't, haha.

lrperry's picture

The Outsiders' Society (Page 106)

I am interested in the tension in Woolf’s letters between positions of insider and outsider status in society. On the one hand, Woolf points out that women (or, as she is very explicit to specify: “daughters of educated men”) are less able to create change because they do not hold the traditional positions of power in society. She writes, “All the weapons with which an educated man can enforce his opinion are either beyond our grasp or so nearly beyond it that even if we used them we could scarcely inflict one scratch” (18). Yet, on the other hand, Woolf also suggests that it is this very outsider status that allows these women to effect more meaningful change. “We believe that we can help you most effectively by refusing to join your society; by working for our common ends – justice and equality and liberty for all men and women – outside your society, not within” (106). She repeatedly cautions against simply following in the same old patterns, and the harmful changes which arise from becoming part of such a society (66), but also advocates for more women in the professions. This dilemma reminds me of a few questions we raised in our first class, namely: Does Bryn Mawr College remain a primarily 1st wave feminism institution? Does it exist to teach women to think like men, to teach women to succeed in professional environments created for and by men? And, if it does, is this a necessary evil?

aeaston's picture

The Dinner Party, The Potluck, and The Three Guineas

My first Critical Feminist Studies class was definitely interesting. That's the word I'm using since I can't quite put my finger on the right adjective. The very first thing we did, was respond to an image which we later learned was a piece in Judy Chicago's exhibit, The Dinner Party. I have to say, the role reversal was a little uncomfortable for me at first. The first day, most teachers go right into their syllabus leading you through that first class. Having us respond to the image, in a sense put the ball in our, the students, court. It at least made me feel put on the spot, but not in a bad way. It just made me realize something about myself. Though, I will be the first to engage in a conversation about what is wrong in classrooms, I learned yesterday that I had settled into the role of complacent student quite comfortably.

This leads me to the Pot Luck exercise we did. Some of the metaphors, including mine, placed the students in a passive role. In my metaphor, I took away the students ability to add to the curriculum and bring their own knowledge to the table. Sponges are good for soaking liquid up, but maybe, as students, we shouldn't just be ingesting what is given us as sponges might. We should be questioning, and contributing without feeling self concious.  Looking at the metaphors, I like the ocean metaphor best. Someone commented on how, like in the ocean, a strong class relies on strong symbiotic relationships. If there is a weak link in the ocean's ecosystem, it would shift and maybe collapse whole. Our classroom experience is going to be what we make of it. Students and professor, working together, is what in my eyes makes all the difference. 

Three Guineas:

I'm finding Guineas really very rich. It's taking me a while to read just because there's so much content. I don't want to miss anything. One particular passage really left an imprint. Woolf talks of the 1919 Act which unbarred women from working.  As she says, "the door of the private house was thrown open," (Woolf 16). I can't believe that with this act centuries of superiority complexes dissipated, but it seems that the very possibility that a woman might earn her own living meant more symbolically than I can understand. Being able to earn her own living released the shackles so to say. Women no longer had to rely on their families to financially support them. The right to work gave them the freedom to relent, disagree, and criticize. "In short, she need not acquiesce;..." (Woolf 17).

At first, I thought that in this case $ was synonymous with freedom. Now, I believe it's not the money itself, but the ability to have a choice, and to do what you will with this choice as you see fit. This led me to think about the importance of education and what it means to be a student at an all women's college. Here, I am making my claim in the world. I am equipping myself with the tools I need so that I won't need to rely on someone else. I am "throwing open the doors of the private house" for myself. 

mpottash's picture

Dinner Party

One of the most interesting things that came out of studying this piece, both in my initial reactions and in the following class discussion, was the assumptions about the gender of the faces.  As I was writing about the piece the first time, I found myself referring to the faces as she, but then I stopped to think about why I assumed that the faces were female, and could not think of any specific reason. Perhaps this had to do with my assumptions about the content of a feminist class. 

I also got more out of the piece once I heard the artist's explanation of it, the fact that the curves on the bottom were meant to be the body, with three different faces emanating from it, all representing the same person.  This speaks to the many faces that people, or perhaps especially women, wear in both the public and private spheres.

Anne Dalke's picture

Metaphoric enrichment

I want to add to the introductions/interpretations you'll be posting this week the metaphoric brainstorming we did on our opening day about ideal/actual classrooms. What are the implications of these images for how we might work together over the course of the semester? Where does the agency, energy and shape of the classroom come from? Wherein resides authority in each of these conceptions of education?

classroom students teacher college
dinner party
guests host house
potluck cooks/eaters --> house
stew veggies -->
ice cream sundae
toppings cherry cone/bowl
democratic government senators president country
home family chaperone house
tree branches roots leaves
book pages title page
boat rowers coxswain river
ocean fish, etc.
game players coach field
bluegrass jam session
musicians starter of phone chain
popcorn kernels heat microwave
frisbee team
team members
captain field
pink jeep tour
tourists tour guide
sound system
collage cutouts glue frame
expedition explorers leader landscape
doorway visitors knob hinge
museum exhibit
guests curator museum


kscire's picture

Dinner Party

I usually have a great distaste for "warm-up" activities at the beginning of a class; like the image analyzation. This activity, unlike other warm-up activities, seemed relevant to the remainder of the class. At first glance I would characterize the image as being from African tribal art. The image appeared to be enclosed in a mirror and a representation of a person. The three separate entities are all a part of the same person. The entity on the left is portraying sorrow, the right fear and anger, and the middle entity represents an uneven mix of the two sides.