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Class notes - 3/28

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Class Notes: 3/28



·         Is she convincing? Is her contribution significant?

·         How is her work feminist science studies?

TiffanyE: If quantum particle behavior is mirrored/upscaled in the real world, is anything objective? Results are shaped by the cut, so are they always varying?

·         For example, if the decision to classify things/create a binary is equivalent to making a ‘cut’ both are subjective.

·         ‘Subjectivity’ of humanities might not be the same as ‘human effects’ in scientific experiments. Could show that human subjectivity is a measurable thing AND/OR human minds are not abstract and are entangled on a material level. Either way, it’s hard to ignore the link/entanglement between the observers and observed as a result of quantum physics.

Philosophy talk: How do we know a subjective or objective ideal exists? We only have what we can observe and imagine, and models that we apply…

Why is it important for non-physicists to know? Questioning the importance of this text in the syllabus.

·         Her examples to represent the idea of mixing borders (if that’s it) is too abstract/too grounded in her specialty field.

·         It’s doesn’t have enough social/human applications for humanities students…

·         Was the example used because it was familiar to her (thus practical for teaching because it seems simpler to the writer) or because it is truth (a physical example of humans and science affecting each other.) Former emphasizes desire to be understood, latter emphasizes the depth of the issue.


Tian and music

Vgaffrey: The observer is not separate from what they observe.

·         The observers making noise and getting angry as part of (silent) performances

·         Performers become part of their work

Question: What makes music music? Analogous to the question ‘what makes information information?’

·         A transmitter and receiver, intention of the transmitter, interpretation of the receiver.

·         Noticeable patterns, context

·         Other things from the information discussion



Video gamers: Gender and social differences exist between users and affect treatment/identity online. In some cases, affects social life offline.

Dr. Gosnell’s patients: Doctor was a Pennsylvania based abortion doctor indicted for a death in the clinic (?) Untrained technicians, unclean clinic, treated young patients 12-19 yrs.

Art students: Specialty in different types of media and technology, but also exposed to a broad scope of them. Message of works sometimes controversial.

US immigrants: Increased technology being dedicated to tracking them (fingerprinting, documents, genetic tests.) Gender/human issues generally ignored in favor of statistics, but they are important.

Lovelace’s women’s hospital: Relatively low scoring New Mexico hospital that seems to be successful because of a very female-oriented marketing scheme. Features women and babies in its advertising, and in its name.

X-men: Fictional group of humans possessing the ‘x-gene’ that gives them powers. Technology is both used to their advantage (vehicles, training) and by the government in ways that they are opposed to (ie: tracking and controlling them)

Youtube community: Generally, the users of the site who post videos or comments. Maybe seen as less connected than most dedicated social networking sites. Allows users to build an online identity for themselves to some extent, and communicate with a large amount of people.

Facebook users: Along with phones/texting, an integral part of most people’s social life today. Makes it easier to build an image that will be closely associated with you. All people categorized with similar info categories (school, post frequency, sexuality) and this is used by both people online and non-human advertising.

MSLIS Librarians: Professional academic librarians, usually with a degree specifically for the job. Learning the skills/taking the courses effectively requires less time, but needs self-motivation. Some extent of power over the access/presentation/preservation of information.

Panel questions

Q: Gender is often (intentionally) mis-represented on the internet… does this make the gender effectively true to the observers?

·         Youtube users: It’s difficult to permanently warp your identity on youtube because you use yourself as material. Most people restrict the information known about them as opposed to creating a completely new identity.

·         Video gamers: Online games are generally less personal (large groups, violent games.) When roleplaying, the real identity is assumed to be hidden, creating a new identity is the point.


Q: Does investment in online communities detract from real life?

·         Video gamers: It can be a substitute social life… boosts confidence/fulfill parts of life that you can’t do in real life.

·         Offline and online life reinforce each other as experiences (future reading?)


Q: What are the socioeconomic conditions of the patients going to the medical institutions?

·         Gosnell’s patients: Some pattern is shown, people who went in for abortions came from communities with little emphasis on sex education. Discrimination was shown against different classes; more potent anesthetic was restricted to those who could pay for it.

·         LL hospital: It costs as much as other hospitals, success was not due to cost-effectiveness but its advertising as a ‘women’s hospital.’

Q: With information control and presentation… is there an issue of too much power?

·         Librarians: Training gives greater self control… the instituion’s goals and what they value are important to the employee (?)It is successful if the information is handled well.

·         Art students: They are intentionally ‘at odds with popular culture,’ what is presented is not supposed to be assumed truth by the viewers. They are intended to challenge norms and encourage thinking instead. [Also a subtler way of encouraging radical ideas, or a method of communicating with those hard to reach, or through language?]

Q: Tracking people, are we opposed to it? (Why?)

·         X-men/US Immigrants: People are opposed to it. Mostly taking issue with the idea that they are identified by some number or labels. There are some benefits to keeping track of people, though (efficient travel with documents?) but it can be dehumanizing for some, [and if identity is defined by that, what happens if it’s faked?]

·         Facebook users: People seem to accept it…? They will make their information more readily available to connect with more people, but misunderstand how the site will use it to connect them in ways they don’t want (target advertising based on facebook information.)


Final unanswered question: Is the information that might have once been your ‘property’ lost when it is posted? What is the value of this information when it’s yours/on the internet?





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