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          Coming into this class, I had no idea what to expect. The topics of gender and technology never happened to cross each other in my mind, and so I came in with no expectations. I was never comfortable with my own writing, and I never thought I would ever publish my own writings and thoughts online, to the world to read. Moreover, this class has changed that. Looking back at my first postings, I spent a lot of time deciding and debating what I should say, and how to phrase it, how to formulate my thoughts and opinions on the topics we discussed in class where the students seemed to be very confident about what they are saying, which was something I lacked at the time.

          I went to every class prepared to learn something new, not knowing what to expect as of how the discussion would go, unsure how to express what the reading, or the movie I had preciously read or watched made me feel. Every reading introduced me to a new aspect of knowledge I yet have to explore. The process of digesting what I’ve learned is still ongoing, and I do not think it will stop any time soon. 

Our first section of the class started with the title of “The science and technology of gender: making and re-making ourselves” which started our readings with Haraway’s “cyborg Manifesto” and Clark’s “The naked cyborg” Haraway and Clark introduced the novel idea of cyborgism to me; the idea of extending ourselves to the machine and intertwining with it is quit fascinating and very real, though I honestly have never given it much thought before.


          These readings only started the train of readings that never failed to surprise me throughout the semester. Feminist readings were one of the readings I enjoyed Haraway’s feminism aspect of writing was new to me, its novelty added more anxiety to the process of my thoughts.  Labels and generalizations were a topic that we crossed multiple times during the semester. The process of how we label things based on appearance or based on few characteristics is incredible. Processing thoughts of how a label changes one’s perspective was one of the important processes I have gone through and one that I learned a lot from.

The section of Information and Technology was one that I enjoyed a lot, it related to my field of studies more in terms of computer science and how technology is emerging with gender. Technology has been playing a crucial role in our lives and this role is increasing more by the day. The subjects of privacy, of how our understanding of a topic differs depending on the type of reading we do.

          Throughout my process, I have come into few difficulties with opening up and expressing my opinions on the several topics we discussed. My way of learning happens to rely more on what I hear people say, and then reflect on them on my own, which I think is one negativity I have. My contribution to the class was not as rich and often as I have hoped they would be. When I contributed, I brought about opinions I have as a result of my background. The fact that I come from a third world country meant that my opinions and thoughts on the several controversial topics we discussed in class were different than what most students in class had. Moreover, my background was a reason for my “shyness” and my hesitation in expressing my opinions, because my culture had strong opinions about topics such as gender and sexuality. Through the panels that were held in class I represented my background, and I brought in the ways in which my culture thinks about sexuality.

          I have learned a lot from this class, as I mentioned earlier. I have picked up a different thought on the effect of technology on our lives. I mostly was surprised of how much of and extension technology is from us. The integration of humans and machines is now one of the topics that I will be paying attention to more often. My opinion on how information is portrayed through the coder and the encryptor has changed. I believe I am more open mined than before, gender and sexuality are topics that I feel more confident talking about in terms of social labels and how we, humans tend to react when it comes to issues in relation to sexuality.

          My participation in our regular large group was not very apparent. I mostly listened to what my classmates had to say. When it was time of smaller groups, I felt more comfortable speaking and I participated very often and expressed my opinions and shred agreement/disagreement of others. If I had to do it all over again, I would take the class and participate more often in expressing my opinions and thoughts, without anything holding me back.