Hist 390 The Digital Past

Oct 14

October 10th

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Okay first I want to start this post by saying I am extremely conscientious of my clapping now because of today’s class.

Professor O’Malley pointed out that people(often white) have no sense of rhythm and often don’t clap on beat. While I am a mixed child(Half-mexican, Half-white) I find that I am also someone who can’t always clap on beat.

Seeing that so many popular artists have spoken about this topic, such as Justin Bieber, I find it’s interesting that so many people still struggle with clapping on beat.

Oct 14

October 1st

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Finally we are back to music! I was actually really intrigued by class this week and talking about the Minstrel Shows. I think a lot of people know about “blackface” as it is called, as today’s society focuses more and more on race and the problems people of color face in today’s society, as I think it should. It’s important to recognize why things are happening in a society to truly understand why things are the way they are in the present.

Minstrel shows, were to be frank, very strange. The idea that white men dressed up as black men for entertainment is strange, and the fact it got so popular is also strange.

However, I think the strangest part of the whole thing is that black people themselves later joined minstrel shows. I don’t quite understand why, although I can empathize it was one of the few avenues for people of color at that time as well.

Oct 14

During this weeks class, we read A Mind at Play¬†by Soni and Goodman. We also had to watch a few videos on the internet and it’s history.

This directly related to what was discussed in class this week as well. We talked a lot about the internet and it’s origins, as well as the origins of radio and television.

As I have grown up with TV and radio, and often have been able to see first-hand the changes those mediums have undergone, what interested me the most was the development of the internet.

We often don’t realize what we are typing or using while on the internet. “HTTP” for example, is one of those things being that it is actually an acronym for “Hypertext Transfer Protocol.” In the internet becoming more and more common, it’s incredibly easy to forget those facts about it’s origins.

Oct 14

September 20th

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Talking about the Cold War honestly isn’t one of my favorite topics. However, I recognize the importance of the Cold War on the development of the United States and our technology. Because I missed the last class, I thought it was helpful that Professor O’Malley did a recap of what was discussed in the previous class.

During every war, the United States goes through an increase in industrialization in an attempt to compensate for the war and in order to try and gain a tactical edge in the war. So, it does surprise me that universities grew during this time frame too.

I would be interested in learning more about university growth during that time, I also wonder if, without the war, universities would be where they are today.

Oct 14

September 12th

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Today in class we talked a lot about the differences between an idealist and a realist. This is something that affects a lot of life. Often people argue that people of the younger generation are “idealist” who don’t know how the “real world” works.¬†Sometimes, that message translates to friend groups as well.

I would definitely call myself an idealist. I want a perfect world where everything works out and everyone is happy. However, in this world we have death, sickness, racism, and prejudices that control everyday life which directly counters the “perfect world” idealists want.

However, while I do believe in God, I would not call myself deeply religious as Professor O’Malley suggested today in class. I would argue that being an idealist doesn’t mean you have to be religious.

Oct 14

September 10th

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It today’s class. We talked a lot about how the “medium is the message.” I completely agree that the we in which we receive the message affect’s how we think of it.

For example, a lot of people are more willing to trust a newspaper or book then they may be willing to trust a post on Facebook. Or, a lot of the time, a call from your mother is urgent, while a text from her isn’t as urgent. It may be because we know what she wants with the text, but even still, it causes a different reaction therefore , the medium is the message.

We were also required to read “The Shallows” which was written by Nicholas Carr. I don’t widely agree with a lot of what Carr said. Carr tends to lean towards the “negative” side of technology and comes off as an older parent ranting to his kids that technology is ruining them. You could argue that technology has changed society, and you would be right, because it has. However, it doesn’t mean it’s for the worse. Society has been changing for as long as anyone can remember and to argue that one decade is better than anyone is pointless to me.

Oct 09

HIST 390: August 29th

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This is Hailey Bullis. I am a sophomore at GMU and I will be making weekly blog posts about my HIST 390 class.

When I first heard about this class, everyone told me it was a good alternative to the other IT courses that are offered at Mason.

While I agree that it is probably easier, it is also not what I expected out of this class either. And I mean that in a good way. I think focusing on music will be an interesting focus in the class and I am looking forward to learning about it.