Week 2: Baldwin and Noble’s Look Into Systems of Power

In The Fire Next Time, Baldwin asserts that the “white world” has formulated a mythology revolving America. Yet this mythology is one whose falseness the Black man is aware of although his countrymen (white world) has yet to come to that realization. For his (white) identity is embedded in that mythology and consequently so are their notions of blackness and to reveal it as such, to admit the mythology is just that, that it is a lie, a falsehood, to renege on what they have defined as blackness would be to give way to the factors with which they conceptualize whiteness. To expose it all as a lie would be to destroy the very foundations of the white identity. It would be an erasure of America and consequently of whiteness. Yet Baldwin seems to suggest that only this would allow for Blacks to emerge from the state of invisibility that they have been condemned to and therefore provide for a mutual state of freedom. Yet the erasure of this mythology is therefore highly problematic for whites for once they are devoid of this binary and the mythology of what America is, with this mirror that reflects only the self and no other what would be seen? I think both Baldwins and Noble’s works speak to issues of representation and the manner in which mythologies are created to serve one group. The systems that create them then gain and maintain power by marginalizing others and Noble demonstrates the manner in which our current society contributes to that. Noble’s research on Google demonstrated how it facilitates and allows its biased searches to be thought of as neutral and how this perpetuates negative representations and essentially the silencing of Black women.

Week 2: Challenging the Dominant Tech, a Lesson Plan

For a lesson plan to be most effective, there should be a goal achieved by the end by both the instructor and the students. At a high school level class, I believe the best way to approach the topic of Google is through the technology that we utilize of theirs every day, driving the point that it has already infiltrated and dominated our lives. The goal then of this lesson plan is to allow the students to be at least aware, at most cynical about the activities that Google produces in them, and an awareness of the value of good research (this coming from a Teaching Fellow that just spent a semester with Freshmen asking them to conduct sound and detailed research). As I said, I think the best way to do this is through the use of the product, and so I would go Google Chrome, which I do believe is the best search engine with the ease of my tailored needs, and explain that to the students, along with the access and programs available through a free Google account is incredible: Google drive to create, store and share all your documents, slideshows, graphs, tables, and more, which is of great importance as we have discovered in a digital age to have backups of everything available online (Box, Dropbox, and others are examples of non-Google driven storage).  Next, I would pull up YouTube, the Google owned and extremely dominant video upload cite, to pull search the video “Google Don’t Be Evil”. The first video that pops up is this: “Google’s Plan for World Domination.” Please, take a look.