Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Self-Introduction:Daisy Arriaga

Hello, everyone, my name is Daisy Arriaga and I am currently a third year here in UCLA. I am currently majoring in Chicana/o studies and minoring in Education. I was born and raised in south-east Los Angeles. I call the city of Bell Gardens my home and I am extremely excited to take this course this quarter. My future career goal is to be an Elementary school teacher and teach fifth grade. All throughout school I had extremely influential teachers that have inspired me to pursue this career path and hopefully one day I too can inspire and motivate students just like my teachers did to me.
        When I read the article about Kaepernick and the Confederate flag the first thing that came to mind was the current political state we live in today. Over the past 2 years, the United States has been faced with open racism and social movements to prevent the discriminations of suffering minorities.  As a form of resistance NFL 49ers quarterback Kaepernick decided to take a knee during the national anthem. It was through this simple act of kneeling that stirred a form of resistance against the social injustice done to multiple minority groups in the United States. The other article talked about how Confederate statues were being destroyed in the south as a form of standing in solidarity with minorities. However, I believe the best way to get rid of these public statues is not by destroying them but by placing them in a museum so that we do not erase the racist history the United States has experienced but instead create a dialogue of what these statues mean and stand for.Both article, demonstrate the need for social movements that would allow social justice to be done.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Extra Credit: Mirame!: Expressions of Queer Latinx Art

Extra Credit: Mirame!: Expressions of Queer Latinx Art


Last weekend, I went to the exhibition in Downtown and got to enjoy some of the wonderful art pieces that were on display. Upon arrival, I walked in on a Sunday afternoon and there were a lot of people admiring different sections of the exhibit. To the right side, there was Professor Alma Lopez's art works and a few other interesting pieces. In general, my favorite art work was the center photo (3rd from the left) titled El Popo Y El Homie by Hector Silva -- depicting an Indian man caressing another man. Not only was the piece beautifully drawn but it depicts the man wearing the head piece showing the other man affection. He was caressing his head and his facial expression reveals ease and love. The man in his arms is sitting in a gentle, relaxed and somewhat feminine pose with his legs crossed. He seems to not be wearing any clothing, just covered by a blanket or some type of cloth. His facial expression shows happiness, possibly laughter. It is rare to see a drawing of an Indian man not standing "macho" and firm. The photo that made me laugh was the Tapatio bottle with a picture of a woman and edited to say "Tapatia". There was an entire wall with the bottles on shelves from top to bottom. I had never thought about what the Tapatio bottle I have at home would look like feminized and it gave me a better take on what it would be like to relate things reconstruct gender norms mentally.

On a side note -- this was my first time visiting Placito Olivera and it was beautiful! They had male dancers playing the drums and wearing beautiful traditional costumes. They had good food, and beautiful art pieces everywhere. It reminded me somewhat of Tijuana and all of the little shops that align the border. I would definitely go back to relax on a Sunday!

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Most Convincing Argument

Immediate Family

"Attack the pedophile, not the photographer"
I feel that this phrase was the final straw on being able to convince me to not censor the photographs. I have had previous experience with child pornography and how human trafficking continues to thrive because of it. Most legislation across the world targets the criminals who draft the victims, I feel if they persecuted the consumer more there would be less of a demand. Those who wish to censor the image because of the nudity do not seem to find the innocence of nudity. For all those images families do with their baby naked in the first months of their lives. The children do not process nudity as a "bad" thing because the world has not corrupted their views of the world. For children, nudity is their natural state and since they're learning the social constructs of society still they will run around naked. For Sally Mann's children who had more space in comparison to those who live in the city, it was very natural for her kids to be naked without having to worry about who views them. Why should art cater to the needs of pedophiles, why are we persecuting the people who interpreting a child's natural state as innocence? Something that also convinced me was how Sally Mann was very transparent with her children explained to them what would be happening with their photos. Her children could have decided not to have their photos published and they felt comfortable in their own bodies, because again as children they have not been corrupted by society's double standard morales Child pornography does not happen with the child's consent, therefore how can we compare both?

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Convincing Argument

Immediate Family by Sally Mann

I felt that one of the most convincing arguments was by the not censor team in the Immediate Family case; the team argued, "Do not attack the photographer, attack the pedophile."
Many times, when the public opposes an artwork, they must be remind about the other issues and factors that contribute to why they are so against it. Society has already shaped people's mind about how they view certain things, thus, sometimes it is hard for them to see that there is a bigger problem than what they are targeting. For example, one may argue that the Immediate Family artwork is child pornography, however, the only reason one may argue that is because they have prior values to why they see this photograph as something else. Also, it is important to hear the artist interest, before making assumptions of something that wasn't there.

Enrique Chagoya Pro Censorship 

Another convincing argument for censorship: to protect and preserve the artwork.

I think everyone in class might be against censorship, on behalf of our team, we all believed that Chagoya's artwork should not be censored for any reason. Censorship has a very negative connotation, it takes away an artist's right to freedom of speech and expression. However, I believe if the art work contains hate speech then that's another story, but if an artwork is offensive then there is no real reason to why to censor the work. When it comes to art, there is always going to be someone who might find the art offensive, however, it is important to understand the art rather than hate it. Therefore, my team and I thought it would be clever to turn censorship into something positive. In a way we agreed with all the statements that the opposing team stated, but instead of using that information against our arguments, we agreed in order to show that pro censoring the art was in the best interest of both the public and artist. All the other teams demonstrated good arguments to why or why not censor an artwork, however, every of those arguments only showed what the public felt and saw. For our team, it was important to show a view that the artist might agree upon.
We felt that our arguments revolved within the artist community: how would they feel if they experienced a hate crime or an attack from someone crazy? It is important to protect beautiful art and artists. Since, the NEA is currently facing a questionable financial future, an artist does not receive enough money to protect the art, thus, the cheapest way to protect their work, is by censoring their work (or keeping it away from the public).
Protecting the art work and preserving it, show that censoring is sometimes in the benefit of the artist and their work, not just the public.

Course Reflection



Throughout the quarter I’ve learned the power of art. Any kind of art has the force to drive a person to a movement, to use their voice, or to share an experience. I have always seen art as a form to express yourself, a new view of seeing the world, or as something beautiful that is displaced on a galleria, museum, or one’s home. Until I took this course, I learned what an artwork can emotionally do to someone or a group of people. As we learned about the Virgin de Guadalupe, I learned the true power of an image. An image of a religious female icon bringing a whole community to their knees to sing her happy birthday. As a political science major, I have gained some skills that can be useful when organizing my people, such as, having my own image or piece of art that will make others believe our one voice. 

For my paintings, I learned how to adapt other aspects from other artist into my own work. I learned hot to blend properly. My self-portrait taught me how I viewed myself; the image I chose of myself was my UCLA ID picture, where I’m smiling. However, in my painting I failed to capture that same smile or happiness. I was very disappointed and frustrated that I was not able to illustrate my smile but maybe that was because I still need to find that happiness I once had before attending school. I think as artist, as Chicanas(os), sometimes we must work twice as hard to get what we want, which unfortunately means less personal time for oneself. Overall this course taught me a lot about artists and their constant struggle to freedom of speech but also in a personal level, it taught me to show more the inner artist I have within myself.

Our Lady of Guadalupe


La Virgin de Guadalupe is a religious icon that emerges on December 12 of 1531 to Saint Juan Diego. She has a similar story as of the Virgin Mary, however, when she appeared to Saint Juan Diego, she demanded a church in her honor at a small town in Mexico.
She has always been a part of my home, as a non-religious Catholic, and someone who has experienced lots of hate, I constantly question the faith I have towards her. There is not a day where my mother does not have a candle for the Virgin de Guadalupe. The more I have learned about her through this class, I have truly appreciate her as art. On December twelve, we go to church and by roses to put them by her frame. My godfather was named after her, we as well buy him roses, now I’m guessing because they share a special date. Everyone in my household has an image or figure that represents Our Lady of Guadalupe, although, half of us, are not religious. I remember visiting her when I was eleven, I thought it was beautiful, lots of flowers and people, all come to receive her blessing. However, even then, and especially now, I have always seen her as a beautiful brown woman.

Art Selected: Enrique Chagoya


The art piece that my team was assigned was Enrique Chagoya’s The Misadventures of the Romantic Cannibals. The artwork consisted of a few printed pages, illustrating cultural and religious figures in a sexual manner. For instance, in the front page shows a figure that others may view as Jesus Christ receiving oral sex, with a caption stating “18 and over.” Thus, Chagoya received lots of backlash by religious groups, in particular, Christians, whom found the printing offensive.
The artwork was displayed in the Colorado Museum, where it was seen by the public and some of those who opposed the art. A woman attacked the printings by breaking the plexiglas that was covering them and injured herself in the process of damaging and destroying Chagoya’s work. Chagoya argued that he did not make Jesus appear in that way, but simply used different symbols. The intention of the artist was to make a statement about the sexual assaults that have occurred within the Church. Although, he seems no harm in sharing the voices of those have suffered by the Church, religious groups have been the number one target in censoring the artwork. 

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

Most Convincing Argument


Last week’s presentations were thought-provoking and full of many solid arguments. One of the strongest teams that initially presented brought up how censoring a work like Sally Mann’s Immediate Family would lead to the normalization of a child’s sexuality. I found that point to be valid and it reinforced my personal stance on why this work shouldn’t be censored on the sole reason that some might interpret it as obscene. Assuming that this work leans more towards child pornography is a reach. Calling the artist a pedophile is a senseless thing to do because her intentions as a photographer don’t even align with pedophilia. The team addressed this issue and brought the point of society’s tendency to blame the victim. She was blamed in the hypothetical situation of what would happen if a pedophile were to be provoked by these images when she shouldn’t be. These were her kids and she was capturing the moments she found adorable. On the surface, the photographs do not seem intentionally sexual so it’s questionable that some might find them to be so suggestive. I thought it was also interesting for the team to address how common it is for parents to capture moments when their kid isn’t wearing clothes and for the family to find it cute.  

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

Team Presentation:Enrique Chagoya

Image result for enrique chagoya
Enrique Chagoya's piece is controversial but censoring it(team I was on), I don't think it should be censored. Which is very alarming because it makes it complicated to support the fact that the piece has to be censored. One, there is no nudity in the piece, so why? How do we protect the fact that this obscene piece is controversial? Well, we can say that it is controversial due to the fact that the figures in the piece seemed to resemble political figures which is why this piece created a lot of controversy because it was attacked and destroyed by a woman. In the piece it presents several symbolic figures where people would identify them as per say Jesus or  Mohammed. Which is why there was a resistance towards this piece because people of the religious background thought it was provocative for Jesus to be getting head by another male AND the fact that Jesus' head was on the body of a woman's. To Enrique Chagoya, he knew this piece was already going to be controversial, because in his biography he states that he likes to use pop culture and symbolic icons.Overall, this piece should be censored because it will cause controversy with those of the religious background and solely to protect the piece from getting further damaged. These pieces do take a lot of work and dedication from the artist, it is not fair to put their work on display while potentially putting the art at risk.

La Virgen de Guadalupe

Image result for la virgen de guadalupe
La Virgen de Guadalupe has always been a memorable figure in my life. I grew up catholic but as I grew up I realized my beliefs did not come to par with those of the church. I still go out of respect, but just the way the catholic setting is set up makes me feel, restricted. Even if my beliefs did not correlate with, "my religion" I still believed in La Vrigen de Guadalupe. As a kid,I was confused between The Virgin Mary & La Virgen de Guadalupe  because I always noticed in our church they had different shrines, and I would ask myself why, if they were supposed to be the same person. Other than that my belief in La Virgen de Guadalupe stands. Specifically because I lost my aunt on December 12th, 2003. She was heavily involved in the church in our community and praised La Virgen de Guadalupe. Unfortunately, she was pregnant while she passed and her daughter Rosita Guadalupe passed away as well. It astonishes me until this day that something like this could happen. I believe this is why I hold onto her belief, because it is such a significant role in my life, that why shouldn't I believe?

Virgen de Guadalupe

The month of December is a month full of celebration and great spirit. In my house it feels like Christmas commences far before the last week of the month. In my family we start celebrating December 2nd because it is my father's birthday but as soon as that is out of our systems we are left with ten days to prepare for the next holy celebration. El dia de la Virgen de Guadalupe (December 12) is as important as christmas in my family. I grew up in a catholic home. If my name doesn't remind you, I will.. my middle name is Guadalupe- thats how faithful my family is to the Virgen de Guadalupe. She symbolizes strength, dignity, honesty, hope, health, family, among other valuable ideals. I did not always comprehend why we worshiped her so much but I have always preferred her over the 'male' figure in church. I unintentionally connected her image with my ideal of feminism. I guess I felt like she was a Goddess just as important as christ.  Her image is all over my mom's house and my grandmas houses and now it is in my home as well. Her story may get confusing/ confused but the idea of respect for this mujer poderosa remains and I love that!

Most convincing argument

The presentations were all full of random ideas that one alone would not have thought of. This week's presentation offered a new perspective to many things. It is hard to argue about religion and humanity. I believe the most convincing argument goes to the group presenting to NOT censor Virgin & St. Bernard by Alonso Cano. The group arguing for the censoring of the image had me completely convinced with them. I agreed that the breast milk's purpose is to nurture a child not to feed a man. I realized the image was not really sexual but still something about it made me feel icky. However, all changed when the NOT censor team reminded me that breast milk is a holy body fluid- the wine in church represents christ's blood- duh! this was a light bulb moment for me. It was also then I caught the detail about saint Bernard having health issues with his throat; the breast milk was serving as a medicine and maybe even as an ointment. From previous knowledge (not religious) I know moms in remote parts of the world are suggested to feed their new borns exclusively breast milk because the water may be too hard and hurt the baby's throats. This was relevant because the breast milk's healing 'powers' would probably aid the saint far better than simple water would.

GomezCristal

Hello there guys, my name is really long. My full name is Maria Cristal Guadalupe Gomez Cruz but feel free to call me Cristal. I am a first generation college student meaning I am the first in my family to attend college. I was actually the first to graduate high school too! I was born and raised in Los Angeles. I like to say I am a true Cali girl, I love the west coast! This is my second year here at UCLA- my dream school because its the university of the city I was born in. I am majoring in Spanish and minoring in Chicano studies. My journey to UCLA  has been rough but I am here. I have a 1 1/2 year old son named Jesse Allen. He is my pride and joy. He is also a leech that lives off of my energy. I am a full time parent and I try to be a full time student. I came across this class almost by accident. It just happened to like this class description a little more than another class I was going to take. I need this class to check off a class requirement for my Chicano studies minor. However, that is not the only reason I decided to stay in this course. I am excited and I am looking forward to learning about the art pieces I have most likely not been exposed to because well they have been censored. I am also hoping to learn to understand the community we are a part of through the diverse artwork.

As for this week's reading assignment:
Adam Harris' "As Support Grows for Ditching Confederate Statues, Some Colleges Begin to Remove Theirs" gives a really good explanation for those who argued to keep the statues, furthermore he offered an even better reason for the statues to be removed. The article touches upon the idea of preserving history through the statues was the main reason majority of the white supremacy groups retaliated and rioted. The reason of the removal of these statues was to show the country has progressed and changed it's beliefs. I think it was ironic for the white supremacists to be so angry at the removal of the statues. I personally believe their point is invalid. We learned that the europeans  wiped out full colonies and not a peep is said about that. In addition, I need to point out the quote "Embracing difference includes creating space where all people feel respected, welcomed, and valued". This quote stood out to me because it is a very unique way of thinking. I realized after reading this that History does not change, it is because we allow change and difference that we are able to progress! This is a change and this too is good! Why can't we just think of it like those Statues' show time is up because they do not bring many viewers- like an old boring history movie.

Most Convincing Argument - Judith Slaying Holofernes by Gentileschi


Artemisia Gentileschi - Judith Beheading Holofernes - WGA8563.jpg


Judith Slaying Holofernes by Artemisia Gentileschi

The most convincing argument was the argument to not censor this painting. The best argument within the main argument [to not censor] was the argument that this is a painting and not a real image. When taking that into consideration, it makes the beheading more tolerable. Once given more background, one would understand that the act of beheading is common in the early Renaissance, as it is part of the "Power of Women". It is also an episode from the Old Testament, which makes me inclined to not censor it even more. If it is an episode from the bible, it should not be censored.

I really enjoyed listening to both sides of each argument and having both sides "rebuttal". It gave each team a chance to argue the weaknesses of their presentation and it was clearly a fair way to have their presentation judged, not based on bias but on which team had the stronger presentation. Personally, I was assigned to censor a painting that I had originally felt like should not be censored. It was extremely difficult trying to argue why something that I felt like should not have been censored must be censored, but it gave me a different perspective entirely on the portrait.







Most Convincing Arguement


I really enjoyed how as a class, we were able to do a debate and try to argue a side for different paintings, and essentially either censor or uncensor them. This not only adds to the fact that it allows us to explore a perspective were not used to, but also understand why other people wanted to censor certain artworks. The argument I found most convincing was that of the Sistine Chapel, trying to censor the artwork. I feel that throughout their debate they focused a lot on politics, and how the law is tied into these kinds of measures. They used contextual facts and demonstrated multiple cases where similar scenarios had occurred and as a result, were censored because of the power the law has. I do want to mention that the other team did bring up the separation of church and state at the end of the debate, which I feel that if it would’ve been brought up earlier, the uncensoring team could’ve made it hard for the other team to rebuttal. However, the use of past cases and precise articles from the law really pushed me to concede to their main argument. This debate between the two sides for the Sistine Chapel was one of my favorites, being that it dealt with both the church and the state, two subjects that are always clashing.

Most Convincing Argument

The most convincing argument was made by the not to censor  Immediate Family by Sally Mann team. Since this series of photos were of her family and how she found her children to be a source of inspiration, they were able to bring in the brighter side and the strongest arguments. The censor team also had a couple of strong arguments, but it made it seem like everyone was capable of thinking in such a malicious way. The team was able to get their reasoning across in order to truthfully justify why the work of Mann should not be censored, while also including some of their own anecdotes to make it stronger.  

There wasn’t an alternative meaning to her taking pictures of her immediate family. She used her passion and the love she had for her family to capture them in a way that captured their own identities. The team who argued not to censor was able to get across their message and the artist's message. Something of this caliber cannot be censored, especially when it is captured through the eyes of someone who is close to them, someone with no alternative motives or thoughts. Both teams did a great job arguing this piece of work.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Most Convincing Argument


In my opinion, one of the strongest and most memorable arguments made during the presentations was that of the not to censor group of Enrique Chagoya’s The Misadventures of the Romantic Cannibals. The group made the point that there was truly no issues with the artwork until someone saw it as a method to gain political attention. They demonstrated that the artwork had previously been exhibited without backlash. It was not until it was exhibited in a city that was in the middle of elections that the image caused uproar. The group made the point that a politician added fuel to this outrage at the artwork in order to be seen as having the interests of the public in mind and to move his political campaign forward. Along with this verbal explanation of the events, the not to censor group added a slide on their presentation that included a visual timeline of the events. This visual combined with their explanation, in my opinion made for a great argument in their favor. Overall, this argument caused me to question the validity of the censorship of Chagoya’s The Misadventures of the Romantic Cannibals. By demonstrating that someone gained from its censorship, it caused me to believe that there truly was no good reason to censor the artwork. It brought out the feeling of a sort of tyranny and overreach of power by a politician to decide what is wrong and what is right. Moreover, in their timeline they pointed out that it was during this politically driven outrage that Chagoya’s artwork was vandalized and destroyed. This further added to the negative perception of a politically driven effort for censoring the piece. Overall, I believe this argument made a strong case that painted a negative image of censorship, especially at the hands of a politician. Additionally, and most importantly , it made me side with the group and decide that censoring Chagoya was wrong.

Most Convincing Argument

I was very impressed with all the arguments presented last week, for I ended up very torn when it came to voting on the winner each round. The debate that stood out to me the most was over whether or not to censor Judith Slaying Holofernes. The first team brought up excellent points that women empowerment should not consist of man hating. We should try to bridge the gap between genders by uplifting everyone equally, rather than punishing everyone equally. This group had me convinced that the picture was wrong because there are many other ways to empower women than by promoting violence.
However, I believe the not to censor group had the most convincing argument by stating that art is not real. This act of murder did not actually take place, and just because an artist paints something, it does not mean they are promoting other people to act on it. The group brought up the point that art can be a form of emotional expression and the artist painted her gruesome pieces as an act of coping and releasing her anger in a non-violent way. I think all the debates could have been easily put to an end with this type of thinking: that art is not meant to be taken literally and just because certain audiences misunderstand the work does not give it a reason to be censored. Every censor argument seemed to stem from twisting the work into something it was not intended to. Perhaps we should all acknowledge that art is not meant to push secret agenda but rather just a form of expressing oneself which in no way is inherently wrong or harmful.

most convincing argument fall 2017

I really liked the group presentation to not censor the Sistine chapel, for their valid points of, :

  • The constructed perceived knowledge of "nakedness" and how that pivots our demoralization of the artwork to inhibit the need of censorship.
  • The relationship between the biblical allusion to Adam and Eve and how the story of how after they ate the fruit of the tree of knowledge did they become aware of their nudeness. "To have them wear clothing is inconsistent with how the Bible created these persons in the beginning" therefore, having them censored by attaching garments is like advocating for their sin of disobedience. 
    • The argument of, " censorship is equivalent to shame and knowledge"
  • What is natural? This argument allows the viewers to question their perceived intuition of wether nudity is moral or not, and whether or not is should be censored in art, and why or why not?
For these reasons, I feel that this group did a well job in executing their arguments to not censor the Sistine Chapel because they heavily touched upon the social construction of "nudity is bad" and how censoring such would be invalidated because of a moral perception. It really had me question the need to censor art at all.

Most Convincing Argument: Sally Mann-- Not Censored

The argument that had me questioning whether to censor or not censor it was the debate about Sally Mann. That's a tough one. Prior to having the debates, I was unsure whether or not I'd censor the work, but ultimately I leaned toward not censoring it due to the fact that it was consensual and because the images were of immediate family. However, I'd still go back and forth questioning whether it would have been appropriate for a child to be the one to make the decision of whether or not they'd feel comfortable with their mother posting their pictures.

Nonetheless, the debate had strong points to support each side. The team to censor the work went first, and a powerful argument of theirs was that pedophiles could get access to Mann's pictures, disregard  copyright, and photoshop them into porno magazines. The strongest argument made on the other end was that the photos were of immediate family which made it appropriate for the children to be naked and held by their parents (in a non-sexual way of course). In addition, the individuals that argued to not censor "Immediate Family" shared details from their personal life of how their parents took pictures of them nude when they were young. Ultimately, I felt like the team to not censor the work did a slightly better job at formulating a conniving argument so I voted for them even though my belief lies somewhere in the middle.

From my perspective, yes, I find it appropriate that a mother wanted to take pictures of her children in their everyday life, meaning some of the pictures would be nude. However, the issue for me lies in getting the album out to the public where pedophiles can access the images to use for their own satisfaction. Even if the child says "Yes, it is okay to take my picture like this," they shouldn't qualify  to provide consent.

To wrap things up, both teams did a superb--

Most Convincing Argument -Censor Mapplethorpe

It was very insightful to hear arguments from both sides of the censorship issue. One would think it is easier to argue for non censorship since most of us would agree everyone has the right to express themselves freely as long as they don't cause harm. However sometimes it is hard to validate a work outside of artistic expression; since art is not a utilitarian tool but an abstract experience. Im not saying art doesn't have value I just mean its hard to make its abstract value tangible.



















I really liked how the Robert Mapplethorpe censor group pointed this out.  Concerning his activist efforts to promote AIDS awareness; his message wasn't clear unless you're "in" on his allusions and that leaves the audience member perplexedly starring at starkly lit pictures of questionable subject matter such as homoerotic S&M scenes without much context. I think his work is pretty amazing and aesthetically bad-ass however I wouldn't be surprised if someone like my mom had a total WTF reaction to it (not that she's a prude or anything). Someone like her would probably not interpret the work the same and she would see it of little value to be displayed in gallery halls. So yeah, I liked Robert Mapplethorpe's censor team argument the most.  

Most convincing argument - To not censor the Sistine Chapel

Last week’s presentations all did a great job at supporting their arguments in regards to censoring or not censoring an art piece. I found that the most convincing argument, however, was the one to not censor Michelangelo’s work in the Sistine Chapel. I enjoyed hearing the team discuss how it is important to not censor the work because it reveals God’s creation of us. They argued that we came into this world naked, therefore it is important for us to know our bodies in order for us to fully understand and accept ourselves. Furthermore, the team used biblical verses to help their arguments against the images being obscene which I found to be ironic because the other team was also using religion and social morals against nudity in their argument. In all the presentations and in outside debates about censoring works, religion always seems to be on the side of those who want to censor. However, this team did a great job at using religion in their defense, stating verses and facts in the bible that I did not know were so open and “progressive.” Although this argument was the most convincing, I would have liked to see the other team discuss the evident white, patriarchal images all throughout the chapel. I feel as though that would have been a great way to argue for censorship because it is not representational of people, especially women, of color. 

Most Convincing Argument - To Censor Mapplethorpe



I really enjoyed the team presentations because I felt the groups all had nuanced approaches, arguments, and perspectives. However, one group really stood out to me because their arguments for the censorship of Mapplethorpe were based on compromise and understanding. The group found a clever way to maneuver through the taboo of censorship without championing the complete restriction of his art. The group argued that based on the talent and demand of his art, the public should be allowed to view Mapplethorpe’s portraits if they pleased. However, based on the sensitivity and controversy of his work, museums and galleries should display his work in privately funded exhibitions. These separate exhibitions ensure only interested patrons and supporters will view his work because they are making a conscious choice and effort to attend. It prevents patrons from feeling slighted by the museum for accidentally stumbling upon his artwork. The separations appease both, supporters and dissenters. Pleasing both sides is not an easy feat and the group’s effort to ensure everyone’s wants and sensibilities are accommodated to the fullest extent was admirable.