“The Final Mini Muse”
By TMI Journalism Club
Celebrating Student Creativity
As the school year comes to an end, the TMI Journalism Club wants to thank the student body for reading our issues and continuing to ask questions and share your work. As our final issue, we have a collection of creativity from exceptional student writers, photographers, and artists, as well as a list of our favorite questions from the Cafe 18 Advice Column. Have a great summer and we will see you next school year!
Anacia Scogin, Class of 2023
Sophia Oliveira, Class of 2023
Gretchen Tiede, Class of 2023
Henry Castaneda, Class of 2023
John Liu, Class of 2024
Bernice Gitiche, Class of 2024
“The Connection of Black and African Culture Through an Analysis of Beyonce’s ‘Black is King’ Film”
As a daughter of Kenyan immigrants, I have been introduced to both African and African American cultures. Since the majority of my family lives in East Africa, I frequently visit them in Kenya. Seeing Beyonce accurately paint the beauties of African culture through this film helped me to feel more connected with myself, my roots, and those who share my skin tone.
For decades, there has been a divide between Africans in America and African Americans. Even though we share similar features, our culture is drastically different. ‘Black is King’ stood out to me because I appreciated Beyonce’s attempt to connect both cultures and find common ground. In my experience, I have seen both Black Americans and African people constantly discriminate against each other. Africans have perceived Black Americans as ‘thugs’ or ‘uneducated gangsters’ while some Black Americans stereotype Africans as poor or uneducated. In reality, we are all different fonts of the same text.
In this film, Beyonce emphasizes the fact that we must remember where we come from, even if our identities have been stripped from us. Throughout ‘Black is King,’ she repeats the phrase ‘come back home.’ Home is the place we experience our true selves, and it can vary for different people. One thing, however, remains the same. Our ancestors come from Africa, and our stories start from there. Our journeys may differ, but our starting point is constant.
In the middle of the film, Beyonce includes two separate songs, ‘ALREADY’ and ‘MY POWER’. In ALREADY, she directs the lyrics toward Black men, reminding them to see their worth as kings and to live as though they are royalty. Ghanian singer, Shatta Wale repeatedly states “Long live the king, you a king, you know it”. The next song, MY POWER, highlights the importance of Black women recognizing their power and protecting it with everything. “They’ll never take my power,” Beyonce sings throughout the song. Both songs are accompanied by traditional African dances and portray the same message: know your worth.
As an African American woman, ‘Black is King’ helped me appreciate my ancestral roots whilst recognizing where I am today. I am an African woman. I am also a Black American woman. Beyonce illustrates the mixture of the two cultures by emphasizing that both need the other. African American culture such as music, clothing, and dance, stems from traditional African culture. Both have learned from each other. We are different, but we are also the same.
“Internalized Misogyny in Young Girls”
You are in second grade. It’s a cool autumn day and you’re with your friends at the playground during recess. Some kids swing on the swings. Others grunt while they tackle the monkey bars with great determination. You are stuck talking with the group of boys who play soccer every day by the field. “What’s your favorite color?” They ask you, strangely eager for your response. You look around at your friends and gulp. “Blue,” you blurt out unexpectedly. They nod their heads and continue asking other people. The other girls respond with “Green” or “Red.” But your favorite color is not blue. It never has been. It has always been pink.
According to an article written by Nina Cherry at the UMKC Women’s Center, “Internalized misogyny is when women subconsciously project sexist ideas onto other women and even onto themselves.”
From a young age, girls are taught that liking ‘feminine’ ideas or objects are less significant than preferring ‘masculine’ ideas. “Oh, you wear makeup and fancy high heels that match your dress? How pathetic. I, on the other hand, go completely natural while rocking my sneakers and baggy T-shirts.”
While leaning more towards behaviors that society labels as ‘masculine’ is perfectly acceptable, it is important to be aware of when one degrades other girls for favoring what may seem more ‘feminine.’ Why are feminine attributes deemed socially unattractive or wrong? And why have so many women felt obligated to lean away from common female behaviors? Have we really let the patriarchy overthrow us?
The phrase “I’m not like other girls” is a common statement rooted in this misogyny. Girls are constantly being told that “not being like other girls” is a compliment. It is as if all women are bad, and since you are different, you are good. This causes some girls to admire whatever is opposite of “girly” and view “boyish” interests as cooler or more attractive.
Our world has already divided men and women, putting women at a lower advantage than men. We already struggle enough in politics, jobs, and schools. Why do we have to become more divisive by degrading other women? It is okay to love the colors pink and purple, despite how “feminine” they may seem. It is okay to wear heels. To wear dresses. It is also okay to wear sneakers and baggy T-shirts. Once we accept all women for who they are and how they want to be perceived, we will be able to conquer the larger world of misogyny. However, it starts within us.
Q: Who Do You Think You Are? Why? Who?
A: The person who is writing this particular answer is sitting on the orange desk near the original picture of the Star Child while he watches me with an enormous smile on his face. Like you, I am most likely a human who typically roams around the halls of the school. When I am not roaming around the halls, I either talk with people or work in my classes. Since I am writing this answer within the advice column, you could probably deduce that I am a part of the Journalism Club. If you deduced this, you are correct. I am also in a lot of other clubs; however, I decided to appear for the journalism club today when I am writing this particular answer. As for who I am exactly, that will always remain a mystery, even to me. Wait… Who am I? Do I actually know who I am? Do you know exactly who you are? Think about it, we have our own perceptions about ourselves; however, we do not exactly know what others think about us besides from some hints. We can never truly know ourselves. I can’t even think about knowing who I am… Do you know what? I am moving on to why. Why can mean a variety of factors such as why we are on this planet or why I decided to wear shoes today. In my opinion, this is one of the most important questions since it can explain the reason for our actions, beliefs, and thoughts. The question needs context and on its own, it is a deeply profound question. Why am I here? Why am I writing this? Why? How and why do we have human functions as we know them today? This timeline has created us; however, we do not know why this version of us is created when life could be so much different. Why? Anyways, let’s continue on with the advice column before we go down a deeper rabbit hole.
Q: Do you like Ice Cream?
A: Who doesn’t?
Q: What do I do if someone ghosts me?
A: The absolute worst thing you could do is chase them or beg them to stay. Sometimes people just don’t want you, and that’s okay! Get out of the habit of determining your worth based on how certain people perceive you. If someone ghosts you, act unbothered. If, and only if, the opportunity presents itself, ask them why you guys stopped talking. But only do this in person and IF the opportunity presents itself. Otherwise, simply moving on will not only be better for your mental health but there’s also a stronger chance of them seeing your value if you show that their absence doesn’t bother you.
Q: How can I get taller?
A: Sadly, after you have hit puberty, the chances of you growing taller are quite slim. However, there is a tiny bit of hope.
- Sit up straight. Having a good posture might give you the illusion of being taller.
- Exercise daily. Practicing physical fitness every day can help you improve your posture.
- Eat healthy. Although eating well may not make you taller, healthy eating will ensure that you are the height you are meant to be.
Q: How to deal with intolerable people?
A: Sometimes it’s difficult to interact with people who bother you, but remember this: anything that annoys you is teaching you patience. Anything that angers you is teaching you peace. Instead of seeing others as a burden, shift your mindset into being grateful for people who are ultimately allowing you to better yourself.
Q: How to survive a bear attack?
A: We did extensive research to develop a beneficial answer to this vital question.
- Stay calm. Panicking or running away will only make things worse!
- Remember this saying: If it’s brown, get down! If it’s black, ATTACK. And most importantly, if it’s white…goodnight.
- Talk to the bear. Building a relationship with your opposition can sometimes lead to a few benefits. Maybe if you show you don’t fear them, they won’t feel the need to eat you.
Q: Is it too late to join the corps?
A: Nope! It’s never too late to join the corps; new members are encouraged and accepted all year long. If you’re interested, there is no harm in contacting Major Claburn and letting him know.
Q: What are some good hygiene tips to always smell and look nice?
A: Here are just a few tips on how to stay fresh and clean.
- Brush your teeth for two minutes every day AND night. Although this is given, brushing your teeth keeps your breath smelling fresh and your teeth white.
- Make sure not to forget to floss and occasionally use mouthwash.
- Shower, shower, shower. Invest in body washes that are good for your skin and also smell nice.
- Drink water!! Water not only helps your skin, but it also prevents you from smelling bad. Try to drink at least 64 oz of water for a month, and you will not only smell better and look cleaner, but you’ll also feel more energized and fresh.
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