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UM Mapping Citizen Critical Reflection

UM Mapping Citizen Critical Reflection


How does the use of “you” throughout the opening sections of Citizen impact your understanding of the text so far? What does Rankine’s use of the second-person (“you”) do that other approaches would not? For instance, you might imagine a different version of the book in which each story is told as a first-person (“I” or “mine”) account. (Your answer should be approximately 2-3 paragraphs.)

When in your own life have you been asked to think about and engage the kinds of experiences described in these opening sections of the text? Were your own experiences (or lack of experiences) put into new perspective by the use of second-person in the text? 

What does Rankine risk by using this approach? In other words, does the use of “You” in the text potentially allow readers who have not encountered racism and racist violence to conflate their own experience with that of the “characters” in the text? below is the link . 

For this week, please read ALL of Claudia Rankine’s, Citizen: An American Lyric 

As you begin the text, please watch this short video:

part 2 

Pandemic as Portal 

In an essay called “The Pandemic as Portal (Links to an external site.),” internationally renowned writer Arundhati Roy writes the following:

“Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew. This one is no different. It is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next. We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, our avarice, our data banks and dead ideas, our dead rivers and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it.”

As we pass through this portal, let’s think about what we might take to the other side, and what we want to leave behind. Write 1-3 sentences for each question, no more. 

  1. What one book or reading from class would you want to take with you?
  2. What, if anything, from your old life do you want to leave behind?
  3. What do you appreciate that you would like to take with you?
  4. What change, if any, would you like to see, and commit to bring about, on the other side?

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