Sorry Rebecca Mead, Things Don't Have To Be Relatable To Be Art

Reflection: Rebecca Mead's 'The Scourge of Relatability'

What defines reliability in art?

60
views

First, read Rebecca Mead's "The Scourge of Relatability." Done? OK.

Mead's central argument is her own interpretation of what she believes "relatability" is in the 21st century. She states that much of what people think of relatable today has to fit into the criteria "that the work itself be somehow accommodating to, or reflective of, the experience of the reader or viewer."

However, she believes that "to reject any work because we feel that it does not reflect us in a shape that we can easily recognize — because it does not exempt us from the active exercise of imagination or the effortful summoning of empathy — is our own failure." I agree with Mead's stance because much of what people claim to be "relatable" nowadays, seems to have to reflect how connected something is to an individual. Otherwise, a piece of work may be looked down upon or it may be something people may be less interested in them.

In my opinion, there is nothing wrong with a piece that is not so relatable. Someone may produce a book, production, or a piece of art for the purpose to share their story and reflect on their own implications and not solely for the purpose of everyone being able to "relate" to them completely. Rather than having "relatability" as a criterion, a better way to evaluate something would be to analyze how the work impacts people the most. In other words, how much insight it brings to an audience, the kinds of impacts it makes on people, what the purpose of it is, and how well it represents what its purpose is. In that way, things can be more appreciated not solely based on whether or not we can fully connect to it, but based on how it may affect everyone as a whole.

There is always something that can be taken out of things that are not so "relatable" to ourselves. There is always a new lesson to learn.

Popular Right Now

Stop Discourging Future Teachers

One day, you'll be thankful for us.
62831
views

“What do you want to be when you grow up?" It seems like this is the question we heard from the time we were able to talk. Our answers started out as whatever movie or action figure was popular that year. I personally was going to be Cinderella and shoot spider webs out of my wrists at the same time. The next phase was spent choosing something that we read about in a book or saw in movies. We were aspiring to be actors, skydivers, and astronauts.

After we realized NASA may not necessarily be interested in every eager 10-year-old, we went through the unknown stage. This chapter of life can last a year or for some, forever. I personally did not have a long “unknown" stage. I knew I was going to be a teacher, more specifically I knew I wanted to do elementary or special education. I come from a family of educators, so it was no surprise that at all the Thanksgiving and Christmas functions I had actually figured it out. The excitement of knowing what to do with the rest of my life quickly grew and then began to dwindle just as fast.

“Why?"

"Well, looks like you'll be broke all your life."

“That's a lot of paperwork."

“If I could go back and do it again, I wouldn't choose this."

These are just a few replies I have received. The unfortunate part is that many of those responses were from teachers themselves. I get it, you want to warn and prepare us for the road we are about to go down. I understand the stress it can take because I have been around it. The countless hours of grading, preparing, shopping for the classroom, etc. all takes time. I can understand how it would get tiresome and seem redundant. The feeling a teacher has when the principal schedules yet another faculty meeting to talk an hour on what could've been stated in an email… the frustration they experience when a few students seem uncontrollable… the days they feel inadequate and unseen… the sadness they feel when they realize the student with no supplies comes from a broken home… I think it is safe to say that most teachers are some of the toughest, most compassionate and hardworking people in this world.

Someone has to be brave enough to sacrifice their time with their families to spend time with yours. They have to be willing to provide for the kids that go without and have a passion to spread knowledge to those who will one day be leading this country. This is the reason I encourage others to stop telling us not to go for it.

Stop saying we won't make money because we know. Stop saying we will regret it, because if we are making a difference, then we won't. Stop telling us we are wasting our time, when one day we will be touching hearts.

Tell us to be great, and then wish us good luck. Tell us that our passion to help and guide kids will not go unnoticed. Tell us that we are bold for trying, but do not tell us to change our minds.

Teachers light the path for doctors, police officers, firefighters, politicians, nurses, etc. Teachers are pillars of society. I think I speak for most of us when I say that we seek to change a life or two, so encourage us or sit back and watch us go for it anyways.

Cover Image Credit: Kathryn Huffman

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

NC State Class Of 2023, This One Is For You

Tips to not look like a freshman.

6
views

As I finish out my first full year of college here at NCSU, I realize how much I've changed since my first weeks on campus. I understand how to make my way across campus without looking like a total div. Take these tips that I learned and use them!

1. Do NOT wear your key lanyard around your neck

Giphy

If you do this, people will know for sure that you are a freshman. The dorm keys you have? Don't show them off. They aren't that cool. Instead lock those keys onto a bracelet, wallet or phone.

2. Get Tapingo

Giphy

Tapingo is an app connected to your Wolfpack One card that allows you to order food from anywhere on campus ahead of time. This SAVES more than enough time since you get alerts on how long it will take and how many people there are ahead of you. Then you can just pick it up and go.

3. Do not order from Jason's Deli and expect it to be fast

Giphy

Jason's Deli is well known on campus for taking forever to make their food, even if you order ahead of time on Tapingo. It also just isn't worth it.

4. The best places to eat...

Giphy

One Earth located in Talley near the outdoor elevator. Starbucks located on the groundfloor of Wolfpack Outfitters. Los Lobos in the Talley common area. Brickyard pizza at the Atrium. SmoothieU at the Atrium. These are some of the freshest, best options that a lot of people forget about.

5. The worst places to eat...

Giphy

Tuffy's diner. Port City Java. They aren't bad but they aren't good. Cheap for sure, but tons of calories and probably frozen.

6. Download the electric scooter app

Giphy

Sadly Lime scooters are leaving Raleigh before you guys get here. But we have some new ones coming in that look just as cool. These bad boys are fun and save a TON of time when walking across campus!

7. Use Uber or a friend when attending games

Giphy

Football and basketball games are very popular. The Red Terror bus that can take undergrads for free to Carter Finley and PNC get very crowded very fast. So if you chose to ride them, get there early or push your way through. But it's hot, crowded, and not fun and takes forever so it's better to just pay the money to Uber or get a friend who has a car.

8. Bring water to the games

Giphy

The football games get SO HOT. Most people leave after the first quarter if they can even make it to that. Recommend to bring water. It will be much more enjoyable that way.

9. Do not feel pressured to go out to parties every night

Giphy

Parties are fun and all, but my biggest mistake was going to so many within the first few weeks and spending tons of money on ubers or hurting my feet by walking so far. They aren't worth it. Much better to hang with friends and do game night at someones apartment or dorm.

10. Be friends with your RA

Giphy

RAs are usually super nice and can help out with so much whether that be stress, homework, etc.

11. Go to events

Giphy

Meet friends, join clubs, or get a job on campus.

12. Get a job

Giphy

Despite what you may think, since all your meals are paid for and it doesn't seem like you need much money - You will run out faster than you think. Get a job, it makes life so much easier and less yelling from parents.

13. Always go to events early for free stuff

Giphy

Better start learning how to pretend that you are interested in stuff just to get a free item.

14. Study hard, but not too hard

Giphy

Yes, college is harder than high school. But GPA is less necessary here and things count for different percentages. You won't fail and if you do, it is OK, everyone does.

15. Eat at the dining halls

Giphy

Dining halls post the menu online and guess what this food is actually good! i regret not eating it as much first semester because they have hidden gems like the pizza, omelets, and more.

16. Do not wait until the last minute to make housing arrangements for sophomore year

Giphy

Last minute meaning like November. Most people have decided where they will live by then. So make arrangements ASAP.

17. Workout

Giphy

Freshman 15 is real since you can eat and nap whenever you want. Workout - it makes you feel better

18. Don't wear the convocation shirt

Giphy

A few things about Wolfpack Welcome Week:

- Packapalooza is fun and a great way to get free items.

- Convocation is really dumb, not necessary, super boring, and wearing the shirt you get is a bad idea because that will also make you look like a freshman. You do NOT need to read the summer book, it's pointless!!

- All the other events are worth attending.

19. Do not overdecorate your room

Giphy

it just means more to take down later on.

Related Content

Facebook Comments