Erica Goldson: Graduation Speech (cartoon) Blog #5

Erica Goldson: Graduation Speech (cartoon) Blog #5


I came across these photos while I was on Tumblr (which is a blogging website with many photos). I found it very impressive and understood through many sociological concepts. Additionally, the illustrations in the images are related to many class discussions we have had regarding the education system and its true value. It gave me some food for thought and I wanted to share it!



2 responses to “Erica Goldson: Graduation Speech (cartoon) Blog #5

  1. Hey Amanda,
    Great post!!!! I must say that I really enjoyed reading the cartoon and I definitely believe that it does tie into many topics covered in the lectures as well as class discussions. I find it interesting that the valedictorian is portrayed as a robot, we see how he feels a sense of alienation being programmed to think and do as he has been told in hopes reaching success one day. He is withdrawn from his peers and loses his sense of self. This demonstrates Durkheim’s egoism and Marx’s alienation . He lacks social integration and alienates himself from others as he even feels detached from all his efforts/hardwork that earned him valedictorian of the graduating class and the educational system. I find it interesting that his diploma reads “work ticket” as it will enable him entry into the labor market. We obtain an education to get a foothold in our careers however we may just fall victims to exploitation as described by Marx’s theory of labor and sell our labor to companies which only seek to make profit through exploiting us with modern day tactics. It’s as if he realized the division between the bourgeoisie and proletariates before even entering the labor market. We are characterized by a sense of inequality all around us as we are programmed to become honest hard working citizens who must educate themselves in order to reach success however we know that we don’t all have the same resources or connections within our reach. This cartoon represents the uncertainty of many college students and the dissatisfaction of many Americans. We emerge into the unknown when graduation nears with our fears/distrust in the labor market and system as a whole. It brings to mind the unpaid internships and the temp positions that agencies are hiring for. When I saw the illustration of skool….university….work I thought of the movie divergent which I saw just recently. Members of society were divided into factions and trained according to their abilities. In the end the ruling faction which I believed resembled the bourgeoise programmed the members (proletariates) of a specific “warrior faction” to set their agenda into place. In the movie, a divergent was labeled as someone who was different, who couldn’t conform and couldn’t be controlled. A real life example of a divergent would be activists who speak out against inequalities and unfair conditions in the workplace. Capitalism does in fact have people to make sure that their power is enforced and the valedictorian will in fact venture into a capitalist society. I don’t blame him for being scared I can relate.

  2. When I saw your blog post It instantly reminded me about myself, because many of the times I do feel like a robot in college! Don’t get me wrong I feel like school is necessary to a certain extent because it does open up our minds and helps us think critically. However, at the end of the day I still feel like it’s a business ;they attack us with costly tuition feeds plus the ever changing test book editions version that only stay valid for one semester. This cartoon strip attest that only the best robot/ slaves are capable of succeeding in life. But what is actually succeeding in life ? Receiving a certificate that demonstrates that one is capable of working? In my opinion this is a form of alienation because we are pretty much forced into completing very systemic and boring classes that many of the times aren’t going to be useful in our actually career nor in the real world. I feel like our life
    Are planned for us. Due to the fact that our major curriculum is already chosen for us we have very little control when it comes to choosing our classes ( electives). If school were to be more flexible and mindful of want we actually “needed” we as individuals will enjoy life much more and although it might sound “cliche” it will ultimately make the world a better place .Instead, they limit the thinker and adventurer inside of us just like the robot in the cartoon strip. What’s absurd is that we have to pay to obtained a job!Recognizing whats evident such as the control these institutions have over us is the first step into a small change that hopefully over time can result into something bigger.

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