There’s never enough time, and who knows that better than educators. So in an effort to offer up a few larger themes to think about and potential pathways, here is a summary of some of the ideas we talked about (briefly) today. Remember, the key is not necessarily writing “about” the art or “studying” only the art per se, but rather leveraging content, context, concept, and even techniques of a work or works of art as an alternative point of contact or engagement with a particular theme or idea. I might also add, that experiences with contemporary art are bursting with bits of sensory input, emotional space, and sophisticated contexts. Engagement with art expands avenues or pathways to learning, or exploring a particular idea, concept, or theme. Think of these experiences with art as additional texts. Though these terms are important, it helps not to get hung up on the words “art” or “creative”.
‘Girlhood’ presents a host of themes that include:
-explorations of identity (cultural, gender)
-implications of socio-economic circumstance (class, access or lack of access to resources, education)
-coming-of-age (in a modern world, in another country)
-choice and intention
Ways into the work include exploration of:
“I” / “Me”- Meet learners where they are, searching self, looking into self, but encourage some stretching into more awareness, some vulnerability, honesty, authenticity.
Writing might include some creative nonfiction or memoir, recalling a time, a moment (from childhood) when everything changed, when nothing would ever be the same?
Further thinking might move into just beyond “I”, an exploration of “I” among choices and circumstances Т (I want, I wish, I wonder)
‘a song in the front yard’ – Gwendolyn Brooks
Check out this recitation by Alfre Woodard at the Aspen Institute
Many of the scenes in ‘Girlhood’ also offer opportunities to explore time, choices, implications of circumstance, character, empathy, and point of view.
Pathways may include first or second person writings, research opportunities and critical thinking on socio-economic issues and how certain circumstances might impact life outcomes, explorations of identity (gender, cultural), and discussions on intention and choice.
I like your idea about a group screening session, but in the meantime, if you can’t wait, ‘Girlhood’ is available for download on Amazon and Netflix.