Three departments host exhibit highlighting social injustice and inequality

Morgan Gisholt Minard, News Layout Editor

Over 68 students from three different departments presented their final projects in an exhibition titled “Exhibiting the Self: Student Representations of Social, Educational, and Environmental (In)equality and (In)justice,” on April 24.

This project was led jointly by Dr. Carmen Henne-Ochoa, Dr. Amanda Wooden, and Dr. Richard Henne-Ochoa, in an effort to direct their students in a self-reflection on social inequality and injustice.

Students from Social Inequality taught by Dr. C. Henne-Ochoa and Social Foundations of Inequality taught by Dr. R. Henne- Ochoa used the concept of habitus in the creation of their projects, all of which took a creative approach in expressing each student’s personal experiences and interpretations of social inequality and injustice.

Dr. Amanda Wooden’s Environmental Injustice class focused on the “just sustainabilities” concept, where students examined ideas of sustainability and social justice from an environmental approach.

These three courses overlapped in the examination of various social structures and environmental factors such as race, gender, class, religion, and education. This project was first developed by Dr. C. Henne-Ochoa and exhibited in the fall, but was adapted this semester by Dr. R. Henne-Ochoa and Dr. Wooden in an attempt to link several different approaches to examining social injustices and inequalities.

“They all struggle with the same issues… [The] exhibit engenders a secure classroom environment and forces students to open up about subjects that they normally wouldn’t feel comfortable with,” Dr. C. Henne-Ochoa said.

The projects themselves consisted of a physical aspect as well as a written explanation analyzing the students’ understanding of these themes. Students chose to explore their personal experiences with inequality or injustice by creating a variety of poems, dioramas, poster collages, performance art, music, pictures and videos, among others.

“The external and internal environmental factors that shape our outlooks on society. Seeing how everyone has their own habitus… It was cool to see the class come together over this project [despite] different things [being] important to different people in terms of their environments and habituses,” Hillary LeDesma ’15 said.

The exhibit was on display from April 24-May 1 in Academic West.

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