Class Reflection #4
This week’s guest speaker was particularly interesting to me as someone who started off as a self-taught graphic designer working largely on logos, typography, and layout design. Having someone come in whose PhD is looking to typography and its colonial tie through language, especially focusing on Latin symbols. It was something I had never even imagined could be a research topic or could glean so many you know implications about imperialism and the translation of class across language and literature.
In addition, it was interesting to see topics from earlier in our class come up with our guest speakers research. She spoke about going through this cycle of deciding whether to focus on indigenous tags/ non-western popular literature or focus on popular Western literature in order to bypass the unrelated questions in regards to the indigenous texts rather than the actual centre of her research.
In one of my classes last semester called Designing The PostNatural with Professor Tega Brain, we oftentimes didn’t design to solve solutions to problems however we did research and work to build, display and present ideas, concepts, issues and post-natural phenomena in a way that’s captivating, timely and easily accessible to the audience. I saw some of the examples that she showed off her work especially when she showed the apostrophe mapping across the various pages. Although you can’t explicitly draw a conclusion from just those mappings, in a larger context, in relation to typography you’re actually able to explore what these maps can offer. Just the inclusion of the maps brought into perspective from me how we often use language to represent class, represent race, represent all these identifiers and what impact does this type of repetitive association of language to certain socio-economic identifiers or even racial physical identifiers relate/interact with language in larger cultural contexts.
I’m excited that we’re able to take what we’re learning in class and be able to see it link with the concepts being brought forth by guest speakers. After this week’s speaker, I really started reflecting on how I can challenge, refuse and maybe fight within my thesis to include, highlight and showcase non-western perspectives, voices, cultures, and initiatives within my work. Although I can understand the speaker’s points, I think it reflects back to our whole class discussions on Academia being a very white space and I believe it will continue to be white if we don’t push against the grain and this talk whether that was the point or not, lead me to start thinking about ways to purposely decolonize academia and decentralized the Western normative perspective in the world of academia.