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Mary Louise Pratt, "Arts of the Contact Zone"


litahays91 1 / 1  
Apr 14, 2009   #1
It has to be related to her essay about contact zones, and if I have ever been in one. This is just my rough, rough draft!!Thank you.

Mary Louise Pratt's essay, "Arts of the Contact Zone" describes contact zone as, "social spaces where cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other." As a woman who has moved all her life, I have been involved in many foreign and domestic "contact zones".

But, my most memorable experience was my contact zone I made on my first day at a middle school on Guam. My father was in the United States Air force, and he was stationed on Anderson Air force Base (AAFB)on the island of Guam. Moving to Guam was interesting for me because I knew that I would be able to learn from a different foreign culture.

The island of Guam is a small island, and they have many different cultures from Americans. My family was originally from Emporia, Kansas and this was a lot to get use to.

Starting school in a foreign country was exciting, nerve racking and memorable for me. I also knew that there was going to be a clash of cultures between me and my peers. It was hard to get use to at first because they were so different from me.

The island of Guam is a small island, and they have many different cultures from Americans. My family was originally from Emporia, Kansas and this was a lot to get use to.

One thing that I noticed that was different from American kids and Guamanian kids was their loyalty to each other. I first noticed some instances of transculturation between myself and the other school kids. They seem to be overprotective of one another. They seem to mesh well with each other, and Americans seem to divide ranks among each other. In America they had many clicks. They definitely dressed differently. My new schoolmates weren't into the designers jeans or anything fancy. Not only was this a different "contact zone" but it was transculturation at its best.

However, They seemed to be observant of me for many weeks. I remember that no one would sit with me at the lunch table. The only person that would even consider sitting next to me was my sister. They would all sit in the lunchroom and just point and stare. I felt so isolated. I felt like I was part of a spectator sport for my new classmates. But, after a few days they finally made me feel wanted and accepted. They shared some of their amazing food with me.

Also, the schools curriculum was different from what I was use to. My teacher's on Guam would tell a lot of stories using Chamorro Folklore in the classroom. They taught through stories to help them understand the significance of the Chamorro culture. All my peers always sat in silence as the teacher told some of the greatest stories that I have ever heard, and the teacher would then ask us to write a short story about what we have just learned. This was important because it taught

This contact zone experience that I had was both memorable and life changing for me. I learned how to coexist with people outside of my culture zone.
EF_Kevin 8 / 13,321 129  
Apr 15, 2009   #2
Mary Louise Pratt's essay, "Arts of the Contact Zone" describes contact zone as, "social spaces where cultures meet, clash, and grapple with each other." As a woman who has moved all her life, I have been involved in many foreign and domestic "contact zones".

Add at least 2 more sentences to this first paragraph. Tell the reader about some interesting insight from considering your own memory of an experience with a contact zone...considering it after reading Pratt's essay. Let the reader know what kind of experience you will be describing, Pratt said about that sort of contact zone, and what you think about it all.

After that, go on to the body paragraphs.

Hey, I see that what you have written of this is very good!! You have unfinished stuff, though, like: This was important because it taught...?

Just strengthen that first paragraph and tie up loose ends! :)
EF_Sean 6 / 3,491  
Apr 18, 2009   #3
A good start. Some tips:

"The island of Guam is a small island, and they have many different cultures from Americans." Do they? Or do they have one culture that is different in many respects from that of America?

"In America they had many cliques ."

The part you have left off is the most important -- what did you learn from this experience?
silverystars 14 / 105  
Apr 18, 2009   #4
My family was originally from Emporia, Kansas and was, therefore, a lot to get used to.

I first noticed some instances of transculturation between myself and the other school kids. They seemed to be protective of one another, whereas Americans seemed to divide ranks among each other. In America, they had many cliques .

Overall, this is a great subject! Not only because it is based on something you have experienced, but even in terms of broadening horizons. I feel like I've actually learned something. :)


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