Tutor profile: Deepankar T.
Subject: Gender Studies
Though US based feminism had different waves in history, what are common critiques of the 1st and 2nd and possibly the 3rd wave in terms of inclusivity of its demographics and scholarship? Specifically, what new terminology helped to bridge these issues into modern waves of feminism? Hint: Was feminism for all womxn in its inception or just for a few specific demographics based on privilege?
Feminism has a complicated history because the original intention to achieve gender equity and abolish power structures, such as patriarchy, had mixed approaches and responses within the movement itself. For instance, we know that Ida B Wells among other womxn of color activists were barred from being visible in feminist leadership of the 1st wave because of influence of southern upper class white feminists who were focused more on suffrage and taking control of the family from male dominated circles. The 2nd wave also suffered similar outcomes where womxn of color were an afterthought in popularized themes of this wave, such as equal pay, economic opportunities, academic inclusion, sports inclusion etc. Because of other power structures such as White Supremacy, Global Anti-Blackness, Western Industrial Military Complex, Heteronormativity, and overall history of Colonialism, Imperialism, Slavery, Industrialization, and Neoliberal Economic Policies/Neoconservative Foreign Policies, we see womxn of color let alone entire spectrum of womxn identities excluded from each and every wave of feminism. The more recent waves of feminism are better in including and encouraging these voices in contrast to original waves of feminism. For instance, during the womxn's march on January 20th of 2017 and 2018, there was a huge phenomenon of "Pink Pussy Hats" to help bolster support for womxn and control of their bodily autonomy through pride and protest. However, this was heavily transphobic because it cemented the false notion that to be a womxn a female reproductive system is required when clearly biological sex and cultural gender identity are separate concepts. Hence, transphobia though much more implicit and subtle is still present in the most modern waves of feminism while it has travelled through a harsh history since the roots of feminism and human civilization that came beforehand. Other common critiques of feminism with each wave is its lack of cross-identity solidarity with other liberation movements. For instance, White feminism is the overarching theme that swallowed most of the 1st and 2nd waves of feminism because of how much focus was given to White feminists of middle class standing or above. However, abolitionist efforts and the civil rights era were seen as separate movements entirely when clearly womxn of color benefitted from both feminist and anti-racist movements. LGBTQ+ equity movements were also seen as separate such as Harvey Milk, Stonewall Riots, 1980s AIDS Epidemic for gay men, and other phenomenon were not seen in connection with feminist narratives when clearly queer and trans womxn and other diverse intersectional identities of gender identity and sexuality benefit again from both of these liberation movements. Another critique focuses around the fact that feminism in its entire history is still tied to power structures that it tolerates in order to survive for the next generation. Corporate, western, military based, and imperial/neoliberal/neoconservative feminism often push for diversity of increased womxn representation in the developed world while undermining the rights of womxn of color in the developing world through the conquest of military, humanitarian aid, and economic policies. Neoliberal economic policies actually stem from 2nd wave feminism in a large part because of the original savior complex to liberal womxn everywhere on Earth through economic equality. However, deeper discourse on economic structures was lost, hence many companies will push for a womxn CEO that is usually white, cisgender, upper class, able bodied etc. but won't address systemic issues of ecocide, abuse of workers etc. Hence, feminism is becoming a toleration of some problematic practices in order to promote diversity of womxn which undermines the entire purpose of feminism which is to liberal womxn and other gender identities in general from power structures in general. Terms like intersectionality and consciousness raising help navigate through these waves of feminism and at least offer linguistic power to understand why some of these problems persist. Kimberle Crenshaw coined intersectionality in 1980 because she found that in legal systems, women and people of color were protected in separated categories but would often ignore any protections for womxn or color who encompassed marginalized identity of both race/ethnicity and gender identity. Hence, intersectionality is a holistic analysis of one's total self of all intersecting identities they encompass in relation to the perception of the outside world and related power structures. This term was developed during the 3rd wave of feminism. On the other hand, consciousness raising was coined in the 2nd wave of feminism as an attempt to congregate womxn in social gatherings to understand individual sexist experiences. However, when womxn joined together to talk about their experiences and share their narratives, they had realized that much of that was systemic and not individualized. Hence, understanding sexism and misogyny needed a systemic analysis to see patterns and trends that undermine non-male identities purely based on culturally stigmatized notions of gender identity.
When it comes to the ACT Reading and Science sections, what are some prudent strategies to help reduce overall time spent on reading, re-reading, and understanding the passages while also answering questions in a time-efficient manner without sacrificing points at the same time? What are similarities and differences in approach these two sections? Hint: Do all questions deserve the same amount of time allocated to answer each of them?
The ACT Reading and Science section are not testing on how well you understand passages let alone the intimate material they cover by various authors. They are simply looking for the most points you can extract before the time for the sections runs out. Doing well on the ACT requires knowing how to navigate through the test, not so much about the content that is covered by individual questions/passages/problems/prompts. Once you place yourself in that mindset, you ironically get better at answering questions correctly by depending much less on what exactly you understand about each passage. Hence, a strategy must be formulated to gain the most points possible while reducing time spent reading/understanding the individual passages. First off, we know that the ACT reading section contains four main passages and the ACT science section contains 6-7 passages. So, we must first look at how the two sections are structured to then realize that total time allocation differs (the ACT reading and science sections allow for 35 min for 40 questions, but 35 min for 4 passages is different than 35 min for 6-7 passages in contrast of those two sections). Rough math indicates that you have less than a minute to spend on each question on either the ACT reading or science section. At the same time, you have 8-9 minutes to spend for each ACT reading section passage and 5-6 minutes to spend for each ACT science section passage. Keeping time allocation in mind, we need to then look at how we approach each passage in an effective manner. The ACT reading portion contains prose fiction, social studies, humanities, and natural sciences for the themes of all passages: it also includes 10 questions per passage in format. The ACT science portion contains data comparison, research summary, and competing hypothesis for the themes of all passages: it also includes 5-6 minutes per passage in format. The key here is to recognize whether you prefer the chronology approach or the thematic approach. If you like going in order from first to last passage, then the individual passages in their content matter less to you. However, if you can already rank the passages in difficulty of what you can answer faster, then once the exam starts, you need to rate the passages within seconds and tackle each passage based on preference before moving on to the next. For the science section of the ACT, usually the competing hypothesis passage is saved for the last because of how word heavy it is relative to the other passages of data comparison or research summary themes because those other passages use more diagrams, graph, charts, etc. Your first pro-tip here is to rank things in order of difficulty and approach what is easiest first and leave the hardest passages for the end so you can maximize the probability of getting the most points possible at any attempt on the ACT reading and science sections. The next step is to look the passages and questions within each sub-section of the ACT reading or science sections. There are multiple paths to approaching the passages and questions but the primary method includes a quick "skim and scribble" of the reading material before "rank and attack" on the questions. For instance, if I open up the social studies sub-section of the ACT reading section, I first go through all the reading materials with a skim-passive level of reading and annotate quickly of active verbs, proper nouns, italicized terms, huge shifts in plotline, and themes of the passage next to each paragraph (Some folks need more annotations and others need less because they can remember more, do what is best for you). Then we move on to the questions where we rank them in order of difficulty before tackling them. This will be a conscious effort in the first few times when attempting the exam but after several practice exam attempts this will be become an automatic process that requires no new writing for ranking the questions. Ranking the questions in difficulty is best as the following order goes from easiest to hardest in terms of total time it takes to look up the answer and the level of critical thinking needed to attempt the question: Vocabulary-in-Context Questions, Detail Questions, Comparative Relationships Questions, Cause-Effect Relationships Questions, Sequence of Events Questions, Generalizations Questions, Main Idea Questions, and Author's Voice and Method Questions. The science section follows a similar format of skim and scribble and rank and attack approaches. However, when skimming and scribbling, you look at the verbal information and visual information differently. For verbal information found in paragraphs mostly, look for parts of the scientific method (hypothesis, conclusion, results, discussion, observation, question, materials list, and experiment. Look for shifts, interesting findings, similarities/differences of each experimental and control group, and the specific relationship between the conclusion of the experiment and the original hypothesis. For visual information found in data, graphs, charts, etc., just look at thematic info such as labeling on x and y axis, similarities/differences between visual aids, which visual aid goes which sentence/paragraph, and any interesting data (blips in data that stand out and might be unusual). You will have similar question types for the ACT science section as you did for the ACT reading section, however the main difference lies in utilizing the data/visual aids and understanding the nuances of the scientific method (ex: instead of just looking for author's opinion on subject matter, being aware of that intention connecting to the motivation of the experiment and if the results matched the hypothesis or not). Hence, Skim and Scribble and Rank and Attack are the main strategies when looking at each passage. In summary, when approaching the ACT reading and science sections we need the following in mind: -Time allocation per ACT section, passage, and question -Ranking of passages and questions in order of difficulty or first to last chronology -Skim and Scribble and Rank and Attack -Don't change an answer you have strong confidence of explicit information showing why a different answer choice is better than what you originally chose.
Organ systems often work together to promote homeostatic functions in the human body: how are the gastrointestinal, nervous, and muscular systems related when it comes to mental health contexts such as Major Depressive Disorder? Hint: think about the transportation of neurotransmitters and the role they play in the human body.
From the premise of the question, we already know that the gastrointestinal, nervous, and muscular systems work together in addressing at the symptomatology of Major Depressive Disorder. It is directly obvious that the nervous system is involved in mental health contexts because of neurotransmitter homeostatic balance determining the severity of psychiatric disorders such as Major Depressive Disorder, Generalized Anxiety Disorder, etc. Just as well, the neuromuscular junction (NMJ) highlights the direct relationship of the nervous system and muscular system (skeletal muscle in this context) in which the chemical synapse arbitrates the Acetylcholine (ACh) passage via exposed vesicles of motor neurons that pour ACh into the NMJ to bind to receptors of the sarcolemma of muscle fiber to trigger the remainder of the muscular response such as enabling arm muscles to pick up a coffee cup. With Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), we are looking at the availability and functionality of Serotonin. Recent research has actually shown that most (approximately 90%) of the Serotonin of the body is stored in enterochromaffin cells of the GI tract to help regulate intestinal movements. In fact, disruption of serotonin availability has shown to enable harsher symptomatology of Irritable Bowl Syndrome (IBS). What's more, recent research has actually elaborated on the existence and necessity of the enteric nervous system which is an extension of the autonomic nervous system where involuntary bodily functions occur via cellular communication. At the same time, the gastrointestinal system contains smooth muscle that is unique to this organ system because of the specific properties to allow for absorption and transfer of nutrients through cell plasma membrane while also being made to specifically allow food particles to pass through in segmented fashion for orderly travel from each compartment (ex: stomach to small intestine to large intestine etc.) to the next. Hence, when we look at the symptomatology of MDD, we find that body weight changes, appetite issues, and strong comorbidity with IBS are largely explained by the disruption of Serotonin levels. Hence, antidepressants like Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors focus on keeping the released Serotonin in the neural synapse by hindering its ability to be taken up through the neural reuptake process for extended periods of time. There is also a two week or so delay for full effect of SSRIs on affecting a shift in MDD symptomology mainly because SSRIs promote several forms of neuronal plasticity, including BDNF (Brain Derived Neurotrophic Factor) activity. However, BDNF in depressed patients have reduced BDNF levels in the hippocampal region of the brain, so there is an overall delay on significant changes caused by SSRI medication because it takes time to promote BDNF activity to a point where BDNF can be effective enough to contribute to antidepressant responses. Thus, when it comes to mental health contexts of the human body, we see that the homeostatic imbalance of Major Depressive Disorder involves the gastrointestinal, nervous, and muscular organ systems because (1) Serotonin is a neurotransmitter mainly found in the GI tract while BDNF involved in antidepressant activity is located in the hippocampus of the brain, (2) smooth muscle of GI tract is disrupted by Serotonin imbalance contributing to IBS and MDD symptomology, and (3) antidepressant SSRIs have a delayed effect on MDD because of the time BDNF takes to promote antidepressant effects in the nervous system.
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