84 thoughts on “Please post your responses to the Week 12 readings here

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    Én ezt érdekesnek találom. A legjobb oldal..
    Olyan sok kérdés és megbeszélni való van, hogy itt vannak az oldalak

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  10. approaches. I found some of the examples to be captivating. I also think the authors did a thorough job explaining the process by which this project was conducted and reminding readers to be aware of the social context of the images. I think the concept of social context

  11. dditionally, Dorfman suggested localized stories and authentic voice in order to relate to the target audience. This ties in with last week’s focus and Bar-On’s discussion of the power of storytelling. Additionally, it links with my current research about the culture-centric theory, where people relate to those who are similar to them–in th

  12. Despite this, I like how Dorfman mentioned the “power gap” that exists and how health problems are typically viewed by the media as individual issues, yet media advocacy stressed the concept of social issues. However, some questions did a

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  14. Additionally, Dorfman suggested localized stories and authentic voice in order to relate to the target audience. This ties in with last week’s focus and Bar-On’s discussion of the power of storytelling. Additionally, it links with my current research about the culture-centric theory, where people relate to those who are similar to them–in this case, other locals or local outlets they feel understand their environment
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  33. When reading about media advocacy, I have to say that the first thing I thought was about what we learned in the health communication class. Therefore, I really liked how Dorfman addressed the differences between these two by identifying what audiences we would target. Moreover, given the importance of the news nowadays and how a message could be distorted if it is delivered within the wrong venues and/or by the wrong person, to learn about how media advocacy could make a good use of the news was really good. In general, I also liked how the author discussed media advocacy in terms of media strategy and access strategy, which I found interesting because before the reading, I might confuse those terms at all. In terms of media strategy, I now understand that I would have to be sure to know what I want to say and to whom, so the policy could be well-implemented, changed or enacted. Likewise, in terms of the access strategy, the main issue will be how to attract the news attention. So I consider that given all the media access that we have right now available and all the ways in which we can get information, to use media as a way of policymaking and advocacy for social justice could enhance the possibility of having a better environment to live.

    On the other hand, I really liked the reading about “The best part of me” because it made me think about how difficult is to sometimes look at our own assets instead of our defects. Personally, when someone ask me about the best part of me or my best quality, I often get a hard time thinking about it. Sometimes is easiest for me to point out what are my weaknesses and/or what things I think I could improve, because in some way it reflects that I envision myself as a keeper. Honestly, I haven’t paid too much attention about what I consider the best part of my body is and how it could talk about me. The stories about how the children choose the best part of their bodies and how they then reflected on them show that even when you can think about your body as something merely physical, independently of how it is, it could talk about yourself in terms of memories and emotions. Thus, I consider that body mapping is a good tool to learn about the stories behind the individuals through their body parts, making them also to realize the importance of the body as a temple that could recall the untold. I also liked how the authors talked about reading family photographs. This made me think about my own family pictures and, moreover, the lack of them in some times of my life. My dad has always liked to take pictures of everything, including our family, so I have plenty of memories kept in photographs from my childhood until I was around 11 years old when my parents got divorced. I also realize now that the lack of pictures in my adolescence is due, in some way, to the lack of my father in my life after he divorced my mother. It wasn’t until I had access to a camera that I started to recognize the importance of taking pictures of my family, as a matter of remembering the good times. Another thing that caught my attention from the reading was when they talked about how one of the students reflected on the best part of his body by imaging life without his best part. I think that this is important to address when talking about body mapping because it gives the participants a sense of importance and autonomy about their own bodies and how it could promote self-awareness and reflection about themselves.

    Honestly, at first, it was hard to me to find a connection between the two readings, given that the first one talked more about social duties and the second talked more about the individual. However, at the end of the second reading, the authors reflected in this matter, giving me a better understanding of how the two themes could be related: “It is interesting to notice that while this project emphasizes individuality, the portraits also make a broader statement- we are all, in many ways, alike, regardless of gender, race, and economic diversity” (p. 55). So, even though body mapping seems as a good tool to navigate a person’s body, the confidence and self-awareness that could be developed by doing it could enhance the opportunities to get a group together and mobilize it through media advocacy for policy making.

  34. First off, I just want to say that the speaker that we heard for class last Friday was terrible. Just my opinion, but, No. That was the first presentation that I have ever been to and the speaker was using profanity, which I felt was inappropriate. Nearly everything she said after that I don’t really remember, because it was a turn off. I understand that there may be some importance of quantitative vs qualitative, but her presentation did nothing for me. And she was getting rather defensive when the person in the audience questioned her work. I really felt as if the spectator raised a good argument (even though I can not remember exactly what it was now).

    One thing in Dorfman’s article, that caught my attention was when it was stated: “The public and policy makers do not consider issues unless they are visible, and they are not visible unless the news has brought them to life”. I was stuck on this for a while because to me, it makes it seem that if the “news” does not portray something as problematic, then it is not problematic. Who gave the news that authority to say that these issues are important and these issues are not? I do not feel that as right. What if someone wants to tell the city officials about something that they find as an issue outside of their doorstep at a city council meeting? Does that make that persons issue any more irrelevant because it was not talked about on the local news channel or printed in the newspaper?

    In terms of media advocacy, I feel Dorfman did a good job in giving a basic understanding of how it could be used. I feel that it is critical that we progress towards media advocacy and use it more within public health in order to reach a wider audience. However, from my experiences, it seems that there are much more negative advocacy than positive. Therefore, I feel like if someone was to be a media advocate for public health, it would seem much harder to tell about constructive acts. And even still, who will hold the power? It would be the media outlet, because they determine what is put out to the public and may even control how it is portrayed through the use of edits. I feel there is an importance of engaging in dialogue in regards to education (teaching and learning). This theory links closely to what I am doing engaging the youth, which most of them have told me a story, particularly about a negative situation.

    I really enjoyed the article “The Best part of Me”. I feel that it is a great way to engage the youth, especially when trying to identify the positives, no matter how strange it may be to write a poem about your chest, or your hands, or your feet. I have always liked the use of visual aids and how it can add to the activity or educational element. After reading this article, it made me think more critically about the role of the facilitator in the process. Ultimately, the facilitator has the greatest responsibility in conducting activities so that the right message comes out to the youth and from the youth.

  35. In chapter 9, Dorfman mentions how media advocacy influences changing policy. I have heard about media advocacy before but I did not know exactly what it is. Through this chapter, I could learn how it works, how it is made. Basically, media advocacy helps people understand the importance and reach of news coverage (Dorfman, p.182). Before using media advocacy, we have to have an answer of “What changes will improve the public’s health?” If not, media advocacy will not influence policy. As health professionals, we cannot hesitate to define what health problem is existed now. And for media advocacy, we need to summarize health problems into a few sentences. It is important that media advocacy should be easily understandble to people in general. All of these steps look like a program planning. In the program planning, we must consider what a problem is in our society and how we are going to change it.

    In page 188 (Dalfman, 2007), the author compares event-oriented stories and issue-oriented stories. Former one is kind of portraits and last one is kind of landscapes. Sometimes I feel interesting from event-oriented stories because I can know each individual’s story. However, when we want to change and influence our society, issue-oriented stories have more leverage to pressure government to go deep into a subject than event-oriented stories. Generally speaking, we need to bring interesting stuffs in the issue-oriented stories because it can be boring without fun. Additionally, we require a clear plan for policy changing (Dalfman, p.202).

    In chapter “The Best Part of Me”, authors use self-portraits to understand of themselves and others. It looks like a photo voice which we talked about before. The important thing what the authors are talking about here is that people or children can promote their self-awareness and reflection through their self-portraits. In safe environment, children might feel comfortable to tell their stories through the photographs. Even in my case, I cannot say about me in unsafe environment. It means that safe and comfortable mood are necessary to express self-reference.

  36. What we read in Dorfmann’s chapter is a re-emphasize about importance of media in the field of public health. It is a means to make public health pertaining issues visible for policymakers. I found it very helpful reading that Dorfmann outlines the steps for media advocacy. It clearly and effectively strategizes the way a public health concerning message should spread out and reach those who are involved in policy level. In this chapter, “What is the problem or issue?” is one of the questions, according to the author (Dorfmann, p. 183) that needs to be considered when the “overall strategy” for media advocacy is developed. That read, I wondered whether the public health practitioners properly define the problem when the issue concerns to “global health”. Really, is that defined? Does the problem is made visible enough to draw the attention of policy makers? If so, that why global interventions are not as successful as planned/expected/reflected to the citizens of donors countries?

    Reading this part, reminded me of what Pogge (Pogge, 2010) states in his text named Politics as Usual, “…in just 20 years since the end of the Cold War, some 360 million human beings have died prematurely from poverty-related causes, with some 18 million more added each year… this catastrophe was and is happening, foreseeably, under a global institutional order designed for the benefit of the affluent countries’ governments, corporations and citizens and of the poor countries’ political and military elites…even now, severe poverty could be rapidly reduced through feasible reforms that would modify the more harmful features of this of this global order or mitigate their impact…take the unconditional international resource privilege, for example.” Relevance to the social justice and ambiguity in definition of global health problems were the two reasons which inspired me to share this part of Pogge’s text which is covered in my other course. In addition, I wonder how the media advocacy is not being applied in an effective way to influence the policy. Huge investments is being made for the purpose of improving global health, but the sustainable impact of interventions are doubtful in most of the cases, I believe. I am not sure what inspires the tax-payers not to urge their governments to be accountable for all the global investments.

    The second reading (Ewald, Hyde & Lord) was interesting. It seems to be an innovative way to invite children to reflect their uniqueness into their taken photographs, self-portraits and in words. I think it is a good means for children to talk about their appearance, explore their identities. What I wonder is that who are the audience for the photograph taken and self-portraits? Who is going to watch them? Some of these photographs may give image about the children’s personality, so where these all will be applied? I raise this as I was not sure how or where these are going to be used.

  37. The Best Part of Me project is one that is near and dear to me. In addition to having worked with Wendy Ewald – the artist who conceptualized the project – I have led it myself in a number of settings, using it as part of a workshop about stereotypes and the idea of self-generated profiles for youth who use social media as well as a tool in non-traditional sexual education classrooms. I find that this project provides clear ways to discuss the idea of embodiment with youth, as well as offering a way to broad the idea of media literacy in the context of still images through the method of photo-reading. In using this project the facilitator has great flexibility in steering the topics at hand while allowing youth to share and tell stories in a very safe, supported manner as well as one which promotes dialogue, asset mapping and geographical/temporal mapping of their lives – all aspects of CBPR approaches in Public Health research.

    In looking at the two readings for this week side by side I see great possibility for compatibility between Dorfman’s pragmatic steps to generating cohesive messaging and Ewald’s gentle build-up of the Best Part of Me project for youth. There are beautiful metaphors between the two approaches as framing, time and storytelling are both articulated for their distinct purposes. As someone who has taught visual methodologies (and has worked as an art teacher) I have always been touched by the nuances of how youth understand image-making, their relationship to being subject or photographer and what language they ascribe to this experience. Bearing this in mind and thinking of where we are in understanding the ethical implications of media-making with youth I think that to employ Dorfman’s techniques and therefore reach large audiences pretty complicated permissions would be needed. Since Ewald’s project is much more grassroots and less intentionally visible (other than select examples that have been published) the extent to which youth share about their lives, fears, dreams etc… offer perhaps too much of a look into their lives and those of their communities than would be safe to simply broadcast through the calculated ways that Dorfman suggests.

    In preparing the presentation for the group this week I am interested in hearing what people’s thoughts are regarding Ewald’s approach to discussing bodies with youth coupled with Dorfman’s much less grassroots methods for reaching large audiences. Do they seem compatible? Is the room for interpretation too vast in the Best Part of Me for it to translate into a concise campaign? Is it ethical to ask grade-school aged youth to recount family stories for a public sphere? What stories would your eleven year old self have told? How would this have influenced your understanding of health, history or family? How can media makers work with public health professionals to expand more personal journalistic approaches to speak to larger themes that need to be addressed on a policy level?

  38. The beginning of the Using Media Advocacy To Influence Policy by Lori Dorfman really caught my attention. I never really thought about how media like the new influences policy. It made me really think about the digital stories that were produced in the Hear Our Stories Ford Foundation Project. I can see how personal stories like that can change policy but never really thought about how the news influences policy. I understand how powerful the news is in a person’s individual life. As Dorfman states, “The reach of the news media is intoxicating”. That quote made me think about my grandmother who watches the news every night and make decisions about her health, diet, and life based on the information she received from the news. Often the suggestions are very confusing, misleading, and contradicting.

    Dorfman also brings up a good point stating that even journalist who write about social problems often write about individual behavior and not social factors and prevention. This is just another form of blaming the victim and these stories can cause more harm than good even if they were made with good intentions. It would be interesting to see how the field of public health and policy would change if public health professionals used media as tool for change.

    I really do appreciate all the detail and examples Dorfman puts into the article. She explains that there are four questions that should be asked to guide a development of a strategy:
    1. What is the problem or issue?
    2. What is a solution or policy- the desired outcome?
    3. Who has the power to make the necessary change?
    4. Who must be mobilized to apply the necessary?
    I believe these are all very important but I think number 2 is the most important one just for policy change in general. I feel like in the my work with STI and pregnancy prevention work in my community I am often in different rooms with the same people talking about the problem, right rates of teen pregnancy and STI. The real problem is that we don’t have a solution and when we come together the only thing being discussed is the issue. Having a solution when trying to come up a strategy will make it so much more success. Also in addition to that question we have to ask is the solution realistic and if it doesn’t work what will. Again thinking back to the journalist we want to make sure that we are not causing more harm even if we have good intentions.

  39. I sometimes forget the power the media has in deciding what is prioritized and valued- the Dorfman article was a good reminder. As several other people mentioned, the shared accountability perspective of media advocacy is crucial. As Dorfman explained, traditional media often puts the responsibility on the individual, leaving little room for actual change.

    As the planner I am, I loved the step-by-step process that Dorfman outlined.However, as I was reading all the steps, it was a bit overwhelming to think of actually being able to quickly pull all your goals and messages together. It does seem like a process one would need to be thoroughly trained in.

    There were a few tips and recommendations that Dorfman offered that I thought were really helpful in general- social math, localized stories, etc. I also thought many of the tips that this article recommended related to SMART objectives- the need to be very specific in spelling out your goals and plans.

    Media advocacy’s ability to connect health issues to broader social and political forces is key. Real change will only be made if those in power are made to be truly responsible.

    Ewald, Hyde, and Lord’s article also highlighted how media (photographs) can help us look beyond stereotyped roles and identities and the bigger picture of all our lives. I was really struck by the creativity of “The Best Part of Me” process- both the facilitation and the actual creations. As Sabina mentioned, I remember the rigidity of the classroom, both in late elementary and middle school. I wondered what kind of school this took place in? Was it a public school? More and more I hear about the intensity of curriculums and testing and wonder how realistic such a wonderful project would be for most classrooms?

    I have been thinking a lot about exhibits and displaying work as I am working with Alice on our Body Mapping project. I loved how the authors talked about the youth taking ownership and making them feel honored as artists. It seems like this is an area where the lines between personal benefit and research benefit can be blurry. The teachers deeply involved the students in the creation of the installation- making it theirs. I also wondered if the teachers talked about any ethics? It seems important to let the students know what they may or may not want to include in their maps and if they would want their maps to identify them in the future.

  40. What stood out to me when reading the Dorfman article is the link between media advocacy and both social accountability and shared accountability, and the fact that media advocacy is not the same as media coverage. Although her article was published in 2007 her analysis still holds true: “public health professionals rarely use media to its full advantage. Rather, they tend to use it in its least effective capacity: to convey personal health information to consumers. By contrast, media advocacy harnesses the power of the news to mobilize advocates and apply pressure for policy change” (p.182). Dorfman gives important advice, especially in having clarity about goals before reaching out to the media and being able to define the issue or main point in an attention grabbing sound-byte, which she says should be 1-2 sentences (not a lot!). What I hadn’t preciously considered is that media advocacy shifts the focus from individual behavior (ex. Umass students during the Blarney Blowout) to the structural forces that contribute to the problem (bars open and serving alcohol at 10am). Overall, I think using the media to tap into the concept of health as social versus individual is extremely valuable and underutilized. In Dorfman’s discussion of framing messages to policy makers and influencers, I think it is important to remember not to reinforce stereotypes, otherwise the purpose of the messaging will revert the focus back to “portrait” instead of “landscape” views. An additional critique I have is in regards to her discussion on “creating an authentic voice” (p. 196). Dorfman encourages using the role of the “victim” to create a compelling story, and on the importance of training that individual to be a good representative of the story or issue. This approach seems to focus on the individual, deficit-based approach, but perhaps I was missing or misinterpreting her point. Similar to the concept of CBPR, the key is to remember that media advocacy is not always an applicable tool to use.

    I loved the article by Ewald, Hyde, and Lord, The Best Part of Me. I also really appreciate that they included the outline of the curriculum at the end, so it can be shared.
    Their process provided such an important approach to eliciting the memories and stories associate with multiple parts of the body- eyes, hands, feet, elbows, knees. Especially for youth, who are often focused on how they represent themselves to others, I like the fact that “paying close attention to parts of their bodies leads to a fuller understanding of themselves as whole individuals” (p.21). Overall the entire process of body mapping served as a way for youth to consider and understand/discuss how society can influence health/bodies, a conversation that is generally missing. I also like how the authors incorporate the process of reading photography/images and using partnering to elicit conversation and also as a way to express that what is evident is not the complete story. During the process, the representation of individual bodies was an abstract process which allowed for open expression. At the same time I think it was very important that the facilitators returned to the image of the body at the end. Especially in thinking about what traditional health classes teach to youth, I think the use of self-portraiture as a process that “leads students to recognize their own personal history and bank of memories…[that] “build connectedness and history” and to “strengthen students’ self-concepts” (p.53) could be such a valuable addition to youth education programming. The authors end with an important point that I find particularly interesting, especially in the context of the body mapping project that Molly and I are in the throes of planning: “study of the body, the physical self, [is] often reserved for science…” This project “encompasses the range of social themes contained within [mapping the body]: identity, culture, history, place, family, memory, language and home” (p.54). The portraits that are the end results “require viewers to spend the time to look and to see the complexity and depth of children’s identities” (p. 56), which many adults often do not take the time to do.

  41. I really appreciated the level of detail in this week’s readings.

    The article by Dorfman provided a clear roadmap for using media advocacy to influence policy. I liked how Dorfman used Journalism as a platform for helping readers understand media advocacy. One of the main lessons learned in this was the difference in journalism and media advocacy. Journalism is often focused on individual problem where as media advocacy emphasis the issue. The article helped me to understand ways in which we can use preexisting structure (i.e. Journalism) for media advocacy.

    Dorfan suggested many recommendations for being a better media advocate. These included, being clear and concise with the message, and focusing on solution along with the problem (according to Dorfan, public health professional are too problem focused we need to also have some idea of the solution). What do you all think about this?

    I really enjoyed reading Ewald, Hyde & Lord ‘s article. They provide a step-by-step instruction for using The Best Part of Me curriculum in classroom, with elementary, middle and high school students. Curriculum for this age group tends to be very rigid… there is a lot of this taking in information and spiting it back out. At the moment I am thinking of my spelling/grammar classroom where I had to memorize words and concepts so we could get a good grade for the weekly quiz. Where as in this curriculum students are involved in the creation, implementation and screening of curriculum therefore, I feel like it is more enjoyable and even more memorable. I think it allows students to think outside of the box and be creative (which is crucial in having self-satisfaction and moving forward in life).

    This week’s reading came at a good time for me because I TA for a course where it is very much student focused and grounded in active participation. It kills me to see how much some of our undergraduate students struggle in the classroom not because they are stupid but they don’t know what to do in a class where their inputs are asked in decision-making and in learning period. Many come in expecting to sit in the back, listen to me talk and then leave. But quickly they learned that the class is just opposite of that. My role is to facilitate their conversation…they are stunned when they learn that they will be the ones talking. However I think that if students are trained in a more empowerment manner (like the way demonstrated in this article) they would be more receptive to taking charge over their education.

    In order for this sort of teaching approach to be successful it is crucial to have an environment that fosters a safe space, especially since it is so different from our traditional curriculum. They noted, “ …in out class student gain a sense of safety because of series of decisions we make as their teachers… we value student’s choice, recognize that we the teachers don’t know everything that our students know… display student work and equip our classroom with necessary materials and tools …[and] finally, plan field trips and projects that invite the students to learn though experience. (18). I found advise to very useful.

  42. This week’s readings were very enjoyable, applicable, and easy to digest. Ewald, Hyde, and Lord’s exploration of concepts surrounding self-portrait, expression, and identity linked back to much of our conversation for the past two weeks about photovoice, storytelling, and other image-based or dialogic approaches. I found some of the examples to be captivating. I also think the authors did a thorough job explaining the process by which this project was conducted and reminding readers to be aware of the social context of the images. I think the concept of social context can be carried over into a variety of areas surrounding social justice, in addition to historical context–when revealed this information can shed light on an image or expression in an entirely different way.

    I particularly enjoyed Dorfman’s analysis of media advocacy. Not only was this clear and concise, but also right up my alley! It is important as health educators and potential policy-changers to not shy away from the media, as it can be such an important resource. The author offered detailed steps on how to actively pursue media advocacy effectively. Dorfman highlighted that it is the responsibility of the public health professional to identify the problem/issue that needs to be addressed, provide a solution, desired outcome or policy creation or change, identify who has the power to change this, and point out who must be mobilized to create this change (p.183). By compiling this information prior to media outreach in a neat and concise fashion–the author contends that this would be the most effective approach to media advocacy.

    Additionally, Dorfman suggested localized stories and authentic voice in order to relate to the target audience. This ties in with last week’s focus and Bar-On’s discussion of the power of storytelling. Additionally, it links with my current research about the culture-centric theory, where people relate to those who are similar to them–in this case, other locals or local outlets they feel understand their environment or experience and are easy to empathize with or relate to. However, Dorfman takes it a step further when talking about media advocacy, saying this is done with a purpose and authentic voice is also used to advocate–so to validate experiences, but then potentially offer solutions. However, this leads me to wonder if individuals as such, are trained–and if so, is the voice really authentic?

    Despite this, I like how Dorfman mentioned the “power gap” that exists and how health problems are typically viewed by the media as individual issues, yet media advocacy stressed the concept of social issues. However, some questions did arise throughout this reading–how do we deal with media glamorization of certain issues, where the focus shifts from the solution and simply capitalizes on the problem? Or what if certain media outlets don’t consider the topic “newsworthy” though it is so important to health outcomes? How do we make it “sexy?”

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