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In “Ways of Seeing, ” art critic John Berger discusses different perspectives of how people believe and go on with life. Berger stated, “The way we see things is affected by what we know or what we believe. ” For purposes of my discussion, I’m going to consider Berger’s argument that if the public “surrenders, ” then we will allow it to continue to hold power over history. In my own experience, if you “surrender” then you will never get your point across on why you believe in what you do.
Berger wrote, “The way we see things is affected by what we know or what we believe in. ” He argued that there are many people in our private and public lives that are interested in influencing the ways we know and believe in things. I specifically am the type of person that is open to opinions, everyone has a different viewpoint. Some people are very diverse in many ways. We are all humans, we all feel pain, we all feel joyfulness, despite some variances. Sadly, the discrimination against each other based on cultural differences has been with us for decades. So many people have died or have been denied their rights because of individual greed. Unfortunately, some of these occurrences are visible even today, continued by people who little understand the importance of the uniqueness of our diversity. A lot of our challenges come from facing the real world. This requires involvement from people of different cultural backgrounds so that we are able to accomplish issues. New ideas from diverse people can solve problems that we have. When we interact and understand each other, we don’t judge them. This makes us not push each other away but welcome them. We can now help one another. This empathizes that all human beings are the same. Hatred amongst people of cultural differences only makes us resentful and full of anger and often denying us the opportunity to go on with our daily lives, instead of worrying about judgment.
The diversity of religion, race, gender, and culture are viewed differently by each individual. Some people tend to be “hardheaded” and not want to hear anybody else’s viewpoint, while some people are open-minded because you could possibly get your valid point across. In today’s world there are billions of people that have the advantage of the technology at their fingertips, and just by a click of a button everything vicissitudes, whether it is good or bad. The message to spread understanding is important in day to day lives, especially in today’s world. Do not surrender yourself to meet someone else’s criteria. Just how Berger surrendered to the aristocracy the interpretation of art. Everything is a work of art depending on how you look at it. I grew up being told “don’t judge a book by its cover” and I strongly believe in that every day. You don’t know the background story of something by looking at it and judging it, but of course, everyone is subjected to their own opinion. History comes with everything no matter what it is, for instance, the history of images for Berger is the closest relation to their past. When they surrendered the aristocracy they allowed it to continue to hold a power of history. With diversity, the history of intolerance becomes cruel, where people don’t fit criteria and set of expectations in society then they are not accepted. Everyone should be accepted for who they are, but today’s world is judgmental. Some people choose to want to experience new things throughout their lifetime, including traveling, learning new cultures, meeting new people. The pleasure of meeting new people who are different from us inviting, but trouble arises when we are not understanding and spreading a love for people in our own neighborhoods who are different from us. It doesn’t matter if they have different backgrounds from which you were raised from if they believe in a different religion, but most importantly if the color of their skin is different from yours, you shouldn’t be judged. Just because the color of a person’s skin is different from yours, doesn’t mean that they are any lesser of a person than you.
Berger lastly wrote, “a people or a class which is cut off from its own past is far less free to choose and to act as a people or a class than one that has been able to situate itself in history. ” Each and every day, people are moving from a part of the world to another. Most people are in search of better opportunities, jobs, education, and lifestyle. In the process people of different cultural backgrounds often find themselves going to the same schools, working in the same office and so much more. As citizens, we are then left with no choice other than to embrace our diversity. In the future, children need to be taught to respect people who are different from them. This way we are somewhat raised alike. No not everyone has the same upbringing but diversity won’t be the main cause of today’s issues. New markets have been discovered by entrepreneurs through diversity. Today there are multinationals setting up offices in different parts of the world of which it would not be possible without embracing diversity. This creates employment opportunities for people. There have been situations in workplaces where race plays a huge role. For instance, a lot of people tend to stereotype. But not everyone is the same even if they are of the same color. Stereotypes lead to assumptions based on a person’s race, gender or sexual preferences. This leads to discrimination. Stereotyping, being an unjustified negative attitude, is based on a person’s class identity acquired through past personal experiences or through wrong beliefs. Including attitude, opinion, perception, or belief about a person or group. It is a mental picture developed as a result of a myth. People don’t often realize appearances of their own prejudice remarks towards others. I have had personal experiences with this myself, some within family and friends, others within a school and the workforce.
Throughout my whole life, I grew up with diversity in my life. Started off going to a private school from kindergarten through eighth grade, from there I got the option from my parents if I wanted to continue with private schooling or go to the public. I personally made the decision to go to public school, going to Penn Hills Senior High School was my decision. As it was a very diverse school, you experience multiple predicaments along the way. Some parents tend to not let their children experience diversity and try their hardest to keep them away from it, which to me is unfair. You are making your children believe that it is okay to be “prejudice, ” or “racist, ” or to think that it is okay to “stereotype people. ” Which isn’t okay in today’s world. You will grow up through life having to come across these situations. When you are raised like this and when it comes to you dealing with it on your own you don’t know how to face it. I chose to face it at a young age. You learn that people are judgmental and also jealous at the same time. Being told that I will get a bad reputation for going to a school with multiple different races in it. I’ve learned that it is parents that tend to stereotype more than teens or middle-aged people do. It becomes interesting to me when people stereotype against their own race and don’t even realize it. For instance when people stereotype white people as “white trash” and so on throughout different races. It comes hurtful to some people and they tend to react in a negative way. This is why you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover. Also the majority of the times it’s not your business, but nobody in this age knows how to keep to themselves. Multiple times in the workplace people get racial slurs towards them. Relating to John Berger, people can stereotype artwork. If you don’t defend your art piece, then people will say what they want about it, just like if you don’t defend yourself people will walk all over you.
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