In the vein of DuBois

Among the most well-known American sociologists, W.E.B. Du Bois is unique in a couple of ways. He does not shy away from speaking from the first-person perspective, wanting his readers to know what it is like to face social inequality from personal experience. Also, he speaks about global issues, but specifically about America, which he is especially situated to do as a citizen. His views are poignant and were ahead of their time, as we are still experiencing today – and in some ways just now recognizing – the issues he discussed.

In this article, http://www.jacksonfreepress.com/news/2014/jun/18/white-privilege-real/, the author displays some parallels to Du Bois; she speaks from a first-person perspective, and about her own personal experiences. She examines the issue of white privilege and how many white people outright deny its existence, much less have discussions about it or work to fix the problems it causes. As she argues, anyone (not of color) who grew up in America is almost guaranteed to have benefitted from white privilege; but that there is a fervent refusal of white guilt, even to the extent of creating separate histories for people of color – which she states is itself part of white privilege. She goes on to express her concern, similar to Du Bois, that it may be that the only way a white person could understand white privilege would be to live in the skin of a black person – which she notes is inherently not possible.

As a black woman, the author speaks from a place of personal knowledge, and discusses how her life has been affected by the issues still present in this country. If Du Bois were to read this article, I think that he would praise the author. Du Bois was intent on expressing to his readers what the issues of his society were like for the individual – whom is especially partial to an issue – not just from an objective stance. Du Bois’ work is inherently subjective, and the author of this article takes a page from his book – using some more modern examples – citing disassociation from racism in film for example, and asking the reader to consider a sort of racial role-reversal. I believe that Du Bois would be saddened that the issues he faced in his time are still present today, but that he would also appreciate that people of color today are still taking up the fight for equality, and trying to make people face issues that are pervasive and silent.

Men as feminists, more masculine…

Consider, if you will, the ideas presented in this article: http://studentaffairsfeminists.wordpress.com/2014/07/29/why-feminism-is-in-my-best-interest-as-a-man/.  Here, the author makes an argument for the what should be the aspiration of every man to be a feminist, or feminist ally; and, to seek the acceptance of women in doing so.  It is a powerful message.  The author addresses a concept that is also one of Charlotte Gilman’s primary points – that is, the pitfalls of patriarchy.  He says that patriarchy does benefit men a great deal (compared to women), but that in contrast, they also suffer in ways women do not; namely, they die younger and experience greater levels of depression and violence (at least the non-sexual kind) than do women.  Gilman would point out that although patriarchy was created to maternalize men, effectively causing them to take on both male and female social gender roles, it is no longer a beneficial or practical social construct.  Still, the author of this article seems to take an optimistic and objective stance in his argument, and  goes on to imply that, despite the negative effects and the destructive nature of patriarchy, people (men) can still move forward from this social construct.  In this way, he is again in line with Gilman, who also argues objectivity and optimism, in the form of positivism; both Gilman’s work and this article seek to skewer the inherent (modern) faults of patriarchy, while trying to simultaneously offer hope for growth beyond that way of life.

Tale-Yax and Genovese

This article (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/26/nyregion/26homeless.html?_r=2&) illustrates a prime example of the modern human’s indifference towards other people. In reading this article, I was reminded of the case of Kitty Genovese, and how it became clear to those nearby that someone was in grave danger, but still did not choose to help her. Although some of the urban myths surrounding that particular case seem to have been debunked, it is still reported that interventions could have been taken on her behalf. Likewise, interventions could have been taken to aid Mr. Tale-Yax. So perhaps the question is: Why were people so dismissive? I think that Simmel would say that it was a case of blasé attitude. People seem to have been aware of what was going on, but still did nothing; possibly because they felt nothing, which could paint them as immoral – but maybe it isn’t so simple. In traditional societies, people lived or died depending on the willingness of all members of the group to work for the group. In modern societies, however, people are so separated by the multitude of demands on them, even encouraged to be as individualistic and capitalistic as possible, that we lose emotional connections with others – though not strictly due to immorality. In addition, division of labor has actually made it more difficult for us (the every day person, that is) to intervene in any given situation. Granted, in many states across America, there are good-samaritan laws, which allow people to aid others without fear of prosecution, but these can be little assurance that assisting someone will not put us in some sort of danger. Also, we live in a very litigious country – another effect of capitalism and separation from the higher good for the group community. These facts add up to people being so wary and uncertain of other people’s grief, that we become numb, or blasé. People have gotten to the point that they feel it is better to mind their own business, and it is just that attitude that can lead to a case as is featured in the article.

Collards: Disease-fighting Superfood

 

Just a few reasons to consider Collard Greens!

  • Contribute to blood-clotting, and may help maintain a healthy cardiovascular system – due to high levels of Vitamin K.
  • Great for bone health, as they provide a good source of non-dairy calcium.
  • Help protect against cancer, cataracts and heart disease through the antioxidant beta-carotene.
  • Folate (a B vitamin) content can help prevent birth defects and anemia, and assist cell growth and function.
  • Shown to lead to lower cholesterol levels.
  • Digestive health may benefit from the fiber content of Collards – which also aids in fighting against Helicobacter pylori.
  • Contains the phytonutrients lutein, lipoic acid, glucobrassicin, glucoraphanin, gluconasturtiian, glucotropaeolin, caffeic acid, ferulic acid, quercetin, and kaempferol.

 

Nutrient Profile – Macronutrients:

 

Nutrient Profile – Micronutrients:

 

Collard Greens growing in a California field:

 

How to prepare and cook Collards:

  • Collards are in season between January and April, but can also likely be found year-round in supermarkets.
  • Choose leaves that are dark green, and avoid limp and yellowish leaves.  Smaller leaves are better.
  • To keep fresh before cooking, store unwashed leaves in refrigerator’s crisper drawer.
  • Rinse thoroughly before cooking.

Several links for recipe options may be found here: http://www.marthastewart.com/286291/collard-greens-recipes/@center/1009854/winter-produce#258351

 

Another great recipe I found (for Stuffed Collards Greens) at the New York Times website. (See link below)

 

Sources:

1st image credit:  https://www.pittsburghfoodbank.org/blog/collards/

Health benefits info: http://www.healwithfood.org/superfoods/collard-greens-health-benefits.php

http://www.livestrong.com/article/273801-benefits-of-juicing-collard-greens/

http://www.fullcircle.com/goodfoodlife/2012/05/24/everything-you-need-to-know-about-collard-greens/

http://www.whfoods.com/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=138

http://health.howstuffworks.com/wellness/food-nutrition/natural-foods/natural-weight-loss-food-collard-greens-ga.htm

Nutrient profile: http://nutritiondata.self.com/facts/vegetables-and-vegetable-products/2410/2

2nd image credit: http://www.kenrockwell.com/trips/2009-06-monterey/

3rd image credit: http://www.marthastewart.com/286291/collard-greens-recipes/@center/1009854/winter-produce#196548

4th image credit:  http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/01/health/nutrition/01recipehealth.html?_r=0