English professor examine La Santa Muerte folk figure

first_imgProfessor Desiree Martin, an assistant professor of English at the University of California, Davis, spoke Thursday in the Hesburgh Center Auditorium about the growing following of La Santa Muerte, a skeletal Central American folk figure whose name translates to Saint Death, in a talk called “Borderlands Saints: Reflections on Secular Sanctity and La Santa Muerta.”“It [the current version of the following] dates from roughly the early eighties, and it kind of really gained steam in the mid-nineties during the Mexican peso crisis of 1994”, Martin said. “The origin of Santa Muerte that goes further back — there is no consensus on when belief in Santa Muerte first arose. … She is sometimes linked to Saint Paschal Baylon [a Spanish Friar and Catholic Saint from the mid to late 1590’s], and she’s linked to a saint in France who appears as a skeletal figure and another saint from Oaxaca who looks like a skeleton, so there is no real consensus, but probably the roots are pre-colonial as there are indigenous gods that match their beliefs and take a skeletal form.”Martin said Santa Muerte controversially highlights a contemporary symbol of secular sanctity, where a profane figure is worshipped in a way that is not unlike the worship of a sacred figure.“Since Santa Muerte is so strongly associated with the profane, especially in relation to illegality or transgressivity, she is a particularly extreme example of the collision between the secular and the sacred. Santa Muerte is famous for being very miraculous and loyal but also for being a jealous, vengeful patron who requires the utmost devotion and respect,” Martin said. “Santa Muerte is not venerated for her purity but for her accessibility and for her resistance to the powerful forces of the state, the Catholic Church and wealthy elites.”Matin said the exchange at the heart of devotees’ interaction and relationship with Santa Muerte, however, highlights a darker aspect of the relationship between worshipper and figure. Martin showed clips from Eva Aridjis’s 2007 documentary “La Santa Muerte,” which depicted a woman praising Santa Muerte while in prison.“This woman, who paints murals and images of Santa Muerte for her fellow inmates, situates her art as both offering and commodity. She also openly identifies the death saint as both a provider and a guardian for her drug habit,” Martin said. “The woman seems neither to expect judgment of nor deliverance from her drug habit. Instead, she considers Santa Muerte a friend and companion who will not only protect her from an overdose, but will stay by her side as she gets high, perhaps implicitly participating in her illicit journey.”Martin says the ambivalent and two-faced nature of Santa Muerte is inherently contradictory, leading to her image as a disruptor of class, racial, gender and sexual hierarchies being downplayed in favor of an intimidating image of the pagan, the Satanic, or the criminal.“In reality, Santa Muerte threatens her critics because she helps her marginalized devotees, especially migrants, poor barrio residents, and most contentiously, criminals,” she said. “But for the majority of devotees, Santa Muerte’s dark side is not exclusively or even primarily linked to the criminal underworld. Instead, it manifests through the Death Saint’s purported jealousy and the price she supposedly exacts from believers who use her powers recklessly or who fail to pay her proper tribute.”Tags: Desiree Martin, Santa Muertelast_img read more

Jeopardy champ talks sexism, gaming

first_imgArthur Chu, 12-day Jeopardy champion and writer for The Daily Beast spoke Tuesday evening on the unhealthy views of women found in “nerd culture,” in a lecture titled “Your Princess is in Another Castle,” the second in the Men in Masculinity series sponsored by the Gender Relations Center.Chu said the increasing portrayal of “nerds” in films and television as awkward but benign characters belies the fact that there are implicit misogynistic attitudes promoted by groups within the nerd subculture.“One of the threads is the concept of sexual market value,” Chu said. “It’s the idea that sex is a transaction between man and woman, much like when you’re interacting with a vendor.”Chu said this transactional view is not only found within certain online communities of men who blame their frustrations on women but is also present in popular entertainment.“It sounds crazy. But it’s not that weird. It’s what you see in the battle of the sexes in sitcoms, where the husband and the wife hate each other,” Chu said. “It’s a trope so obvious that even the simplest video games for children use it, that you have to save the princess.”Chu said the frequent use of this trope in entertainment reflects a deeper societal tendency to view women as a prize.“It’s an old narrative; it’s a very powerful narrative of how things should be between men and women,” he said. “It’s built into every story that has the beginning end with the promise of the daughter’s hand in marriage for accomplishing this quest.”Chu said this view of relationships not only harms women but also dissolves the value of relationships.“At the end of the day a transactional view of relationships is a bad relationship,” he said. “The very nature of saying you deserve to be with someone for accomplishing some task means that the person that you want to be with is interchangeable with anyone.”In some cases, this “toxic” perception of relating with women leads to extreme violence, seen in the Virginia Tech and University of California Santa Barbara shootings, Chu said.“It’s often the least successful men — the guys who we think of as nerdy, rejected and pitiful — who are most resentful in this context, and therefore the most dangerous,” Chu said.Chu said the danger in dismissing “lone-wolf” spree killings as anomalies undermines the awareness that these acts are one part of a much larger problem by which women are negatively affected.“The problematic behavior lies on a spectrum,” Chu said. “But the behavior that we’re talking about is built into the assumptions of our society. The spectrum of antagonistic behavior based on a transactional view of sex and marriage is the idea that women owe you something.“No matter how much an individual woman might look for a man who doesn’t buy into this narrative, she’s going to be exposed to men who are on the toxic side of the spectrum.”Chu said countering this transactional view of women and relationships first requires a willingness to address the issue head on.“Just talking about it is a big deal,” Chu said. “When it’s the in the background, when it’s the assumed state of how things are, if you don’t put a name to it, it’s very hard to oppose it.“It is a big deal to recognize when these tropes come up, and recognize that they are tropes, that they are a specific way of looking at things that doesn’t have to be true.”last_img read more

Senior Class Council tickets vie for votes

first_imgTwo tickets will compete to be elected to the executive board for Senior Class Council. Elections will take place today from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., according to Judicial Council. Because tickets for Junior Class Council and Sophomore Class Council ran unopposed, they were declared winners by Student Senate last Wednesday.Eric Richelsen Senior Class CouncilKatelyn Wray, Clare Geraghty, Zach Bequette and Celanire Flagg designed their platform to focus on four main pillars — experiencing the city of South Bend, providing outlets for students to develop professionally, building lasting memories with friends and leaving a class-wide legacy at Notre Dame.“Utilizing the diversity of the senior class, we strive to have programs that bring the entire community together and create opportunities for people who may no longer be involved through dorm life,” Wray, the ticket’s presidential candidate, said in an email. Wray said the ticket has identified events affiliated with each pillar that are both feasible and innovative, including a signature class of 2017 event during Antostal, a class service day and an event for seniors to take professional headshots to use in résumés or portfolios.“Remember how fun Hip-Hop Night was freshman year? We are going to make Legends great again with Senior Night. Live music, cheap drinks and all of our friends in one place — Legends, as Legends was meant to be,” she said.Wray, Geraghty and Flagg all served on Sophomore Class Council, and Wray currently serves as vice president of Junior Class Council. Geraghty, the ticket’s vice presidential candidate, now serves as Cavanaugh Hall president. Bequette serves on the Club Coordination Council, which allocates funds to student groups on campus and facilitates University-club interactions, in addition to being a member of the officer board of the club sailing team.Geraghty said the ticket’s top priority is to foster a tight-knit class community, despite the fact many seniors live off campus.“It can be difficult to have class cohesion when everyone has such diverse involvement and interests within the Notre Dame community,” she said. “ … It is our goal to extend our reach to the entire class by putting on events that all members of the class will genuinely enjoy. We are dedicated to bringing the class together for a final year under the dome and making memories to last a lifetime.”The other ticket for Senior Class Council consists of Patrick Tinsley, Noelle Gooding, Jake Dunigan and Andrew Thomas. The campaign said the central theme of its platform is “the notion of building bridges.”“Senior year, for many, represents a number of separations — separating from your on-campus friends if you move off campus, separating from college life when you graduate and separations between different aspects of Notre Dame student life as a whole,” Tinsley, the ticket’s presidential candidate, said in an email. “Our goal is to bridge those separations.”The ticket hopes to work with University administration to improve the shuttle system to and from off-campus housing sites and designate certain parking spots closer to academic buildings for off-campus students for a limited period of time during the day, Tinsley said.“At the core of our platform lies a tremendous respect for next year’s graduating class,” he said. “As to-be seniors ourselves, we respect the remaining time we have at this university, time that should be used most effectively during our last year.”Tinsley said that if elected, the ticket also plans to host regional mixers that would allow students to meet classmates that plan to work in the same city after graduation.“Meeting some other soon-to-be Notre Dame alums who also will be living in an area might help ease that transition and provide you with a built-in network of friends before you ever arrive at your job,” he said.No members of the ticket have served on a class council before, which Tinsley said would allow the group to provide a fresh perspective to the role. Tinsley served as the Transfer Welcome Weekend co-commissioner last fall and is currently the Student Union Board representative for Alumni Hall and a dorm judicial council member. Gooding is president of Notre Dame’s branch of the American Society of Mechanical Engineers and has been active in her dorm’s hall council in the past. Dunigan co-founded and is currently vice president of Notre Dame’s chapter of Young Americans for Freedom, while Thomas currently serves as the Stanford Hall senator.The ultimate goal of the ticket is to bring seniors together with events like class Grotto trips, service projects, South Bend Cubs games, a senior class formal and a revamped Senior Week, Tinsley said.“It’s our last ride — we want to make it count,” he said. “Four years is all we get with our friends, roommates and fellow Domers. In recognition of the fleeting nature of our college years, we are hoping to provide several events for the senior class as a whole to better cherish and appreciate our final year together.”Junior Class CouncilSara Dugan, Janet Stengle, Paul Stevenson and Matthew Peters said they hope to foster a sense of unity between members of the junior class, both on campus and in study abroad locations.“For the first time since we have gotten to Notre Dame, our class will be significantly separated,” Peters, who will assume the position of secretary, said in an email. “We will be divided by oceans, with students studying in countries across the globe. Furthermore, our class will be significantly subdivided into their respective majors. For these reasons and many more, it is not hard for the junior class to appear divided or fragmented. It is our goal to mitigate these effects.”The executive board plans to increase advertising for class council events, such as South Bend Cubs games and brother-sister dorm Olympics, to increase participation and maintain accountability, Dugan, Junior Class Council president-elect, said.“Junior Year is a unique time for students at Notre Dame,” she said. “As the Junior Class Council executive board, we really want to focus our efforts on catering specifically to those unique qualities. In addition, we hope to bring the Junior Class Council’s events to the attention of campus by staying visible, both online and around campus, and to stay accountable to our goals by adhering to the plans we make at the beginning of our term.”Dugan currently serves as Parliamentarian for the Ricketts-Ruelas administration and works as a student assistant in the Student Activities Office. Both Stengle and Stevenson served on Freshman Class Council and Sophomore Class Council. Stevenson also works for the Orientation Steering Committee and the University Communications Department. Peters has had no student government experience. Stengle, who will serve as vice president, said they plan to restructure Junior Class Council based on feedback and experiences from previous years.“Our goal is to assign task forces during the council application process based on work style, strengths and personalities to ensure that each event is executed to its fullest potential,” she said. “This will also allow for members of the council to hold greater responsibility and to build camaraderie through collaboration.”Sophomore Class CouncilMichael Conlon, Mary Ninneman, Jane Driano and Chris Lembo said they hope to recognize the diversity of their class and use it to bring people together during the upcoming year.“We would like to be a more open class council,” Conlon, who will assume the role of president, said in an email. “It is our responsibility to serve our constituents in the class of 2019 and to promote their ideas in future decision-making.”Conlon said his executive board plans to host events that promote class unity through prayer, service and fun.“There is no better instrument of unification than serving our South Bend community,” he said. “Additionally, we will offer opportunities to reflect on our Notre Dame experience together.”All four members on the ticket serve as officers on the current Freshmen Class Council, Conlon said. “With our previous student government involvement and individual interests, we look forward to serving our class for another year to the best of our abilities,” he said. “We have formed extensive connections in the Notre Dame administration and the other class councils, and we look forward to collaborating with and expanding our network to further foster community within our class.”Tags: class council elections, junior class council, senior class council, sophomore class council, Student governmentlast_img read more

NDVotes renews partnerships, plans for post-election programming

first_imgNDVotes will carry on its partnerships with the Center for Social Concerns (CSC) and the Rooney Center and to continue pushing for the student body to participate in “civic engagement.” Post-election season, sophomore Kylie Ruscheinski and junior Andrew Pott, co-chairs of NDVotes, said the renewal marks a new start for NDVotes. “There’s a sort of rebranding of NDVotes,” Ruscheinski said. “A lot of people seemed to appreciate the void that was filled on campus for civil engagement and staying informed about the election, but civic engagement doesn’t necessarily stop after the election season, so finding a way to provide that platform and a space for students to be engaged in politics in the off season is important. We’re still going to do voter registration, but next steps also, like how do you stay involved in local politics.”While NDVotes will have a slightly different focus, Ruscheinski said both the Pizza, Pop and Politics events and the dorm liaison program will continue. This new focus, Ruscheinski said, will be on increasing the “effectiveness of engagement.” “We used to have voter registration tables, but since there isn’t an election in the next few years, we’re thinking of replacing those tables with civic engagement tables, so basically stuff about how to write letters to your congressmen, who your congressional representatives are,” Pott said. To kick off the “rebranding,” the next Pizza, Pop and Politics event will center on the effectiveness of protests. “Our next speaker is about the sociology of protest; is protest the best way to get your voices heard by your leaders? What are the strategies for calling your representative or writing in? Basically, it’s how to stay involved in the process with more than just your vote,” Ruscheinski said.Future events might be focused on local elections and interpreting the “new media,” including “alternative facts,” “fake news” and “how to get reliable information when everyone has an agenda.”  Pott said ND Votes was valuable because it “fills a void” on campus.“I can’t think of any other organization that consistently has some sort of really interesting political talk like we do — maybe Bridge[ND] — but College Democrats and College Republicans bring in interesting speakers, but it might just be once a semester,” he said. “ … There’s also no slant to ours, or at least we try for there not to be.”Part of what makes NDVotes important and valuable is how accessible it is, Ruscheinski said.“We have professors come and speak, so they’re people you can continue the conversation with and see on campus,” she said. “The present it in a very approachable way for everyone to understand and follow along. Our last event, we filled Geddes Coffee House. It was standing room only. I think that shows people are interested and if you provide the service, they’ll come.” Tags: civic engagement, College Democrats, College Republicans, NDVoteslast_img read more

13th annual Saint Mary’s Dance Marathon raises money for Riley Hospital

first_imgPhoto courtesy of Theresa McSorley This year, the Saint Mary’s Dance Marathon became the fifth dance marathon in Indiana to raise $1,000,000 over the course of its history. The event’s funds support Riley Hospital for Children.Dance Marathon members begin fundraising at the beginning of each academic year to support the Riley Hospital for Children, senior and operations co-executive Theresa McSorley said.In the past, Saint Mary’s Dance Marathon has had several high schools who fundraised to help reach the group’s goal, but this year was different due to having just one high school participate, senior and Dance Marathon president Meg Brownley said in an email.McSorley said this decrease affected fundraising for the event.“We lost a lot of high schools that bring in major parts of fundraising for Dance Marathon this year,” she said.Despite this setback, members of the club knew they wanted to have an exceptionally good year because Saint Mary’s was set to have raised a total of $1,000,000 during its years participating in Dance Marathon.“We are the fifth Dance Marathon in the state of Indiana to reach a cumulative total of $1,000,000,” Brownley said.Executives of the club attribute this achievement to more involvement from the surrounding community.“This year, we had a 30 percent increase in fundraising compared to last year,” Brownley said.This increase came from the individual members of the club who began their fundraising in August, as well as the more than 300 people who registered to participate in Dance Marathon.“It helped that we opened it up to Notre Dame and Holy Cross students to really advertise our Dance Marathon on their campuses,” senior and personal relations executive Alaina Murphy said.The event itself lasted 12 hours — time the operations committee arranged to be filled with entertainment that included a performance by Bellacapella — the Saint Mary’s acapella group — animals from the Potawatomi Zoo, visits from Notre Dame baseball and football players and face painting.“We’re so grateful for all the groups from the tri-campus community that came,” Corcoran said. “It shows that our sense of community is strong.”During the time of the 12-hour marathon, the organization raised about $27,000, Murphy said.Patients at the Riley Children’s Hospital and their families attended the event and shared stories of how the hospital’s care has impacted their family, junior and letter-writing executive for the organization Grace Ward said.McSorley said this visit was a Dance Marathon tradition.“Every year, the Riley kids come, and either they or their parents speak and tell their stories,” McSorley said.Seeing the children benefitting from the fundraising makes participating in Dance Marathon an emotional experience for some, McSorley said.“People think you’re just dancing for 12 hours, but it’s so much more than that,” McSorley said. “It sounds so painful, but the minute you sit down after that 12 hours, you realize that the pain you feel is nothing compared to what those kids go through.”Tags: Dance Marathon, Pfeil Center, riley hospital, riley hospital for children, Saint Mary’s College Dance Marathon, SMC Dance Marathon Members of the tri-campus community gathered at the Pfeil Center at Holy Cross College on Saturday for this year’s Saint Mary’s Dance Marathon.This was the 13th year the fundraising club has hosted the event for the Saint Mary’s community, and its theme was “Get Wild for the Life of a Child,” according to junior Madeleine Corcoran, co-executive of operations for the club.last_img read more

Swing and a Miss! Bronx Bombers to Close on Broadway

first_imgStrike out! Eric Simonson’s Bronx Bombers, starring real-life spouses Emmy winner Peter Scolari and Tracy Shayne, will play its final Broadway performance on March 2 at Circle in the Square Theatre. The production officially opened on February 6, 2014. In addition to Scolari and Shayne, the cast features Francois Battiste (Reggie Jackson), Chris Henry Coffey (Joe DiMaggio), Bill Dawes (Mickey Mantle), Christopher Jackson (Derek Jeter), Keith Nobbs (Billy Martin), John Wernke (Lou Gehrig) and C.J. Wilson (Babe Ruth). View Comments Bronx Bombers Related Shows Show Closed This production ended its run on March 2, 2014 Directed by Simonson, Bronx Bombers follows Yogi Berra (Scolari) and his wife Carmen (Shayne) through a century of the New York Yankees’ trials and triumphs, bringing generations of Yankee legends on stage. The play celebrates and explores the timeless legacy of baseball’s most iconic team.last_img read more

Tickets Now On Sale for Hereafter Musical Off-Broadway

first_imgTickets are now available for Hereafter Musical, a new show by Frankie Keane and Vinnie Favale. The tuner, directed by Terry Berliner, begins performances on September 13. Opening night is set for October 25 at the Snapple Theater Center off-Broadway. Hereafter Musical Hereafter Musical follows three women who have come together at the home of world renowned psychic Jason Richards, desperate to make contact with their loved ones who have passed. Unbeknownst to them, the spirits materialize during the reading, and they, like the living, also have a great deal of difficulty moving on. View Commentscenter_img Keane will also appear in the cast alongside Deborah Tranelli, Pierce Cravens, Jill Shackner, Paul Blankenship, Eileen Faxas, Carolyn Mignini, Courtney Capek, Tanisha Gary, Kissy Simmons, Margaret Kelly and Alan Kalter. Related Showslast_img read more

Weekend Poll: Which Broadway Student Do You Want to Pass Notes With?

first_imgIt seems like just yesterday we were stuffing our winter coats into storage and stocking up on booty shorts, but sadly, the end of summer is already here. But don’t worry—hitting the books doesn’t have to be boring, especially if the students from Spring Awakening, Grease, Heathers and Wicked go to your school! Hey, we can dream, can’t we? So we want to know: Which Broadway student would you like to hang out in the back of the classroom with and pass notes during Algebra II? Vote below! View Commentslast_img read more

Joshua Park, Broadway’s Tom Sawyer, Dies at 38

first_imgJoshua Park, a stage and screen alum who starred in the title role of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer on Broadway, has died following a brief illness. He was 38 years old.Soon after graduating from North Carolina School of the Arts, Park made his Broadway debut in 2001 in The Adventures of Tom Sawyer. It was the first Great White Way show he had ever auditioned for. “This is not what school prepared me for at all,” Park told Broadway.com at the time. “School prepared me for: ‘You’re not gonna work for the next five years, so get ready, kid.’” Though the musical, which also featured Kristen Bell, Jim Poulos and Tom Aldredge, only played the Minskoff Theatre for just over two weeks after opening, Park received a Theatre World Award for his performance.Later that year, Park appeared in the Irish Repertory Theatre’s off-Broadway revival of Streets of New York and A Celtic Christmas in 2002. His additional stage credits included the off-Broadway musical Prodigal opposite Christian Borle and Kerry Butler, ”Master Harold”…and the Boys ad the Westport Country Playhouse and the title role in the Goodspeed Opera House and subsequent national touring production of Pippin.On screen, Park appeared in a series of low-budget horror films: The Bog Creatures, Fort Doom and Blood Relic. He also participated in many developmental readings and festival stagings of new works, including A Merry Jewish Christmas and Like You Like It. View Commentslast_img read more

Allegiance, Starring George Takei & Lea Salonga Will Record Cast Album

first_img Show Closed This production ended its run on Feb. 14, 2016 View Comments Oh my! George Takei, Lea Salonga, Telly Leung and the company of Allegiance will head to the studio to record a cast album on December 7. Produced by Lynne Shankel and Joel Moss, the album is scheduled to be released digitally on January 30, 2016.Directed by Stafford Arima and based on Takei’s childhood experience in a Japanese-American interment camp, Allegiance features music and lyrics by Jay Kuo and a book by Marc Acito. A story of family, love and patriotism set during World War II and beyond, the show follows veteran Sam Otsuka and his sister Kei as they find themselves torn between loyalty to their family and allegiance to their country.The cast also includes Katie Rose Clarke, Michael K. Lee, Christopheren Nomura and Greg Watanabe.Allegiance is running at the Longacre Theatre. Related Shows Allegiancelast_img read more