Superstition Assignment

Superstitions are a type of magic that people believe that practicing certain rituals brings them good luck, prevent illness, evade evil, and other related outcomes. As such, superstitions can be in different types depending on the context. The remarks or actions made by others can be superstitious in some way.

I experienced an incident that seemed superstitious. I used to visit my grandmother during holidays to spend some time with her and assist her in the daily chores. However, in one particular incidence, she made some remarks that appeared superstitious. She said that she had a grudge with my other family members because they neglected her in her time of need. According to my understanding, the remarks seemed superstitious since I did not know how she could react in her grudge against my family members. She could even do harm to me as a form of revenge.

In one instance, a young man came straight to a lady and started hurling insults at her without a clear basis of the source of the hostility. The lady felt disturbed and concerned that she did not know the guy and yet went ahead to insult her. I find the incident superstitious since no one can tell the reason the guy behaved the way he did. It leaves a lot to think about because they were strangers to each other. The unclear intentions of the young man make it very superstitious.

Another incident involved two ladies who were not in good terms. One lady, Janette used to visit the other on weekends and carried a small bag which she used to forget intentionally behind only to be reminded later about it. The trend continued on several occasions until the other lady became suspicious of a small bag. The actions by Janette are superstitious since she might be sending a clear signal to the other lady of bad luck. The fact that she left the small bag intentionally shows that she there was something she intended to do the other lady.

I think that all the examples outlined clear explanations about superstitions based on personal remarks or actions. In the first incident, my grandmother ought not to say the remarks she said because they live a lot to consider. The remarks elicit fear and imaginations about the likely course of action that she intended to take. She could leave a curse, cause evil, or seek for revenge in very negative ways. Thus, I think that my grandmother would not be satisfied even after revenging due to inner thought struggles. In the second instance, the young man could not insult the lady since she was innocent by her being a stranger. It is likely that the guy had a mistaken identity that makes it very superstitious to judge his actions. I think that the remedy for the behavior would be requesting to know more about the events leading to the incident. The third instance involved a superstitious action. It is not clear to the observer what Janette meant by leaving her bag intentionally. People could imagine that Janette desired to do harm to the other lady and used the bag to entice her. It is likely that there was something bad inside the bag meant to cause harm to the lady.

The need to identify superstitious actions and remarks from others is important in evaluating the cases identified. It is easy to differentiate between superstitious actions and remarks to others due to the expected turn of events. The arguments given in class are a good foundation to help in evaluating the cases.

The Black Woman and Family

Question 1
The shift of welfare rhetoric from inept mothers to calculating parasites was with the use of imageries such as race and gender images including matriarch and mammy. The imageries helped in the development of the perception that the family formation of the black community comprised of a bad black mother. Black women who relied on welfare were presented as bad mothers who engaged in irresponsible behavior. The women were presented as women who failed in their efforts to protect their offspring. The perception ignited the desire to control and regulate childbearing. The public got the impression that the single mothers were calculating parasites who strived to raise their children alone so that they can enjoy welfare support at the expense of other hard working citizens (Jordan-Zachery, 2009).

It was brought to the attention of the public that the majority of women enjoying the welfare benefits are not widowed women but young unmarried women. The term urban teen mother was coined to define the women enjoying welfare support. It emerged that the single mother had to get married so that their husbands can take their rightful position as breadwinners of the family thus unburdening the government the role of providing welfare services. Members of Congress, as well as some presidents, have been known to give black women under welfare titles such as the Jezebel, the matriarch, and the Sapphire. The titles give the impression that the black woman has manipulated and controlled the government so that they can continue to bear children and the government continues to offer support (Jordan-Zachery, 2009). The black woman was thus not a good woman unless she was married and did not depend on welfare support.

Question 2
The perception of the “black family” as deviant can be traced back to the era of slavery where the slaves were not allowed to have families. The denial arose from the perception that the black people were lesser beings than the whites. The perception of the “black family” continues to be perceived as deviant in several ways. Most black families are headed by single women. Unfortunately, the black female-headed household is perceived as wrong and the justification of the high poverty rates among black families. Unending and increasing levels of poverty increase the number of families that are homeless as well as the rate of social ills in society. Society perceives the ideal family as one that is headed by the man. The black family is deviant as the black woman is perceived as having refused to conform to the patriarchal family formation (Jordan-Zachery, 2009). The black woman is thus perceived as the cause of damage to the black man and the black community.

There have also been efforts at establishing policies that will promote fatherhood. The efforts are tied to the assumption that families headed by fathers result to healthy marriages and stable families. The black family is deviant as it is largely female-headed thus promoting fragile families. The policies are based on the patriarchal ideology that centers men as dominant individuals in a family unit. There has also been increased emphasis on controlling the sexuality and morality of black women (Jordan-Zachery, 2009). The requirement that black women must disclose their sexual history to receive public assistance is an example of efforts to control the sexuality and morality of the black woman. There have also been instances where substance-abusing black women have received money in exchange for sterilization.

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