Our humanities project is coming to an end. I’m going to be talking about our project from start to finish. This includes some of the big milestones we did, the challenges that I faced, and things I did really well. I also will talk about the competencies I had to work at through every assignment and how I did well at them. In the end, I will show you how I answered the driving question to this project.
The name of this project was “Straight flowin / while I’m scrollin”. The driving question for this project was “How can we use current memes to comment on the significance and consequences of nationalism around the world.” This meant that for our project, we had to learn about three different topics. We needed to learn about memes, historical significance, and the cause and consequences of nationalism. We had to complete a series of milestones to learn more not just about memes, history, and nationalism, but also about how we can answer the driving question. Here are some of the milestones I thought were the most important for me to reach the final end product.
Milestone 2 was a milestone I thought really helped me with understanding historical significance. For this assignment, we had to examine significance in the event of the Crimean war. There were four questions we needed to answer to help us better understand historical significance. The competency that was being assessed was establishing historical significance which means how can we evaluate evidence to decide if it’s adequate to support a historical conclusion. I think I showed this through how I answered the questions. With the four different questions, I answered, I made sure I did extra research besides what I was given. Cause of the extra research I did, I was able to better understand how to analyze historical significance. This really helped me with answering the driving question.
The next milestone helped me to better understand what a meme is. A meme is an idea that spreads through society/mind to mind. Even though I had a basic understanding of the definition of a meme, I needed to still understand how they worked. That’s where milestone three comes in. As a group, we needed to create 3 TikTok that followed the popular trends of a meme, a dance, and a special effect. If you want to read more about how that went, I have a blog post here that talks all about that milestone. For this post, I’m just going to talk about the competencies and what I’ve learned. After completing all of the TikToks, I have improved my understanding of how I can share my own idea when I write, speak, and represent. I have done this by creating fun TikToks with my friends. I have shown that I can represent the memes, dances, and affects that other famous/viral TikToks stars put out on the internet. Now that I had gained a better understanding of memes, I was almost ready to answer the driving question.
This final milestone brings memes, historical significance, and especially nationalism together. We had to create our own meme that can teach others about historical significance and nationalism. My plan was to create two image type memes and one TikTok. Below are the three memes I made.
Meme #1: Say Sike Right Now
This first meme is the “Say Sike Right Now” meme template. Through this meme, I tried to show how western powers colonized and divided up Africa. With the short dialogue I have on the top of the screen, I try to show how Europe almost tricked them into being their friend and then takes over and colonizes them. The purple plant saying “say sike right now” is more of a modern way to portray what the Africans were thinking at the time. This shows not only how at the time Africa was colonized but also how they felt and how their land was divided up between other nations.
Meme #2: Me And The Boys
The meme template I chose for this meme was the “me and the boys” template. I wanted to extend my learning, so I went into the extend your learning tab and tried to make a meme out of something in that folder. I stumbled upon a post called “the rise of Greek nationalism.” It talked about how they use to be a part of the ottoman empire. There was a large group of people within the ottoman empire who had the same beliefs and worldviews as each other. Those people then formed up, left the ottoman empire, and formed modern-day Greece. My meme is a very simple abbreviation of that. I tried to show “the boys” being the greeks leaving the ottoman empire. I also added Greek symbols such as instruments and weapons to better symbolize there nationality. This helps me with answering the driving question because it shows how a group of people with the same beliefs and worldviews can form up and become their own country.
Meme #3: This is America…
This meme is a TikTok. I chose to do it in the form of “This Is America”. Although it may be confusing at first glance, hopefully by reading this you can gain a better understanding of what I was aiming for. Recently for one of the milestones, I watched a video on YouTube called Guns, Germs, and Steel. In this video, it talks about how Africa was at a disadvantage from the beginning. The Europeans had the perfect geography to grow a large number of crops, domesticate tons of animals, and a perfect climate to live in. This gave them so much time to create innovative technology that would change the world. Since the Africans didn’t have this, every day they struggled to collect food and had no time to create new technologies. They had to worry about if they would eat or not. In my video, I tried my best to portray the Europeans happy and cheery life and the Africans life of struggle.
After completing all of these milestones, I’d say I’m confident enough to answer the driving question. I think that to incorporate historical significance and nationalism into a meme, you have to have balance. What I mean by this is you have to have the perfect balance between comedy, and learning. If you have too much comedy, it makes take away the idea of learning. If you just have history and no comedy, it will just be as fun as learning history through a textbook. I think that my memes might be a bit off-balance, but because of my failures, I have now learned how to balance comedy and learning through the work I completed.