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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Hard-to-find products in mainstream culture?
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For a class assignment I'm asking students to shop for items hard to find in mainstream culture (for example an Asian Barbie, a book with a lesbian main character, etc.). Any suggestions?
Posted:10/8/2007
By:
Sarah S. , Mankato, MN, United States , 32 , Female , Catholic , White/Caucasian , Straight , Professor , Over 4 Years of College , Middle class
Mesg ID: f50aa531-0997-40c8-bba8-e71f789b98f9
Responses:8
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Pre-screened Responses
Category: General Diversity
Subject: Well...
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Well Lesbians as main characters in novels isn't very hard to find now-a-days. Just off the top of my head I can think of two; "Fire Logic" and "Wolf Cry".
Posted:5/15/2008
By:
Itsuwari No Tengoku, Allyn, WA, United States , 16 , Male , Atheist , Bisexual
Mesg ID: 58e87d82-b669-489b-ac1a-fc326d70e00c
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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Petite clothes and 'YASPs'
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Non-standard sized clothing, especially stylish clothes for women 5'4" or shorter are very difficult to find. Sure, there are petite stores or sections at every mall, but selection is often awful. Another thing that is hard to find in mainstream culture: Asian characters in movies or television who are like Charlotte York from HBO's Sex and the City. Asians are usually portrayed either as restaurant/grocery store workers or, if wealthier, doctors.
Posted:10/26/2007
By:
Cynthia , Toronto, NA, Canada , 28 , Female , Asian , Over 4 Years of College , Upper middle class
Mesg ID: b3f50c1b-4b66-4520-a736-52ca5b4b12a5
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Unscreened Responses
Category: General Diversity
Subject: Products that are hard to find in mainstream shops
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This sounds like a great assignment, Sarah! I think you're looking to provide a new and exciting experience for these students--to get them into a part of town or a type of shop they have never visited before, so they can interact with people whom they might never meet otherwise.

So I'm not sure an "Asian Barbie" is what you're looking for. Any product or toy mass-produced by a multinational corporation seems pretty "mainstream"--even if it's marketed to a minority demographic.

Others have mentioned that novels with lesbian characters are pretty easy to find these days. This is true in many cities, but I don't know much about Mankato (except I think it was where the Ingalls family always took Mary when she went blind or got too sick for Doc Baker to handle). It may depend on the town.

Now, Mexican devotional candles are fun and inexpensive, and they may be available only in specialty shops in your town. If Mankato has shops like that, they can be really great for a non-Latino person on his/her first visit.

Japa beads are used in some Hindu practices; shopping for those is likely to be an experience. If that's too arcane, try nag champa incense.

Send somebody to get something that sounds mysterious and magical, such as dried mugwort (a medicinal herb) or "dragon's blood" ink (which, despite its name, is made entirely from plants)--that should be interesting.

Good luck, and let us know how the assignment goes!

Posted:4/4/2009
By:
Gordon R, Salt Lake City, UT, United States
Mesg ID: 66b03f56-ed83-4a0b-a907-b22c678cdb8c
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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Class challenge
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How about challenging your students to 1 month of shopping locally for all of their needs. No big box stores or corporate chains. No Wal-mart, Target, Gap, etc... haircuts at local salons, no franchises. Eat at local establishments. No Starbucks, Denny's IHOP, Chili's Outback, Olive Garden. You get my drift. It will teach them how to support the LOCAL economy rather than the corporate economy and how big box stores with lower prices lie Wal-mart and Sam's Club can cause business blight in communities.

Posted:3/25/2009
By:
Maureen K, Pittsburgh, PA, United States , Female , White/Caucasian , Straight , Lower middle class
Mesg ID: f62e0d63-a27f-459d-9ec4-0f9fc18aa34a
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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Movies with real female and minority characters
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How about any movie where the black/Latino guy isn't either a gang thug OR President of the United States? Or where the women aren't emotional basket cases OR rigid ballbusters? Where all the Asians aren't liquor store owners or math geniuses? Most people don't live either extreme but you rarely see "normal" portrayed.
Posted:11/24/2008
By:
Dot L, L.A., CA, United States , Female , Middle class
Mesg ID: 7ef4fb80-57d9-4ecb-b76b-5dc13a944b86
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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Lesbian Barbie doll
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I'd love to see a lesbian Barbie Doll and a gay Ken doll. Can you imagine the wardrobe & accessories and companion dolls?!

Just Curious
Posted:11/23/2008
By:
Shirley Avery, St. Louis, MO, United States , 50 , Female , Jewish , White/Caucasian , Straight , 4 Years of College
Mesg ID: e6470f92-727d-482d-9ea6-3a70695e3f1f
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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Hard to find products
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Ask your students to find an ATM that does not ask you if you want to conduct your transaction in Spanish. Or, ask your students why local merchants should stock merchandise targeted for minorities when there non within 100 miles of Mankato
Posted:10/24/2007
By:
Cal , Lakewood, CA, United States , 47 , Male , Agnostic , White/Caucasian , Straight , Engineer , Over 4 Years of College , Upper class
Mesg ID: 17584802-85ff-453d-9f6b-3c0dcdb17605
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Category: General Diversity
Subject: Here's an impossible one...
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How about a mainstream journalist who doesn't think the existence of guns is the cause of all violent crime?
Posted:10/13/2007
By:
Ann , Kansas City, MO, United States , 40 , Female , Animist , White/Caucasian , Straight , Executive Assistant , 4 Years of College , Middle class
Mesg ID: 55ceae72-adaa-4932-833a-ad05d7055c74
Responses:0
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