So originally this post was called “Why Are People Prejudiced” but I decided to edit the post and combine my reflection post with my Life Update post. Making this a really long post, but it’s divided into sections, so if you don’t want to read the whole thing that’s totally fine! I think this is actually one of my longest posts so far but I had so much to say and I didn’t want to divide this into two posts.
For my on-campus elective, I had to choose a project and I chose to do the project on my grandpa. [1. More details on that later] I asked my aunt and she dug through her old boxes and came across this super cool picture of my grandpa at his 60th birthday, posing with my grandma. My family history is actually really fascinating, which I may expand in a separate post, but my grandparents from both sides of the family actually came from North Korea.
My grandpa was actually born in a Korea before it was separated into the North and South but lived in the part of Korea that later became the North. And as you can sort of tell from the picture, he was very much the gentleman. Meaning he was well-educated and well-off. He later escaped via the Nam River when the war broke out with my uncle and then later met my grandma.
Break for Sunday school is over this upcoming Sunday. Please cross your fingers and/or pray for me. I’m kind of dreading seeing my first graders.
In other not-so-great news, my aunt recently passed away.
She lives in South Korea, so my dad is there right now. I wasn’t very close with her (partly because she lives in another country) but she was really close with my dad. When I was in the first grade and I saw her for the first time, she sobbed when she saw my sister and me. At the time, I probably didn’t understand why she was crying but now that I think about it, it was probably because she had seen us for the first time even though she was so close with my dad.
In that way, it’s really hard living away from family. The only extended family I have here in the states, is my aunt but apart from that, everyone else lives in South Korea. My sister and I are only close with each other but sometimes I feel like it would have been nice to be closer to the other members of my family.
I finished two books. One was The Shadow of What Was Lost by James Islington (fantasy) and the other was The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury (YA). Both were pretty good but I didn’t think about them afterwards, which is what I usually end up doing over a really good book. I end up thinking about all my favorite parts and can’t wait to read the next book, which isn’t what happened after I read both of these. Not that they were bad in any way! I think I just developed higher standards for genres that I read a lot.
Here is the summary for The Shadow of What Was Lost:
It has been twenty years since the end of the war. The dictatorial Augurs – once thought of almost as gods – were overthrown and wiped out during the conflict, their much-feared powers mysteriously failing them. Those who had ruled under them, men and women with a lesser ability known as the Gift, avoided the Augurs’ fate only by submitting themselves to the rebellion’s Four Tenets. A representation of these laws is now written into the flesh of any who use the Gift, forcing those so marked into absolute obedience.
As a student of the Gifted, Davian suffers the consequences of a war fought – and lost – before he was born. Despised by most beyond the school walls, he and those around him are all but prisoners as they attempt to learn control of the Gift. Worse, as Davian struggles with his lessons, he knows that there is further to fall if he cannot pass his final tests.
But when Davian discovers he has the ability to wield the forbidden power of the Augurs, he sets into motion a chain of events that will change everything. To the north, an ancient enemy long thought defeated begins to stir. And to the west, a young man whose fate is intertwined with Davian’s wakes up in the forest, covered in blood and with no memory of who he is…
The book was well written but felt like an average epic fantasy novel. And after reading a couple of great epic fantasy novels that really pushed the boundary, “well written” doesn’t grab my attention as much as it used to. Still a great read though, if you like epic fantasy!
And then The Forbidden Wish:
She is the most powerful Jinni of all. He is a boy from the streets. Their love will shake the world…
When Aladdin discovers Zahra’s jinni lamp, Zahra is thrust back into a world she hasn’t seen in hundreds of years—a world where magic is forbidden and Zahra’s very existence is illegal. She must disguise herself to stay alive, using ancient shape-shifting magic, until her new master has selected his three wishes.
But when the King of the Jinn offers Zahra a chance to be free of her lamp forever, she seizes the opportunity—only to discover she is falling in love with Aladdin. When saving herself means betraying him, Zahra must decide once and for all: is winning her freedom worth losing her heart?
As time unravels and her enemies close in, Zahra finds herself suspended between danger and desire in this dazzling retelling of Aladdin from acclaimed author Jessica Khoury.
Which actually had a really interesting premise. I liked the world-building and the romance was well written. Sometimes, I get bored at reading YA romance/fantasy novels just because I’ve felt like I’ve read it before but the romance in the book wasn’t insta-love and just felt really natural. But I felt like the plot could be a bit predictable at times.
I started watching Trollhunters on Netflix. It’s an animated TV series by Guillermo del Toro and produced by DreamWorks. It’s actually pretty good (even though computer 3Dish animation still bothers me a little). This is the summary from Wikipedia:
A fifteen-year-old boy stumbles upon a magical amulet that transforms him into a warrior with the title of Trollhunter. He is the chosen defender of the trolls that live below the human town of Arcadia from miscreants who try to disrupt peace.
I’m not watching any Korean dramas at the moment, even though I want to. I heard Netflix will be coming out with an original Korean drama, which is exciting! I wonder who the actors/actresses will be?
These days I’ve been reading Noblesse consistently. [2. Apart from One Piece, of course] I also started reading Something About Us (Romance) and At the End of the Road (BL). All three are webcomics and the last two are from a site called Lezhin, which is actually pretty R-rated. Okay not “pretty R-rated”, it is R-rated. I was pretty shocked but I guess as long as it has a story line, it doesn’t matter all that much to me? LOL I don’t really discriminate which topics I should or shouldn’t read.
But… thankfully Something About Us and At the End of the Road aren’t R-rated. And to be honest, I did try reading a mature/R-rated manga and I think my virgin eyes are pretty much scarred for life.
I’ve been playing Kirby: Planet Robobot, which is super fun (and also really cute) on my 3DS. I own a few other games but Kirby is probably my favorite right now. The air plant that I mentioned in a previous Life Update post is slowly dying. I thought it would be easy to take care of like a cactus but I was totally wrong.
I also just realized that my Life Update posts end up being mini-reviews, aha. I didn’t mean for them to end up that way but they just sort of did I guess?
Thoughts of the Day – Why Are People Prejudiced?
I’m going to end this post with a reflection. I’ve been on a Harry Potter re-reading high and as I was reading through the Goblet of Fire, there was one particular scene that stuck out to me.
“So?” Harry prompted Ron. “What’s the problem with giants?”
“Well, they’re… they’re…” Ron struggled for words. “… not very nice,” he finished lamely.
“Who cares?” Harry said. “There’s nothing wrong with Hagrid!”
“I know there isn’t, but… blimey, no wonder he keeps it quiet,” Ron said, shaking his head. “I always thought he’d got in the way of a bad Engorgement Charm when he was a kid or something. Didn’t like to mention it…”
“But what’s it matter if his mother was a giantess?” said Harry.
And this passage got me to thinking about prejudices.
Previous to this, Harry expresses how his lack of knowledge about certain aspects of the wizarding world made him ignorant about things like giants. But does this make him ignorant? It seems to me like because of his lack of knowledge, Harry is expressing his opinion based on his character and not because of how he looks. Which got me to thinking about how issues like this translate to the real world?
For instance, my own parents grew up in South Korea. South Korea, along with North Korea and Japan, are considered the most homogenous countries in the world. Which basically means that everyone looks the same. And when everyone looks the same, you don’t encounter people who don’t look like you or very much diversity in terms of race. My parents, being older and not having grown up with the internet, grew up in this homogenous country and as a result, can be racist. They had preconceived notions about a whole group of people, even though they had never seen them in person before. Does this justify the fact that they’re have prejudices? No, it doesn’t and after living so long in the US, a very diverse place, they’ve started to get over some of those preconceived notions. In all honesty, it’s hard getting over those notions if you’ve grown up with them you’re entire life, but at least they’re trying to get there.
But maybe it does help us understand why people are prejudiced. This doesn’t just apply to the color of your skin but I don’t think we should judge people based on how you look. I don’t want to be called that “Asian girl”, just as I’m sure someone who is over 6 feet tall doesn’t want to be known as that “tall person”.
Ron, having grown up with tales of how violent giants are, would have judged Hagrid (even before meeting him) if he knew that Hagrid was a half-giant. Harry, having no exposure to violent tales about giants, doesn’t understand why anyone would judge Hagrid because he was a half-giant.
I don’t know. I just thought that this was interesting to think about (and also reminded me why I love Harry Potter as a series so much). As mentioned in my post “Am I a Good Person?”, I want to continue to think about issues like this and become more articulate on why I believe in the things I believe.