Diversity in Doctor Who: Final Reflection

Diversity in Doctor Who has been an interesting experience for me. When signing up for this section of IS 201, I was not certain what to expect. Before coming to class, I had never read or seen series of Doctor Who. Although I have not enjoyed watching the episodes, I have been able to relate different experiences in the show to reality in our society. Talking about different shows in relation to Doctor Who has allowed me to understand different portions of the show.

Some of the episodes related to topics that interested me which made them more interesting to prepare for. For example, The Shakespeare Code was an extremely interesting episode because I love storytelling and literature. Their ability to use historical events and works and turn it into a different theme is engaging. Episodes involving the angels relate to my interest with the Salem Witch Trials. The presentation regarding the historical events and how the witches and angels in Doctor Who relate to some of the history made the show more engaging.

I enjoyed writing the fan fiction piece more than I had initially thought. Although it was over a topic regarding Doctor Who, I loved having a creative writing element and outlet. After deciding to write from the viewpoint of the average citizen, I was able to relate to my own character in my form of writing. For example, coming into class I was knowledgeable about all things Doctor Who and still have various questions about episodes and details. Just like my character, I knew little about the Doctor, but was interested in his abilities.

Diversity in Doctor Who has allowed me to think about diversity in terms of generation, tradition, and interests that are not as common. It has opened up a different element of thinking and brainstorming that has helped me grow in knowledge of culture. I have learned multiple different tactics to identify aspects of culture and diversity in different environments and countries.  For example, my final project has allowed me to research diversity in different countries and their mannerisms regarding social strategies. Doctor Who has been a medium for me in my research regarding tradition, generation, and expression.

Although I have not enjoyed the show, I have appreciated the amount of diversity I have been exposed to regarding different interests and personality types. I have been able to relate information from this class to my other major formed classes regarding learning styles, diversity, and the ability to understand interests.

Sex & Gender in Society

Last week in class, our topic centered around gender and sex in society. I found this to be one of the more interesting discussions about diversity, because of how relative it is in today’s society. We determined that sex was the biological makeup of your body determining whether you male or female parts, while gender was how you expressed yourself. Gender and sex play a major role in our political decisions, moral actions, and attitude towards identity. Only being a small fraction of the idea of identity, gender and sex also relate to customs, sexuality, and social experiences.

The idea of sex versus gender could be looking at from an understanding of nature versus nurture. Nature refers to the sex of individual while nurture refers to the gender of the individual and how they were raised by society; however, in today’s society, these ideas become more complex and sensitive. Culture and socialization group individuals into categories based on their representation of gender. “Several agents of socialization exist, including the family, peers, schools, the mass media, and religion, and all these institutions help to socialize people into their gender roles and also help them develop their gender identity” (Andersen & Hysock, 2011). Each one of these aspects affects an individual’s daily life; therefore, affecting their perception of themselves and others.

The main standard in society when determining someone’s gender is based off the mass media. The media portrays strict beauty guidelines and behaviors that must be followed in order to fit into a certain gender category: male, female, male that acts like a female, and a female that acts like a male. Language and the way we address people becomes extremely important and purposeful. Allowing people to be comfortable with their personal self expression, allows the rest of society to form higher priorities of respect.

Aside from my views on gender and respect for self expression, after the class discussion last week, I have realized how prominent this issue is in our society. Gender and sex are constantly portrayed in the news, political thoughts, and personal moral decisions made by individuals everyday. Being a cisgender female in society, I have not had to overcome difficulties with my gender expression. I do however, hope to gain a greater knowledge of other individuals expressions. Sex and gender is a topic that brings multiple opinions and actions towards others. With its ability to be complex and sensitive, this is a topic I hope society can find more compassion and respect towards.

Andersen, M., & Hysock, D. (2011). Thinking about women: Sociological perspectives on sex and gender (9th ed.). Boston, MA: Allyn & Bacon.


Diversity in the Education World

As an elementary education major, diversity is something that will affect my life in different ways. Not only am I to embrace diversity in my own life, but I am to help students embrace their own depictions of diversity. Being in IS 201 has taught me that diversity can be found wherever we look. While watching the episodes and trying to find pieces of diversity, I have realized that examples can be as small or as big as we make them.

Integrating diversity into classroom lessons will give students choices and allow them to feel more in charge of their role as students. Along with teaching cultural and racial backgrounds, students also need to realize that their is differences among everyone. This is especially important in the middle school age. Since my field placement in a middle school classroom, I have realized that finding your interests and expressing yourself can be difficult. Often times students do not accept diversity, and teachers are not putting focus on acceptance and self expression.

Teaching students the importance of diversity will not only help them grow, but while continuing their education and getting into the workplace, they will be more knowledgeable. Having a good sense of the diversity within you and around you enhances individuals ability to better themselves. Teaching students that success starts with appreciating diversity will help them succeed on teams and gain a basic knowledge of the world around them.

Being a well rounded teacher is a huge responsibility, especially when taking on roles of mentors and role models. Students education and appreciation of diversity starts with their observations of the ones around them. As teachers, we have to be good at expressing and appreciating diversity so that our students find value in it as well. Both IS 101 and 201 have allowed me to view diversity from different standpoints and recognize it in different environments. This will help me on my road to becoming a teacher and a better person. Diversity is a topic that has always interested me, so I am eager to take on the role of modeling it. Diversity is more than just race and ethnic background; although important, students need to see and understand that diversity is everywhere.

Companion to Lover?

Certainly not every companion, but in my opinion, the Doctor has definitely found deeper feelings for some of his newfound friends. Being one of the only survivors from the Time War, this lonely time lord is in search of some company. Being the last of his kind has got to feel isolating and lonesome. The idea of the companion is to give the Doctor someone to not only share his knowledge and understanding of the world with, but also someone to experience life and make memories with. On the outside the Doctor is portrayed as a kind, humorous man who takes saving the world seriously, but on the inside I find him to be more sensitive, lonely, and romantic.

Being his first companion makes Rose an easy target to this idea of a ‘romantic hero.’ Rose and the Doctor are a perfect example of a potential love that is not one sided. The Doctors first contact with Rose was during his heroic duty to save her from the mannequins. Since then, Rose has tagged along through time with the Doctor to save the world and learn about different universes. The Doctor would, and does do anything for Rose Tyler: takes her back to a universe where her father is still alive, meets her mother and helps to explain where Rose has been, and respects her and her ability to help him save humanity. The Doctor even portrayed some disliking and jealousy towards Rose’s boyfriend, Mickey. For example, during season one episode four, the Doctor gets snippy with Mickey while he is trying to save him and Rose’s mother from aliens.

The finale of Rose was heart-wrenching from a romance standpoint. After falling in love with the real Doctor, Rose stayed home in the parallel universe with the copy doctor, but struggled to find the same emotions. Throughout the show, the Doctor continually experiences heartbreak because of the events that lead up to his separation from companions he has learned to love and trust. Specifically with Rose, the Doctor was forced to save his own life and transform leaving behind his love. The Doctor not only saved his own life, but did what he thought was best for Rose because of the circumstances in her previous universe. Throughout the rest of the episodes, the Doctor struggles with a comparison between his new companions and his love for Rose Tyler.