Thursday, September 30, 2010

Social Activism of Yesteryear Versus Social Media of Today

Please take some time to read this New Yorker magazine article by best-selling author Malcolm Galdwell (e.g., Tipping Point and Blink): Twitter, Facebook, and Social Activism.

The article addresses social media of today as opposed to activism of the past. What is your response to the article? How might the ideas in this article be used in the classroom to provoke discussion?

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Jess K. said...

This article will help students understand how forms of communication have changed in the last five decades and help them understand the civil right movement.

Jenn D. said...

I wonder if students read Galdwell. This article might be a good introduction. Then students can be shown some of his books and encouraged to read them.

Diana Coyne said...

This was a really interesting article, and I love how it made me think about my opinions and thoughts on social media playing a role in the social revolutions taking place today. Before I read this article I had sort of half-paid attention to the news reporting that social media was the catalyst for starting these revolutions and just kept that thought in my head. This article really challenged my thinking on this and made me realize the difference between helping "start a revolution" and really just being a tool to help communicate. That being said, I don't think the role that social media is playing in connecting people and giving people information should be discounted, but I think Gladwell has a point that it is not the "hero" in these revolutions.

It also was interesting to think about what the Civil Rights Movement would have been like with tools such as twitter. What would have been different? Would it have been a positive impact or cause more harm than good? Very interesting though provoking questions. As a social studies teacher, if I was teaching about the Civil Rights in a high school, I would absolutely have my students read this article and then ask these thought provoking questions. We could even have a debate!

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