Reflective Artist’s Statement

Throughout this project I learned many things, but the most useful one that I think I will be using it a lot in future classes is to get to the bottom of what the characters really mean in what they say. In the brown boy, white boy by Jonathan Mendoza, at first I didn’t really get the true meaning behind his story until we had class discussion. Everyone had different perspectives and most of them saw his story in different way. As we had more class discussion like the one we did with Anon(ymous), I started to pick up that skill. The skill to dig in and find the hidden meanings behind what characters are saying. The formats that I chose for the 3 assignments, I picked them based on which one I can show the reader that I understood the story at the best of me. also I tried to connect my story with their story.

Ms. Marvel Artist Statement

Captain America was scolding/reprimanding Kamala so she was portrayed going from normal to small because she wanted going into her own shell for several reasons. She felt that by going into a cocoon,; she could disappear and not standout from her teenage friends or society from discrimination of her religion, culture, race and what’s happening to so many Muslims in this war of terrorism.

That is why I chose to write  a poem and touch on these issues but I was also a victim of bully, discrimination, racism and  I related to what she went through as a teenager and still as an adult.

If the people in this world do not change their attitudes, behaviors… This  world will still stay in division and will not progress. We need to start to learn on how to get along with each other and learn the meaning of RESPECT!!!!!!

Ms. Marvel

I am just a teen

Why are you being so mean

Wanna to take a stand

for you to only reprimand

So many people still judged by their race

For there never ought to be such a place

They feel superior and they differentiate

Against those who are different and discriminate

we suppose to live in a socialized democracy

Jim Crow laws will never let me free

they judge you by where you come from and the color

of your skin

for many equality and respect seems impossible to win

painting faces black, doing a song and dance only  leads to division and war

just to show how ignorant many people dedicate themselves  to these laws

those men who once whore hoods and robes

today wear shirts and ties I’m told

divide and conquer is their plan

kick us out of our homeland

people of color convinced that all is well

a chilling fact indeed

and my mind’s confusing as hell

they seek to kill, steal, and destroy

we can’t let them succeed

or they will use us as their toys

just like Judas betrayed Jesus with a kiss

hell will be your eternal bliss

early Americans discovered had smaller, slender faces, and narrower skulls pay attention

Native Americans closely resembled the modern  people of Africa, Australia, and South Pacific I have to mention

without the Cherokees, Tainos, Pocahontas… many  would not exist

Christopher Columbus discovered America and so many lies there’s not enough space on this paper to list

we don’t walk around with useless chains

but much credit not given – unclaimed

he scars on our feet and hands still feel the same

oh what a crying shame

God I love you  – you refuse to  leave my side when I’ m spat at, beaten, humiliated, break down and cry

A world of hurt, hate and lies

a broken mind is terrible thing to face

when one’s world is crumbling all around I still have Faith

Don’t feel sorry for me, my pain is real

I’m not lying this how I feel

You point and laugh,  saying it can’t be true

It is for me, just not for you

my clothes, my hair

how I talk, the clothes I wear

cold as ice and black as night

it’s not our heart, ti’s your soul

killing me must be your goal

you’re getting close, no doubt, you know

creeping, lurking, you don’t have far to go

soon enough, you’ll reach the end

you’ll have my soul to tear apart from limb to limb

but you don’t know, you never ask

the look on my face, is giving me away

I wonder, what will you say

how long this will last

many rial  have come my way

but let me say

that Jesus has been there through it all

when words lashed and whips gashed

and made me fall

he rescues me and remind me that he’s the one

the  one that I can call

no matter how many fears

and when I think I’m alone here

I close my eyes and feel you get close; drawing near

America great


America hate

red, white and blue

Not any different from the colors of me and you

just because my head is covered

it doesn’t mean I’m  a terrorist, a killer or a robber

it shows I follow my religion right

but still a soar for your sight

Of course I’m fine, why do you ask

Oh, don’t mind this, it’s just my mask

don’t think it hides the grief, it hides my gripe

I wear it to escape my LIFE


In order for me to analyze the play Anon(mous), I felt that I needed to orient myself more to better understand it and get a few questions answered, by doing so, I should read The Odyssey. In the playwrite interview Papatola, Dominic, P. “There’s No Place Like Home American Theatre. February 07, Namoi Iizuka said, “If you know The Odyssey, then your experience of the play will be enriched.

In Odyssey, an epic poem about a Greek hero, Odysseus hasn’t returned from a 10 year Trojan war; his wife, Penelope, is being pressured by a crowd and 108 suitors into marrying one of the suitors to place of the absent husband. There is a plot to murder Odysseus upon his return. Telemach, Odysseus’ son is urged to seek his father. Odysseus spent 7 years in captivity on Ogygia. Poseidon wrecks raft when Odysseus tries to escape. Odysseus reveals his identity to Princesss Nausicaa and reveals his name to Cyclops, Poseidon’s son. Poseidon cursed Odysseus to wander the sea for 10 years which he lost most of his crew and returned home with others. The witch-goddess, Circe turned half his men into swine and fed them cheese and wine. Odysseus encountered the spirit , Elpenor; unnoticed by others and summoned the spirit of the prophet Tiresias for advise on how to appease Poseidon upon his return. He met spirits of famous men and women. Anhilles told him about the land of the dead. On another voyage, Odysseus didn’t drown because he listened to the song, was to the mast and told the sailors not to untie him. Odysseus prayed. When Zeus punished them they suffered a shipwreck but Odysseus clung to a fig tree above Charybdis. Odysseus got stuck on an island of Ogygia as Calypso’s lover. He was  homesick, bored until she was ordered by Zeus to release him. He didn’t know how long it would take him to get  home and to his family so, with the help of Athena, he disguises himself as a beggar named Telemachus to escape an ambush of his wife’s suitors. He reunites with his father and reveals his identity to him. Disguised as a beggar, Odysseus, arrives at his palace and Penelope sees a resemblance between the beggar and presumed dead husband. Knowingly, she proposes to, at last, marry the suitor who wins the contest. With confidence, Odysseus is the only that can pull off the feat; she had no worries. Odysseus wins contest, kills the suitor, Antinous, leads the massacre of the suitors and finally reveals his identity to  Penelope and Ithaca is at Peace.

Now, Knowing the the adaptation of  The Odyssey, I could relate to the play, Anon(mous) much better. This play I feel was not about refugees, some made it here and made a life for themselves but others like Anon, his mother, Nemasani, along with others, were trying to make it but all were traumatized by war while trying to escape to America. Once they survived the ordeal of breaking that barrier of entering into the US, they still have another war to fight. A war of mental illness like trauma, any negative life event like war, natural disaster, rape, loss of a  family, can generate as many symptoms of post traumatic stress disorder (Freeman, Daniel. & Freeman, Jason. Anxiety: aVery Short Introduction. Oxford. 2012. p.105)

I came to this  conclusion by reading The Odyssey and  Anon(mous). In The Odyssey, there were many Gods, Goddesses, spirits, the Sirens-enchantresses who lure sailors to their deaths with their beautiful voices, so I came to the conclusion that Anon wasn’t suffering from Schizophrenia. He sounds more of an individual that was traumatized by the flashbacks, memories and sound of war. For example, when he was alone at night in part 2 and he’s talking where he from there was, he describes the  bombs, M16, the air smelling like death, the sounds of war…

One of the Post traumatic stress disorder symptom is Reliving Traumatic Event: This can take the form of nightmares or flashbacks, when the person feels that they are right back in the midst of the horror. Thoughts of the trauma constantly recur, no matter how doggedly the person tries to forget. Distressing memories can be sparked by the smallest things – perhaps a particular sound or smell, a place, or the look on someone’s face. (Freeman & Freeman. Anxiety: A  Very Short Introduction. Oxford. 2012. p. 104).

Not only did Anon suffered from these flashbacks and memory of war so did Nsareen, Ali  and Ritu, so, I feel that in this play most refugees suffered from trauma  and PTSD. Nemasami was suffering from sexual harrasment from Mr. Mackusnand not knowing whether her son was alive or dead. This also falls under the category of PTSD.

When Anon sees Naja, this could be a severe form of PTSD with Psychosis. This is the main reason why I went back and read the playwright which lead me read the epic poem, The Odyssey.

Since Anon missed his hometown, was on the search of his mother, didn’t feel comfortable i anyone’s home, saw a human being get killed and almost got killed himself, I feel all these were traumatic events which would definitely lead him to a life with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has three levels of symptoms:

  1. Mild Symptoms: anxiety, nightmares, avoidance of stressful events.
  2. Medium Symptoms: social withdrawing, depression, mild flashbacks of the stressor
  3. Severe Symptoms: psychosis, reliving the events,extreme physical exemptions   Robert, Catherine. The signs, symptoms and causes of PTSD. March 18

I found most interesting, that Ms. Naomi didn’t give Anon a name or much details like where his mother or himself  in the Odysseus, the main character, Odysseus, had several different names, a palace, hero, wife named Penelope, knew his father, and earned respect. Nemasani, which was called Penny was his mother. Penelope – Penny, too coincidental. There was killing in both.  The princess keeps him prisoner for a short term. Sounds like what Calista wanted? Cyclops said that Nobody blinded him. Nobody is one of Odysseus names and when the chorus sings in the Anon(mous) it is similar to  when the Sirens sing. The Odyssey gives you a the name of the war and a time frame. Also, you know they are Greeks, he’s married, get’s to go back home, get reunited with his wife and father.

Odysseus means “trouble” in Greek referring to both the giving and receiving of trouble. His trait is cunning intelligence – “metis”. He is described as “peer of Zeus” because his intelligence is manifested by use of disguise to alter his appearance. Also by his use of deceptive speech when he told Cyclops Polyphemus that his name was Nobody. Cyclops  Polyphemus yells Nobody is hurting me when other Cyclops asks why he’ screaming. Lastly, Odysseus shows arrogance and pride(hubris).

Anon is somewhat similar to Odysseus because they both struggle to go back home. Anon finds his mother at the end. They both get into altercations, experience dealing with goddesses, shipwrecked, have the same name Nobody, use cunning intelligence and deceptive speech. They both have to deal to with situations with the opposite sex that they really don’t want to. Dealing with war, natural disaster, and getting out of dangerous situations I believe they both suffered from trauma.

Final Assignment

Dear people,

I am writing this to you in an effort to address a serious issue that has been coming up a lot recently. The issue of Islamophobia has been a major topic in our present time. With a lot of violence going on from terrorist attacks and bombings, Islamophobia is increasing because many people tend to lean to one side of the story in blaming the people behind these brutal attacks and the media is to be blamed. Whenever an act of terror or a shooting takes place, many of Muslims watch news and the media coverage with fear hoping that the suspect is not a Muslim.It’s not the that the suspect is more likely to be a muslim but with the unfair media coverage on terrorism and labeling the suspects.It seems like it is more outrages and biased whenever an act of terror occurs by a Muslim rather than it’s by other races. In the comic book “Ms.Marvel”, the main character is Kamal, a Muslim Pakistani-American superhero, and a teenage girl who struggles with her identity because of her faith and family. Kamala makes a significant reference to an important belief that she learns from her family and faith.This belief comes from the holy Quran.Before Kamal started saving lives she mentioned a small verse from the Quran when she said “Whoever kills one person, it is as if he has killed all of mankind and whoever saves one person, it is as if he has saved all of mankind.” This small teaching of the Quran that Kamal and millions of muslims believe in is important to prove that Islam is a religion of peace and terrorism does not belong in Islam. As a Muslim, I’m tired of condemning terrorist  attacks being carried out by sick and vicious people.It is frustrating having to explain that  people use Islam for their nonsense ideology when in reality Muslims are being murdered by the same terrorists.It is unfair seeing many attacks being carried out not getting the same media coverage and labeling for the reason that the suspect is a non-Muslim.I’m tired of seeing a religion of 1.6 believers get blamed whenever a terrorist attack occurs.Islam is a law, and a system.And a Muslim is an individual who makes the profession that they belong or they are attached to that system. Having said that, do you judge a system by the people who say that they are a part of it?,No you don’t.For example, you can’t not blame a entire car company for accident that was committed by a reckless driver who made the wrong actions and choices.Therefore, it is unjustified to blame a whole religion because of wrong actions taken by violent people. All things considered, we can all agree that terrorism is a dangerous threat.However, it is not right to blame an entire faith to the actions of a small portion of people who hijack the name of the religion to spread their violent objective.As a Muslim, I beg you all to not ignore the facts and to always look at issues from all different sides.We can not let the media coverage propagandize us from the truth and create hatred among us.



Fouzi Nagi

New York City


Artist Statement


Throughout this project I learned to write a well and organized letter. I also learned to use my own thoughts and experiences to make a good argument.Another important lesson I learned is to always  look at problems from different perspectives.Lastly, I learned that there are deep and hidden themes in sentences.I could use some of these things that learned in different ways.For future assignments, I will spend more time reading sentences to extract the main ideas.I could also use my thoughts to expand on arguments to make theme more persuasive.I chose to write a letter on “Islamophobia” because there was an important part of the comic that was relative to this topic.As a Muslim, a letter to address Islamophobia is was necessary especially in our present time.I think writing a letter to people to address an issue was important and it helped me to analyze the comic more because I can relate to the topic.I could have pushed my analysis further by providing more arguments and examples.The rhetorical choice that I did was including real life and logical reasoning to support my argument and I think it made my thesis more effective.For my future assignments I will bring some rhetorical insights like using my own experiences, using logical reasoning, and deep explanation of the argument.

Artist statement

Throughout this project I learned how I create imagery in my passage. This really helps my reader feel exactly what I’m pointing towards. I wouldn’t say I didn’t learn anything I always learn from my writing and along with improving my literature. I can always use what I learned in class to help me always write not only good poems but great essay analysis also cause I learned overall a ton of work having to do with writing in this class.

I loved writing poems for analysis cause it give me the creative space to use the same topic but to style it up .I could of pushed my analysis further by writing even more .Rhetorical questions I put in my poem was mrs.marvel questioning what the girl who judges her sees.The process of peer review pushed my  analysis forward because It helps me stay on track with my topics and gave me ideas towards my writing.  Rhetorical questions I will always use in the future have to do with equality and racism.

The Interview

The Interview

Three potential candidates attend a panel interview for a position at Mella Co.
The interview takes place in the company’s high-rise conference room that features a grand display of graffiti and murals of historical black figures. Seated around the large conference room table is Head of HR, IMANI; Director of West Indian Affairs, JEVAUN; and VP of Urban Development, D’ANDRE.

ENTER MARQUIS, 24, handsome fair-skinned biracial (Jamaican/English) man from Brooklyn, NY. Has a B.A in New Media. Head full of dreads neatly cornrowed, wearing a crisp white button down black slacks and dress shoes.

Morning all (with a pleasant smile)

The panel nods with a smile at MARQUIS as he takes a seat.

ENTER KATY, 24, pleasant looking white woman from Manhattan, NY. Has a B.A in Business Administration. Shoulder-length blonde hair in a neat bun, wearing a pale blue blouse and black pencil skirt and appropriate black work pumps.

Good morning everyone! (with a full smile)

JEVAUN stifles a chuckle as IMANI shoots him a sharp look before looking at KATY as she takes a seat.

Good morning

D’ANDRE nods with a slight grin.

ENTER TERELL, 26, hard but attractive looking man from Queens, NY. Has an A.S in liberal arts. Neat and tapered dark caesar, wearing a red Polo sweater, black jeans, and black ACGs.

What’s good y’all.
(Proceeds to give D’ANDRE & JEVAUN daps, and gives IMANI a deep nod)

Morning (nodding back to TERELL)

TERELL grabs a seat as KATY gives him a slightly incredulous look.

MARQUIS leans across KATY to give TERELL a fist bump as they nod at each other.

TERELL reaches out to KATY to shake her hand. She hesitates at first but accepts it.

Okay, let’s get started.
D’ANDRE, KATY, TERELL, thank you all for coming.
If you’ve never participated in a group interview before, it can be quite awkward at first.
We are aware of that. Being that we’re still a developing company, we are using this process to efficiently fill positions with qualified people. I encourage you to speak freely, but with consciousness that another candidate will have to answer as well.

In other words, try fi keep yah answers dem brief.

KATY squints at JEVAUN but doesn’t say anything, while the other two candidates nod.

Let’s jump right in.
What do you know about this company?

I’m aware of how popular your organization has become. Mella’s revenue has grown by 27% over the last year, mainly due to how much you appeal to ethnic groups.

Oo you ah talk bout ethnic, yuh funny.

Umm, thank you?! (with an awkward smile)

TERELL rolls his eyes.

Y’all are revolutionary. Black folks ain’t never had a mainstream company they could vibe with that ain’t tryna sell them clothes or Hollywood dreams. I feel y’all.

I agree entirely. Your company has a culture that resonates with me, and I believe, the entire black community. Education is important, and the type of education that you are giving inner city youth and their parents stuck in the black hole we call the hood, is invaluable.

For sho. I’ve seen some things… It changes you. You gain a perspective of life that can harden you.
Mella allows you to take a step out of the hood even if you’re still chillin on the couch.

I can’t say that I can relate. I came in knowing that I may be a bit out of place. However, it never hurts to have some diversity in your company. Especially when the right individual can appeal to a wider range of people. I have experience in marketing as well as public relations and I believe I can help company branding.

D’ANDRE raises an eyebrow.

Oh really? What do you feel is lacking in our branding? Diverse faces?

Well… Yes. I love the message Mella is looking to spread. I think it would be beneficial to humans of all races. I can be more than just a token, I am highly qualified and…

Qualified?! My girl you nuh undahstand a word mi ah seh since yuh comyah.

IMANI clears her throat.

Erm… I, uh…

If I may. I think there’s a huge misconception that seeing a bunch of dark faces on an ad means that it lacks diversity. Black people span nations and are so underrepresented in some countries that you’d think we don’t even exist there. An Afro-American, Jamaican, and Nigerian are all from very different cultures. I love that Mella tries to bridge the gap between each to foster a community that will uplift us all.

Word! How many white people you see on these shows. Talkin bout, I’m this that and the third? I get it, I mean, you get an Irishman, an Italian, an Australian and a Dutchman and boom, diversity, right? To us, we just see wypipo. Ain’t nothing wrong with having something for ourselves.

This company gives the world a chance to get to know and love us. As more than just melanin.


D’ANDRE smoothly applauds.

Well said, my brother. We here at Mella are looking to create an image of what we could be without losing the soul and the very essence of what we are. What makes us, us.

Speaking of image… KATY, have you ever considered a perm to give your hair some sort of volume or texture?
The policy of our company requires employees to keep a professional look in line with our culture.
The texture of your hair is too… Eurocentric.

It would also help if you could consider some tanning salons.

KATY looks absolutely horrified.

My hair and skin color has nothing to do with my qualifications and my ability to do the work required of me! I am an excellent market researcher. I have recommendations! I…

Ah whoaleap ah otha people wi can pick weh can do di work. Why wi fi pick you?


TERELL snickers.

He asked why should they choose you if there are others who are a better fit, culture-wise.

KATY ponders. She needs work. She’s quite desperate for work, she’s been on interview after interview. She knew there was a good chance Mella wouldn’t accept her because well, she’s white. However, she thought that if she could show how great of a candidate she was, they’d be stupid not to hire her.

KATY, I’d like you to take a look at the men sitting around this table. I’d like you to think of the places you have worked, the places your parents have worked. How likely would it be, that any one of them would get a job at any of those other places… over you?

KATY looks around. She sees MARQUIS’ dreads but thinks of how articulate he his. But… his dreads. She immediately dismissed TERELL. D’ANDRE and JEVAUN, their names alone wouldn’t have even gotten them a phone call.

I understand. I do, but I really do think the company is amazing. I would work really hard…

TERELL quickly interjects.

Maaannn listen. I’ve been workin hard my whole life. You’re preaching to the choir miss.

Mi know mi work. That’s all I’ve been doing from Day 1. It’s what you do when you’re trying not to be a statistic. It’s all most of us know. I’ve never been on a family vacation. I have been able to go to places my darker family could not. The whole time there I’m defending one half of me while trying not to offend the other.

Pfft. Man at least you can go to those places. I wish I could pass sometimes. As far as family vacations go… First, you need family. Second, you need money. I know two types of homies. The ones who try and do it the right way, and ones who need to do it the quick way. Vacations with your moms and pops when you’re young is like a myth in our community.

We’re looking to change that. I’m not going to sit here and say white people don’t run into life problems. That’s an incredibly ignorant thought. However, I will say this. You take an impoverished black boy with a “typical black name” and an impoverished white boy with a “typical white name”, clean them up real nice, give them the same education, and send them on an interview. Unfortunately, the white boy would 9 times out of 10, maybe even 10 out of 10, get the job. That’s just how society is.

Yes. A suh tings set. At Mella wi nah look fi handouts. We are the giving hand.
For wi brotha an sista dem.

We’ve definitely built mad stuff for the man.

The idea behind Mella is to end the “woe is me” complex. We can’t forget where we came from. We are a broken people, but we’re looking to fix that ourselves. We won’t be upset about white people portraying us incorrectly. It doesn’t make sense to expect someone who doesn’t like you to paint you in a good light. We will illustrate ourselves, educate ourselves, build our own homes, discipline our own children, write our own stories, love ourselves, and in this case, please do not take offense because we are choosing to hire ourselves.

To be honest it seems like the culture of our company would overwhelm you. I also don’t want staff to feel they’d need to conform to a certain type of speech because you’re around. You’d be surprised how quickly employees would code-switch. I want them to be themselves at all times.

Mi nuh wah people inna dis department yah fi be trifling fih nuh white gyal tek dem promotion.

I…I understand. Thank you for sharing your honest thoughts with me. I wish your company much success, and when you feel you’d like to collaborate with Caucasians, I’d love to be considered.


D’ANDRE claps hands together.

Alright! Thank you, my brothers for coming!

You’ll hear from us within the next two weeks with our decision. Thank you for coming.

JEVAUN nods at both men and stands up to leave.

ALL EXIT the room.