I found some relations between my project and Freire’s “Pedagogies of the Oppressed.” My manifesto is going to encourage Arab-Americans and Muslim-Americans to take action in reconfiguring harmful violent stereotypes by expressing themselves. Similarly, Freire indicates “while nobody liberates himself by his own efforts alone, neither is he liberated by others” (Freire 66). This quote ties in to my project because people of Middle Eastern origins cannot be passive and hope that their culture will be represented in the way they hope. Instead they must take matters into their own hands.
One way in which Arabs can reclaim their agency and shift the stereotypes of their violent nature is through acquiring media literacy. As Goodman notes in Youth Media, “historically, the way in which poor and marginalized groups have become visible… has been the acquisition of literacy in the dominant media field… [and] the dominant form of language has become the image” (Goodman). Therefore, I will encourage people to learn to deconstruct mainstream images and create their own media in order to truly educate the masses.
Similarly, Paper Tiger encourages creating alternative media if a group doesn’t like how they are portrayed. I would encourage Arab-Americans to follow suit and create their own programming in order to depict themselves as they want to.
In order to encourage participation in our manifesto, I encourage concerned Middle Easterners to create advocacy videos if possible. Although advocacy videos are time consuming and expensive to make, they can directly encourage participation since images establish a more personal connection to events and storytellers and defy language barriers. Participatory videos are also powerful and align with the mission of my manifesto. This medium acknowledges the variation in the individual experience, but also addresses the collective problem.