NCEA 3.4 – Writing Folio – Niqab

Be flawless’ written in white letters on the black poster above the classroom door. Walking into the full classroom was always the most horrifying experience of Hadiyahs school day. Everybody’s eyes lay on her as she stood on the threshold, taking a deep breath before walking to the empty desk in the back of the classroom. She pretended to ignore the facial expressions of her classmates as she passed them. They weren’t exactly her mates, more like people who accepted her existence in their class. She rushed to her desk, desperate to sit down without being the middle of all the attention. As she sat, Hadiyah realised she was still holding her breath.

Once her heart stopped racing, she realised how quiet it was. Too quiet. By the time she looked up, the classroom burst into laughter. Her name was in big capital letters on the board in front of her, slurs drawn around it like a mind map. She had heard it all before, but as always TERRORIST cut the deepest. “Don’t cry, don’t let them see your pain”, her sister used to say, “your eyes are the window to your soul”. In fact, they were the only thing that could reveal her feelings and emotions, since everything else was covered in her Niqab. She would give everything to be normal, just for one day. She wanted to be like all the other students. One day without being different, not being an outsider but instead, fitting into the school like a perfect match. In this society everybody looked the same except for the NSEs which stands for New Society Endangerer. The war against Middle East had pointed out that all Muslims were terrorists and must be kept in special Islamist camps, shielded by security guards with their bloodthirsty dogs at the gates.

Ms Millen entered the room, which stopped her thoughts and brought her back into the plain classroom. The teacher inspected the board, without showing interest in the repetitive action. Her eyes remaining cold and empty. Hadiya’s emotion bracelet turned orange, indicating her pain and anger. Calm down, she thought, do not let it turn red. She once saw the black/white police troop marching into the NSE camp, hoisting a man out of his apartment with a red light shining on his arm. His eyes were empty when they brought him back into the camp.

Pushing this thought to the back of her head, she tried focusing on the students around her. Everybody was wearing the same white uniform. Her black Niqab was standing out like a blemish on a clean plate. People think they want to be different but the truth was everybody wanted to be the same. Life was only enjoyable if you are flawless.

Holding that thought, she noticed the girl next to her which was wearing a pink hair-tie instead of a white one. Why on earth would she want to be different? Why would she put herself voluntarily in this position? Hadiyah felt the anger swell up to her head but her emotion bracelet reminded her  like a warn sign before entering a danger zone.

The girl had a choice and she chose to stand out while Hadiyah would give everything for one day of being just like the others. She imagined walking into the school with the white silk dress flattering around her body almost  as if she wasn’t wearing anything at all. The wind that arises while passing other students would swirl through her long brown hair, and she would walk along the corridor with elegance, pride and confidence. Being one in a crowd. Fitting into the school like a perfect match. Being flawless. Nobody could determine whether she was one of the other students or not. She could be normal. Maybe she would even have friends. She wouldn’t have to sit separate at lunch or in the classroom, fitting into the society would make her life easy and after time, they would even appreciate her as a person with a genuine personality.

The bell rang. The sharp sound cutting through the silence in her head. Indicating it was time to leave the class, but it was so much more. It was a wakeup call. She made her decision and one last look at the girls pink hair-tie reinsured her in her decision. This was her last day of being a spot in a flawless society.

Practice External

Good literature enlightens, great literature inspires action

  • Showing the truth, holding a mirror in front of us
  • Seeing what goes wrong and where we need to take action
  • Inform about things that you didn’t know before so u have to change it ( take action)
  • Cause u to think twice about what you read and how it may affects you
  • 1984 showed what could happen – surveillance
  • → it concerns me now and caused that i am more aware and take action for instance being more careful with my devices
  • Without reading it, we wouldn’t have noticed it in the first place

Reading a book can have the same effect on you as for instance holding a mirror in front of you. A mirror shows you how you really look, without a filter or cover up.

Books do a similar thing. Books reveal the truth and with this idea we open our eyes and see how our society really works and what is really behind the big face of a leader.

Those things are shown to us in the 1984 novel from George Orwell. We get confronted with the Big Brother as a leader saying “Big Brother is watching you”  but throughout the book we question if he is real or just a role that the government made up to manipulate its citizen.

Those concerns make us think about our own society and where we get manipulated.

We begin to open our eyes to what is obvious and even though we just read about a dystopian world, we ask ourselves if it is really so different from the one we are living in. 

The uncomfortable moments in a text teach us the most

  • Dystopian texts are so successful because of that
  • We remember it through emotions
  • We start paying attention
  • Maybe you question yourself why you feel that way
  • Maybe it relates to the real world and that is what scares you

The movie “Minority Report” directed by Steven Spielberg carries us into a society that seems so far from the one we are currently living in. The movie shows a dystopian future version of the world and how our society could develop.

Those features are brought to us in a disturbing way which makes us feel uncomfortable, even almost scared. We might find ourselves questioning why we are feeling that way in a particular scene. Maybe it is disgust or anxiety. Associating our emotions to specific moments in the film leads to a better memory of those scenes.

While asking why we might have those emotions we refer back to the film scene and try to analyse these by understanding the cause of our reaction.

With most things in life we have to experience them before we are able to learn or understand the depthful meaning of those. Having a bad experience or associating painful emotions with it, help us to learn from these because we do not want to feel that way again. 

Good decisions come from experience and experience comes from bad experiences. 

As this quote underlines the statement before, bad experiences help us to learn what we have to be careful about and where we need to take action. 

Quotes

“The terrible thing that the Party had done was to persuade you that mere impulses, mere feelings, were of no account, while at the same time robbing you of all power over material world. ” 1984, Chapter VII

Winston judges his own behaviour as a child since he blames himself for killing his mum and younger sister. He is not very emotional and could never understand why his mum gave him all their food even though everybody else was starving. 

As he groves older he thinks of his mum as being special because her thoughts and feelings belonged to her while she made decisions out of intuition. She decided on a morally base because she loved him even though it was not efficient and most likely her own death. Winston sees this ability as a useful and important skill because just you can say whats wrong or right and nobody can take this decision from you. 

The party took that away with persuading the people that they don’t have to think because they would do the thinking for them. It causes that the people can’t make a decision just out of intuition because those are not always the most smartest ones. 

To think and to make our own decisions makes us human and taking it away from us, takes a part of being a human away. 

If we dont have own feelings and our own thoughts, how do we know what we truly like or desire. 

Maybe it saves you from loosing time thinking bout stuff that is not important or protects you from making a wrong decision but it also takes your identity away.

“If you can feel that staying human is worth while, even when it can´t have any result whatever, you´ve beaten them.” 1984, Chapter VII

“And when memory failed and written records were falsified—when that happened, the claim of the Party to have improved the conditions of human life had got to be accepted, because there did not exist, and never again could exist, any standard against which it could be tested.” Chapter VIII

 

Quote

“All one knew was that every quarter astronomical numbers of boots were produced on paper, while perhaps half the population of Oceania went barefoot. And so it was with every class of recorded fact, great or small. Everything faded away into a shadow-world in which, finally, even the date of the year had become uncertain.”

The main character Winston from george orwells book 1948 themes in Chapter 4 in a quote how the population gets manipulated by the leaders.

Winston clarifies not just the significant fraud, he also states his opinion about the system he is living in.

Choosing the example of boots is a sign for how obvious the population gets manipulated because it just takes a little bit of intellect to notice the wrong numbers of produced boots if most of the people dont have shoes at all.

The last sentence of his quote makes clear that the system manipulates the people in multiple things and they dont even stop before changing the date of the year.

After looking closer on the language used by George Orwell in the quote it appears to me, he used the symbolic of a shadow to led up to the dark side of the human nature, emphasising the dystopia of the future.

A shadow world can be also an sign for a future without happiness and sun. It would be cold and odd. The reason he used a shadow world to express his feelings shows how much he fears it.

He used a strong impression which everybody can emphasise with. Shadows are normally linked to bad happenings without sunlight and related to bleakness.

New Generation

Yesterday I drove passed a high school on my way into a new town and i spotted a destitute girl walking home with a top shoving her abdomen and shorts which revealed her backside.

My inner voice was screaming in the back of my head trying to convince me to show compassion.

Her parents probably do not have enough money to pay her new clothes which is why she has to wear the same stuff for years even though she grew out of them.

So I pulled the car over and ran after her with my new bought blanket which smelled like my exclusive leader seat. When I had caught my breath I gave her my blanket because she must have been so cold and exposed. I offered her a ride in my sophisticated and extremely fashionable car because that is what well-behaved Gentleman do. She must have been so overwhelmed owing to my kindness which leaded to her preposterous reaction. Her expression was a mix of sceptical thoughts and a little bit of fear. I noticed her hand slipping into her bag. I persuaded her she would not have to remunerate me for my actions. The girl grabbed hairspray and sprayed it into my face.

Those children were more traumatized than I thought.

This town needed a hero! The perfect preoccupation for a selfless person like me.

I , Charles Carlo had a mission but all respectable and successful heros have a friend on their side.Shortly after the idea crossed my mind I already located a upper-class girl with gorgeuos tights and a revealing red dress. She must be related to a princess. I hastily went to her and tipped on her shoulder because I did not want to lose more precious time searching for an assistant.

Gracefully her head turned around and I was like struck by lightning.

Her lips were swollen and suck in dark red blood. Her eyebrows were two bars above her green and blue coloured eyes. They must have attacked her because she was the only person dressed presentable. Not just inadequate social performance, this town occupied seriously dangerous lunatics. I convinced the woman to take a seat and reassured her because her massive lips hampered her while she tried to talk.

I poured cold water over her face to reduce the swelling. Her skin and her eyebrows began to peel away so I attempt to dry it with a tissue. It seamet to get worse because now her whole face gleamed in different colours. The woman got upset and extricate herself from me.

The people around us started taking pictures and videos and encouraged me because they were so happy about a person who helped a victim of pure aggressiveness. I was a blessing for this town.

The police officers thought the same about my action because they helped me to get out of the crowd by holding my arms. At least they were dressed acceptly!!

I was planning to give light to other people as well.

 

 

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Chris Waugh