Text Review of “the 100” Season 2

Selected Work: The 100 Season 2 (TV series)

The 100 is a science fiction drama television series whose story setting is 97 years after nuclear holocaust devastated almost life on Earth. There mainly three races in season 2: Sky people who lived in a space station orbiting Earth, Ground people who are survivals on Earth after nuclear holocaust, Mountain people who locked themselves in fortress before the nuclear holocaust. Sky people have high-tech and plan to transfer from the space station to Earth. Ground people are almost primitive and brutal. Mountain people have high-tech, but they must stay in the fortress or wear suit because they cannot survive from radiation on Earth. The number of 100 stands for the 100 young criminals exiled to Earth from the space station.

The topic of the story is the conflicts between these three groups. When the 100 teenagers first come to Earth, they are attacked by Ground people because Ground peoples’ culture teaches them to kill any possible threats. In Ground peoples’ viewpoint, the 100’s identity is different from that of them. However, as de Beauvoir indicates in The Second Sex, “the other consciousness, the other ego, sets up a reciprocal claim”. Ground people are also othered by the 100 because they are brutal and primitive. After all Sky people land on Earth, they take over the lead of the 100 because they have more weapons and people. The 100 are stilled othered because they were criminals.

Mountain people arrest Ground people and extract their blood for survival and “other” them because Mountain people think Ground people are brutal and they are not the same kind of species. And the advanced technology enables Mountain people to treat Ground people as others, like de Beauvoir discusses how power relation constructs the concept of Othering. However, Mountain people initially want to make friends with Sky people because they think they all have many similarities and the same culture. The identity in their views is culture-defined.

However, when the conflicts between Sky people and Mountain people grows, Mountain people are exterminated at the end of the story by the united army of Sky people and Ground people. There are many innocent people are killed.

The story focuses on group difference. Every group has its own problem of survival and has to harm other groups in order to solve the problem. They all have “goodness” in human nature, but they have to do something “evil”. I think the author wants us to take away is: when there is no conflict, people define identity based on the number of similarities. However, when a conflict grows as a group issue or race issue, identity will be redefined. The final winner of the conflict is the one has much more power. And there will be many innocent people involved and being killed which is injustice and unavoidable.

Yo, Is This Sexism?

Xixiang: The phenomenon that women only occupy a small proportion of STEM fields has existed for decades. I think the opinion is divided over that if this is sexism. We can talk about this issue and analyze them deeply together today.


Haoxiang: Yeah, I also mentioned it in my Diary of Systemic Injustices. I found that some surveys indicate that, for STEM areas in America, the female worker only has 15% of the engineering workforce. The main reason behind this is women’s pregnancy will increase companies’ costs. Companies need to not only give them long-term maternity leave but also continue to pay their insurance fee. Meanwhile, during that time, companies need to find substitutes for them to remain the project in operation. Because of such concern, most companies in STEM fields prefer to recruit males. Do you think this is a kind of sexism?


Xixiang: I think we can’t deny that if the female workers in labor, it may cause the company to pay the higher cost to make her job done. However, I think that giving birth to the next generation should be the responsibility of all society, but not pushing this responsibility to just females. Also, we shouldn’t make them fall into a vulnerable group because of this irreplaceable contribution. Therefore, I think the case you mentioned should be classified into sexism.


Xixiang: I also noticed that some people hold the view that the amount of female students in the college who are studying the STEM major is significantly lower than the male students. Therefore, this naturally leads to the result that most of the STEM job positions are occupied by males. In other words, they think it is not caused by sexism, but just many female students didn’t choose STEM majors in college. What do you think?


Haoxiang: In my mind, the cause of this phenomenon is because many females know it is not easy for females to find a job in STEM fields which causes them to avoid STEM as their major in university. And I think it is a result of sexism. 


Haoxiang: However, there is another scenario. In general cases, males always have better physical strength than females, which makes males able to adapt to a high load working-environment. From that point, many people claim that the reason why many companies prefer to recruit males is that these companies only want to maximize their profits instead of having a bias on females. So they don’t think it is sexism.


Xixiang: I think I can’t agree with the people’s points you mentioned. Nowadays, most of the job positions in the STEM field don’t have a very high requirement for physical strength. For example, like software development, the most vital factor of brain power but not the physical strength. Therefore, although the average physical strength of the male may be stronger than the females, I don’t think hiring more male staff can help the company raise profit.


Xixiang: Following what I just say, some people also claim that the average level of the college degree of females is also lower than the males. Although we can say the difference of physical strength between males and females doesn’t count too much on today’s STEM working environment, in the field of brainpower, males still perform better than the females. Therefore, the reason why we see the company select more males than females is just that the male’s average education level is higher than the female’s. They don’t think it is sexism.


Haoxiang: It might be true that in the past decades males often have better performance than females because of educational differences. However, in recent years, some statistics reports show that the proportion of college-educated women has nearly matched that of men. However, as the proportion increases, the fact that it is difficult for women to find a job in STEM fields doesn’t get changed.


Xixiang: Yeah, from the discussion we just made, I think the phenomenon that male occupy much more workforce in STEM fields represent sexism. It reminds me of the class materials we have read in the first two weeks in this semester. As de Beauvoir says in her novel, “The Second Sex”, the male has always been on the more powerful side in the comparison with the female since ancient times. For instance, the male is referred to the Sun, but the female is referred to as the Moon. With the rise of the feminist movement in modern times, the status of the female has a significant promotion. However, the prejudice among females since the ancient age still exists in many people’s minds. The unfair treatment women faced in the STEM workplace can clearly represent this issue.


Haoxiang: Yeah, I totally agree with you. The reason why many people don’t think it is sexism is that they are a group of males who are Ones in our story. As de Beauvoir mentions in The Second Sex, “The other consciousness, the other ego, sets up a reciprocal claim”. Because males are not experienced in searching for a job as females, their point of view is different from females. They never have the dilemmas faced by females. The reciprocal claims against each other lead to that many males don’t think it is sexism but most females think it is.


Haoxiang: What’s more, decades ago, women’s rights had not been liberated totally before. The factors like educational differences and social prejudice against women’s work led most STEM jobs which require sophisticated skills to be occupied by males. And the sexism of it leads to the phenomenon that females are Othered in STEM fields. In order to solve the issue, in my mind, females also need to make efforts. Like de Beauvoir mentions in The Second Sex, “the Other is posed as such by the One in defining himself as the One. But if the Other is not to regain the status of being the One, he must be submissive enough to accept this alien point of view.”

Chinese School District House

By Haoxiang Dai

Education has become one of the most concerned topics for Chinese people, while Chinese house prices rose rapidly in the past ten years, leading to a systematic injustice overlapping these two fields.

House price in China has been unusual high for a decade or even more. For survival, people can just rent a house because rent fee is very low compared to the ridiculous house price. However, nowadays, many rules come out requiring people to buy a school district room otherwise their children cannot go to school. The rule also made requirements about the area of the room and the length of living time. It all turns out that whether children can get good educational resources has nothing to do with the children’s talent and endeavor. The only thing that matters is the wealth and social status of children’s parents. Education is already unfair for students before facing the so-called the most equitable “The national college entrance exam”. Meanwhile, the phenomenon forces all parents under the pressure of unusual high house price, extracting their hard-earned money to the pocket of real estate companies which represent a group of upper classes.

This instance reminds me of Spivak’s “Can the Subaltern Speak?”. Like Spivak points out that “the terms ‘people’ and ‘subaltern classes’ [are] used as synonymous throughout [Guha’s definition]” (page 26). The word “Subaltern” defines a group of people oppressed by power. In this case, general Chinese people are forced to afford the sky-high house price for their children’s future. Otherwise, they and their children will be considered as “Others”. As a result, there are so many Chinese families under the pressure of house loans and making money for real estate companies for decades. General people don’t have right to speak. They can only follow the rules made by authorities. However, the reason why it is systematic injustice is the government has strong relationship to these real estate companies. Through bonding sky-high house price with children’s future, Chinese families’ hard-earned money is extracted to authorities for decades. And what is worse, when these children grow up and get married, they have to face the same problem as their parents.

Link 1: https://www.sixthtone.com/news/1002882/chinese-parents-are-paying-a-high-price-for-free-education

Link 2: https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/07/04/china-cost-of-education/2489899/


Work Cited:

Spivak’s “Can the Subaltern Speak?”. Class Material.

Ni Dandan. (2018). Chinese Parents Are Paying a High Price for Free Education. SIXTH TONE. Retrieved from https://www.sixthtone.com/news/1002882/chinese-parents-are-paying-a-high-price-for-free-education

Calum MacLeod. (2013). Sky-high house prices surround China’s top schools. USA TODAY. Retrieved from https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/world/2013/07/04/china-cost-of-education/2489899/

History of the British Takeover of Nigeria

Nigeria is a country in West Africa. It was colonized by the British in 1884 and the colony is established at the Berlin conference which divides Africa by European powers. The British targeted Nigeria because of its resources. The British wanted products like palm oil and palm kernel and export trade in tin, cotton, cocoa, groundnuts, palm oil and so on (Graham, 2009).  The British accomplished the colonization by using its military. Although there was strong resistance from natives against the British, it was all crushed by the British. As a result, the trading post at the Niger River is created and the British economic rule is maintained over the colonies, exploiting Nigerians (Graham, 2009).

After the British conquest of northern and southern Nigeria and the merging of the two to establish Nigerian colonies and protectorate, the British seeks the best interests between direct rule and indirect rule. They will not hesitate to use the means of direct rule if they think that indirect rule cannot guarantee their colonial status. The divide and rule policy is always adopted by the British over the colonization of Nigeria. The consequences of the colonization consist of many parts. Politically, slavery was abolished. Economically, the tax system and transportation system deepened the British’s plunder and control over the economy in Nigeria. Culturally, the British controlled the religious culture in Nigeria through training a group of local people to spread Christianity in Nigeria, opening missionary schools, and other ways.

“Nigeria was granted independence on October 1, 1960 but the journey to achieving the right to self-government started seven years before when Anthony Enahoro moved the motion for self-governance in the British-led parliament in 1953. […] Foremost Nigerians like Obafemi Awolowo, Nnamdi Azikiwe and Tafawa Balewa who like Enahoro were some of the nationalists who fought for the country’s independence” (Omotayo). They were trying their best to convince their colonial Britain of the need for independence but prove and the capability of self-governance. They had to use their knowledge to prove this by presentation at the parliament and with solid logic. On the other hand, British need to consider the gain and loss from the Nigeria since British is under a turbulent era: Nazism in Europe was over, but Communism and the Soviet Union was increasingly powerful (America also). The available resources were limited, so it’s necessary for British to balance the risking of losing their power in the world.


Work Cited:

Katie Graham. (2009). “Nigeria: Colonization”. Retrieved from “https://hj2009per6nigeria.weebly.com/colonization.html”.

Omotayo Yusuf. (2017). “How Nigeria got its independence”. Legit. Retrieved from “https://www.legit.ng/1044956-four-nigerians-fought-britain-seven-years-won-pictured.html”.