The autumn term ended in November, and the winter term will start on this Friday.
So before new classes start, I'd like to look back what I learned and thought in last term.
In autumn, I took semiology class. We studied about sign and symbol, and those relation to linguistics. And as its assignment, I wrote a paper about "invisible minority."
In the class, we had several guest lecture, and one of those was dealing with oversymbolization of the Great East Japan Earthquake in 2011. The disaster caused massive damage, and a lot of the media brought up it with using symbols like "Fukushima" or "Tohoku." But the lecturer raised a question about that issue, because such overuse of symbols may cause stereotypes of its image, and overlooking the real problem among the victims, like mental issues.
Related to the lecture, I thought about the situation in minority groups. Forming groups and claiming for their rights might appeal their existence, but it may also cause a creation of another "invisible minority."
Sexual minority, for example, has come a long way to acquire a right in society. But as minority groups like homosexual people became visible, other people, such as bisexual or nonsexual people became invisible. Now the term, LGBT is widely accepted, but can this category include all minority people? Isn't it making fixed image, and preventing other people from recognizing different personality?
These term or image may facilitate general recognition, but I think this attitude will also facilitate stereotypes. As each person has different character in majority groups, minority people too, have different personality.
I believe that we should claim rights as a person, not as a group, and everyone should strive to recognize each personality.
But we can't help getting fixed image through media, like in the case of the disaster and minority groups, so I think direct communication is the only way to overcome them.
We should not just accept information, but learn it at first hand.