I was reading Lyndsay‘s post “Exemplary Video” that discuses the use of camera angles and langueage in a short YouTube film, made by the Dove Cooperation. At the end of her post, Lyndsay links to another video by Dove, addressing inner beauty. I followed her hyperlink, and thought, “Ah, yes, what good messages this company is advocating. Beauty comes from within, and we must teach our ‘girls’ this message.”
Ok, so after I sat back and pondered and then I noticed a YouTube link to a video that looked very similar. The film started with the same shot, a young girl in the center of the screen. Only in this other film the young girl does not have white skin or blue eyes… I clicked, I watched, I listened.
Lyndsey states her intent to use the Dove films in her health class to teach identity. Indeed, Dove films are valuable teaching tools. During my Middle-Years Teacher Education Degree, with it’s focus on social justice, Dove films have surfaced often as positive examples of ways to promote positive self-concept. However, the films are, as well, one means with which I will teach my students the skill of Questioning the Author.
I can not teach my students to become socially responsive learners if they are not critical of what they read, listen to, or watch. Engaged citizenship demands that my teaching be rich in critique. My middle-years learners will benefit from learning that beauty comes from within, but they will own this message when they discover that though there are people who try to sell outer beauty, there too are those who commodity inner beauty. The real lesson here is having students take responsibility for the beauty they offer humanity. It is because students lack a global perceptive not necessarily a global ownership, it is “No wonder our perceptive of beauty is distorted.”
Below is the Dove film, Beauty Pressure. Next is the GREENPEACE film, Onslaught(er), that spurred this post…