I’m currently collecting data for my thesis. I’m writing on the Chinese Dream and what university students are willing to do to achieve it. I’ve always been fascinated with the American Dream and decided to see if there was an equivalent in China. There wasn’t much talk about it until Xi Jinping used it in a speech in late 2012. It’s now a popular slogan used EVERYWHERE. It’s actually been used so much that when I told my students I’d be writing on it, and needed them to take my survey, they were not excited. I explained that I chose the topic before it was popular and my reasons why. After that they were more interested. Haha. I’m excited to see what information I gather from the students over the next couple of weeks.
Matt and I have one month left in our semester and a bunch of assignments due in that time. Our final project in our Practicum course is an artistic representation of our year. I love Humans of New York and have been inspired by Brandon’s portraits with accompanying stories. I don’t speak Chinese, so I’m not comfortable walking up to strangers to ask for a chat and a photograph, but I’m able to communicate with my students. I’ve been wanting to photograph them anyway because I’m going to miss them when we leave. I decided recently to couple my personal project with my practicum project and get moving! My goal is to get 100 portraits in the next three months. I haven’t been consistent with projects this year, school work always gets in the way (ha!), but I’m determined to do my best on this one.
When I photograph the students, I’m going to be asking them about both their personal dreams and their dreams for China. I’m so excited to see how this goes!