Hey! My name is Matthew So, I am a Computer Science major, and I plan on graduating in 2022, assuming all goes well. Although for most of my life, I have lived in the U.S., for my earliest years, I was raised in Hong Kong, so there’s that.
Although I have, of course, taken English classes in the past, including AP English Language in high school, this is my first English class at Georgia Tech. However, as you may know, this class certainly diverges from most other English classes; for most, I remained unconvinced in my abilities to write, which led me to treat such classes begrudgingly, as only busy work to finish. As such, for me, I most enjoy non-verbal communication, since unlike most types, it remains hidden yet enhances other, more visible, communication modes; even the raising of an eyebrow can completely alter the connotations of a sentence. However, I still struggle with verbal and oral communication; it’s just that every word matters, and because of that, it’s difficult to balance both clarity and emotiveness, meaning that half the time, I act far too formally, causing me to speak nearly condescendingly or incomprehensibly, while in the other half, I become so informal that it outright becomes inappropriate (hopefully, this blog will address that). With this class, however, and the fact that this class involves significant interpretation of verbal and oral communication, since the class requires analyzing television, I’m confident that I’ll be able to become more aware of visual implications. Speaking of television, for me, I never really engaged with current TV, simply because I either couldn’t allow myself enough time or because none of the TV shows available on major networks at the time interested me. However, with many of the current TV shows that this class has introduced me to, such as Jane the Virgin and The Good Place, I believe that I might re-enter the realm of TV, especially with the wide variety available today (after all, this is supposedly “peak TV”).
As for the TV show to review, I have chosen Switched At Birth primarily due to its handling of not only class distinctions but also deaf/hearing distinctions as a television show from a national broadcaster in prime-time. The plot centers around two girls, Bay, and Daphne, the former of which was raised in a wealthy suburb and the latter of which was raised in an impoverished neighborhood and became deaf after contracting meningitis, which were, like the namesake, switched at birth. Overall, though, I’m excited for this TV show, especially considering the high representation of deaf or hard-of-hearing actors and actresses in this program.