The “Problem” with Apu

“The Problem with Apu” Ending Analysis

In his movie documentary, Hari Kondabolu analyzes the “Problems” with Apu and the racial representation and weight that Apu has carried over through the decades.

In the closing monologue, Kondabolu reiterates his point of view on this character. He gives an analogous paragraph comparing “The Simpsons” to a “Racist grandfather”. This analogy illustrates an example for the reader that is easily relatable to a very wide audience. A grandpa (as I’d like to call it) are our elders and that we inherently have a respect for them as they’re crowned the most important (alongside grandmas and children) within a family hierarchy. The implications of having a “Racist grandfather” hits very close to different readers. The addition “Maybe it’s time he dies” also lends to a certain amount of shock value to the audience as they probably won’t expect such a statement.

The second paragraph is a short anecdote that Kondabolu decides to bring out. Featuring his own mother, Kondabolu complains about the living conditions that his family faces “Take that dot off your head” or “why don’t you shut up and make me food?”. Similar to his take on Apu, a younger instance of Kondabolu vents anger towards his mother instead, possibly for being so racially stereotypical in accordance to Apu’s own character flaws. This build possible sympathy for the generation previous to Kondabolu’s such as his parents for the amount of hardships that they faced not only at home, but possibly in the ouside world as well.

November 2019, Socratic Seminar Reflection

“ABC” Socratic Seminar, November 4th.

For this socratic seminar, we were divided into group and each group was given different chapters to focus on. Each group was given a set amount of time to present and share their ideas. Our group was given chapter 4 and 6.

Not surprisingly, every group presented ideas that were both new and surprising to me. It allowed me an amount of insight to how they analysed literary and artistic imagery used in their given chapters. One fact that I found most interesting was group 1’s socratic seminar. One our classmates in this group had prepared extremely well for this occasion and thusly was able to direct the seminar in really academic manner. I believe that all of the groups had civil discussions no one really dominated any conversation.

My group consisted of four people, including myself. I believe that the time we were given leading to our socratic seminar helped prepare us for this seminar. During the presentation, everyone else was extremely respectful to each others’ ideas. We were able to build upon these ideas. Depending on the topic, the conversation was lead by different individuals.

From my own perspective, I’m satisfied with the diversity and amount of notes that I had prepared. One fun fact that I shared to my group-mates before the presentation was a scene of Wei-Chen taking care of the animals. Because we know that he is a monkey, he is able to identify that the monkey in the cage is ACTUALLY a guy. This is a cool detail that I noticed. Overall, I was able to present most of what I had gathered and am happy with the results from our socratic seminar.