When I decided to revise this paper, it was more of a review. It was a revision that touched up wording, reorganized sentences, and perhaps added or subtracted ideas if they seemed needed or obsolete, respectively. Although there was a lingering thought to reconstruct half of the paper, making it more form fitting to my portfolio theme, I found myself drawn to explaining this original idea: location and relatability. Perhaps I will find myself desiring to reconstruct the paper before the Final Portfolio is due, or perhaps my entire theme will change. Regardless, my original paper idea struck a cord with me when I wrote it, and so I wanted to elaborate to you, the reader, on why.
In the Humanities Program, we undergo many meetings that discuss our papers before they are actually due. These meetings are done with our section Fellows and section Professor. They are quite beneficial. With this particular paper, I was often asked two questions (among others, but these seemed to be asked every time, even from three different people):
- Did you find this challenging / Which was more challenging, Paper 1 or Paper 2?
- Tell me about your paper. What did you mean to say by it — what was the scholarly conversation you found and wanted to cover?
The second question is what propelled me to elaborate on my original paper, instead of reconstruct it completely. When I went in to my discovery, I went in with an open mind about any results that would come of the key search words. I was open minded to different conversations that I could find, and many focused on the idea of Lemonade, Béyoncé, and feminism. There was something internal that pushed me to keep on with my discovery, something that drove me to want to find a different topic. (Not that the link of feminism, Béyoncé, and Lemonade doesn’t deserve discussion, but I just seemed to want to write about something else. And so, I found myself on this one work by Amanda N. Edgar and Ashton Toone that discussed Lemonade and its foundations: Béyoncé’s meticulous selection of location and the relatability that comes from the stories she tells. Béyoncé makes the choice on location and makes a choice to be vulnerable with her audience in an effort to achieve relatability and have a greater impact. This scholarly work attracted me. This idea of the historical relevance of a place intrigued me. The idea of relatability from historical, generational racism (and personal pasts) caught my eye. And that is how my paper was born.
After finding this idea — this connection of location and relatability — I found myself delving deeper into discovery. I constantly had to revise search terms, I had to skim multiple works before I found even one that could be a part of this scholarly conversation. Even though it seemed like a harder conversation to cover, the historical past was a conversation that was less covered by scholars, but still talked about. Through a discussion with Dr. Denham, it was noted that although this conversation amongst scholars was perhaps not as drawn out as one on feminism, the recognition of a conversation scholars are having without even realizing it is crucial. It drew out a conversation that scholars were having indirectly through their works and putting them together— connecting their ideas that others may not have associated together. Edgar and Toone, along with other scholars, I was able to look at the historical aspect of crafting Lemonade.