What is the Battle of Cowpens? I never learned about this battle. When I hear American Revolution I think about the Battle of Lexington & Concord or Battle of Bunker Hill. Therefore, when I first arrived at Cowpens I immediately felt out of place. I felt a little bit of guilt that I was detached from this history. Apparently, this battle is taught in the South as my friends from the South knew about this battle. I grew up in Chicago and learned differently apparently. Therefore, this leads to wonder why were such battles were not mentioned in Northern textbooks. As well as, why certain narratives were mentioned during our visit and not the stories of the minority told? Only a specific narrative was being kept alive and it was not of those who have a minority background.
When I arrived there to me it looked like a forest. The location needs to integrate more tour guides and integrate more diversity in order to have a better audience. Although, the people who fought were predominately white their weapons and help to win the battle stemmed from minorities. The fact that minorities were not mentioned at all, proved to me how stories can be molded and twisted to hear one specific side of the story. This realization made me scared as I always believed everything I was told especially growing up but one must question what they are told at all times. That is something that I’ve learned since taking Humanities and that is to always question everything and expand the human experience to everyone, not just a specific group.
Growing up in the great city of Chicago I know through the public education I received no word of the battle at Cowpens was mentioned. However, in the South, it is something very important in their history and is taught in their school system. This is something that needs to be addressed in order to better us as a society and better our future generation of learners.
Additionally, it was obvious that they only cared about the audience whose ancestors were impacted by this battle since the audience was not intended for Davidson College students. In fact, we added more diversity to the audience. Therefore, the fact that this is for a particular group and excludes the voices of the minority is what made me feel excluded. These feelings of exclusion are what makes the history of Cowpens so absent rather than known.
I am forever thankful for the Humanities Program taking me to Athens, Greece. As a first-generation, low-income college student I would have never had the opportunity to study abroad at the ease that I did with the help of the Humanities Program at Davidson. This was the first time I had ever left the country and left with a group of my peers to learn about their culture and engage in intellectual work.
Athens was a once in a lifetime experience and am so thankful to have been able to go. We explored the culture and history surrounding Athens and it was fascinating. It was like a dream come true since I’ve read so much about ancient Greece! Going to the Pantheon was amazing and have a class in the ruins was so surreal. It shocked me how I was able to engage with past history while being lectured to.
Not only that, but the phallic culture present truly shocked me. I never knew how idolized the phallic culture in Athens was. This leads me to ask so many questions about homosexuality and I found it interesting how a majority of intervals within the queer community remain closeted. During my stay, I asked our tour guide about the phallic culture and he mentioned a parade that they through in order to honor the god of love and sex – Dionysus. The parade is large and a bunch of penises is all over.
The trip was also amazing we got to explore the culture and what a typically Greek person would do. We did do some touristy things but we walked the paths where typical Greek people would walk. We took a boat to an island which was also amazing. I have never been on a boat and would not have imagined the difference culturally it is.
In summation, Greece has truly changed my outlook in life and has made me curious about traveling back to Europe. I am truly fascinated in exploring the world and understanding different perspectives in order to better myself and engage fully in the human experience.
ALL PHOTOS PROPERTY OF LUIS CORDERO.