An Energy Boost for Your Finals Week

By: Hayley Hasberger 

Online Section Writer 

Finals week is here and students are focused on studying, writing papers and completing projects. We’re all so ready to finish out the semester on a high note or graduate and move on to greater things.

Many students look to caffeine as their savior during this time, but there are many other options that can help boost your energy and keep you focused. It’s important to keep in mind that food high in calories and fat make the body more tired because they’re harder to digest and contain less nutrients that aid in energy production. Here is a list of healthy options that will keep you full of energy and ready to “crush it.”


Foods such as oatmeal and whole-grain cereals offer long-lasting energy. Whole-grains contain beta-glucan, which provides a more sustained energy release by delaying stomach emptying and the absorption of glucose in the blood. Also, as an added bonus, the vitamins and minerals in whole-grains such as B vitamins, iron and manganese work together to help the body metabolize and produce energy.


Yogurt, a simple and quick snack, includes the simple sugars lactose and glucose, which can provide ready-to-use energy. Similar to whole-grains, yogurt contains B vitamins that assist in energy production to fuel the body. The high amount of protein in yogurt slows down the absorption of lactose and glucose which makes it a perfect combination to provide a quick boost of energy that is long-lasting.


            To get their daily dosage of caffeine, many people prefer coffee over tea, however some teas like green tea contain the compound L-theanine. When this compound is combined with caffeine, it can lessen the negative effects of caffeine such as anxiety or the jitters that comes with drinking coffee. This will help increase your focus and be ready to tackle whatever finals week throws at you.


Not only are bananas an easy snack to carry around, they also contain B-vitamins, carbohydrates, potassium and fiber that assist in the creation of longer-lasting energy in the body.


Like yogurt, eggs contain protein which gives you a steady source of energy. Eggs also contain the amino acid leucine that stimulates energy production by helping cells absorb blood sugar and breakdown fat to use for energy


Hummus is made from chickpeas, sesame seed paste, olive oil and lemon juice, making it a food packed with carbohydrates, protein and fat. The carbohydrates give you a nice boost of energy while the protein and fat work to stabilize blood sugar levels by slowing down the carbohydrate intake for steady energy.


Nuts like almonds, walnuts and cashews are high in protein and healthy fats as well as carbohydrates and fiber that offer a sustained energy boost. Nuts also have vitamins and minerals that assist in converting food to energy and helping decrease tiredness.

Keeping in mind these healthy, energy boosting options, here are a few on-campus locations that offer snacks and beverages to fuel your body and mind:

  • MLC
    • Jittery Joes
  • Tate
    • Starbucks
    • The Market
  • Science Learning Center
    • Coffee and Bagels
  • Law School
    • Jittery Joes
  • Joe Frank Harris
    • Red Clay Cafe
  • Main Library
    • Tween the Pages
  • Amos Hall
    • Au Bon Pain
  • Veterinary Teaching Hospital
    • The Station





Eva Morón Fernández: The Whole World in Her Hands

By: Maggie Cavalenes

The problem with Eva Morón Fernández is that she’s “good at everything.” In school, she enjoyed history, chemistry, geography and would do math problems for fun when she was stressed. Of course, there’s also the fact that she speaks six languages.

“I don’t know how I got here,” Fernández said with a laugh when asked why she learned so many languages. “I kept adding languages without realizing.”

Fernández learned Spanish and English as a child in Calahorra, Spain, and picked up French from her father. She took German during her time at the University of Valladolid, using it when she went to Munich as an exchange student at the Fremdspracheninstitut der Landeshauptstadt München (Foreign Language Institute of the City of Munich). She began learning Italian in college as well, and added Polish along the way. The hardest of these was the latter, due to the fact it was the first Slavic language Fernández learned, making its grammar rules much different than that of a Romance or Germanic language.

She’s currently teaching herself Swedish when she “has time.” She can already speak it from living with Swedish roommates when she worked at Disneyland Paris, but she wants to learn how to write it.

Out of all the words she knows, her favorite word since she was little is “pistacho,” the Spanish word for “pistachio.”

“Pistach-I-o,” Fernández said, emphasizing the “i” that the English version includes, wrinkling her nose. “No, I don’t like that.”

Knowing all these languages can cause confusion, like forgetting the Spanish word for “settings” during a recent phone conversation with her brother as she tried to explain how to fix a problem on his phone.

She started dreaming in English two months into her time at the University of Kentucky, where she got her master’s in Hispanic studies before moving to the University of Georgia to start working on her PhD in linguistics.

“I was like, ‘woah, that’s new’,” she said, reflecting on the first time she woke up and realized she had been dreaming in English. Fernández sometimes dreams in French, as well.

“If I dream in French, and I wake up and have to talk in English to my classes, it takes me a while to process the language,” she explained.


On a Wednesday in March, Fernández walks in-between desks as the Elementary Spanish class works on their assignments, hands in the pockets of her dress as she answers students’ questions.

Fernández tells a student that Paco is short for Francisco, to which the student replies, “like Bill is short for William?”

Despite being in the U.S. since 2014, this is clearly a new fact to Fernández. “Bill Clinton’s real name is William?” she asks, eyes wide.

The students laugh and confirm that it’s true. “It’s a whole new world,” one student comments, and Fernández laughs along with them. IMG_3831

She explains the game of “yo nunca,” the Spanish version of “never have I ever,” and gives the example that she’s never been to Chick-fil-A (though she recently tried her first Pumpkin Spice Latte). This reveal sparks a lot of debate amongst her students, but she redirects them to the task at hand.

Fernández said the best part of teaching, when she thinks about it, is her students and the feeling of being useful. Between teaching her classes, going to her classes for her Ph.D. and studying, “teaching is the best part of my day,” said Fernández.


The first culture shock Fernández experienced was on her first day in the United States, when her roommates from the U.K. took her to Walmart. “That was the closest place I’ve ever been to Disneyland, I think,” she said with a laugh. “Everything is huge, everything is big. Food is also different, you have a lot of things of everything. If you want cereal, you have like 50 kinds of cereal, maybe more.”

Southern hospitality is another cultural difference Fernández has noticed since her move to the U.S.  “I think people are nicer here, in the sense that if you walk through the street here and you see someone, they smile to you and you smile back,” she said, a smile on her own face. “In Spain that doesn’t happen, if that happened – run.”

“I remember the first time I was at the supermarket, and they asked me like, ‘how was your day today’, ‘how are you doing’, I was like ‘no, you don’t know me, I’m new,’” she said, reflecting on her first days in the U.S.

“It is very hard to be funny in your second language, and she is super funny,” said Alexandra Lauchnor, another Spanish instructor at UGA getting her PhD in Hispanic linguistics who has been friends with Fernández for three years.

Fernández can’t drive, as the process to get a license is a lot more complicated in Spain than it is in the United States, and she spent the summers she could have spent taking classes working at Disneyland Paris. However, this hasn’t stopped her from getting to cities all over the United States, and around Athens in general. “I run pretty fast,” she replied to one student who asked how she gets around UGA without a car.

The cities in the United States that she’s visited and enjoyed include New Orleans, Memphis and New York City. Before (and if) she goes back to Europe, Fernández hopes to visit Washington, Philadelphia and Chicago. “I’ve never been to Chicago, I want to go so badly. I’ve been in the airport so many times. It seems so pretty, for some reason Chicago seems different [than other cities], and I heard pizza is good,” she said.

Fernández describes her choice to go to the U.K. for her master’s as the influence of an “inner Jiminy Cricket.” While most students spend a lot of time weighing options when it comes to their choice of college, when faced with three American universities to choose from, Fernández said she simply woke up with a feeling that she needed to go to Kentucky, and so she went. It was similar when she had the choice to go anywhere in Europe as an exchange student, deciding to go to Munich and calling that “the best year of [her] life.”

“I used to get nervous. I used to think ‘what will happen if I miss this train’ or ‘what if my flight got canceled’,” she said, when asked if all her traveling made her nervous. “Now, I’m used to flights being canceled and missed trains. So, yeah, I’m not nervous anymore. I’m curious. I’m really curious about meeting new places and new people.”

Despite now being in her second year at UGA, that curiosity hasn’t gotten her to eat at Chick-fil-A just yet.

Georgia Activist to Host book Launch Party

Jamaican immigrant Mokah-Jasmine Johnson is in the fight for racial justice.

February 14, 2018

Athens, Georgia—Artist and activist Mokah-Jasmine Johnson has spent the past few years of her life fighting for justice and building a movement in the college town of Athens, Georgia.

Now the activist and educator is set to release her debut book “Spirit of an Activist: Stop Sitting on the Sidelines” during a launch party at Cine (234 W. Hancock Ave., Athens, Georgia) on Wednesday, Feb. 21, at 6 p.m. The book is available for presale.

“I wrote the book to give an account of how a wife, mother and entrepreneur could become who I am today—an activist seeking social justice in my community,” said Mokah, who moved to Athens in 2011.  “I want people to know and understand that it only takes one event to stoke the fire and desire to make a change, but it can take a lifetime of experiences and allies to build a movement.”

“Spirit of an Activist,” tells Mokah’s story from her early days as a Jamaican immigrant to the United States, to her recent work in building the Athens (Georgia) Anti-Discrimination Movement in response to racial injustices not only in her hometown, but also across the nation.

“The police shooting and killing of Trayvon Martin woke me up, but surprisingly, six years later a drink called “Niggarita” made me jump into action,” Mokah writes of her first foray into local activism. The discovery of the drink on the menu of General Beauregard’s, a Confederate-themed bar in Athens — home to the University of Georgia — made national attention and spurred Mokah and her husband, Knowa, into action.

Part survival manual, part manifesto for the examined life and part biography, “Spirit of an Activist” is an honest and searching book that will inspire readers to actualize their potential as citizens during these desperate and politically fraught times.

Mokah’s voice is one of wisdom, experience, leadership, and love — with a parting message that we are all bound together as neighbors, no matter our differences.


For media interviews, please contact Lee PR at (678) 835-8497, or for more information visit

Mokah-Jasmine Johnson is an educator; activist; and music, media and marketing entrepreneur. She is a mother of four and grandmother of two. Mokah, along with her husband Knowa, co-founded the Athens Anti-Discrimination Movement, a grassroots organization that aims to combat discrimination through education and activism. She holds an M.S. in education, media design and technology from Full Sail University and a B.S. in marketing management. She is also the vice president and co-owner of United Group of Artists (UGA Live), a marketing, consulting and event production company. In January on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Mokah and her husband Knowa were honored by Georgia State Rep. Deborah Gonzales with a House Resolution honoring their community service.

Need an Excuse to Enjoy Chocolate this Valentine’s Day?

By: Hayley Hasberger 

Online Section Writer 

Chocolate…there are hundreds of combinations and ways to eat it. There are the basic varieties of dark, milk or white chocolate. The basics can be enhanced with nuts, toffee, extracts or spices. You can even consume it as a beverage or melted to create a fondue. Chocolate is also commonly found in baked goods such cookies, brownies and cake. There are just too many forms and possibilities of chocolate combinations to list them all. Yet, no matter what way you prefer your chocolate, it will always leave you feeling satisfied. If you needed another reason to love chocolate, cocoa has multiple ingredients that can be healthy for the body; as long you’re eating chocolate in moderation and not that entire 1 pound chocolate bar in one day.

It’s Valentine’s Day, and many people will be buying and gifting chocolates to their friends, loved ones or even themselves. Even though you may love to eat chocolate for its decadence, do you know its nutritious background?

The cocoa bean, and therefore cocoa, is a main component in the production of chocolate. Cocoa contains a large quantity of compounds called flavonoids, which are antioxidants. Flavonoids assist in reducing blood’s ability to clot by lowering cholesterol and reducing inflammation, in turn helping reduce the risk of stroke and heart attacks. The cocoa bean contains high quantities of soluble and insoluble dietary fibers. Cocoa also contains many essential minerals including magnesium, calcium, iron, zinc, copper, potassium and manganese, which positively contribute to our daily health.

Not only does cocoa contribute to physical health, but also mental health. Cocoa contains an antidepressant and stimulant called phenylethylamine that acts similarly to dopamine and adrenaline. If you really like chocolate, even tasting it can release dopamine in the brain that can boost your mood.

Because the cocoa bean itself contains all these nutrient compounds, the chocolate that is most beneficial for you to eat is dark chocolate. This is because dark chocolate contains the largest quantity of cocoa, and the more cocoa the better. On average dark chocolate contains about 70 percent cocoa, though there are some varieties out there that contain over 80 percent. On the other end of the spectrum, milk chocolate normally contains 50 percent cocoa, yet some milk chocolate candies can contain as little as 7 percent cocoa. Sadly, white chocolate only contains cocoa butter, which provides none of the nutrients held in the cocoa bean.

A drawback worth mentioning about the cocoa bean is that it is 50 percent fat, mainly composed of saturated fats. Therefore, chocolate itself is fattening because it also contains milk and large amounts of sugar. Milk adds to the fat content, which can affect cholesterol level, and large quantities of sugar are known to have negative effects on health such as weight gain. Also, you must take into account anything you are pairing with your chocolate such as nuts, toffee or fillings, all of which can dramatically increase the fat and sugar content. So, always be mindful of how much chocolate you are consuming and the quantity of cocoa in the product, since that is the healthy component.

Even though there are some negatives to chocolate, it has its positives too. So, continue to savor your chocolate fix, no matter how you choose to enjoy it. Valentine’s Day is a just another good excuse to treat yourself to a delicious cocoa product.




Tarte Foundation Receives Backlash for Lack of Diversity

By Kalah Mingo

Creative Director


The Tarte Shape Tape Foundation launched on Jan. 21 and retails for $39 online and in stores only at Ulta.


Recently, the popular makeup brand Tarte Cosmetics has been criticized for the lack of shade range in its launch of the highly anticipated Tarte Shape Tape Foundation. The brand’s newest release had big shoes to fill considering the success of the Tarte Shape Tape Concealer, a cult favorite. However, the new foundations fell massively short of expectations.

The initial launch included two different foundation formulas–hydrating and matte–each with 15 shades.To consumers’ disappointment, there’s an imbalance of shades with 12 varying shades of light to tan and only three deep shades catered to people of color.

Faniché Brown, a third year international affairs major from Darien, Ga., was one of Tarte’s fans that was disappointed in the new line, especially as a woman of color and makeup artist herself.

“It seemed that they put more effort into making sure the lighter shades varied in color and undertone in comparison to the three deeper shades that had the same undertone…,” Brown says.

Brown has done makeup as a hobby for more than five years and currently works as a freelance makeup artist.

Tarte explained that they have plans to expand the shade range with 10 more hues. Still, several popular beauty influencers such as Alissa Ashley, Jackie Aina and James Charles have denounced the product for the exclusive shade range that leaves out deeper skin tones.

Brown had planned on buying the new foundation until she realized the incomplete line didn’t come in her shade.

“…a brand as established as Tarte Cosmetics shouldn’t have launched a product if the line wasn’t complete,” Brown says.

Tarte fans and makeup lovers took to twitter to voice their discontent:







Tarte later released a statement on their Instagram story in response to the heavy backlash:

“It may be too little too late, but we can assure you this was not meant in any kind of malicious way. We all just got so caught up in #shapetapenation and seeing your tweets asking for it… We wanted to get the product out as fast as possible, & we made the decision to move forward before all the shades were ready to go. We know there is no excuse, & we take full responsibility for launching this way. We lost sight of what’s really important in this industry, & for those who feel alienated in our community, we want to personally apologize. We’re doing everything in our power to bring those unfinished shades to market as fast as we can, at any cost. We CAN and WILL DO BETTER.”

Soon after their statement, they released three more deeper shades in each formula, however, not everyone is satisfied with the quick fix:



Samrin Martin, a public relations major from Lawrenceville, Ga. was not appeased with the additions and suspects it was a marketing strategy.

“As a big brand, they know better,” Martin says. “I feel like this might have been a ploy to receive more attention due to all the backlash.”

Martin is passionate about makeup as she’s worked as a freelance makeup artist with Chanel for five years.

“… these shades are not adequate at all. It is not fair that women of color have to suffer because high-end brands think they are losing money by creating more shades for us,” Martin says.

With brands from Fenty to Huda Beauty, and many more taking the steps to create a more diverse and inclusive line of products, does Tarte have an excuse?

Brown has decided not to buy from Tarte Cosmetics anymore despite her love for their eyeshadows and concealer.

“I will miss my Shape Tape Concealer, but in good conscience,” Brown says. “I can’t support a brand that doesn’t support me.”

The beauty realm expects and demands better. Will the industry listen?

The Irony of the Black Vote

By: Nia Waller 

Online Section Writer 

Twitter exploded on Jan. 3, 2018 when Democrat Doug Jones beat Roy Moore for the Alabama Senate seat. In a state like Alabama that is traditionally red, Roy Moore should have seen an easy victory, but Moore’s race was littered with controversy. After announcing his Senate campaign, Moore was followed by several sexual allegations from various young women. Although many of our elected officials, even some in the highest offices, have still won elections with sexual assault allegations following them, Roy Moore’s case was special. Not only was he accused of dating young girls, Moore had been dismissed from two courts for what other judges interpreted as overstepping his bounds on religion stances. After being appointed as the Chief Justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, Moore installed a 5,200 pound marble statue of the Ten Commandments in the state judicial building. After refusing to take it down, Moore would be unanimously voted off of the court after only two years of service. In 2012, Moore would be elected again to the bench, and ousted again quickly after. In 2016, he was accused of urging Alabama state court judges to defy the Supreme Court decision declaring the right for gay marriage.

Despite a career filled with controversies and failures, Moore found himself backed by the President of the United States, Donald Trump. So, how was Moore defeated? The answer is simple: black people, specifically black women. While immediate exit polls showed that Moore still won 68 percent of the white vote, black people came out overwhelmingly to cast their vote for Doug Jones. Black voters lifted Alabama out of a two decade-long Republican rule. Although black people are only 13 percent of the population in the United States, black people represent 25 percent of Alabama’s population. The Democratic Convention focused on getting the message out about Jones’s time as a crusader against white supremacy, he prosecuted the white men that committed the bombing of the 16th Street Baptist Church. Black voters were especially energized about keeping Roy Moore, a candidate who proudly referred to the period before the Civil War as “great,” even though we “had slavery,” out of Alabama office.

So, what exactly is the irony in all of this? Most of the Twitter reactions on the Jan. 3 were users “thanking” black women for getting Doug Jones elected. Although the Democratic public and the Democratic Convention does have black women to thank for a shiny new Senate seat, what exactly have politicians done for black people in Alabama, or other Senators elected largely by black vote done for black people lately?

The Democrats have historically relied greatly on the black vote to put and keep them in office. Democrats are practically promised the black vote, without ever doing anything in return. Although the NYPD has stayed in the news for the past decade for beating and even killing its black citizens, New York always clenched a Democratic Senate seat with the help of the black vote. Poverty in Michigan is exponentially linked to the horrible job market for black people and an education system that doesn’t help black kids, but Michigan has remained a blue state since 1992. This phenomenon isn’t just restricted to Senators. While the black population of Atlanta celebrated the election of Keisha Lance Bottoms, one of its many black Democratic mayors, one of her first new polices greatly increased police presence and gentrification in a city that had long asked for the opposite. We get them elected, and they do the bare minimum, or sometimes nothing at all for us.

The last Presidential election helped showcase just how powerful losing the black vote can be. With the divisive words of Donald Trump, the Democratic Party was absolutely certain that they could clinch a win with the help of the black vote in pivotal states like Michigan. When the results came in, narratives poured in about why black voters didn’t turnout for Hillary Clinton as willingly as they did for Barack Obama. The answer was simple: she didn’t align herself with them. Black voters weren’t willing to forgive statements about black men being “super predators,” or her general lack of any true ability to relate to black women or men. Black people are no longer supporting those who don’t truly support them. No, they won’t vote for Republicans, they just won’t vote.

If Doug Jones wants to keep his Senate seat, he has to keep the black vote. Keeping the black vote means supporting the struggling Historically Black Colleges and Universities in Alabama, fixing the classically broken Alabama justice system and fighting voter suppression that barred many black voters from polls. If Jones and other Democrats want to ‘thank’ black women, they need to do it in statutes, not statuses.



5 Books You Might Have Missed in 2017

by: Diana Richtman

Entertainment Writer


It’s no secret that 2017 was a crazy year. With classes, work and campus life, there might not have been a lot of time left for much else. It’s important for college students to set aside time in their busy schedules for relaxing. Speaking from my experience, fiction reading is one of the best remedies for stress. Fiction offers escape and adventure into worlds potentially unlike my own and inspires empathy that can be helpful in navigating a world that at times seems more divided than united. If you’re trying to read more in 2018, consider checking out one of these five books that were released in 2017 that you may have missed.

1. “When Dimple Met Rishi” by Sandhya Menon

Dimple Shah’s parents are very traditional and really want their daughter to find an “Ideal Indian Husband”. The only problem? Dimple’s not on board. She’s more concerned with starting college than snagging the perfect man. Before starting school in the fall, Dimple attends a summer program for aspiring web designers. Unbeknownst to Dimple, Rishi, the boy her parents have arranged for her to marry attends the summer program too. Rishi’s job is to get Dimple to fall in love with him. In this rom-com novel, there’s sure to be a lot of love and laughs.

2. “Dear Martin” by Nic Stone

A more serious read, “Dear Martin” is about Justyce McAllister, who is one of the best in his class, and is set to attend an ivy league school. When he has a run in with the police, he turns to the teachings of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. for guidance. Justyce starts writing in a journal in which he addresses the entries to Dr. King. When Justyce and his friend attract the attention of a white off-duty police officer, shots end up being fired. In the aftermath, Justyce is the one who’s in the spotlight for better or worse.

3. “Dreadnought” by April Daniels

Although I haven’t gotten the chance to read “Dreadnought” yet, it sounds so different from anything I’ve read before that I can’t wait to get my hands on it. At the beginning of the story, Danny Tozer has one secret she’s trying to keep—she’s transgender. The action starts when she’s given the powers of Dreadnought aka the world’s greatest superhero. Those powers include transforming her body into exactly what she always thought it should be. Now, there’s no hiding who she is. Between coming out and saving the world, Danny is not the most typical superhero, but she’s arguably the superhero the world desperately needs.

4. “Shadowhouse Fall” by Daniel José Older

In the second book of Shadowshaper series, Sierra, the teenage hero everyone wished they could be, is back creating more art and working with more spirits. If you haven’t read the first book, be sure to check it out before picking up this one. In this sequel, Sierra and her friends fight more evil spirits and the gentrification of their neighborhood in Brooklyn.

5. “We Are Okay” by Nina LaCour

This novel is the epitome of short and sweet. It’s the perfect length if you don’t think you have much time for reading. Marin leaves everything behind when she leaves her home in California for college in New York. It isn’t until winter break when her best friend Mabel comes to visit that she finally confronts the tragedy she’s been running away from. This book is an important reminder in the new year that sometimes it’s better to confront what scares us than run from it.

It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year: Getting Through the Stress of Finals Season

By: Hayley Hasberger

Online Section Writer

Finals is a time of studying, procrastinating and cramming. Whether you have essays and projects or exams to study for, it is important to focus not only on your school work, but yourself. Everyone has a different way of studying, but you shouldn’t let your studies negatively impact your mental and physical health during this stressful time. Below are just a few tips according to the UGA Health Center to help get you through finals season.

Take Breaks: Whether you study better in short or long increments, it doesn’t matter. Breaks help your mind absorb the information, and make you feel physically better while studying. Taking a break does not have to be a long, extravagant event. Do something simple to give your mind a break, such as venturing out to get a small snack or sweet treat, watch a show, listen to some music or go for a walk, the list and combinations are endless. Another option is more involved activities like exercise (running, biking, yoga, weights, climbing, etc.), which helps increase your ability concentrate and improves sleep quality.

Sleep: Get a good night’s rest not only the night before your final but all the days leading up to the big exam. Sleep deprivation can affect both your mental and physical health, so make sure to get enough rest for the best results.

Eat and drink water: Even though you are spending valuable time studying, it is still crucial for your body to have its necessary nutrients to help function properly. Stress can weaken your immune system, and one step to help combat this is to focus on your nutrition. By not taking the time to eat complete meals or drink water, you are hindering your brain function and capability. Water helps provide oxygen to your brain, therefore if you find yourself yawning during studying time and can’t remember when you last had a glass of water, your body may be dehydrated and unable to function at its best.

Remember to be nice to your body and mind during this intense time, you deserve to be healthy. Finals can seem daunting, but taking care of your body will help you feel prepared to ace your tests!

Female Representation in “Stranger Things 2”

By: Diana Richtman 

Entertainment Section Writer 

If you’re anything like me, then you were probably extremely excited to see more female representation in “Stranger Things 2.” Among the young people in the first season of “Stranger Things” the ratio of girls to boys was two (Eleven and Nancy) to six (Mike, Will, Lucas, Dustin, Steve and Jonathan). This imbalanced ratio is common in television, and it is especially common in science fiction and fantasy series. Women are often underrepresented or unwelcome in genres such as these.

This season of “Stranger Things” primarily introduced two new girls to the cast, Max and Kali. When I first saw that there would be more girls in the show, I was excited to see more people like me getting to participate in a tv show that infamously received criticism for its lack of representation, both for minorities and women. However, it’s worth discussing how the original and new female characters are portrayed in this series.

It’s no secret that Eleven doesn’t like the newest eighth-grade girl at Hawkins Middle School, Max Mayfield. This seems mostly motivated by Eleven’s false perception of Max and Mike’s relationship and then later by Eleven’s jealousy that she is no longer the only girl in the group. It is not a completely inconceivable plot point for Eleven. After all, in season 2 Eleven more violent even with people she deeply loves and trusts. However, this is a plot point so overused in television that it shifted from not only being boring but also being frustrating to watch.

On the other hand, viewers saw another interesting relationship unfold in season 2. Eleven reunites with a young woman named Kali who was also a part of Dr. Brenner’s experiment. It was thrilling and empowering to see these two women share their powers with one another. Yet it still ends with them separating. Every female connection Eleven makes in this season ends with her leaving them. So much focus of Eleven’s development is on her relationship with men (major examples would be Dr. Brenner, Mike and Hopper), and even with this season’s best effort, not enough screen time was devoted to Eleven experiencing lasting relationships with other women.

Everything down to Max’s name, which is shortened from Maxine, is supposed to represent her disdain for traditional femininity. She loves skateboarding and sets the high score at the arcade. She’s a spunky outsider, but Max is also a cliche and not revolutionary. What would be? If she could simply be friends with the boys without ultimately having a romantic plot line. If Max being a “tomboy” wasn’t the very thing that attracted Lucas and Dustin to her in the first place. If being different from “other girls” wasn’t what made her worthy.

Finally, perhaps the most concerning female portrayal of the season comes from our beloved Nancy Wheeler. Nancy’s plotline for season 2 is supposed to be about getting justice for Barb, but it is overshadowed by the love triangle between her, Steve and Jonathan. Everyone is entertained by a good love triangle, but the problem with love triangles is they are so rarely good. I felt it when I saw Nancy with Steve at the end of season 1, and I felt it again when I watched her get together with Jonathan in season 2. Nancy shouldn’t be with either boy. The narrative this season is that Nancy is too good for Steve, and she’s always really loved Jonathan, but neither are true. How can she be too good for Steve when she spends the whole season falling in love instead of having a more active role in the fight against the Upside Down which is the very thing she criticizes Steve for? How could she have always loved Jonathan when she only bothers to hang out with him “when the world is ending?” But enough about a rather messed up love triangle, why is Nancy, a brilliant badass, suddenly a stagnant character? The truth is Steve was given the development Nancy deserved this season. Viewers never see her forming a relationship with her brother Mike or anyone else in the original cast, let alone a woman.

The world of sci-fi and fantasy is an adventure that so many women want to see themselves in, but the Duffer Brothers have created a world where women are few and so rarely get to interact with each other in real, nuanced ways. So why don’t we get more dynamic female stories? Why don’t the women of “Stranger Things” get to team up more? It’s my hope that in the coming seasons that’s exactly what viewers will get to see. Let’s leave the Upside Down. It’s time to go back to the real world.

Photo by Netflix

“For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide when the Rainbow is Enuf” Highlighting Black Women’s Experiences

By: Rachel Yuan

Online Section Writer

This weekend, the Black Theatrical Ensemble held their fall semester performance in the Fine Arts Theater. The Black Theatrical Ensemble allows students to participate in and learn all aspects of putting on a production, from acting to behind-the-scenes work. They strive to showcase Afro-centric theater, by performing works by black writers or about the African-American experience.

This semester, they performed Ntozake Shange’s “For Colored Girls Who Have Considered Suicide when the Rainbow is Enuf,” a choreopoem that combines a series of poetic monologues, music and dance movement. The piece follows the stories of seven nameless African-American women, identified by the colors of their skirts. The rainbow created by the Lady in Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Brown and Purple dances across the stage as emotional monologues detail the struggles specific to women, especially women of color.

Topics of unrequited love, abortion, rape, domestic violence and simply growing up and existing as a “colored girl” are broached in this performance. Not a conventionally formatted play, the women rotate in the telling of different, unconnected experiences of black women. In many cases, these utterly relatable stories were met with mumbles of agreement from the audience. Often, the intensely emotional and painful monologues left the audience holding back tears.

One scene in particular that was received with a lot of audience agreement had all of the women saying that their love was “too delicate/sanctimonious/beautiful to have thrown back in my face.” In a talkback with the cast after the performance, many audience and cast members agreed that most women can relate to giving their love to someone who did not deserve it.

In an especially electric moment, the Lady in Green performed “Somebody almost walked off wid alla my stuff.” The monologue repeats this line over and over to emphasize her anger at a man for almost taking a piece of her identity away from her.

The final, and probably most painful, story is told by the Woman in Red. She details an abusive relationship, where a woman refuses to marry the father of her two children, so he drops the children out of a fifth story window.

The piece culminates in a song with all the women coming together, singing “I found god in myself / and I loved her fiercely.” After all of the hardships and grief presented in the preceding poems, the women begin “moving to the ends of their own rainbows,” presenting their resilience to hopefully inspire an audience of women of color to keep their strength throughout the oppressions that life will throw at them.