Social Activism posters by students in Professor Stacy Lotz’s INTG-409 class ‘Citizenship Through Art’ were removed from Dunlap Terrace last week over concerns about their potentially upsetting messages and the wind.
So huge was the interest in these posters that campus safety inquired whether or not there was an event going on that they were not aware of. Contrary to belief, campus safety was not at fault for the taking down the posters. “There was concern that some of the posters might upset members of the campus. After a conversation with campus safety (and because the wind that day was taking its toll on some of the posters) I made the decision to strike the display earlier than what was planned,” said Lotz.
“The purpose of the project is for students to think about issues that they care about and share those in a public setting,” said Lotz. Students from the class were able to voice any of their concerns relating to social justice and display their perspectives on a poster that was hung outside Stockdale on the Dunlap Terrace. Student Emily Kreuger said it was enjoyable to see the different posters and different points of view. “My favorite part of the project was that we were allowed to share our posters with people outside of our classroom. It was refreshing to engage in a larger conversation regarding our chosen topics with the greater Monmouth College community,” said Kreuger.
Despite inclement weather, the posters were hung up by the class which addressed a number of issues such as gun rights, feminism, and different political views. Lotz said, “I have done this project every year that I’ve taught Citizenship and it has always started campus conversations-some productive, some not.” Throughout the early afternoon, students from across campus on their way to lunch and classes could view these posters and some students posted them on their social media pages in support of the messages being shared by the class. Of the posters, Student Senate President Abierre Minor said, “I thought the art exhibit was beautiful, empowering, and awe inspiring.”
Some of the posters were more controversial than others and did make some students feel uncomfortable. Kreuger’s work was among the posters that received a significant amount of attention, having to do with feminism and women’s rights. One side of her poster titled “Pussy is Power” contained images of 6 different drawings of female genitals. When asked about her poster Kreuger said, “I…wanted to use the imagery to engage the audience and start a conversation because I knew that having a diverse array of genitals spread across the poster would be deemed controversial by many. I wanted to use that controversial imagery and pair it with an important and strong message.” On the other side of the poster, Kreuger adopted another strong message with her poster saying “If You Do Not Wear a Mask, You Have Small Dick Energy”. Another poster that sparked conversation was Raman Mohan’s “Fuck You” poster. Mohan’s purpose was “to make the uncomfortable, comfortable…and say a Big Fuck You if you are a racist or if you are a sexist.” Overall, Lotz was impressed at the variety of messages being displayed and thought every student did a great job.
Due to the success of the posters, the class is considering further acts of ‘guerilla’ art to help inspire campus and fulfill their requirement of performing citizenship through art. Professor Lotz states, “There will be more to come. This group of students have a lot to say.”
Kieren Marshall – Staff Writer
Pictured are some of the posters that were featured on Dunlap Terrace