Welcome to the fourth edition of Muhlenberg College’s interdisciplinary journal, the Muhlenberg Academic Review (MAR). Despite the challenges of COVID-19 and the new modality of remote learning, our tireless editorial board has worked to display the insightful student work of Muhlenberg’s academic community. Our board consists of members of Sigma Tau Delta, Gamma Iota, Muhlenberg’s chapter of the intercollegiate English Honors society. As Co-Editors-in-Chief, we have worked alongside our Senior Editors, Hannah Betz and Jeremy Silverstein, our Layout Editors, Andrew Leahy and Morgan Bishop, our PR and Social Media Manager, Alana Noehrenberg, and our Fundraising Chairs and Editors-in-Chief of the Sigma Tau Delta Cookbook, Ashling Wahner and Caya Greenspan-Layman, to develop the 2021 edition. We would like to thank our faculty sponsor, Professor Linda Miller. In addition, we are grateful to Dr. Kathy Harring, President of the College, for all of her support
Along with our editorial board, we have had numerous contributing editors and copy editors without whom this journal would not have been possible. Out of almost fifty submissions, we are proud to present twelve papers that exemplify the interdisciplinary nature of MAR and the liberal arts experience that Muhlenberg provides. These papers include, but are not limited to, disciplines such as public health, political science, film studies, and even biology. We are honored to have had the opportunity to read through all of the submissions, which highlight the insight and intellect of Muhlenberg students.
Given the interdisciplinary nature of this journal, the papers explore a wide range of topics that can be difficult to classify, yet they still reflect commonalities in interests across the Muhlenberg discourse community. Over half of the entries in this edition examine issues of social justice which have been particularly topical in the past few years. For example, in “I Don’t See Color” Amisha Datta analyzes the acquisition of power for white individuals through their visibility, contrary to the invisibility of marginalized people. In a similar exploration of marginalization, Auroni Hashim argues that the United States’ environmental policies constitute acts of institutionalized racism against communities of color in “Environmental Racism.” Additionally, Alice Banta’s “From Culture to Novelty” and Hailey McMichael’s “The History and the Future of Hip Hop Dance” investigate cultural appropriation in their respective disciplines of music and dance. On the other hand, some papers enclosed within stand out as singular from the rest, like Renee Heller’s “Using macroinvertebrates…” which explores her fieldwork in Ecuador using macroinvertebrates as an indicator for water quality in the Rio Anzu region. Rachel Weisenthal closes the journal out with “Sincerity and Authenticity in Philip Roth’s American Pastoral,” as she investigates Roth’s portrayal of the self and analyzes the many ways of constructing identity, bringing together the spirit of this year’s collection.
Thank you for your continued interest and support; we hope that you enjoy this 2021 edition of the Muhlenberg Academic Review!
Co-Editors-in-Chief of the Muhlenberg Academic Review
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Once again, congratulations to our authors!
Amisha Datta ’21
I Don’t See Color: Blindness and White Privilege in A Quiet Place
Renee Heller ’21
Using macroinvertebrates to evaluate high water quality and predict potential anthropogenic impacts in the Rio Anzu region
Liam Tocheny ’21
Indifference: FDR and Labor Movement
Kate McCowan ’22
Haring and Basquiat: Artists of the People
Cecelia Peden ’22
Ethical Considerations of NFL Players; Should They Be Allowed to Play?
Hailey McMichael-Holliday ’21
The History and Future of Hip Hop Dance and Hip Hop Dance Education: Where Have We Been, and How Can We Move Forward?
Auroni Hashim ’22
Environmental Racism: A Critical Look at American Democracy
Eliana Schuster ’22
Writing and Reading Comments
Emily Falkenstein ’22
Disability Policy and Inequality in the United States Healthcare and Political System
Aidan Myers, Sara Kalet-Schwartz, and Johannah Wai ’21
Re-ranking Olympic Performances
Alice Banta ’21
From Culture to Novelty: The Blurring of the Lines Between Inclusion and Whitewashing
Rachel Weisenthal ’21
Sincerity and Authenticity in Philip Roth’s American Pastoral