Noir Example: Carmen Jones

After thinking long and hard about what example of Noir I could use, I kept coming back to just one idea. I had the thought of the early 2000s computer game “Where in the World is Carmen Sandiego?” stuck in my head. So, naturally, I turn to Google to see if this is an idea actually worth using as an example. Flipping through a few pages of google search containing the title of the game and “noir example” or “noir characteristic,” I stumbled across the old 1954 film Carmen Jones. After reading the plot summary of the film, I became intrigued. So I took a chance, rented the movie and ended up loving it. Although this is a very recent discovery of mine, I think it’s a great example of the noir theme we are going for in this course. Here’s a very short summary (spoiler alert) and my reasoning for considering it a good example of noir:

Carmen Jones is a 1954 musical film. It is filled with infidelity, crime, running from the cops, and eventually ends in an unfortunate death for the main character, Carmen.

I believe this is an example of noir because of the production characteristics as well as other key features. Throughout the story, there is a healthy mix of doomed romance, desperate desire, strayed innocence, and cynicism. It’s set in the time period directly following World War II which makes the previous characteristics a reality for the people who were living in that time.

This film can be either rented or bought online. One of the most popular sites is embedded below:

Chemistry 112

During this spring semester, I am also enrolled in a Chem 112 course. This is the second section of general chemistry and is used as a prerequisite for most upper-level biology and chemistry courses.

Along with lecture, this course requires lab time. A specific lab that our class had done over the semester was especially interesting to me. It was centered on the inorganic chemistry branch off of general chemistry.

The experiments were basically used to determine the oxalate content in two different complexes that we had created. We were able to find our percent yield and percent error to figure out where we had made mistakes and what had happened.

The lab report is attached here: Project 4 Final

FLOW: For Love of Water

Facts and statements pulled from movie:

  • without water the Earth wouldn’t be what it is
  • our planet has water constantly running through it (water is like blood in veins and arteries)
  • US does not keep active records of who gets sick from drinking tap water
  • We’re not removing drugs, rocket fuel, chemicals from water
  • These volatile pollutants come in contact with you mainly when you take a shower and it comes in through your skin.
  • These things in the water are changing the chemistry in our bodies and it’s hurting us

 

  • Green Revolution in India: crops are inefficient because they don’t soak up water due to the chemicals soaking it up instead, therefore, you need 5-10% more water for the crops but you aren’t getting any more food
  • 70% of water worldwide is used by agriculture, 20% is used by industry, and 10% is used for personal reasons

 

  • birth defects in Mexico increase near agricultural areas
  • fertility declines throughout Europe primarily in areas with heavy pesticide use
  • Tasmanian cancer rates shoot up 200% after heavy use of pesticides
  • The water in the Seine River in France is studied and the fish living in it, over the past 5 years, are changing sex. (there are only females)
  • Prozac is being found in fish tissue in Texas labs
  • The chemicals being used are for chemical warfare, they all came out of the war era

 

  • Atrazine is created by Syngenta (#1 chemical found in drinking water) produced in Sweden
  • Atrazine demasculinized male frogs that were exposed to it (they would grow ovaries and produce eggs)
  • Has found that it increases many different kinds of cancer.
  • The European Union has banned Atrazine (can travel through rain water) Not even legal in it’s own country

 

  • Thames Water, Vivendi, Suez (3 major, fortune-500 water companies)
  • They are forcing poor countries to forfeit their right to water in order for for-profit companies to take over
  • In El Alto, 208,000 people have been excluded from potable water service
  • 1 out of every 10 children will die by the age of 5 (illnesses that come from a lack of clean drinking water)
  • In 1999, water was privatized in Cochabamba, then a water war began when the citizens took to the streets to get rid of the transnational company Bechtel
  • The government just did it. The World Bank forced Bolivia to privatize because they said that they would cut water funding to them if they  didn’t
  • In January 2007, Bolivia’s government ended the Suez contract and returned the water system to the people of La Paz

 

  • These companies are trying to make profit for themselves while establishing themselves in countries that cannot pay for water, let alone their other means

 

  • People live in settlements spread far apart so it’s hard to connect the water ways, especially in India.

 

  • UV lamp
  • Bomminampadu, India (70,000 people died in 1 year from dirty drinking water even though it was said to be available within a 2km walking distance)
  • The system of the UV lamp system can be sustained by the people in the town
  • $2 per person per year for 10 liters of drinking water a day

 

  • most people don’t even think about where their water comes from
  • we could be on the verge of the 6th mass extinction (us)

 

  • Bottled water
  • why do people pay such a high price to water
  • 1/5 Americans drink only bottled water.
  • bottled water is much less regulated than tap water
  • The UN states that it would require $30 billion a year to provide safe, clean drinking water to the entire planet. Last year, 3 times that amount was spent on bottled water.
  • it’s all about power and who can earn money and control water because it is such a precious commodity

 

  • The Ganges is a sacred river
  • The ashes  of loved ones are put into the Ganges when they die
  • The rivers flow is being interrupted by a Suez dam. They are collecting the water and selling it at 10 times the price that it is today.
  • When a dam is put up, the organic matter in the water that’s essential to the life forms is captured behind the dam and it begins to rot and then forms Methane gas. Methane is the leading cause of ozone in our atmosphere.
  • 40-80 million people were displaced by dams in the 20th century

 

  • Nestle bottling company in the middle of Michigan
  • They’re pumping 450 gallons per minute. They turn lakes into mud flats
  • They’re pumping water out of a stream system and then selling it.
  • Can you really own water?

 

  • we are part of the earth and it is a part of us

 

  • there is no substitute for clean water
  • we’re taking from nature, but not giving
  • it’s a lack of political will, not a lack of knowledge

 

The previous bullet points are facts or statements from the movie that I found interesting while watching it. The major point that stuck out to me was the pure ignorance of global companies towards people living in severe poverty. The lack of understanding of their situation and the extreme greed that drives them to charge people for something as essential as water is disgusting. It just shows that people in this day and age are truly only concerned with themselves and their personal “success.”

It is very possible to solve the water problem with smaller solutions. The large companies only offer solutions that cost millions of dollars and are just not feasible for small, poverty-stricken countries. The solution of UV lamp systems to disinfect water is simple yet complex enough to kill the bacteria that causes disease and illness. The other idea that was previously executed and then terminated was collecting rain water falling off of one’s house and then collecting it in a basin in a basement or ground level room. This ended essentially because the question of “who owns this water” came into play. Law officials were saying that the people did not own this water that was running off of their house and it was a public necessity that people would basically be stealing from their neighbors. When reintroduced, people said, “wow why haven’t we been doing this?” Then the question came up once again of “who owns this.” This leads me back to a previous statement of mine, people these days are concerned only with themselves and their well-being. It is all about ownership. “If I can’t own it, they definitely cannot harvest it for their own use.” That is the kind of mentally that kills societies because everyone wants to be more significant, have more power, and own more than the person standing right next to them.

After watching the documentary I wanted to learn a little bit more about the back story of it and the producers. I went to flowthefilm.com and it was very informational and made me confident that the documentary was very true. I went to the “Take Action” tab on the website and signed my name on the Article 31 Petition to support the movement of universal access to clean water. I believe in the movement and although it will take a lot more than a 19 year old girl’s signature on a petition, someone will know that I support them and there are a lot of others out there that do too.

What’s More Vital Than Water?

 

10 minutes without a phone for someone who doesn’t even have clean water to drink? How sweet does that sound?

Wanna join in? Open the following link on your phone, and don’t use it until you need it.

UNICEFTAPPROJECT.ORG

Sounds pretty easy, huh? I just donated two days of clean water to children in need while writing this post. How long can you go?

More Water

This is an interesting website made in the UK. It shows a story about a guy’s typical day with a couple of facts about water and how it’s taken into account on a regular morning.

http://everylastdrop.co.uk

It also has links at the very end that lead to webpages with news and articles about water.

North Carolina Riverbed Coated By Toxic Coal Ash

This is a factual article.

Associated Press. (2014, February 18). North Carolina riverbed coated by toxic coal ash. In theguardian. Retrieved February 20, 2014, from http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2014/feb/18/north-carolina-river-coal-ash-spill

 

This article is discussing a large spill that happened in the Dan River at a Duke Energy dump in North Carolina two weeks ago. What was dumped into the water was a massive amount of coal ash that the company had produced. The spill occurred on February 2nd and officials believe that at the site, the pile of coal ash was about 75 feet long and 5 feet deep in some areas.

The Dan River runs all the way into Virginia and into the Kerr Lake. The ash has moved all the way down the river and has made its way into the Kerr Lake, which is a major reservoir. Officials have told people to avoid the water and not eat the fish within it. This is extremely concerning because a lot of people rely on the river and lake for their water source and for a portion of their food source. Authorities are also concerned about the long-term effects of this dump and have said that the effects are being further investigated.

Not only does this spill effect the communities living around and off of the river and lake, but it greatly effects the species living in the river. The article talks about two federally enlisted endangered animals who call the Dan River their home. Both the Roanoke logperch fish and the James spiny-mussel live here. There’s also the Green Floater mussel who is under consideration for being an endangered species that lives there. Not only is the coal ash burying some of the smaller and bottom-feeding animals, but it is also burying the food sources that are essential to the river’s residents.

Federal officials say that the water in communities downstream from the spill is still safe, however, it’s only safe because they are filtering out an extreme amount of heavy metals detected in the water. Although the municipal treatment plants are solving this problem now, there’s a chance that even more of the ash could contaminate the river. With the large amounts of snow that the area received now melting, there will be an increase in the speed of the river which in turn means more water and ash will move. This threaten to move the ash further along the river and more into Lake Kerr, making it a bigger issue than before.

 

This is a picture of a portion of the Dan River in Danville, VA with the coal ash swirling around on a bank.

dan riverr

 

Broome, G. (Photographer). (2014). [Image of photograph]. North Carolina; Associated Press. Retrieved February 20, 2014, from http://www.greenwichcitizen.com/business/energy/article/NC-regulators-shielded-Duke-s-coal-ash-pollution-5218995.php#photo-5850444

Fish living near the equator will not thrive in the warmer oceans of the future

This article is factual. I found it on sciencedaily.com.

ARC Centre of Excellence in Coral Reef Studies. (2014, February 11). Fish living near the equator will not thrive in the warmer oceans of the future. ScienceDaily. Retrieved February 12, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/02/140211094304.htm

 

This article was interesting to me because I had a tropical fish from Walmart once and could only keep it alive for about 15 minutes. Tragic. But in this article, it discusses why big temperature changes can be so detrimental to fish. This is what I didn’t know about the pink guppy I had bought. Temperature changes effect the fish’s oxygen use and metabolism rate.

According to the team conducting research discussed in this article, “at warmer temperatures fish lose scope for performance.” What they’re saying is that fish are just simply not in their natural element. They’re not able to find and obtain their food or reproduce efficiently when temperatures are thrown off. As the oceans continue to warm, the fish population will take a big hit. It is said that the ocean will warm another three degrees by the end of this century. That means that the vast majority of our Earth will be heated. Three degrees may not seem like a lot, but in the big picture it is a lot. It’s estimated that 352,670,000,000,000,000,000 gallons of water are in the ocean. All of that to be heated requires A LOT!

The populations of these species near the equator will suffer from the temperature, but the societies around the equator that rely on these fish as a food source will suffer as well. The increasing ocean temperature will effect their industry, diet, way of life, etc. The controversial topic of what to do about these rising temperatures is a big one, but the time before temperatures really start to raise is becoming shorter and shorter. It’s a serious issue that is centrally based around water and our essential dependence on it, not only for bodily functions, but for our food and our industries.

Beginning Project Ideas

I am interested in the water conditions in developing countries.

I think my focus might be on the health risks that come with using unsanitary water in these countries.

In this search I used the following key words: water, quality, in, developing, countries, usage, resources

References:

Alam, S., Mukhopadhaya, P., & Randle, D. (2011). THE GENERAL AGREEMENT ON TRADE IN SERVICES (GATS), WATER, AND HUMAN RIGHTS FROM THE PERSPECTIVE OF DEVELOPING COUNTRIES. Netherlands International Law Review, 58(1), 43-75. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0165070X11100029

Van, d. B., Borghgraef, K., & Vinckier, C. (2010). Causes of water supply problems in urbanised regions in developing countries.Water Resources Management, 24(9), 1885-1902. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s11269-009-9529-8

Renou, Y. (2010). The governance of water services in developing countries: An analysis in terms of action stratification. Journal of Economic Issues, 44(1), 113-137. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.umw.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/89186298?accountid=12299

Nitiema, L., Boubacar, S., Dramane, Z., Kabore, A., Noël, P. J., Traoré, A.,S., & Dianou, D. (2013). Microbial quality of wastewater used in urban truck farming and health risks issues in developing countries: Case study of ouagadougou in burkina faso. Journal of Environmental Protection, 4(6), 575-584. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.umw.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/1399692794?accountid=12299

Massoud, M. A., Tareen, J., Tarhini, A., Nasr, J., & Jurdi, M. (2010). Effectiveness of wastewater management in rural areas of developing countries: A case of al-chouf caza in lebanon. Environmental Monitoring and Assessment, 161(1-4), 61-9. doi:http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10661-008-0727-2

Lantagne, D. S., M.Eng. (2009). Viability of commercially available bleach for water treatment in developing countries. American Journal of Public Health, 99(11), 1975-8. Retrieved from http://ezproxy.umw.edu:2048/login?url=http://search.proquest.com/docview/215084136?accountid=12299