First Meeting with Professor Cain

Exhibition Process this week focused on collaborating with our assigned professor.  I received Professor Mary Cain, Department of History, whom I taken several courses with being a history major.  I felt that understanding the practices of history will allow me to visualize my space for the exhibition along with already having a relationship with Professor Cain.

The first part to this week was to read Professor Cain’s personal statement.  While reading her statement, I enjoyed her explanation of the importance of history.  She notes how context can explain both the past and present along with individuals or a collective group of people.  In addition, I enjoyed her role as a historian in relation to her subject matter when it comes to race and gender.  However, elements that Professor Cain excluded was her personal experience, which Professor Whittle and I learned more about in our meeting with her.

The second part to this week was meeting with our professor to discuss their personal statement.  During my meeting with Professor Cain, I brought up some of my initial thoughts about her personal statement (mentioned in the previous paragraph).  Throughout this meeting Professor Cain expressed some concerns about her writing approach.  She was unfamiliar with this writing style this exhibition demands which caused her to leave out some areas.  After Professor Whittle offered her previous catalogs, it gave her a general idea.  However, we did not want her to deviate from her rough draft entirely because part of her approach to the personal statement is part of her overall process.  In addition, during the meeting I observed her office space to find potential objects for the exhibition.

Professor Cain’s office contained several artifacts from the women in her family.  These possessions included her Great Grandmother’s high school diploma and class picture along with her mother’s college banner.  These objects are perfect for the exhibition because they  visually display why Professor Cain is interested in women’s history and the subject in general.  Another theme I want to incorporate in her gallery space is her writing process.  During the meeting Professor Cain mentioned that she wrote 8 drafts for the personal statement and that she always uses a legal pad.  In her gallery space I would love to have a podium or table covered with these writing drafts and notes.


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