Voices -- The Women's College Magazine at Santa Monica College

Focus on SMC
Our Bodies
Science & Technology
Stories & Poems
Letter from the Editor



From Personal to Political

The realties of our world have the possibility of not only disheartening individuals but rendering them mute. This may be the journey of one person or the legacy of generations in which silence is the coping mechanism, and questions remain upon the minds of the young, until one day the quantitative world replaces the shadowy realm of the mind and thought is a source of fear rather than resolution. Here, isolation and powerlessness are fixtures in the mind and the family; spouses and society often reaffirm that this way of living is just the way life is. Quiet resistance is in time replaced by lethargy, and then the very prominent product of our culture- apathy.

An education gives the individual the means to create mental and emotional space and come to a better understanding of the world in all of its complexities. Feelings of isolation and powerlessness are transformed into empowerment as individuals, stimulated and nurtured by the educational environment, find that they are refreshed, equipped, and inspired to interpret the world for themselves.

We must challenge rhetoric, assumption, and misinformation in the media and academia, the scope of which must extend to our relationships and our homes, from the personal to the political. This issue of Voices is primarily concerned with how each of us extends from the personal to the political and how we are active and conscious of that process. Here the operative word becomes “how”: how we challenge the norms has set each of us on distinct paths, and Voices is the first step on that journey.

This issue of Voices may then be viewed as testimony to the work that will in some way continue with each of us in our own endeavors. Emily Busch introduces a new section to our publication, "Environment," bringing many current issues to light, including the overpopulation epidemic which will affect us all in the future. In "Our Bodies," Senta Erbe continues the exploration of the female body ranging from new medical findings on cervical cancer to alternative medicine. In "Focus on SMC,", Carla Garcia highlights how an educational institution such as Santa Monica College continually brings awareness to its students by promoting speakers discussing issues such as Black Sexual Politics and new educational and career paths for women in the 21st century. Ronit Sky brings her own insight in tackling edgy literature and new perspectives about the way women are depicted in film in the year 2004 in "Entertainment." Moon Kim and Verònica Lòpez showcase diverse creative talents in "Stories and Poems."

As for myself, I had the opportunity to navigate from my own personal world to the political and many times had the humbling experience of seeing my own bias and lack of exposure to certain issues. I also had one of the most rewarding experiences of my college education. My exposure to people with different insights and perspectives challenged me to refine my own assumptions about the political system and allowed me to see that avenues for affecting change can be a reality.

Our advisor, Diana Aghabegian, has been a constant and tireless supporter providing much-needed clarity in times of potential crisis and fumbling in the dark. From day one, Diana set an atmosphere of equality and respect from which the Voices staff could exchange dialogue and constructive criticism. This dialogue extended to other Women’s College faculty, including The Women’s College program coordinator, Christina Preciado, who brainstormed with us and helped us think up new ideas for articles, as well as lending us her valuable insight on women’s issues. In all aspects, Voices has truly been an experience in which we applied our intellects to endeavors that encompassed both the personal and the political.

How we reconcile our civic duty and our own individual hearts and minds makes for a rich exploration and a life experience that offers tremendous growth for our futures. We hope that our individual contributions to this issue of Voices will inspire you to question the world around you and use your own insights to challenge assumptions about our world, inspiring you to navigate your own path from the personal to the political.

Misty Swift
Editor-in-Chief, Voices





The Women’s College Magazine at Santa Monica College
Copyright 2003 Santa Monica College