It didn't occur to me until I started writing this post just how impactful this course has been on my way of thinking. Coming in at the beginning of the semester, I thought this class would just be a fun way to talk about silly soap operas; now I see not only how off my assumption was, but also just how much I've learned.
I have genuinely never enjoyed a course more than I enjoyed this class. This has been the only class I've ever taken where I was disappointed that our time was up at the end of every class meeting. I've never felt so driven to learn and to understand, and I genuinely never thought that a class about telenovelas would be the one to keep my interest in such a way. I think what really grabbed me in this course was looking at something so seemingly simple- a television program- and dissecting it until its multitude of meanings and its significance came through. Learning about the various representations of different identities found in telenovelas and their significant meanings, the intense production process that those involved in submit themselves to just to make a quality product for their audience, the risks taken to broadcast these programs and the regulation involved, and even hearing face to face from those involved all made this course so impactful and important to me. What I've taken away from this course overall (among many other lessons) is that audiences feel and respond to passion. Telenovela audiences pick up on the meanings of characters represented, the amount of work that goes in to each production, the risks taken in each broadcast, and consequently the passion that comes from those who are making these programs for them. I think that's what hooks telenovela audiences and what will continue to hook them; a passionate production creates a passionate audience.
And parallel to the reception of telenovelas, I think I've been passionate about this course because Dr. A is so passionate about this topic. Her absolute love and respect for this industry has shone through and has helped me to understand just how important telenovelas really are to society and the impact they can have. I'm so grateful that Dr. A created such a welcoming and compelling class that extends far beyond just telenovelas. Being passionate about what you do and experience in life is such an important lesson and I feel that that's one of the most valuable things I'll be taking from this class.