Acceptance is the act of consenting to receive something that is offered. Focusing on an individual’s acceptance, it falls under the realm of judging their adequacy, their validity and whether this can make them conform to the norms. Acceptance is a scale, and controls it. One’s acceptance can either be based on their character or rather just their physicality.
According to Bohn, she addresses how Mabel is not considered Greek despite her living there for 22 years. Even though she personally considers herself Greek, the society is not accustomed to accept her. “We don’t feel welcome here, but we don’t have other options,” says Fatima, a 34-year-old Iraqi mother of three. “If we could leave tomorrow, we would. But for now, we want to try to build our lives here.” The pain that is associated with Fatima really hurts me, the fact that her family left their country to find safety yet they do not feel like home at all. This is certainly detrimental to the growth of her three children as it affects them psychologically. I cannot imagine how it feels not to be wanted in their ‘temporary home.’ This stigma is dreadful and it should absolutely be eradicated.
Acceptance is a something that many of us face. As a mixed raced child, I have had a struggle of acceptance into the society of my parents. Firstly, the reason is because I do not resemble the people of each of my parent races, and that immediately ostracizes me from the community. Moreover, not speaking any of my parent’s language also acted as a hindrance into my acceptance. It was difficult growing up in such an environment, and I believe it does have an impact on me until today. However, I feel as though I can somewhat resonate with the individuals at the camps since majority of them do not feel accepted. The fact that most of the refugee’s do not look similar to the common Greek person, despite whatever they do, they will always be looked at as ‘not Greek. The same goes to the way Mabel was treated, it was because she did not resemble them, and hence this was a leading factor as to why she is not accepted. I want to share my stories with the individuals at the camps and to make them know that they are not alone in feeling left out. I want to see how much this affects them personally and I hope I would be able to resonate with them through such conversations.
Bohn, Lauren. 2015. Translated by Tania Karas. "A Greek refuge for women migrants spreads love amid a sea of hatred." Infiltration 1. Accessed 9 Jan 2018.
Indeed a physical attribute can become a stigma – and what is important to note is how there is a “doer” to the deed. A few writing points before I address your ideas. Because I asked you to find a word that functions within a particular text, the first time you introduce a word, you have to note which text it comes from and who the author is. When you write about “Mabel” – we are introduced to her by the author who interviewed her. So you have to write, in an interview with the author (name of the article’s author – first name and last name the first time you refer to an author), and then you can write about Mabel. Now to the idea of “acceptance.” You write about “norms’ and that is absolutely correct. But who sets those norms and why? You observe that a component of a “norm” is a shared skin color (which is read as race), shared culture and nationality. Is this what you mean by “adequacy” and “validity”? As you explain it acceptance has to flow from the citizen to the foreigner — and somehow citizens seem to recognize one another, in your essay, by skin color and and cultural references. What you write in your last paragraph is a kind of remedy – to share how this mode of stigma affects people in other countries, and how if functions in much the same way. What you write is that feeling that you are alone in that feeling of inadequacy is painful, and that while you can’t change how the Mabel experiences the Greeks as closed, you can dilute the pain through gestures of solidarity. I wonder if whether you also think that there is a way to shift or undermine the “norms” of Greek society — is there a way to touch those who perpetrate the feeling of stigma? Think of the strategies of the Melissa Network. Think of how Thnassis, our guide, was exposed to the indignities of the camps, which he never saw, even after a long time living in Athens. How does different structures of exposure to people help change the refusals of acceptance?