Posted in Student Spotlight

Student Spotlight: Monica L. Gresham

Monica L. Gresham

Monica L. Gresham ’13

Major: Africana Studies

Minor: English

Do you have any special areas of interest, academic or otherwise?

Diasporic peoples, social science, Literature, and universal unity

What are your favorite resources at McCain Library?

 I have always focused on books and databases, [and] some movies if assigned by the Professors. As of late, [my favorite resource] is my relationship with the Librarian. I have come to believe that is the most important resource available to an Agnes Scott student.

Do you enjoy reading? How would you describe yourself as a reader?

 My parents encouraged reading. Even after completing homework and chores, we always expected to read for an hour on our own. I usually skipped meals and read until I fell asleep. Reading was my escape from reality to a better life of resolved issues, triumphs, and good winning over evil. My tastes changed as I hit milstones of age, experiences, and maturity. I’ve always read on a much higher level than my age would denote. I read to see what writers really thought about race, society and religion. I read to exercise my imagination, spirituality and to challenge my constructed truths.

What kind of books to you like to read outside of your classwork?

 I left my beloved fairy tales and Bible, as a child to explore dark fantasy, and fiction as well as non fiction stories of cultural/social oppression, history, and academia.

What books do you recommend as must-reads?

I am a firm believer in reading, it doesn’t matter what you read as long as you are simulating your mind and nurturing your humanity. As of late, I find enjoyment in narratives of history, mysticism, and triumphs over mental, physical, and economical circumstances. I don’t have a favorite book, I have several. A must read is any book that pushes one outside of societal constructed ideologies, allows one to see life through another person’s perspective and exposes truth beyond what one has been expected or trained to believe.

What kind of movies do you enjoy watching?

I’m a horror, comedy, psychological thriller, and foreign films fan. I especially love those with subtitles. I am fascinated with films that put a different spin on fairy tales and legends; showing something different or challenging constructed myths and pseduo-true accounts. I love truth, no matter how much it hurts; add a challenge to morality, humanity and breaking constructed barriers and you got me.

Are there any movies you recommend?

Imitation of Life  Though, I have issues with the constructed ideologies of cultural motherhood along with balancing careers and the settings that denote a social status within our multi- cultural society. It shows a blending of economical truths and celebrates the unity of strength, organization, and knowledge of the black and the white woman. There are many others I could name but I dont want to spoil it. That’s the important part of recommending; give a tease then lets talk.

Do you have any memorable stories about reading that you can share?

I received my first Bible at 5 years of age. A children’s bible first, then as I advanced in my reading I was given adult versions. Through my experiences as a child, adolesent, and teenage years, I struggled off and on to understand the concepts in applying them to my reality. As an adult, the Songs of Solomon has become a favorite, along with Genesis.

Is there anything else  you would like to share?

Being a Senior, I hate that I waited until this year to realize the resources available at McCain. Being a student of Social Sciences with a specialty in the African Diaspora, I’ve spent countless dollars and time trying to find information that was right in my own backyard. I feel so cheated with a swift kick for I did it to myself. If there is anything that I would like to share it is this:

1. Always check your own backyard first.
2. Get to know that quiet person sitting at the resource desk with the yellow sign, “its ok to interrupt.”

A personal thank you to Ms. Casey Long for swinging the patio door open and showing me the manicured grounds.

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