Reading Response to Why I Am Not a Maker

This article illuminated many parts of maker culture that were obscured to me while only reading maker-produced literature. The difference between making and “not-making” hadn’t occurred to me at all before, since the movement’s focus and dedication of the role of making didn’t really allow for any thought of an antithesis or opposite to the movement; making existed as an independent movement working counter to corporate making, leaving no thought for “not-making.”

One familiar concept of the article was how making is a “rebel movement” but still holds basically the same values as the majority culture that it stands against. Yes, it does take a stand against major capitalism and corporations, but it reinforces traditional roles of power within every imbalance (gender, race, ethnicity, ability) that already exist in majority culture. It is very true that by being a maker, you are grouping yourself into the privileged class of people that have the access to resources and ability to “make” in this specific sense.

Something else I hadn’t thought about before was how coding has been shown off as an almost essential part of maker culture, even though it doesn’t fit the definition of traditional making very closely, since it does not pertain to a physical object. In the article, the author writes about how it’s only seen as “making” because men do it and have packaged it as such. However, I can understand how it, in fact, could be making in the traditional sense because in order to make any physical thing that also has electrical components, you’d have to have some sense of coding. Still, her point is valid about how things that men do are typically given more importance than the work of women.

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