Column: Watching media at the right time makes it more impactful

Helena Edwards, Opinions Writer

In high school we learned about the separate ways to persuade someone through what we created. These primarily included ethos, pathos, and logos. We then touched a tiny bit upon Kairos. The term Kairos is an Ancient Greek word that means critical timing or an opportune moment. 

When analyzing and feeling the media I consume, I find that Kairos is the most persuasive to a person besides logical persuasion. Recently, I have been thinking about the timing in which I consume media and the impact it has on me based on events going on in my life at that time. 

Most often when I am choosing movies or shows to watch I do it with careful precision. I will put off movies or shows for years if I do not think I am ready for it yet. I have yet to see the critically acclaimed Moonlight or Us, even though I have been told those movies are right up my alley. 

Determining whether I am ready for something yet comes naturally. It’s like an instinct where one day my brain clicks, and I decide to throw myself into whatever the media is. It is like I have had the life experience I need and now I am ready to connect in some way. 

What made me consider all of this was watching the movie Hillbilly Elegy the day after Mother’s Day this year. 

Hillbilly Elegy is a movie based on a memoir from J. D. Vance. In it he must return to his home from Yale to help his mother after an overdose. In the film he discovers and reflects upon his family’s history and values that has roots in the Appalachia’s of Kentucky that carried over to his past of living in Middletown, Ohio. 

It is a story of the cycle of poverty with consequences of addiction, loss, and abuse. However, it is also a story about pride in continuing after these events and respecting the dead along with those that came before you.  

Of course, this is a movie that had to be watched at the right moment for someone who has had problems with their mother and family history before. 

I watched this movie right after Mother’s Day, a tough day of the year for myself. In the final lines of the movie from JD says, “Where we come from is who we are, but we choose every day who we become.” 

He managed to make something of himself and become successful while still finding an appreciation for those that raised him, something that because of the opportune timing of watching this movie I was able to really connect with. 

I am guilty of reading into the media I consume to an annoying level. However, waiting for the perfect time to connect with media on a personal level is a rewarding experience separate from just enjoying a story. I enjoy feeling heard, seen, and represented.