Laurie Toby Edison

Photographer

Returning with Links

Debbie says:

As you may have noticed, we were down for most of a week due to a malware attack. Endless thanks to our webmaster for tireless efforts to bring the blog (and the website) back up safely.

When the attack happened, I was just about to put up a links post, so that’s where we’re starting now.

Our own Lynne Murray found a fascinating article on webburgr about a newly discovered photographer, Vivian Maier:

woman walking in cityscape

Perhaps the most important street photographer of the twentieth century was a nanny who kept everything to herself. Nobody had ever seen her work and she was a complete unknown until the time of her death. For decades Vivian [Maier]’s work hid in the shadows until decades later (in 2007), historical hobbyist John Maloof bought a box full of never developed negatives at a local auction for $380.

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I’m not sure when I’ve read a better manifesto about diversity within a marginalized community than this one by smartassjen at Jen Richards.

This is a sample of the kinds of trans people I’ve personally met, talked to, learned from, heard about through mutual friends, or seen in the last two years. It is not intended to be comprehensive or definitive, but rather a glimpse from one specific person’s experience, over a relatively brief period of time, and in utterly random order. …

Trans women who are over six feet tall and still rock high heels. Tiny ones next to whom I feel like a beast. Some who wish they were taller, some incredibly anxious about their stature and who instinctively shrink their bodies. Tall trans men. Short trans men. Trans men so masculine that I don’t even notice their height. Trans man/woman couples so comfortable with their inversion of ‘normal’ height differences that the idea of normal becomes laughably absurd.

People who don’t identify as men or women, or who identify as both, or third sex, or as nonbinary or genderqueer or genderfluid or some combination of these. Some who see various stages of gender expression and identity as stops towards a final destination, others who comfortably live outside of any binary structure.

Trans women who love their cocks and have no desire for surgery, some who have always hated them, and every shade of horror, acceptance and enjoyment between. Some who have mutilated their own, through creative and dangerous ways, some successfully, some with painful consequences. Women who have their testicles removed, but do not want further surgery, and some who do that first and save up vaginoplasty later. One who medically transitioned, with hormones and surgeries, but remained their assigned gender in public. Trans men who pack and those that don’t. Trans men that bind and those that don’t. Trans men who sometimes pack or bind and other times don’t, or do or don’t at different times in their transition. Men who want phalloplasty, men who don’t. Trans men who love being penetrated and trans men who don’t ever want to be touched there. Many men and women whose feelings towards their genitals evolve over time.

And so much more.

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At The Weekling, Dr. Santayani Dasgupta has a very thoughtful and complex post about doctors and fat patients

The patient is large. Very large. At more than 600 pounds, he is a mountain of flesh.

“My stomach hurts,” he says, his voice surprisingly high and childlike.

THE OTHER DAY, a colleague brought to my attention an essay from The Washington Post called “A morbidly obese patient tests the limits of a doctor’s compassion” written by a Dr. Edward Thompson. Just the first two lines of it above had me furious. Not only were they a study in the power of negative metaphors, but as a fellow physician, they felt all-too familiar. T…

Indeed, although studies show that physicians are nicer to thinner patients, many of my medical colleagues don’t seem to realize that personal and institutional violence against fat people (and I use that term in solidarity with the fat activism and fat studies movements) is a thing. A real, grotesque and infantile thing. A real, grotesque and infantile thing that negatively impacts the health care that fat individuals receive….

As a faculty member in the Master’s Program in Narrative Medicine at Columbia University, I know about the power of stories: stories told by physicians, stories told by patients. I know that having health care students read, write and analyze narratives can deepen their training in bioethics, medical professionalism, reflective practice, self-care and patient-centered care. Narrative study can help our students effectively diagnose, treat, and otherwise attend to the lives of their patients.

Yes, stories are powerful. But let’s not get too precious about them. Simply reading any story with a medical student or engaging them in a narrative writing prompt is not the same as actually educating them in structural issues of oppression and inequity. Those of us in the medical humanities professions must teach our students not only to listen to stories, but to listen to them critically; asking themselves questions like “who is speaking?”, “who is being spoken for?”, “what larger narratives is this story supporting?”, and “what additional stories are being silenced by this one?”

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Maybe I just can’t see clearly from my vantage point of being 60+, but I smell trouble coming for Silicon Valley:

Nitasha Tiku at Valleywag, working off an article by Noam Scheiber at the New Republic, says:

If I had $1 million for every time a founder told me “It’s impossible to raise funding if you’re not a twenty-something dude,” I could lead their Series A round. The same bias applies to hiring. The ideal resume shouldn’t be much longer than “Dropped out of Prestigious University.”

The body image connection? Plastic surgery to make men look younger. Scheiber talked to Dr. Seth Matarasso, a San Francisco plastic surgeon:

… the age at which people seek him out is dropping—Matarasso routinely turns away tech workers in their twenties. A few months ago, a 26-year-old came in seeking hair transplants to ward off his looming baldness. “I told him I wouldn’t let him. His hair pattern isn’t even established,” Matarasso said. …

… In ascending order of popularity, the male techies favor laser treatments to clear up broken blood vessels and skin splotches. Next is a treatment called ultherapy—essentially an ultrasound that tightens the skin. “I’ve had it done of course. I was back at work the next day. There’s zero downtime.” But, as yet, there is no technology that trumps good old-fashioned toxins, the most common treatment for the men of tech. They will go in for a little Botox between the eyes and around the mouth. Like most overachievers, they are preoccupied with the jugular.

For the record, I’m 100% in favor of young people having positions of responsibility, decision-making, and institutional power. At the same time, I believe diversity in all categories is the spice of strong choices.

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Eric Stetson at Daily Kos reports that JPMorgan Chase won’t process payments for Lovability, a mother-and-daughter condom company, because they are a “reputational risk”: Anyone want to bet they make the same decision about Trojan? Stetson got his facts from the Huffington Post.

I wanted to let you know that we actually will not be able to move forward regarding processing with Chase Paymentech, as processing sales for adult-oriented products is a prohibited vertical. I apologize for the confusion and wish you and your growing brand the best of luck in the future.

Remember, JPMorgan is an investment bank for the rich, but Chase is around every corner in big cities. You don’t have to bank with them, if you consider them (as I do), a “reputational risk.”

Most usual sources: Feministe, Feministing, io9, and Shakesville. And also, this time, Lynne Murray.

2 Responses to “Returning with Links”

  1. Lizzie Says:

    I wish someone who understands more than I do about photography as art could explain to me the significance of of Vivian Maier’s photos. I love them as historical documents, the same way I love old news photos or group photos, and they’re pleasingly done, but I don’t understand what makes them artistic.

  2. Laurie Says:

    Lizzie,

    It’s always in the eye of the beholder. For me, she is often compositionally brilliant. And I think she has a fine sense of “in the moment” in what she captures in her portraits. I like what I’ve seen of the work at lot. But I’d have to see some originals or at least very good reproductions to have a definite opinion.

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