LWsR #10

3 February – 6 March

This is actually a “Last month’s reads” post…

The new job is keeping me very busy – mindwise, and I struggle to find the concentration to read as much as I am used to, and to write down my thoughts. At the same time, I am finding a lot of pleasure and happiness in my running training, and I am starting to slowly see some improvements ! I’ll probably write something more about it in another post… but for the moment:

The Story of Sophie Germain, Maria Popova, Brain Pickings. The incredible story of French mathematician Sophie Germain, of her correspondence (initially under a male pseudonym, but afterward revealing her true identity) with Gauss and of how, with great efforts and persistence, she won a prize from the Paris Academy of Science for her work on vibration of elastic surfaces, at a time when women were not yet allowed to attend its lectures.

How a Fractious Women’s Movement Came to Lead the Left. Amanda Hess, The New York Times magazine. Feminism has never been a compact movement. Since its dawn, it has been incapable to collect the issues of different women under the same roof, forgetting how, behind her sex, race, class and sexual orientation shape the struggles of a woman’s life. The last decades pop-feminism most of all, distanced it from the political platform, making it, if though accessible to everyone, a little shallow and individualistic. But things might change. The #womensmarch of Washington was able to bring together women as well as men of different races, classes, sexual orientation and whoever identify him/herself as anti-racist and pro-environment and social justice. A movement, made not only by women but lead by women, that showed itself as inclusive and intersectional and that might finally bring along a fight that encompass different realities.

The Other World, Caithlin L. Chandler, Guernica Magazine. As MSF doctor, the author got to spent 9 days providing medical help at a refugee camp at the border between Syria and Lebanon. In the article, stories and feelings from a humanitarian crisis about which we know still too little and that looks far from being over.

The Body Adaptive, Gillie Collins, Guernica Magazine. An interview with Sarah Hendren, who, staring from the principle that every technology is an assistive technology,  uses art, design and engineering to build technologies, social spaces and a radically different cultural context for disable people.

” ..living with atypicality is a site of invention and creativity. People see disability always as a diminished form of normalcy or a form of normalcy that has to have this pathos around it. But a disabled person’s experience is as complicated as any given life. It’s got heartbreak, sadness, joy, and frustration, and every possibility and experience in it. If you see that, then you see the invention and creativity that comes from looking at people with nonnormative experiences. If you can just strip away this freighted cultural baggage, you can get interested in what people do.”