Saturday, 24 October 2020

World Polio Day

Worldwide, there is no correlation between a child's gender and immunisation, i.e., there is no gender difference. One important exception is India where females are associated with missed polio vaccination (via).

"(...) there are notable variations where immunization coverage is higher for girls in some countries and higher for boys in others. This is why the polio programme regularly collects sex-disaggregated data to enable it to track gender-related discrepancies and take swift corrective action. Overall it is important to note that data from the polio-endemic countries (Afghanistan, Nigeria and Pakistan) in the past two years shows that girls and boys have been equally reached in house-to-house vaccination campaigns. For instance, in Afghanistan, out of all girls surveyed after vaccination campaigns in 2017, 92.6% were recorded as vaccinated, compared to 92.5% of boys. This high level of coverage is the tangible result of targeted and context-specific communications for awareness raising and behaviour change activities, combined with well-trained health workers recruited from local communities." Global Polio Eradication Initiative

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photograph via

Friday, 23 October 2020

... and the fear might evaporate.

“If he were allowed contact with foreigners he would discover that they are creatures similar to himself and that most of what he has been told about them is lies. The sealed world in which he lives would be broken, and the fear, hatred, and self-righteousness on which his morale depends on might evaporate.”
George Orwell, 1984

photograph by Vivian Maier via

Wednesday, 21 October 2020

Training Police for Intercultural Sensitivity. Two Approaches.

Intercultural training aims to train people to interact with people with differnt cultural backgrounds, to convey information about cultures and countries, to develop self-awarenss by examining one's own "cultural values, beliefs and assumptions". This approach emphasises different individuals coming together, cross-cultural understanding and self-awareness. Race (sic) relations training, on the other hand, focuses on raising awareness of one's own racism, understanding structural racism, combatting harassment based on skin tone and seeks to change social institutions. This approach emphasises intergroup relations and behavioural outcomes.

In their meta-analysis of methods used to train the Canadian police for intercultural sensitivity, the authors come to the conclusion that programmes using the intercultural approach are significantly more effective than those using race (sic) relations training. Another significant finding is that programmes with ethnically heterogeneous participants are more successful than those with rather homogeneous groups (Ungerleider & McGregor, 2008).

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- Ungerleider, C. & McGregor, J. (2008). Training police for intercultural sensitivity: A critical review and discussion of the research. Canadian Public Administration 36(1), 77-89.
- photograph via

Tuesday, 20 October 2020

World Osteoporosis Day

Since osteoporosis still has the image of being a so-called women's health issue, it is often overlooked in men and becomes an unrecognised and untreated condition leading to higher mortality and morbidity rates in men (Rao, Budhwar & Ashfaque, 2010).

- Rao, S. S., Budhwar, N. & Ashfaque, A. (2010). Osteoporosis in Men. American Family Physician, 82(5), 503-508.
- photograph by the amazing Vivian Maier via

Monday, 19 October 2020

The Migrant Acceptance Index

According to an index that is based on three questions Gallup asked in 138 countries in 2016 and 2017, nine of the ten countries that score a 2.39 or lower are Eastern European countries, most of them  located along the Balkan route. They also happen to be the ones most strongly opposed to accepting Syrian refugees. In Macedonia, Montenegro and Hungary, at least two-thirds say that their countries should not admit Syrian refugees ... a predisposition these countries already had before any "influx of refugees" (via).

But there is evidence that people in these countries -- many of which have long histories of conflicts with neighboring countries -- were already predisposed to be suspicious of outsiders, and the influx of refugees further inflamed these attitudes. Even before the crisis, the majority across Eastern Europe said that migration levels in their countries should be decreased. The same is true of Israel, where three in four residents in 2012 -- the year before the country finished building a fence along its border with Egypt to keep out migrants from Africa -- said they wanted immigration decreased. 
The three questions:
Immigrants living in this country                                  A good thing
An immigrant becoming your neighbor                         A bad thing
An immigrant marrying one of your close relatives       (It depends)*

The least accepting countries:
1) Macedonia: 1.47
2) Montenegro: 1.63
3) Hungary: 1.69
4) Serbia: 1.80
5) Slovakia: 1.83

The most accepting countries:
1) Iceland: 8.26
2) New Zealand: 8.25
3) Rwanda: 8.16
4) Sierra Leone: 8.05
5) Mali: 8.03
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photograph via

Saturday, 17 October 2020

How diversity gets lost in design practices of information and communication technologies

Abstract: This article adopts an intersectional approach to investigate how age, gender, and diversity are represented, silenced, or prioritized in design. Based on a comparative study of design practices of information and communication technologies (ICTs) for young girls and older people, this article describes differences and similarities in the ways in which designers tried to cope with diversity. Ultimately diversity was neglected, and the developers relied on hegemonic views of gender and age, constructed older people and young girls as an “other,” and consequently their input was neglected. These views were thus materialized in design and reinforce such views in powerful yet unobtrusive ways. Oudshoorn, Neven & Stienstra (2016)

- Oudshoorn, N, Neven, L. & Stienstra, M. (2016). How diversity gets lost: Age and gender in design practices of information and communication technologies, Journal of Women & Aging, link
- photograph by Pierre Cardin (1970) via

Thursday, 15 October 2020

Men Buy, Women Shop?

According to a survey carried out among 1.700 consumers, the notion of women spending much time on shopping while men just take the first thing they see in order to leave the shop as quickly as possible seems to be a stereotype. In fact, men were more likely to do detailed research before buying something than women (men 32.1%, women 26.4%) (via).

photograph via

Wednesday, 14 October 2020

The Impact of Culture on How the Media Portray ADHD to the Lay Public

The biomedical model sees disorders and diseases as deviations from the norm and medical approaches as the only possible treatment (via) ignoring psychological and social variables that are "unquestionably important" (via). According to various analyses of newspapers, in the UK, the psychosocial model of ADHD is dominant while in the US, the biomedical model is stressed. In France, there is a rather psychodynamic understanding of the disorder and whenever biomedical aspects prevail, they are presented or discussed in a more nuanced way (Ponnou & Gonnon, 2017). This, again, has an impact on how ADHD is seen and approached.

- Ponnou, S. & Gonnon, F. (2017). How French media have portrayed ADHD to the lay public and to social workers. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Health and Well-being, link
- photograph by Henri Cartier Bresson via

Monday, 12 October 2020

Quoting Jimmy Carter

"We have become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different hopes, different dreams."
Jimmy Carter

photograph via

Sunday, 11 October 2020

Best Picture Nominations & Ageism

It may not really come as a surprise: Seniors are scarce in movies. 25 films nominated for Best Picture between 2014 and 2016 were analysed. The results: 8% of the speaking characters were 60 years of age or older, 77.7% of them men, 22.3% women.


42.9% of the 14 films with a leading or supporting senior character featured a derogatory comment about ageing - referring to health, movement, cognition, senses, appearance or death (Choueiti et al., 2017)

- Smith, S. L., Choueiti, M. & Pieper, K. (2017). Over Sixty, Underestimated: A Look at Aging on the "Silver" Screen in Best Picture Nominated Films, LINK
- photographs of the amazing Donald Pleasence (1919-1995) by Allan Warren via and via

Friday, 9 October 2020

Stranger Fruit, by Jon Henry

Jon Henry's "Stranger Fruit" series is named after Billie Holiday's song and a reaction to the murders of black men in the U.S. In his series, mothers pose with their sons "in a manner that evokes the Madonna and child" (via).

“The mothers in the photographs have not lost their sons, but understand the reality that this could happen to their family. The mother is also photographed in isolation, reflecting on the absence. When the trials are over, the protesters have gone home and the news cameras gone, it is the mother left. Left to mourn, to survive.”
Jon Henry

photographs via

Wednesday, 7 October 2020

Homogenising the Way the World Goes Mad

To travel internationally is to become increasingly unnverved by the way American culture pervades the world. We cringe at the new indoor Mlimani shopping mall in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania. We shake our heads at the sight of a McDonald's on Tiananmen Square or a Nike factory in Malaysia. The visual landscape of the world has become depressingly familiar. For Americans the old joke has become bizarrely true: wherever we go, there we are.
We have the uneasy feeling that our influence over the rest of the world is coming at a great cost. loss of the world's diversity and complexity. For all our self-incrimination, however, we have yet to face our most disturbing effect on the rest of the world. Our golden arches do not represent our most troubling impact on other cultures, rather, it is how we are flattening the landscape of the human psyche itself. We are engaged in the grand project of Americanizing the world's understanding of the human mind. 

(...) Particularly telling are the changing manifestations of mental illnesses around the world. In the past two decades, for instance, eating disorders have risen in Hong Kong and are now spreading to inland China. (...) In addition, a particularly Americanized version of depression is on the rise in countries across the world.

(...) Over the past thirty years, we Americans have been industriously exporting our ideas about mental illness. Our definitions and treatments have become the international standards. Although this has often been done with the best of intentions, we've failed to foresee the full impact of these efforts. It turns out tha thow a people in a culture think about mental illnesses - how they categorize and prioritize the symptoms, attempt to heal them, and set expectations for their cours and outcome - influences the diseases themselves. In teaching the rest of the world to think like us, we have been, for better and worse, homogenizing the way the world goes mad. (excerpts)

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- Watters, E. (2010). Crazy Like Us. The Globalization of the American Psyche. New York, London, Toronto & Sydney: Free Press.
- photograph (America Seen Through Stars and Stripes, New York City, 1976, by Ming Smith) via

Monday, 5 October 2020

Donate your words

"225,000 older people often go a whole week without speaking to anyone at all. So we've partnered with Cadbury to encourage everyone to have a conversation with an older person and to celebrate the story of an older person you know." 
Age UK

"Captain Sir Tom Moore has joined Cadbury’s ‘Donate Your Words’ campaign in collaboration with Age UK, which aims to encourage Brits to start a conversation with an older person in their family or community, to help tackle loneliness." (via)

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Watch more clips:

::: The Originals: WATCH
::: Manchester United: WATCH
::: Fence: WATCH
::: Donate your words: WATCH

Sunday, 4 October 2020

The First Day

"I am Elizabeth Eckford. I am part of the group that became known as the Little Rock Nine. Prior to the [de]segregation of Central, there had been one high school for whites, Central High School; one high school for blacks, Dunbar. I expected that there may be something more available to me at Central that was not available at Dunbar; that there might be more courses I could pursue; that there were more options available. I was not prepared for what actually happened."
"The First Day, which was performed by Kendie Jones, is a dance interpretation of Eckford’s walk that day. Its monochrome aesthetic is an evocative nod towards the black-and-white images of Eckford's public ordeal, which was captured by press photographers and republished in papers internationally." (via)

THE FIRST DAY from barnaby roper on Vimeo.

"I was more concerned about what I would wear, whether we could finish my dress in time...what I was wearing was that okay, would it look good. The night before when the governor went on television and announced that he had called out the Arkansas National Guard, I thought that he had done this to insure the protection of all the students. We did not have a telephone, so inadvertently we were not contacted to let us know that Daisy Bates of NAACP had arranged for some ministers to accompany the students in a group. And so, it was I that arrived alone.

On the morning of September 4th, my mother was doing what she usually did. My mother was making sure everybody’s hair looked right and everybody had their lunch money and their notebooks and things. But she did finally get quiet and we had family prayer. I remember my father walking back and forth. My father worked at night and normally he would have been asleep at that time, but he was awake and he was walking back and forth chomping on cigar that wasn’t lit.

I expected that I would go to school as before on a city bus. So, I walked a few blocks to the bus stop, got on the bus, and rode to within two blocks of the school. I got off the bus and I noticed along the street that there were many more cars than usual. And I remember hearing the murmur of a crowd. But, when I got to the corner where the school was, I was reassured seeing these soldiers circling the school grounds. And I saw students going to school. I saw the guards break ranks as students approached the sidewalks so that they could pass through to get to school. And I approached the guard at the corner as I had seen some other students do and they closed ranks. So, I thought; 'Maybe I am not supposed to enter at this point.' So, I walked further down the line of guards to where there was another sidewalk and I attempted to pass through there. But when I stepped up, they crossed rifles. And again I said to myself; 'So maybe I’m supposed to go down to where the main entrance is.' So, I walked toward the center of the street and when I got to about the middle and I approached the guard he directed me across the street into the crowd. It was only then that I realized that they were barring me, that I wouldn’t go to school.

As I stepped out into the street, the people who had been across the street started surging forward behind me. So, I headed in the opposite direction to where there was another bus stop. Safety to me meant getting to that bus stop. It seemed like I sat there for a long time before the bus came. In the meantime, people were screaming behind me what I would have described as a crowd before, to my ears sounded like a mob."

Elizabeth Eckford, 1997

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Related postings

::: Narrative images: World Press Photo of the Year 1957: LINK
::: Narrative images: The Lost Year: LINK
::: Narrative images: Charles Thompson goes to school: LINK
::: Ruby & The New Orleans School Crisis: LINK

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gif via