SPRING 2017 THE PURSUIT ISSUE
ATLAS SPRING 2017
EIC: Lindsey Paradis Managing Editor: Antonia DePace Creative Director: Sam Harton Fashion Directors: Emma Cox and Kristen Bruck
PHOTO Photo: Nora Wilby Photographers: Olivia Gerasole, Hannah Choi, Jacob Cutler, Meagan Leotta, Monika Davis, Andri BLOG Blog Editor: Lauren Lopez Bloggers: Jennifer Wood, Jessica Morris, Mia Ek Blog Photographers: Hayley Broderick, Amelia Wright
GLOBE Globe Editor: Jackie DeFusco Writers: Shafaq Patel, Kristi Szczesny, Harmony Taggart
CITY City Editor: Jess Filippone Writers: Giuliana Bruno, Brooke Johnson, Carissa Dunlap HEALTH Health Editor: Alysen Smith Assistant Health Editor: Olivia Woollett Writers: Margo Rometo, Elizabeth Hartel
STYLE Style Editor: Melinda Fakuade Writers: Lily Bump, Hannah Brem, Melanie Barreiro CAMPUS Campus Editor: Caitlin Smith Writers: Lilly Milman, Sarah Molloy
MARKETING Marketing Director: Swetha Amaresan Marketers: Rebecca Bass, Jen Litchfield, Maria Elisa Rodriguez
COPYEDITING Head Copyeditor: Katrina Taylor Copyeditors: Lilly Milman, Elle McNamara, Tara McDonough, Kira Venturini, Mia Ek ONLINE Online Writers: Fiona Luddy, Rebekah Scarborough
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As a staff, we came back from break this semester confused, afraid, defeated, but I think most of all angry. In discussion of themes we kept coming back to revolution, resist, fight; all powerful words we were feeling in the moment. But we put a pin in those. Not because we didn’t think we’d be feeling those emotions in three months—I’m sure most of us still do. I still do. Then we came to pursuit. To pursue is to follow or chase something. A right that everyone is supposed to be entitled to, a right that is ingrained into the founding of our country: the pursuit of happiness. In this issue we talk about these individual pursuits, to pursue something better for yourself, greater, more fulfilling. As well as those bigger national pursuits, sparked by not only our anger but our overwhelming wants for others to be equal, loved and accepted. For me, those national pursuits mean more than my individual ones. Yes, I am graduating. It is terrifying. I am pursuing my future here: graduation, hopefully a job, financial stability, a home, really everything I possibly can I will be pursuing these first few real years of my adulthood. And I want to succeed in those pursuits. But I would rather struggle along for these next four, five, six years if it meant that we, as a movement, had our pursuit come to fruition. I am a white cisgender heterosexual woman. My family is well-off middle class. I got to go to college taking on less loans than most. I have privilege. I know that as a person I could probably get by somewhat unaffected in these coming years. But my humanity wouldn’t. I guess this is my call to action. We will be living in a Trump America—God, writing that phrase makes me cringe—for the next four years. If anything happens, a Pence America. I’m not sure which one is worse honestly. Please don’t let your own personal pursuits blind you from our pursuit as a country, an overall society, a resistance, to move forward. Look out for others. Being a bystander is never the answer. Be accepting and kind every chance you get. Make art, write, never stop creating. Silence gives others power. Donate to causes that need it, that might lose funding. Most importantly, don’t give up. The only way you stop pursuing something is by giving up. Best,
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MEET OUR STAFF CREATIVE DIRECTOR Samantha Harton
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MANAGING EDITOR Antonia DePace
PHOTO EDITOR Nora Wilby
CO-FASHION DIRECTOR Emma Cox
GLOBE EDITOR Jackie DeFusco
CO-FASHION DIRECTOR Kristen Bruck
ASSISTANT HEALTH EDITOR Olivia Woollett
BLOG EDITOR Lauren Lopez
HEALTH EDITOR Alysen Smith
NOT PICTURED CITY EDITOR Jess Filippone MARKETING DIRECTOR Swetha Amaresan CAMPUS EDITOR Caitlin Smith HEAD COPYEDITOR Katrina Taylor
STYLE EDITOR Melinda Fakuade
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IN THIS ISSUE pg. 54
CAMPUS The Pursuit of a Dream pg. 10 Shawn Simpson, marketing communications major, is already living his dream as he’s already gone on tour with India’s hip-hop artist Raja Kumari. Here’s the thing: he hasn’t even graduated yet. Brain Child pg. 11 Emerson has a new brainchild on the loose: “A New Brain.” Written and directed by William Finn and James Lapine, this musical explores a life-threatening brain condition right on our campus. President Pelton’s Sanctuary Campus pg. 12 Emerson College has been declared a sanctuary campus. We sat down with President Lee Pelton to find out the reasons behind this decision, and why he wants to protect students.
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CITY Beauty at Balans pg. 16 This Boston-based spa does more than just create relaxation, it guides you through a holistic approach (and 100 percent organic and plantbased products). Artists for Humanity pg. 18 “I wanted to give kids an opportunity to tell their story during a time where the broader population would look past them,” says Susan Rodgerson, founder of Artists for Humanity. Find out how this inspirational woman is providing underprivileged teens with a chance. Cantina Italiana pg. 24 Take a trip with us to the North End as we explore one of the area’s oldest restaurants, Cantina Italiana.
SPRING 2017 pg. 30
pg. 18 pg. 46
Shaving Hair pg. 28 When Haseena Punjani shaved her head, she knew that it was a rebellion against her culture. Her bravery is inspirational, but her reason why? Empowering.
Here’s to Bold pg. 38 New and bold fashion statements have been seen on the runway, but do you know how to rock them? Read this article for tips and tricks on rocking a bold and stylish outfit.
Mastering Mindfulness pg. 52 When Sunada Takagi was diagnosed with severe repetitive strain injuries in both of her wrists, the life that she had known was taken away. But, it was this life event that led her to Buddhism, meditation and mindfulness.
#Goals pg. 45 Makeup is more than just a brand. It’s empowerment.
Cupping Therapy pg. 54 Cupping does a whole lot more than just leave alien-like bruises on your back. Find out the benefits and reasons why people get it done by reading this article.
Angels Getting Their Wings pg. 30 If you’ve ever had a disastrous date, but nowhere to turn to, this article might just be for you. The Pursuit of Happiness pg. 32 Culture changes a lot of daily life elements, but did you know that it changes the way that people look at happiness?
Feminist Fashion pg. 46 We’ve seen a lot of triumphs, battles and defeats in feminism this year. But, what a lot of people don’t realize is how it has made its way into fashion.
Ditch Your Diet pg. 56 Find out if your new diet is worth it as we delve into what diets really do to you, both mentally and physically.
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CAMPUS The Pursuit of a Dream: Shawn Simpson // pg. 10 Brain Child // pg. 11 President Peltonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s Sanctuary Campus // pg. 12
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The Pursuit of a Dream:
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WRITER: Lilly Milman COURTESY PHOTOS: Madly Photo Most Emerson students dream of traveling, making creative content that reaches large audiences and having the opportunity to work with celebrities. One student is already living this dream and he hasn’t even graduated yet. Last semester, Shawn Simpson, marketing communications ‘17, was able to go on tour in India with hip-hop artist Raja Kumari, who is mostly known for her collaborations with popular artists Fall Out Boy, Gwen Stefani and Fifth Harmony. This all happened thanks to a mutual friend of Simpson’s, an invite to Kumari’s birthday party in L.A. and a few Twitter direct messages between the two. However, chance encounters aren’t the only reason for Simpson’s success—he also attributes his opportunity to his hard work, perseverance and confidence. Before he left the L.A. program, he was already telling people that he would eventually shoot a video for Kumari. When asked about the learning curve of the job, Simpson mentioned the cultural division between them. Kumari is a first-generation Indian and a devout Hindu with a doctor for a father. Simpson is an American-born first-generation college student. Ultimately, it was the pair’s shared interest in rap music that bonded them together. Simpson’s experience can definitely be described as a whirlwind. It started with FaceTime, during which the two brainstormed ideas. They ended up working together in L.A. a day after he met Kumari in person. “It was pretty much a wrap from there. We communicated constantly, and the following month she flew me out to L.A. to work on the video for ‘Believe In You.’ Both of the videos were featured on VH1 India…The press was crazy,” he says. The videos ended up being wildly successful. Kumari invited Simpson to create the visuals that would be displayed behind her during shows for her tour. Their chemistry was so obvious in the videos that they made together that he ended up being invited to go on tour with Kumari in India for a month to direct new music videos and to film various events. “I was definitely a little hesitant to travel to India initially because I didn’t know what to expect,” Simpson explains. Despite his original doubt, he left India with many positive experiences. Although he complained about the “unbelievable” traffic, he also said, “the food is amazing, the coffee is unreal, the people are incredibly kind and the country is beautiful.” His biggest challenge during this experience was learning to stand alone. When Simpson works in the United States, he works with a consistent crew of people. Being without his usual team in India was challenging, but it is also the reason for the pride he feels from this project. These videos represent his ability to trust in his own talent. When asked if he had any parting words, Simpson simply said, “never give up. You literally never know when you’re going to meet the person that’s going to change your life forever… If you love something, you need to chase it until you can’t run anymore.”
BRAIN CHILD WRITER: Caitlin Smith PHOTO: Hannah Choi
Emerson College has issued “A New Brain” for their students, and it didn’t come in a medical container. This past February, Mimi Warnick, directing major with musical theater concentration ‘18, directed 10 actors in two and a half weeks to bring William Finn’s vision to theatrical light. “A New Brain” is the brainchild of William Finn and James Lapine. The story arcs around an autobiographical exploration of a life-threatening brain condition for Finn. True to his original contemporary style, Finn and Lapine created a story expressed mainly through song instead of dialogue. With incredible juxtaposition and complex harmonies, “A New Brain” is not a simple procedure. During sad moments the harmonies would be upbeat and fast-paced while during happy moments, the harmonies would be depressing and choppy, contrasting the emotions with the reality. Warnick says, “There are many themes throughout this show, but I really chose to focus on heart and music instead of time and music and the idea that, when we have issues arrive and turmoil arises, our response to the heart, that innate gut emotion that we can’t control or do we allow time to solve it for us?” When “A New Brain” was originally produced in 1998, the focus was on heart. In the 2015 revival, the focus was on time. Warnick attributes the change in theme to the change in our society from various factors, “9/11 being a huge part of that. In 1998, they were coming out of the AIDS crisis in Broadway in New York, it was really a time of mourning but also celebration with your heart. But ever since 9/11, it’s like we live in a very different society where art is not the focal point, where we focus on time to tell us what we do and we usually don’t realize we’re in a bad state until something bad happens and that we all think it’s going to be okay and then it hits us.” Although “A New Brain” is Warnick’s third production at Emerson, it did have its own challenges. “One to put up, and two, to understand. I think because of the consistence of the song, the juxtaposition and the lyrics where you are in the plot
doesn’t match the melody, he did it that way. So if something is a really sad song, it’s an upbeat melody. It’s all just a constant juxtaposition.” When Warnick first proposed “A New Brain” to Musical Theater Society, she had just finished directing “Godspell” last December. Similarly to “A New Brain,” “Godspell” was told mostly through song instead of dialogue, it was “just taking the step up on a show that focuses on relationships and health, kind of the healing power of art through song, which is what drew me to the whole process of proposing it,” says Warnick. On February 20th, 10 actors performed 30 songs of complex melodies for a packed house of Emerson students, alumni, teachers, friends and family members. Instead of feeling immediate pride for her production, Warnick was terrified that no one understood the piece. “When people were coming up to me after the show, I was like ‘nobody got it, nobody understood it.’ But I don’t think I gave enough credit to the audience that they could understand it or that we did a good enough job that they would. Everybody said that, ‘I’m so excited that I was introduced to the song and musical.’ And they really liked how the story was told, the themes and that it was through song. So really, really great feedback. Mostly to the casts account, obviously, but really good feedback.” Through all of these experiences, Warnick has learned that “through time and practice and preparation, you truly do become better at things.” Warnick graduates next spring, but there is a final hurrah for Warnick Directions on the far horizon. For the fall semester, however, Warnick will be studying theater in London. In her final spring, Warnick plans to direct another show through the Musical Theater Society. Every April students can apply to become a member of their executive board, or, if solely interested in production and direction, can submit proposals from March through April by going online to their website. For the fate of “A New Brain,” Warnick plans to keep this experience “in my backpack.”
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President Pelton’s Sanctuary Campus WRITER: Sarah Molloy
Photo: Jacob Cutler
Under the Pelton administration at Emerson College, many social policies have been put in place, more specifically, one in which hopes to comfort a variety of American citizens who currently live in fear. Colleges and universities throughout the nation have recently enacted policies to support their diverse student bodies. On February 8, 2017, President Pelton sent out an email to the entire college, explaining that he had declared Emerson a sanctuary campus.
ditional. What Boston has said essentially is that we will not voluntarily assist ICE officials, except under certain circumstances, one circumstance being identifying an undocumented immigrant who has a criminal record. In that respect, you’re really following the guidelines of the Obama Administration, which in effect said, “we’re not going to seek out or prosecute undocumented immigrants who have no criminal history, we’re going to focus on those who do.”
Sanctuary campuses promise safety to members of the college community who may not be officially documented citizens of the United States. These adopted policies include not willingly giving up undocumented students to officials unless there is specific reason to do so. In your own words, what defines a sanctuary campus to you? A number of cities and states and colleges have declared themselves to be sanctuary campuses; however, it can be misleading. All of the jurisdictions and colleges that have described themselves as “sanctuary” are not promising unilateral, blanket protection, they are providing protection that is con-
One of Trump’s biggest campaign claims was that he would rid America of undocumented immigrants in order to make America a safer place. Now that he is in office, we have seen him already making plans to deport immigrants, targeting millions of people. What led you to declare Emerson a sanctuary campus? I believe that the college has a duty to support our students who we’ve enrolled, regardless of their standing outside of the college. I also believe that we stand united in welcoming and supporting immigrants. They have friends, they’ve gone to American colleges, they have the same allegiance to this country as all other citizens. I believe we ought to extend to
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them the rights and the privileges that we extend to other Americans. What, if any, are the results to be expected from this decision? I can’t predict what kind of guidance the Trump Administration might give, but we are not going to willingly support efforts to detain or deport our students. What was the timeline of making this happen? Is there a date for when it will become official? It’s effective immediately after the email was sent, on February 8th. What do you hope will come from the decision of making Emerson a sanctuary campus, both within Emerson and on a greater scale? My hope is that the collective voice of states, colleges and universities who said that they will support undocumented immigrants will send a strong, powerful message to the nation about what we value as being distinctly American.
Do you have any words for those students who have to live in fear of the current administration of our country? Yes, I do. First of all, I’m very sympathetic to students, anyone, having to live under this dark cloud of threat to their well-being and to their full engagement of American life. I would assume that for our students this produces enormous anxiety and frustration, and so that’s why I’ve appointed a senior administrator on campus to be there for all these students, to reach out to them individually and to help them navigate Emerson and their lives. Emerson faculty and students alike are very adamant about showing their support for the members of the community whose rights are compromised under Trump’s administration. Whether it is attending marches or holding on-campus programs to promote important political conversation, the Emerson community supports it members—especially when much of the outside world does not.
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CITY Beauty at Balans // pg. 16
Artists for Humanity // pg. 18 Cantina Italiana // pg. 24
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beauty at balans
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WRITER: Brooke Johnson PHOTO: Jacob Cutler Located just down the street from Emerson’s Boylston campus is Balans Organic Spa; a luxurious center for health and relaxation. Balan’s doesn’t just provide the services one thinks of when they think of a spa. Instead, they offer a more holistic wellness experience. Balans believes that there are choices you can make in your daily life that serve your skin, health and the environment, and it is possible with some guidance, to make these choices habitual. One of the things Maura McCartney, a nutrition and health consultant at Balans, says makes the spa so special is its 100 percent organic, plant-based product line by Maria Akerberg. According to McCartney, all of Balans products are free of chemicals, additives, preservatives and fragrances. Nothing but pure ingredients. But this doesn’t just mean everything has kale as a main ingredient. For example, one of the spa’s treatments is a stem cell facial. These special cells were once extracted from fetal tissue, but today, stem cell techniques have evolved and scientists are able to create plant and animal stem cells in laboratory settings. Just as stem cells can replace damaged kidney or liver cells, they can also renew skin cells. A topical application of stem cells to the face can slow the aging of skin and help your body replace damaged cells with new, more youthful looking skin cells. Balans believes that our bodies are constantly exposed to toxic chemicals and synthetic ingredients that leave our immune system, digestion and endocrine system vulnerable. Organic, plantbased ingredients are most familiar to our own cells, which means these ingredients are able to heal and nourish our cells more effectively. This is true for skin care, food and even cleaning products. Balans makes all of its products in-house. Additionally, all the production and manufacturing of products is geared to sustain the environment and eliminate the pollution of the ocean. Balans products are contained in 100 percent compostable and recyclable bottles and packaging. Being the first spa in Boston to offer a 100 percent organic skin care line isn’t the only first Balans claim. Balans Organic Spa is the first in Boston to provide extensive nutritional, health and lifestyle support and counseling. Balans believes sustained health is achieved once it becomes a part of your lifestyle. McCartney says a Balans “nutrition and health consultant supports her clients through education, encour-
agement and accountability to find the foods, habits and lifestyle choices that truly serve them. Receiving a spa treatment is a wonderful form of self-care and we want to make sure we can reinforce those efforts beyond their experience at the spa by offering nutrition and life coaching. We have found this to be an excellent addition to our menu.” Those struggling to find their way to a healthy lifestyle that suits them have the option to spend 30 to 45 minutes with a consultant up to four times a month, and work together to find a way of life that allows them to be their best self. Balans also offers flotation therapy. Flotation therapy is a relatively new treatment, but according to McCartney, many Balans customers swear by it. It involves spending 90 minutes floating in a one foot deep pool of water filled with 900 pounds of epsom salt, which, McCartney says, relaxes the brain and promotes feelings of tranquillity. Unlike sensory deprivation tank flotation, a similar therapy that takes place in a dark, sealed tank, Balan’s flotation therapy takes place in a spacious, lit room where you can choose to listen to guided meditation or music of your choice. McCartney says, “the physical, mental and health benefits are outstanding. Our clients float for many reasons: to relieve stress, and muscle aches, promote relaxation, meditation, or for those who struggle with depression, anxiety or insomnia. Float is an incredibly nurturing experience that can support the healing and overall health instantly.” Flotation therapy isn’t available in many places, but is becoming quite trendy. In fact, the New England Patriots are said to have sensory deprivation tanks in their locker room. csnne.com reported that “players inside the Patriots locker room say they believe the salt water helps reduce inflammation, and some like the idea of having a designated quiet space to think or pray. But there’s one primary benefit that they consistently highlight: improved quality of sleep.” This seems to be true for a lot of “floaters.” Faith Cummings, a writer for Harper’s Bazaar, wrote in her article, “Five Reasons To Float In a Sensory Deprivation Tank,” that after her flotation therapy, “I could’ve fallen asleep on the floor of the spa with the snap of a finger had I been allowed. But instead, I fell asleep the instant I hit my mattress and slept almost two hours past my usual wake-up time the next morning (I’m a chronic early bird) and felt completely restored and rejuvenated the entire next day.” Balans may have some unusual treatments, but their mission is simple: honor your body and mind, and they will serve you well. Whether that means taking an hour out of your day for a relaxing massage and flotation therapy session, or consulting a nutritional counselor to help you make healthy choices, Balans can be there for you on your journey to a healthier, happier you.
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artists for humanity
WRITER: Carissa Dunlap PHOTO: Hannah Choi A non-profit organization, Artists for Humanity, is providing underprivileged teens with creative opportunities. The Boston based organization trains and employs teens to collaboratively work with and learn from mentors to develop innovative solutions to meet clients’ needs. They are the largest on-site employer of teens, employing over 250 in paid apprenticeships to provide their artistic services to the Boston business community and to let their voices be heard. By fusing the community’s artists and businesses, AFH hopes to promote growth in their artists and change the perceptions of low-income youth towards their future. Susan Rodgerson noticed a lack of an art education and voice for the youth in the Boston Public School System, back at the organization’s start in 1991. The ’90s were a hard time for many youth, as violence increased and high school graduation rates decreased, in Boston. Since the beginning, Rodgerson saw a deep yearning for teens to be a part of a collaborative and creative environment. After school, teens would line up to wait outside for Rogerson to open the studio’s doors. The vision was to take teens from Boston’s challenged neighborhoods, and to cultivate their craft and work with them to produce artwork that could be sold to corporations and businesses. Rodgerson saw an innate talent and clear vision to solve and provide creative services to the community from the teens within it. “I wanted to give kids an opportunity to tell their story, during a time where the broader population would look past them. I began as a painter with a simple idea that I could work with a group of young people and help them define a message and translate that message onto large scale art pieces. Then sell them to corporations and get their voices on the walls of banks, law firms and begin to educate the broader population about these kids because, at the time, they had no voice,” says Rodgerson. For instance, the artists in the of the group took an average wall next to the highway and turned it into a beautiful demonstration of three dimensional art before it was garnished with graffiti. Three dimensional art has volume in comparison to two dimensional art that remains flat. The group created 3D flowers out of an assortment of geometric shapes, colors and recycled plastic, then scattered them on the wall. Rodgerson saw this as an opportunity to
give these teens a voice, stating the mission of the organization is to “bridge the economic, racial and social divisions by providing under-resourced urban youth with the keys to self-sufficiency and creative outlets.” “We had a goal of making Boston a better city for kids. And I think we’ve done our part, as much as we could for this town, for both the young people and the business by giving them a way and an avenue to the talented Boston youth,” says co-founder and special projects director, Jason Talbot. Many of the teenagers come from underprivileged backgrounds and low-income families. This creative environment is seen as a productive and life changing opportunity for the youth and their communities by many of the organization’s workers and the teens’ families. For three days a week, teens are able to come into a productive space to create fine art, to design solutions and learn about future career possibilities. While teens are receiving paid apprenticeships, the community’s youth are allowed to attend programs and art nights hosted by the organization. Talbot believes the organization is a great way to address social injustice and cultivate enterprise through art, and a way to develop the foundations of respect, responsibility and purposeful relationships. It is a way for the entire community to be engaged and to create with meaning. “I think it is important for these kids to have some guidance, so they can figure out a path for themselves, rather than the path everyone else believes they’ll be on. It’s important for us to shepherd these kids, and make sure their making the right decisions and not making any permanent mistakes,” explains Talbot. “They get to decide to invest in themselves, and know that the track in front of them isn’t the only way to go.” According to Talbot, last year the group created over 700 pieces of artwork and sold roughly 1.5 million dollars’ worth to an array of clients such as Converse and Reebok. For each piece sold, the artist is given 50 percent commission. Similar to a regular part-time job, each artist is directly paid for their work. The organization focuses on different medians of creativity—paintings, sketching, industrial or sculpture design, graphic design, photography, web design and silkscreen. The addition of silkscreen printing was added in order to expand into a new business where they not only make their own t-shirts to be sold in their Faneuil Hall store, but also to Barnes and Noble college bookstores. Before branching off
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into the different sectors of AFH, a new teen member begins at the organization’s foundations—the art studio. Talbot says, “Everybody who comes in has great ideas, but the studio is where a teen learns how to sketch out their ideas, share them, critique them and learn how to bring together these ideas into an up-scale project and into the world.” When a teen first comes to AFH, their first project is to create a self-portrait. This is where incoming teens learn observational skills, how to see clearly, how to understand the proportions of the body and transform the 3D world into a 2D drawing. More importantly, Rodgerson recognizes the beginning of their journey to discovering their own self-worth. As well, Rodgerson sees the changes in the newcomers in just the first few months being involved in the organization. More and more, they begin to take initiative and invest in themselves. “The world becomes their oyster,” says Rodgerson. “They begin to see their value, and become inspired by the creative process to solve problems for corporations or individuals. They feel like they’re participating in commerce and the world, and the way things unfold. They feel a part of the urban building. Ultimately, they feel like they have value. And that the value has no boundaries.” Every month, Artists for Humanity hosts two open houses for teens interested in working with the organization. Those who are interested can explore and tour the studio in order to see how their peers work. They are then given an application and undergo a rigorous interview process. Applicants are hired as vacancies open up, but many of the prospective students are put on a roughly six month, extensive waiting list. Many of the new employees start from scratch, needing further education and knowledge of basic art skills. Boston public schools don’t provide art programs because of district wide budget cuts resulting in a lack of funding. Mentors will work with newcomers on honing their observational skills, artistic skills and to figure out what department their talents could be better developed in. AFH’s methodology is to work with and listen to everyone, and lead with the mentor structure in order to infuse kids with the proper tools to complete any task. “What we’re looking for isn’t so much as artistic talent, but it’s more about their need for a program like this. There’s lots of people who need this place, but more than anything, this is a place that benefits everyone,” says Talbot. Although the organization is solely centered around high school teenagers, there are also opportunities for college stu-
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dents. AFH prides itself on its 100 percent graduation rate from high school and achieving college acceptances. They attribute the high rates with their after-program tutoring, which provides one-on-one sessions in the math and science subjects. This also creates a constant need for volunteers and mentors to come in and aid the educational side of the teens’ curricular. Those who attend college, or stay in the Boston area and are in need of additional funding can work part-time at the organization. Many former members after college return to AFH as full-time members. In the upcoming year, AFH hopes to break ground on the construction of an even bigger and better facility. The Artist For Humanity Epicenter was built back in 2004 on A street in South Boston. It was awarded a LEED Platinum certification—the highest honor in sustainable architecture—for its 100 percent renewable energy by the United States Green Building Council. The building was designed to house the expanded program and gallery around Boston’s South End art district. At the time, the Epicenter provided youth with a wide studio and gallery space, and allowed for more employment of teens. Now, the organization plans to build more studios and conference rooms on the adjoining parking lot. By doubling the size of the facility, AFH will be able to provide even more opportunities and living wage jobs to over 500 teens. “There’s not enough jobs for teens. We still have a tremendous waiting list, and we want more kids to have this opportunity,” says Talbot. Talbot goes on to explain how giving teens employment helps solve potential threats underprivileged youth face, such as dropping out of school, teen pregnancy or getting into legal trouble. “A lot of the issues these kids face would be solved with a good job and with a mentor who could offer advice, rather than being at the mercy of their neighborhood. You get to feel the self-esteem of having a paycheck and the respect you get from being a part of a team. It changes how kids view themselves. And then, the feeling of accomplishment. You can see what you’ve created and others can see what you’ve created. It really makes you see yourself in a different way.” Through donations, marketing services and sales revenue, the organization continues to provide a safe, exciting and productive working environment to teens. In the future, Artist for Humanity hopes to continue to pioneer more opportunities for the youth in the Boston community, and to continue the immense success of the organization.
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CANTINA ITALIANA WRITER: Giuliana Bruno PHOTO: Olivia Gerasole
A night out to the North End is a staple in the lives of Boston students, but there is more to Hanover Street’s strip of businesses than just cannolis. The rich history of the area is easily found at the North End’s oldest restaurant, Cantina Italiana. Located on Hanover Street, the restaurant first opened in 1931. Colella bought it in 1979 after it closed, and reopened it in 1980. He was only 22 at the time. Although Colella was young, he was wise and mature beyond his years. Born and raised in Avellino, Italy, he learned about real Italian cooking far before his arrival to the United States. Colella moved to Massachusetts for a better life. He wanted success. “I came to this country when I was 12 years old, so let’s put it this way: when we were kids, 12 years old, you were a grown man. When you are 5 years old you already have your duties,” Colella explains. “My duty was to cook for the employees, the people who used to come and work the land.” In his youth, Colella worked at Rocco’s Pastry shop and then would come to Cantina’s and wash dishes. He gradually became involved by making pizzas, which eventually led to buying the restaurant. Colella also owns Ristorante Fiore, just down the street from Cantina’s. The restaurant, which opened in 2000, is a more modern, upscale dining experience featuring outdoor dining and a rooftop bar. The dishes showcase the flavors of Naples, like pasta fagioli—a soup of pasta and beans. Because of the many years he has spent working with his two restaurants, Colella has seen the North End develop and
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change dramatically over the years. The changes, some for better and some for worse, happened right outside his storefront on Hanover Street. What were once funeral homes and salumerias are now commercial banks and clothing stores. A positive change Colella has seen is the growing popularity of the area, which has led to good business. “When I first started working in the North End, there was less than a dozen restaurants,” Colella recalls. “Now there’s about 150 restaurants, business wasn’t as good as [it is] now. It used to be a neighborhood.” Andrea Saliba has been a member of the Cantina’s staff for nearly 20 years as a waitress, manager, bartender and wherever else she is needed in the restaurant. Saliba can attest to what the North End neighborhood was like back then. “When I was younger, it was considered basically the ghetto,” says Saliba. “Now, people can not come buy anything around here unless [they’re] a millionaire.” But Colella is wary of too much change to the infrastructure of the Italian neighborhood. “I think if [there is] a lot of renovation, it won’t look like the old North End anymore. We don’t want it to look like, you know, downtown Boston,” says Colella. “We want the old Italian North End with the brick fronts.” Despite the presence of Chinese restaurants and a 7 Eleven store among the authentic Italian eateries, Colella is glad that the area has not been populated with Dunkin Donuts and Starbucks. However, he has a feeling that this may not be true in 10 years or so.
The suburbs within a 20 mile radius of the North End are already experiencing what he describes, with chain restaurants and big steakhouses, even some chain Italian restaurants, popping up. There has also been buzz about Eataly, an Italian marketplace that recently opened in the Prudential Center, potentially taking business away from the North End. But Colella isn’t worried. “[Eataly] is a different concept altogether,” says Colella. “It’s a good concept they have, but those fade away eventually. They get busy at the beginning, everybody wants to go visit it and see how it is, but if they want the real deal, it’s here. The real Italian food is in the North End.” Colella is an expert in that realm. Real, fresh, homemade food is of the utmost importance to him and his restaurants, Cantina Italiana and Ristorante Fiore. “We specialize in everything homemade. We buy very little. We only buy stuff that we need to buy like the veal, the chicken, the flour,” he says. “We make our own pasta, we make our own bread, we make our own roasted peppers, we make our own eggplant, everything is made here. I think we are the only restaurants, Cantina and Fiore’s, [that] make our own stuff.” The homemade specialties can pose a bit of a challenge for Colella when it comes to finding employees willing to put in the time and labor. He is disappointed to see so many chefs whose preferred method of cooking is, as Colella calls it, “from the freezer to the fryer.” “They want to just fry [the food], put them in a basket, send them to the customers, get their paycheck and leave,” Colella says.
The way people eat Italian has also changed, according to Colella. Andrea Saliba, manager of Cantina’s, says Americanized versions of traditional Italian dishes are partially to blame. “You go to Italy, there’s no chicken parm, eggplant parm, it appeals to the masses though,” says Saliba. It disappoints Colella when customers have never heard of gnocchi or fusilli, traditional Italian pastas that are handmade in his restaurants. “I had a young couple, on Valentine’s [Day] we made homemade fusilli,” recalls Colella. “Fusilli is a signature dish of Avellino. It’s made by hand, one by one. And the kid goes, ‘this is not pasta. I’ve never seen pasta like this. The pasta’s supposed to be round and short.’ He was looking for rigatoni.” Colella, through the food he serves at his restaurants, hopes to educate young generations about real, authentic Italian. This young generation, much like the “freezer to the fryer” chefs, have moved away from the old-school work ethic that he grew up with. He thinks modern technology is to blame. However, Colella remains optimistic for the future. “I’d say in about 15 to 20 years, things are going to turn around. You can’t cook with a phone...you cannot build a cabinet or chair with a computer. You need carpenters, you need chefs, you need pastry makers, you need mechanics, you’re going to need them,” says Colella. “There’s a shortage now, but pretty soon, people are not going to be able to find jobs sitting [at] the computer desk.”
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GLOBE Shaving Away Expectations // pg. 28
Angels Getting Their Wings // pg. 30 The Pursuit of Happiness // pg. 32
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SHAVING AWAY EXPECTATIONS WRITER: Shafaq Patel ILLUSTRATION: Antonia DePace Locks of Haseena Punjani’s hair fell to the floor, just like the leaves from the trees outside. She began to see her scalp—she was going bald. Punjani, 26, was sitting in front of the mirror, watching her friend chop off all her hair. There was no going back, so she started laughing and enjoying the moment. “As the hair was being cut off my head, it was like I was chopping away at the rules that society had wanted to put on me, and I was doing so in a free way,” she says. This was not a spur of the moment choice. Punjani had planned this for years. Finally, in the fall of 2015, she decided it was the right time to shave her head. She wanted to make a point. People believe that women’s hair is a symbol of femininity, an ideal she never agreed with. “I wanted to challenge the idea of femininity and beauty,” Punjani says. “People thought I would lose it with me shaving my head, and that is so dumbfounding to me.” According to Maria Koundoura, professor and chair of the department of writing, literature and publishing at Emerson College, having long hair in most traditional cultures is seen as a symbol of femininity. Punjani, an Indian-American, says that Indian women’s stereotypical long, shiny hair is often sought after. While there are different cultures in India and not all of them have the same beauty standards, many still value long, luscious hair. Evidence of this is the numerous articles written on the subject that speak of long hair with high esteem. Priyanka Chopra, an actress in India and America, as well as the new face of Pantene, talks about beauty and maintenance of hair in an Elle interview. In a Vogue India article, the focus of the article is simply on hair. “Hair is about the care of the self, and it’s about tradition,” Koundoura says. “Feminists would say [it’s about] subjection then because if one does not do the historical traditional, then one is seen as not obedient, not a ‘good’ girl.” Shaving one’s hair off can be a sign of rebellion, like it was
for Punjani because she was going against the norm and trying to make a statement. Other Indian feminist activists, like writer Mahasweta Devi and philosopher Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak, have also shaved their heads. “[Cutting one’s hair has] become a classic feminist sign, so much so that sometimes it can function as a stereotype,” Koundoura says. “That doesn’t, though, diminish or take away the power that the action can have for the particular person that is doing it at any moment. From this moment to 50 years ago, it still has the power of slipping outside an expectation.” When Punjani first thought of cutting off all her hair during college, her mom was afraid of the social repercussions and questions that she would face. Yet, a few years later, Punjani did it regardless because she wanted to break out of her shell. When Punjani announced plans to cut off her hair, her little sister, who had traditional hair herself, advised against it. According to Punjani, she was afraid of what people would think of her. To combat this uncertainty, Punjani and her friend went through many of the questions she would be asked in preparation for the big change. Many people did give Punjani compliments after she shaved her head. She says she was applauded for her bravery and was told that she pulled off the look well. “I did not want to necessarily be an inspiration, but I wanted to show people it is not that bad to do something that defies a lot of rules against women, specifically against Indian women,” Punjani says. Punjani said she does rebellious things because she does not like that there is inequality over things she can’t control like her gender, skin color and ethnicity. Her defying acts target these boxes she is placed in. “Constantly challenging the status quo is the way I think I go with my life,” she says. “I think there is a much greater chance of living life fully if I don’t just sit here blindly following these rules that are just based on my gender and background.”
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WRITER: Kristi Szczesny PHOTO: Nora Wilby When swiping right on Tinder, the last thing a person wants to think about is whether a potential date could end in disaster. As a result of this, many date goers are often unprepared when their date doesn’t turn out as expected. What starts as an uncomfortable meeting could quickly progress into an unsafe situation. It is in circumstances like these that one may need a friend or an ally. Meet Angela. Born in Lincolnshire, England, Angela is a preventive measure employed in bars and pubs throughout the United Kingdom, offering help to date goers who feel uncomfortable or unsafe. Though Angela may be no more than a code word, her protective presence exists in the form of posters hung in the public restrooms of numerous bars and pubs. With the growth of the #NoMore movement in Lincolnshire County, which aims to put an end to sexual violence and abuse, “Ask for Angela” posters have become a highly successful tool, providing comfort to both men and women across the globe. “Ask for Angela” posters work by first identifying a problem: “Hi I’m Angela. Are you on a date that isn’t working out? Is your Tinder or POF date not who they said they were on their profile? Do you feel like you’re not in a safe situation? Does it all feel a bit weird?” The posters instruct men and women to go to the bar and “Ask for Angela.” This will lead bar and pub staff to recognize one’s need for assistance and they will “call you a taxi or help you out discreetly—without too much fuss.” Angela, though unintentionally named, is considered a ‘guardian angel’ for many people in unsafe situations. “Ask for Angela” creator and sexual violence and abuse strategy coordinator in Lincolnshire County, Hayley Child, discusses the impact of the posters in the UK. While she does not know of any specific circumstances in which the code has been used, she says that bar staff feel more comfortable knowing that people can come forward and ask for help. Additionally, she says that “Ask for Angela” has prompted conversations in the community, encouraging people to think more about safety. Child says the international response has also been very positive. In addition to its implementation in Australia, the “Ask for Angela” code has been adopted in bars throughout the United States in the form of an “Angel Shot.” Posters for the angel shot offer specifically coded forms of help, ranging from an escort to one’s car or a call to the police, depending on whether the shot is ordered neat, with ice or with lime.
Despite all of the praise this initiative has received, Dr. Melanie Matson, director, counselor and advocate for the center of Violence, Prevention and Response at Emerson College, acknowledges that it is important to examine preventive efforts from every angle. Prevention initially focused on risk reduction strategies for people in unsafe situations, she explains. Today, however, there is an increased focus on primary prevention. Primary prevention signifies a fundamental shift in culture and in the role of the community as bystanders. “There is this myth that individual safety [means that an] individual should be responsible for it...actually, community should be responsible for an individual’s safety,” she says. This shift in prevention stems from recent aims to target the root of sexual violence and abuse, rather than the result. The passing of safety concerns from the individual to the entire community prevents blame and responsibility from falling solely on a single individual’s shoulders. Matson says she’d like to see a greater movement towards primary prevention by all bar staff. She believes the “Ask For Angela” initiative could be improved by assessing a bar’s culture and environment, pointing out that many bars function in an environment where sexualization and harassment are minimized in their significance and considered a norm. According to statistics from the Rape Crisis Center of England and Wales, thousands of women and men are raped each year, with nearly 11 assaults occurring per hour. In the United States, the Rape Abuse and Incest National Network, also known as RAINN, reports that instances of sexual assault occur every ninety-eight seconds. Without a culture shift in every community tackling the root of the problem, sexual violence and abuse could continue regardless of the number of times “Angela” is called. As “Ask for Angela” gains recognition across the globe, it could become standardized and therefore become less discrete in practice. While Child hopes to expand the campaign in the future, she aims to keep the code simple. Matson encourages society to look even further, striving for a community in which violence and assault are nonexistent. While “guardian angel” preventative measures are definitely a step in the right direction, shifts in cultural ideology would ensure that such “guardian angels” wouldn’t even be needed. The power lies in the hands of every community.
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Pursuit of Happiness WRITER: Harmony Taggart PHOTO: Andri MODELS: Heidi Kwak, Cantikha Alyssa, and Chassidy David “HALF OF THE INTERESTING PART OF LIFE IS NOT BEING SATISFIED WITH WHERE YOU ARE.” –CYNTHIA MILLER, EMERSON COLLEGE Happiness is a funny concept. We think of it as a universal idea, but ask yourself this: how would you define happiness? Your definition might be very different from someone living across the hall from you or someone living halfway across the world. From Yucatan, to Kunming, to Paris, to subcultures in the United States, each county, region, and person has their own idea of happiness and how to achieve it. Bruce Song, film studies ‘20, at Emerson who was born and raised in Kunming, China, describes happiness as being “satisfied with what you have.” He says we shouldn’t “be demanding too much of what [we] want, what [we] expect.” He associates happiness with independence, though he noted that his family was very different from many of his friends’ parents. He was always encouraged to pursue happiness by trying new things
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and taking risks, especially when he was with his parents. He says they told him,“‘even though we want you to be certain things, go ahead and pursue your own passion.’” Inversely, his culture generally has a traditional view of happiness. “People tend to think of material things as a way of achieving happiness: good cars, good house, good status of living,” he says. Similar to Song, Amethyste Frézignac, film studies ‘17, born in Paris, France, was wholeheartedly supported by her parents to be happy. She was raised in Paris by her French father and American mother. Her idea of happiness revolves around “[focusing] on what’s positive and [trying] to make the most of every situation.” When asked if she associated happiness most closely with love, closeness, independence, freedom or control, she chose “love like, love romantic [and] friendship love.” She also noted that she’s “Always kind of felt American in France and French in the United States...I always wanted
to like give a good image of the other culture.” This has caused her to strive to be happy whenever possible so that both the French and American cultures see the other as happy. Growing up in Connecticut, Emerson College professor Cynthia Miller lends a different perspective. Her definition of happiness is to be “comfortable with [her] life but not necessarily content . . . half of the interesting part of life is not being satisfied with where you are.” She later mentions how culture plays a huge role in defining a person’s expectations about happiness. For example, in America and in industrial Western cultures in general, people’s definitions of happiness are closely tied to success. While both Song and Frézignac noted similar connections to happiness and success in their cultures, they were able to avoid this pressure by having parents who held different values. Tal Ben Shahar, positive psychologist and visiting Harvard professor, has a much broader idea of happiness. He describes it as “the overall experience of pleasure and meaning,” adding,
“the definition does not pertain to a single moment, but to a generalized aggregate of one’s experiences.” He says, “A person can endure emotional pain at times and still be happy overall.” “HAPPINESS IS BIOCULTURAL.” –CYNTHIA MILLER, EMERSON COLLEGE Frézignac’s definition of happiness includes “trying to focus on what makes you feel good and even in bad situations trying to find something positive,” and Song’s definition is “to be happy with what you have.” While they both seem to relate a feeling of being content with happiness, Miller doesn’t see happiness as being synonymous with contentedness. In China and France, success is one spot on the map in which you reach, and stay put. In America, the entire map is a never ending road of ways to succeed. Shahar believes that “happiness is a universal pursuit, largely independent of culture.” He says, “we all search for pleasure and meaning.” Miller on one hand agrees, saying that
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happiness is biocultural. “We’re physiologically hardwired to be happy and to have the capacity to be happy,” she explained. On the other hand, she believes it is also based on our culture: “Our culture tells us what we ought to be happy about. What we ought to want with ourselves, what we ought to be satisfied with.” Not only does culture play a role in what we think of as being happy, it also dictates how we express happiness. In Tamil Nadu, a state on the southern coast of India, to show unhappiness or discontent is highly inappropriate. Miller, who was doing fieldwork in a small farming village, remembered a time when a stray dog who had been following her around during her stay turned up dead one day. Apparently a villager had killed the dog. Naturally, she was devastated and broke down crying on the street. “The guy I rented the upstairs of the house from, came over and very quickly schooled me in how inappropriate that was and how they all knew what happened, but everybody in the village had to get along and there was no room for this,” she says, shaking her head and laughing. Frézignac experienced something very different in France. She says that happiness “isn’t a value that’s very French.” She goes on to say that, “American happiness is more something that people show...the French when they’re happy, they’re gonna
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keep it to themselves more.” She says there is a sense of guilt that comes with being happy. As other people in the world are enduring war and disease, the French don’t feel they have the right to be happy. Culture has to do with where a person is raised, though, influence may vary depending on a country’s subcultures. Such is the case with people living in extreme poverty. Miller, who has worked with the homeless population in Boston extensively, collecting visual and audio documentary material, noted some key differences in their idea of happiness. “They’re happier with a lot less. They don’t have the expectations that we have....it’s, ‘I wanna be ok today’...it’s not ‘Wow, I look good today so I’m happy’ it’s ‘Wow, I’m healthy today and I’m still here so I’m happy,’” she says. “WE ARE OVERMEDICATING IN OUR CULTURE AND NOT ALLOWING PEOPLE TO DEAL AND GROW FROM HARDSHIP.” –TAL BEN SHAHAR, HARVARD UNIVERSITY While a culture’s expectations of happiness are all just fine, what about people who don’t have that ability to be happy? In recent years, a lot of attention has been put on mental illness and depression in America. Especially in today’s society, the majority of people who have a mental illness like anxiety and
depression are put on medication that allow them to experience happiness more frequently. In 2011, Harvard Medical School published an article titled “Astounding Increase in Antidepressant use in Americans.” It states, “the rate of antidepressant use in this country among teens and adults (people ages 12 and older) increased by almost 400% between 1988 and 2008.” This means that one out of every ten Americans are using at least one antidepressant. According to a Business Insider report, “Something Startling is Going On With Antidepressant Use Around the World,” the United States and France are both in the top 25 countries for antidepressant use among citizens. China, however, is not one of these 25. The report states that there is little correlation between the number of citizens who are depressed and the number of antidepressants taken. Instead, it “is the result of a complicated mix of depression rates, stigma, wealth, health coverage and availability of treatment.” Authors Skye Gould and Lauren F Friedman state, “Koreans are much likelier than Americans to see mental illness as a personal weakness...which means many never seek treatment.” Both Song and Frézignac spoke to a cultural need to be content. This social discouragement in regards to medication may begin to explain why both Chinese and French citizens use prescription antidepressants less frequently. The article goes on to state
that most countries in the top 25 have yet to see any increase in suicide rates or other numbers that would suggest the populations are actually becoming more depressed. Apparently, the only thing that is changing is the number of people taking antidepressants. Miller noted that most of the people she knows who are on medication say that it dulls all of their emotions. Their depression is gone but so are the elated moments they had when they weren’t on medication. Both Miller and Shahar think that medication can be very helpful for people who need it but mentions that they think there is an overmedication happening in America right now. Sharar says, “I’m not against medication, and sometimes it can help. However, we’re overmedicating in our culture, and not allowing people to deal with and grow from hardship.” So, where do we draw the line between pushing through times of hardship and using our resource of medication to live a happier life? Unfortunately, no doctor, anthropologist, psychologist or student at Emerson has the answer to that question. No one can tell you how you can be happier except yourself. The anecdote may differ, depending on who you are, where you are raised and how you define happiness.
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STYLE Hereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s to Bold // pg. 38 #Goals // pg. 45 Feminist Fashion is No Fad // pg. 46
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WRITER: Melanie Barreiro PHOTO: Monika Davis MODELS: Rija Rehan, Kristen Mitchell, Morgan Wright STYLISTS: Emma Cox and Kristen Bruck It can be hard to stand out in the fashion world where it seems like everyone else is wearing something that you would never be able to pull off. But the key to being able to wear unconventional pieces is to wear them with confidence. If you want to incorporate more trendy items into your wardrobe, but you don’t know where to start, just remember to embrace them in whatever way makes you feel confident and comfortable. Focusing on one color for a monochromatic look is a great way to build up confidence and start experimenting with daring fashion. For this trend, you want to focus on consistency. When assembling a monochromatic outfit, the pieces don’t always have to be an exact color match, but a similar shade. The look doesn’t have to be about just color either. You can focus on textures or fabrics. One of the easiest monochromatic looks to recreate is all denim. Pair a denim jacket with your favorite jeans, making sure the washes are similar. Other fabrics you can use to achieve this look include silk or velvet. It’s as simple as pairing a velvet top and some matching velvet accessories like a choker. Black or gray velvet are great neutral colors to start with. Another trend, one that makes a personal statement, is graphic T-shirts. In particular, graphic T-shirts that highlight messages of inclusivity, awareness and love. Designer Christian Siriano ended his Fall 2017 runway show with a model wearing the message, “People are People,” on a black T-shirt. Designer Prabal Gurung showcased various messages for his runway finale and wore his own graphic tee with the message, “This is what a Feminist Looks Like,” to close the show. These shirts are easy to find, but even easier to make. With just a few iron-on letters and the slogan of your choice, you can add a great message to any plain T-shirt. You can also sew on the letters, or paint them by using a stencil and some fabric paint. It’s an empowering take on bold fashion, combining style with a message. This trend serves as a great reminder that fashion with a meaning can be just as bold as something intricate and unconventional. But if you do want to try something that seems unwearable or really bold, remember to keep a balance. According to Boston fashion blogger Bitsy Skerry of Bits of Style, no piece is unwearable. She says, “I have some pieces that not everyone would wear. I incorporate them by letting those bold pieces be the focal point of the outfit.” On the other hand, if you want to bring out certain elements of a unique piece, style your other pieces around it.
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One example would be heavily detailed sleeves. A lot of tops right now are adorned with laces, bows or feature interesting shapes like bell-sleeves. It may seem like you have a lot going on, but these blouses would work well with more streamlined or straight legged pants. The pants work to offset the heavy detailing on the top and keep the focus on the shirt. However, with the right pieces, the feminine details of the blouse can be brought out. A shirt with ruffles on the sleeves can be worn with a skirt to give the outfit a youthful and girly appeal. Keep the skirt a light weight fabric like chiffon to make it more summery and light. To finish the look, add in some neutral sunglasses and jewelry. A big part of bold style is not just following what’s trendy, but also making the trend work for you and your personal style. Kenzy Peach, political communications and theatre studies ‘18, loves that in Boston and at Emerson there is a freedom to be yourself when it comes to style. She says, “Here, I’ve had fun being as wacky with my clothes as I want. I have more room to explore without feeling that I look absolutely ridiculous. It’s like a Boylston runway.” Don’t take yourself and your style too seriously. If something doesn’t work, just change it! If the trends don’t speak to you, don’t be afraid to look in new places for inspiration. Bold style comes from all types of influences and it can be surprising what you can find—from places like Instagram, clothing websites and stores, or movies and television shows—especially if they’re from different decades. Be open to all different types of inspiration. “I try not to define my style because I find it really limiting,” says Peach. “I like to allow myself to dress however I feel on that day. Sometimes that’s ‘punk rock Mrs. Frizzle’ and sometimes that’s ‘fairy princess grandmother.’” Your personal style can change from day to day like Peach, or you can have a certain consistent style that you love, like Skerry. Her style is minimalist, monochromatic and structured, but even within that theme, she has fun with fashion. “My style sends a message of who I am. I like experimenting with different trends and I choose what speaks to me,” says Skerry. “I try to stay true to myself, I know what pieces make me feel confident, and that comes through through my fashion.” So find what makes you feel bold and what helps you embrace who you are. There are lots of trends to try, but wearing what speaks to you, and what makes you comfortable, is where bold fashion starts. Confidence is bold fashion, and confidence is always in style.
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#goals Generally, feminist scholars fall into one of two schools of thought regarding makeup and feminine clothing. Some suggest that women—or male and non-binary wearers of makeup—use cosmetics as a form of expression and that consumption of fashion and makeup liberates the user from the mundane. One look at the eye-catching and bright runways of New York Fashion Week would seem to confirm this idea. The fashion and makeup worlds often pioneer trends that disrupt common concepts of what is “wearable.” Critics of the fashion industry, like scholars Amanda Hall Gallagher and Lisa Pecot-Hebert, say that to be so concerned with one’s outward appearance is to fall victim to “patriarchal visions of an idealized femininity.” They suggest that if women are encouraged by their culture to look a certain way and physically alter their appearance to fit societal norms, they are restricted. These dueling opinions of makeup and clothing are both valid, well supported claims. Fashion, makeup and Instagram are a form of work for Elise Gabriel, a former marketing executive and current employee of a large media company. At the moment, she is working to launch a company and runs her fashion blog “as a way to share the cool stuff I’m doing and working on.” Gabriel believes that her style has incredible power, saying “I think all people need to be aware of fashion’s power to leverage it to signal what we want to portray and what’s appropriate for the situation.” For Gabriel, Instagram works as a live resumé and a demonstration of the freedom she has achieved through fashion to travel around the world and collaborate with many brands and artists. Her experience seems to contradict the claims of scholars like Gallagher and Hebert, but her path may be unique. Not all young people who admire Gabriel’s style have the time or money to achieve her look. In comparison to her, the average viewer may feel insignificant. Not everyone has the resources to consistently shop and refresh their style with the brands that Gabriel dons or shop at professional-grade makeup stores like Sephora. The pressure to live up to the standard of perfection bloggers like Gabriel portray may intimidate aspiring fashionistas and makeup artists, but she doesn’t pretend that the life she showcases online is easy to achieve, saying “for every ‘glamorous’ experience there are hundreds of hours of unseen hard work.” While her social media presence may emphasize the stylish highlights of her workday, Gabriel is just as eager to discuss the education and training that allow her to be successful in her field. Gabriel is also open about her experience with the same insecurities that any other person feels. For her, scrolling through social media and seeing people
WRITER: Hannah Brem
more stylish or successful than her is always a challenge, but the self-doubt has faded with age and experience. She says, “I’ve learned to do this ‘mindset switch’ a lot faster, and with maturity I’ve also been able to look at other people doing awesome things with the perspective of being inspired rather than it inducing self-doubt.” Like Gabriel, Chloe Kerwin, theatre and performance ‘20, uses clothing and makeup to represent her personal taste, emotions and overcome her personal insecurities. She says, “Dressing up how I feel and in my own taste makes me have a little more confidence.” Putting on a nice outfit is not just a temporary mood boost for Kerwin; it fosters a different side of her personality. She explains that her Instagram feed may make her seem more serious and put together than she is in person, but she is equally proud of her “dorky” personality. Gallagher and Hebert say that over time, “makeup became associated with performing gender.” They believe that makeup is a way that women adhere to strict gender roles. In this way, they do not consider an interest in fashion to be particularly “feminist.” Kerwin, on the other hand, says, “I strongly believe that as a woman, expressing yourself in any way, shape, or form, is considered feminist.” Kerwin is emblematic of fashionable young people who use their clothing and makeup to express a unique identity, which may not align with traditional gender roles. When asked how she describes her style, Kerwin says, “quirky, unique, vintage and classic.” These four terms don’t exactly match the traditional image of a woman that Gallagher and Hebert believe makeup supports. Every society has a physical ideal for its members to strive for, and in most cultures, makeup and clothing can be used to artificially reach these goals of perfection. However, when fashion and makeup, especially that of young women, are dismissed as vapid, and even harmful, people lose a space to develop a healthy relationship with beauty. Gabriel and Kerwin both use fashion and makeup to further their personal identities and stand out from the general population. Kerwin denies the suggestion that she uses makeup to match some false idea of womanhood. She says, “It’s my face. With or without makeup.” For her, the opinions of others are not a bother, and she continues to explore her personal style. It may not hold true for everyone, but in Kerwin and Gabriel’s personal experience, makeup and clothing are sources of empowerment, freedom and expression. Kerwin says, “People ask who I dress up for, and the answer never changes: I always dress up for myself.”
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Feminist Fashion Is No Fad WRITER: Lily Bump PHOTO: Monika Davis MODELS: Anahita Padmanabhan, Vivien Liu, Taylor Carlington, Annika Hom STYLISTS: Emma Cox and Kristen Bruck The fashion industry is changing, and not just between seasons. Pantsuits—popular in the 1960s and ’70s—have been popping up again. Sweaters with uterus detailing, which previously might’ve been considered risque, no longer make people bat an eye. And last year, Dior released a shirt with the slogan, “We Should All Be Feminists,” emblazoned on the chest. If you’ve noticed a common theme throughout these fashion statements, your hunch is not misplaced. Feminism has made its way into the fashion world, making the clothing industry more political than ever. While this new craze might seem nothing but empowering, there is also some evidence that feminism in high fashion—an industry known for being stuck in its exclusive ways—might not benefit the average woman. It was not long ago that girls interested in clothes and makeup were considered vapid. In the same vein, girls who labelled themselves as feminists were seen as overbearing. However, in our recent political climate, the concepts of ‘fashion’ and ‘feminism’ are no longer mutually exclusive. As the third wave of feminism continues to gradually gain recognition, feminism has now become one of the latest fashion trends. The nature in which magazine editors and fashion de-
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signers are making their political views known hasn’t been this explicit since the suffragette movement. For example, Elaine Welteroth, editor for Teen Vogue, and Phillip Picardi, Teen Vogue’s digital editorial director, recently went on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah to discuss “how the magazine has become a politically and socially aware voice for young women.” The fashion industry voiced their support for Hillary Clinton regularly; some of fashion’s highest influencers such as Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Vera Wang and Michael Kors endorsed her. Some designers, such as Tom Ford and Marc Jacobs, were so pro-Clinton and anti-Trump that they even refused to dress the women associated with Donald Trump, specifically his wife Melania. In an interview with Women’s Wear Daily, Jacobs even said, “Personally, I’d rather put my energy into helping out those who will be hurt by [Donald] Trump and his supporters.” Maria Grazia Chiuri, Dior’s new and first female creative director since its origin in 1946, said at her show in 2016, “I strive to be attentive and open to the world and to create fashion that resembles the women of today.” All of the latter may
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seem great, but some things about the fashion industry regarding feminism just don’t add up. The current fashion industry might seem to stand for equality, but it does not accurately resemble the women of today in terms of showcased body standards. It is a fact that the fashion industry is not a pioneer when it comes to diversity: the demographic of models who walk the runway and are featured in ads is primarily white and stick-thin. When it comes to the average woman, most do not feel represented when they see other females in catalogues or showcasing designer brands on the catwalk. “Being fat, I was always told that my body was wrong,” says Stacey Louidor, a plus-size model from Haiti. Louidor has used Instagram as her primary outlet for pictures and exposure. In other words, feelings of inadequacy for the common woman aren’t surprising when looking at fashion’s demographics. According to the CDC, while the average American woman is 5’4” and 166 pounds, according to New York Better Business Career Services, the average model should stand between 5’9”–6’0”, and weigh between 110–130 pounds. During the spring 2017 runways, only 25.3 percent of models were people of color, and only 0.54 percent were plus-size. Statistics showing inadequate representation have been around for a long time, and brands have attempted to make up for it. However, these attempts are usually offhand at best. Recently, Vogue released a ‘diverse’ issue with models Ashley Graham, Gigi Hadid, Imaan Hammam and more that raised brows. Louidor points out, “They have a very heavy lack of representation. Ashley Graham is what’s marketable [in the plussize community], [and] the models of color are only ever fair, never dark.” When Vogue attempted to recognize other cultures, they used a white model. Karlie Kloss appeared in traditional geisha clothing and makeup within the issue despite being a white woman. People like Louidor demonstrate how important it is to call out diversity dilemmas that contradict the so-called trend. That way, hopefully representation demographics will strengthen, and the feminism promoted by these brands will feel as earnest as they should. Other trends, such as pussy-hats and uterus sweatshirts, intend to empower women through the cisgender female body, but exclude women who identify as transgender. While these trends might have good intentions, they lead further into ostracizing women of certain races, weights and more, which goes against the very core of intersectional feminism. Slim, caucasian figures are the ones primarily showcased in oh-so-prevalent ads, and women undoubtedly feel a pressure to resemble them. As a result, the idea of fashion being empowering to the average woman, despite recent attempts to promote girl power, seems counterintuitive. Jonnaray Ramirez, another Instagram model, has a hard time trusting high-fashion feminism. “[People of high-fashion are] trying to integrate [feminism] into the world of fashion, but sometimes it’s easy to question if they’re doing it for marketing,” says Ramirez. “It doesn’t come off super genuine all the time.”
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This seems to give feminist high-fashion the feel of a marketable ploy. Criticisms of the lack of diversity in the fashion world have been around for decades, and the probability of these criticisms never reaching powerful figures in the community seems impossible. Luckily, fashion isn’t only represented in the world of couture. The advancement of social media has given underrepresented models, who might not necessarily fit the slim, white mold set by notorious designers, a chance to be recognized. “Fashion had a big part in building my self confidence,” says Isabel Hendrix, an Instagram model and employee at Tunnel Vision, which features models of all races and sizes. Tunnel Vision also has an extensive range of plus-size clothing. Hendrix is a plus-size model who has accumulated a following of almost 100,000 on her Instagram. “When I moved out to college, I got super depressed and actually developed an eating disorder. I think a lot of people use fashion to further that bad thinking but for me, I made a connection with a community of people who were super weird and cool. Seeing all these young women expressing themselves and saying ‘hey, this is me, I’m weird but I like being myself,’ was really empowering to me.” In the Instagram fashion community, diversity is showcased and received with open arms. Hendrix points out, “Social media in general has really added a better playing field because it doesn’t really matter who you are or what your background is—you can reach more people than you could have before.” The difference between high fashion and Instagram fashion is that people are given the opportunity to really choose what fashion content they’re getting. Hendrix adds, “People like to see diversity. A lot of [models and fashion designers] on social media maybe wouldn’t be popular otherwise.” While some models might be turned away by fashion designers searching for a particular look, they can represent themselves on Instagram without worrying about exclusivity or prejudice. In terms of diversity and feminism, Instagram’s fashion world, however broad, seems to be moving on the right path. While this might seem disconnected to the world of prestigious fashion, the growing popularity of plus-size Instagram models or models of color could have a large influence on couture. In the words of MSN, “magazines no longer dictate trends, the internet does.” Perhaps as a result, according to The Fashion Spot, spring 2017 runways have been the most diverse yet. Designers such as Chromat, Tracy Reese and Christian Siriano prioritized diversity at New York Fashion Week with models of all races, sizes and genders. Feminism in high fashion as it is right now still might seem a little too good to be true; undoubtedly there are flaws in couture feminism when it comes to inclusivity. However, feminism in fashion isn’t a complete faux pas. The good intentions are evident, just not executed sincerely. Luckily, feminists will not be silenced when it comes to shedding light on diversity issues, and those who are truly committed to both worlds have strong voices. With the help of people like Louidor, Ramirez, Hendrix, Chromat, Reese, Siriano and more, a higher standard of feminist fashion is certainly on its way.
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HEALTH Mastering Mindfulness // pg. 52 Cupping Therapy // pg. 54 Why You Should Ditch Your Diet // pg. 56
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How Meditation Can Help You Live In the Moment WRITER: Elizabeth Hartel PHOTO: Meagan Leotta MODEL: Caroline Fortuna
In the span of just one month, Sunada Takagi lost it all. Twenty years ago she had a high-power job in technology. She was in the middle of a major project with a major deadline, she was stressed, and her perfectionism and type A personality exacerbated her anxieties. She spent hours each day typing away on her keyboard. Simultaneously, she studied classical piano. She practiced each night as she pushed herself to perfection in another area of her life. Suddenly, her whole life changed. Her business career that she had worked so hard for was no longer conceivable; her passion for playing the piano was no longer possible. “Everything came crashing down on me when my wrists
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got injured from the overuse,” says Takagi. “I ended up with a severe repetitive strain injury in both my wrists.” After that, Takagi could not use her hands. To this day she still deals with the repercussions of her injuries. Now, she can look back and see what she was doing wrong in her life, but then, she felt like a rug had been swept out from under her. “That’s when it started dawning on me that something is very wrong,” says Takagi. Since then, she has completely rethought her life. Takagi began to pursue her interest in Buddhism. It led her to meditation, and finally, to mindfulness. Now, she commits herself to both practices through being a mindful living coach. Takagi’s case may be her own, but she isn’t the only one
who has sought peace of mind, acceptance, stress reduction and calmness through meditating and living a mindful life. Mindfulness and meditation have recently become two popular practices in society. THE BACKGROUNDS OF MINDFULNESS AND MEDITATION According to mindful.org, “Mindfulness is the basic human ability to be fully present, aware of where we are and what we’re doing, and not overly reactive or overwhelmed by what’s going on around us.” Because much of mindfulness depends on an increase of awareness, it relates directly to meditation. Merriam-Webster defines the word “meditate” as: engaging in mental exercise (such as concentration on one’s breathing or repetition of a mantra) for the purpose of reaching a heightened level of spiritual awareness. In an article published in 2014, the Mayo Clinic says meditation comes in different forms; each of these types has a slightly varied focus and practice. Some of the most common types of meditation include: guided meditation, which consists of using relaxing images to create a sense of ease; mantra meditation, which consists of repeating a calming word or phrase; mindfulness meditation, which consists of adopting an increased level of awareness and acceptance; and yoga, which uses physical movements, breathing exercises and concentration to increase awareness and presence. Despite its rising popularity, meditation is not a new concept. According to the Exploration of Consciousness Institute, meditation practices first began more than 5,000 years ago. The spread of Buddhism helped popularize meditation, and the practice isolated itself in Eastern countries for thousands of years. The spirituality movements in the 1960s and ’70s helped bring meditation to the Western world, and since then, its prevalence in modern society has all but died down. Although meditation is often paired with Buddhism, you do not have to be a Buddhist to meditate. Similarly, even though meditation proves as a helpful tool to increase mindfulness, you don’t have to meditate to be mindful. Lastly, although meditation clinics can help you learn the basics of the practice, you don’t need to attend them to know how to meditate, and you also don’t have to go to them to become more mindful. Mindfulness starts within you; meditation does, too. THE BENEFITS OF BOTH “I meditate because it gives your body a chance to focus on your inner self and nothing around you matters,” says Emily Quinn, a political communication and sports communication
double major ‘19, who is also a member of Emerson College’s women’s lacrosse team. Quinn began practicing meditation three months ago during her first yoga class. She says she continues to meditate both in the studio and on her own because it feels so powerful. “Essentially, you are putting your body and thoughts at complete ease,” says Quinn. “It allows you to have an open mind about things and gain a better perspective of everything overall. It’s definitely a de-stress tool.” There are a handful of emotional health benefits that come from meditation, and one of the most widespread of these is stress reduction. Quinn’s ability to de-stress through meditation is a common result of the practice; it’s even scientifically proven. A program called Mindful-based Stress Reduction, also known as MBSR, helps thousands of people overcome the tension and anxiety that fiddles their everyday lives through becoming more mindful. Takagi says that MBSR program participants meditate for 45 minutes each day. Through becoming more mindful, you may become more accepting, more attentive, less distracted and less afraid of mental pain or suffering. Mindfulness doesn’t just strengthen your mind, though. Both mindfulness and meditation are proven to be physically beneficial. For example, being able to clear your head of negative thoughts before an athletic endeavor may help you perform better. In addition, because meditation often focuses heavily on your breathing, it also has the potential to help you become more physically relaxed, especially if you struggle with stress or anxiety. There are a handful of different ways to meditate and practice mindfulness. Generally, meditation consists of the following: being comfortable, being aware of your body, feeling your breath and acknowledging and accepting when your mind wanders. “The point of meditation is to turn your awareness inward into what is actually happening in your body and in your breath right now,” says Takagi. “The point is not to try and calm yourself down, and not to stay focused; it’s not about reaching a goal.” Takagi explains that meditation helps increase focus because anything you do while meditating is intentional. It is a practice that revolves around calmness, resting and inner thinking: the position you sit, stand or lay in is on purpose; the acknowledgement of your breath is on purpose; and the thoughts you allow or avoid are on purpose. Even though meditation is a great way to become more mindful, you don’t need to meditate to increase your awareness in your daily life or your acceptance of yourself and your situations. Mindfulness can be attained without meditation. “It isn’t something that you need to set aside time to do,” says Takagi. “Even if you feel like you don’t have time to sit down—that’s not necessarily what mindfulness is.”
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The Alternative Medicine Trend That’s Sucking Everyone In WRITER: Margo Rometo & Alysen Smith PHOTO: Meagan Leotta MODELS: Alena Jones & Kallista Leonardos
In fitness centers, athletic facilities and wellness clinics across the country, cupping therapy has been making waves. Athletes with large, bruised circles peppering their bodies have become a common sight among fitness crowds as cupping has made its way into the limelight in the health and wellness sphere—and for good reason. According to studies at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, this form of alternative medicine is an extremely effective way to improve blood flow and circulation and to treat muscle stiffness, pain, migraines, respiratory conditions, fatigue and even anxiety. Cupping therapy is a deep-tissue therapy in which special cups, usually made from glass or bamboo, are strategically placed on the skin to create intense suction on the targeted area. The suction is traditionally created by using a flammable substance to create a vacuum within the cup, causing the skin and tissues under the cup to rise as blood vessels expand; but more modern cupping methods use a rubber pump to achieve the same air-tight result. The cups are generally left in place for less than five minutes and after they’re removed, a large, dark, circular bruise is left behind where each cup was placed—the telltale sign that someone has caught on to the trend.
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“Cupping seems to be all the rage recently, and as someone who’s been using it for a couple of years now, I’m all about it,” says Andrew Levandowski, 21, a fitness enthusiast and student athlete at Temple University in Philadelphia. “I’ve never been able to find a physical therapy method that works so well. I definitely think it’s the best natural way to treat back pain and soreness from physical activity.” An ancient Chinese form of medicine, cupping therapy dates as far back as 300 AD, when the Taoist herbalist Ge Hong wrote about it in “A Handbook of Prescriptions for Emergencies.” Despite being a centuries-old practice, cupping has been popularized in recent years by celebrities like Jennifer Aniston and Victoria Beckham, as well as iconic athletes like Michael Phelps and Andy Murray. Perhaps most notably, several athletes at the 2016 Olympic games in Rio de Janeiro were covered with the distinctive circular bruises. Levandowski says that he was ahead of the trend, but understands why it has exploded in popularity recently. “Oh, I definitely think this past year’s Olympics played a huge part in that,” he says. “Nobody really knew about it before. I used to get the craziest looks from my teammates and people at the
gym when I’d walk in with giant purple spots all over my back and shoulders, but now a bunch of people I know are into it. It’s super popular among the athletes at Temple.” As a means of muscle recovery, cupping is tremendously popular amongst athletes because it helps to prevent injuries and assists muscles in “bouncing back” from lengthy, intense workouts more quickly. Its popularity is often attributed to the organic nature of the practice: essentially, many people choose cupping because it doesn’t involve ingesting or injecting any synthetic substances, as many other forms of medical treatment and pain relief do. “That’s probably my favorite part about it, aside from the sheer effectiveness of cupping,” says Levandowski, who suffered a back injury last fall and credits his speedy recovery to the unconventional therapy. “When I hurt my back, the first doctor I went to tried to prescribe three different medications to me: one for pain, one for inflammation, and another for God knows what. I hated the idea of taking so many different pills.” Acupuncture is also a common practice in combination with cupping. Typically, needles will be placed beneath the cup
to target specific pressure points and further increase blood flow. This approach allows patients to reap the benefits of both practices at the same time. Even among non-athletes, cupping has grown in popularity. The most common side effects of cupping include burns, bruises and skin infection—all of which can be easily avoided with professional and hygienic execution. And the benefits of cupping are more than skin deep. While only a small number of studies have been conducted, the general consensus is that cupping can also help cure acne and eczema, high blood pressure and even blood disorders such as anemia and hemophilia. At anywhere between $40 to $80 per session (typically lasting around 30 minutes), the cost is also remarkably cheaper than most clinical treatments for the same conditions, including surgical procedures following an injury. For treating a variety of maladies, cupping therapy comes with optimal results and minimal risks. Levandowski says, “I’m a huge advocate of cupping and I don’t envision myself stopping any time soon. It’s something that I’d definitely recommend to all of my friends, because as an athlete, cupping has changed my life for the better.”
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Why You Should
Ditch Your Diet
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WRITER: Olivia Woollett PHOTO: Olivia Gerasole It seems like every other week there’s a new trendy dieting fad sweeping the nation, from Atkins and Paleo to raw foods and veganism. It’s easy to understand their appeal—they carry the promise of weight loss and improved health for anyone willing to follow their program or eat within their guidelines for a few months. But do they really work? For a trend so pervasive, there is a startling lack of support for the claim that dieting leads to lasting health benefits, regardless of whether or not dieters lose weight. In “Medicare’s Search for Effective Obesity Treatment: Diets Are Not the Answer,” a report published in the American Psychologist reviewing studies of the long-term outcomes of weight-loss diets, most dieters were not able to maintain their weight losses in the long-term. Additionally, according to the report, “in the few cases in which health benefits were shown, it could not be demonstrated that they resulted from dieting, rather than exercise, medication use or other lifestyle changes. It appears that dieters who manage to sustain a weight loss are the rare exception, rather than the rule.” Michelle Ott, a registered and licensed dietitian and owner of Blue Carott Nutrition, concurs. “Statistics show there’s a 95 percent failure rate with diets,” she says. Both Ott and the American Psychologist stress the importance of lifestyle changes. “You can’t diet,” Ott says. “You have to learn how to make healthy changes to your current habits.” Dieting is ineffective because it proposes a short-term solution to a long-term problem—someone’s relationship with food over the course of a lifetime. Kaily James, a nursing student at Stephen F. Austin State University, tried dieting for years without success. “I tried the no-carb, no-fat kinds of dieting and I could never see any kind of improvement, or even if I did see improvement I’d stop for like a week and then I’d gain it all back. It was constantly exhausting,” she says. The National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases advises that for a long-term weight control strategy to be successful, it has to focus on overall health, and not just eating habits. In other words, more effective than dieting—which is temporary by nature—is the pursuit of a longterm, sustainable change in a person’s approach to eating as part of a healthier lifestyle. HEALTHY BEHAVIORS FOR SUSTAINED WEIGHT LOSS According to the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the first step for a sustainable weight control strategy is setting specific, manageable goals—emphasis on specific. Instead of saying you’ll “eat healthier,” set a goal of eating two more servings of leafy greens every day. Instead of telling yourself to “cut calories,” make specific adjustments to eating habits like saving half of a large meal to eat tomorrow instead of in a single sitting. Thoughtful, measurable goals are more effective
than vague statements of intent. “Eat maybe three bites less of the foods that aren’t healthy every day,” Ott suggests. “Just start by eating less of the same food. The changes you make have to be sustainable, you have to be able to do them every day for the rest of your life.” For James, who lost more than 40 pounds after ditching diets for a more long-term shift in her eating habits, sustainable changes had to be easy enough to fit into a busy, student lifestyle. “I try and make easy swaps. Like hamburger meat has a lot of fat in it, so I just swapped it for lean turkey meat. I grill instead of fry things. And I love fruits and vegetables so I eat as much of those as I want, and I just try to get more of the fresh food,” she says. It’s all about consistency according to James, and about disconnecting food from feelings of shame and guilt. “One meal isn’t going to make me fat, just like one good meal isn’t going to make me skinny,” she says. “It’s a balance of trying to live happily and still be healthy.” WEIGHT CONTROL AFTER DIETING A healthy relationship with food is possibly the most integral aspect of dieting and controlling weight successfully. The biggest reason diets don’t work, according to Ott, is because people resume their old eating habits after losing weight and don’t actually address the internal factors which contributed to their initial weight. “Diets fail and people gain the weight back because they’re not learning how to incorporate their pleasurable foods into their lifestyle,” Ott says. “I hate seeing people who ‘diet’ again and again and again without dealing with the psychology behind it.” Changes to what you eat matter, of course, but mental adjustments which address your relationship with food are just as important as physical adjustments to how you’re eating for achieving long-term weight control. And, as Ott points out, it’s possible to eat healthily but still have a fundamentally unhealthy relationship with food. “A healthy relationship with food should be intuitive to your body’s physical needs. When you’re hungry you eat, and you stop when you’re full. Most people know what’s healthy, it’s just a matter of not overindulging in those other foods.]” For James, improving her relationship with food meant examining herself and reflecting on why she wanted to lose weight. “When I was dieting, it was because I wanted to look good, I wanted to impress guys and stuff,” she says. “But when I started actually making these healthy changes I realized I don’t care what any of these people think!” By focusing on her own health and happiness instead of relying on a diet, James was able to make a lasting, positive change to how she eats and how she lives. “Dieting definitely does not work,” she says. “Forget trying to impress anybody— it’s a lifestyle change so I can live longer and feel better.”
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BLOG PHOTOGRAPHERS: HAYLEY BRODERICK AND AMELIA WRIGHT
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JENNIFER WOOD MY STRUGGLE WITH UNHEALTHY EATING “I’m in love. I’m having a relationship with my pizza.” For almost all aspects in my life, those words ring true. Not only am I perpetually single, I have almost always had a strong relationship with the foods I eat. It is very important for me to enjoy the food I eat and to have an experience while I eat. In my family, every meal we eat is made with a lot of love and is surrounded by a happy conversation — it is a tradition that makes me value meal-time. However, the bad part about this relationship is that a lot of the food I eat are horrible for my body.
JESS MORRIS ELIZABETH WARREN IS THE POLITICIAN WE NEED Permanent Massachusetts resident or not, it’s likely that you know Elizabeth Warren’s name by now. She’s currently the senior US senator from Massachusetts and is a very prominent figure in the Democratic Party. There’s even talk that she might put in a bid for the presidency in 2020. And for many Emerson students who lean to the political left, the possibility of Elizabeth Warren becoming president in four years is the hope they need right now. Having grown up in Massachusetts, I have watched Warren rise from a Senate hopeful to a leading voice among the country’s Democrats. Though I might be biased given my political party of choice (hint: I love the color blue), Warren’s journey has undoubtedly been an incredible one. I’m glad to have witnessed it firsthand as a Massachusetts resident.
MIA EK GREAT RUNNING ROUTES IN BOSTON Running. It is something we are all familiar with, whether we were track stars in our high school days or the slowest kid on the playground, we all have an opinion on it. Personally, I love it. It pushes me to be my best self and I find my mind at its calmest when I’m on a run. For those of you on the same page or for those of who want to just try it here are some running routes near campus for you to try out!
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