December 2018 /January 2019
Emma Yee Yick ‘19 & Allisen Lichtenstein ‘19 EDITORS-IN-CHIEF
Katherine Leak ‘19 & Claudia Levey ‘19 MANAGING EDITORS
Yudi Liu '19 CREATIVE DIRECTOR SOCIAL MEDIA DIRECTOR Emily Supple ‘19 SOCIAL MEDIA EDITORS Allie Goines ‘20 Aoife Henchy ‘19 Yunxiao Cherrie Zheng ‘21 FEATURES EDITOR Juliana Kaplan '19 ASSOCIATE EDITOR Collier Curran '20 STAFF WRITER Aliya Schneider '20
POLITICS & OPINION EDITOR Sara Hameed '20 ASSOCIATE EDITOR Naava ellenberg '21 STAFF WRITERS Annabella Correa-Maynard '20 Hadassah Solomson '20
NEW YORK CITY LIVING EDITOR Veronica Suchodolski '19 ASSOCIATE EDITOR Pavi chance '20
LAYOUT DIRECTOR Galiba Gofur '20 LAYOUT EDITOR Nicola Sheybani '22
HEALTH & STYLE EDITOR Isabella Monaco '20
PHOTOSHOOT DIRECTOR Yudi Liu '19 PHOTOSHOOT ASSISTANT Yuki Mitsuda '21
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT EDITOR Julia Tache '19 ASSOCIATE EDITOR Kalena chiu '20 STAFF WRITER Annette Stonebarger '21
ART DIRECTOR Sadie Kramer '21 PHOTOGRAPHY EDITOR Peyton Ayers '21
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2 - December 2018
A Letter From Our Editors Dearest Readers, There is a warmth that comes with the winter months--whether that be a warm feeling of relief as this whirlwind of a semester winds down or one of joy and closeness as the holiday season draws closer. There is also a bit of magic that tags along too: magic in tradition, magic in families reuniting, magic in a city blanketed with snow. We hope that in the midst of finals craziness, you are able to take a moment to feel the warmth and appreciate the little things. We at the Bulletin have taken it upon ourselves to provide you with a bit of wintery content: from holiday music debacles, winter aesthetics, and a NYC gift guide, to preparing for your first winter break back at home and a reading (for pleasure!!!) list. We would like to both end this year and start the new one with this: our unabiding belief in the strength and importance of the bonds we share with others—after all, it is those bonds that make us human. We finish off the final month of 2018 with a discussion about what it means to belong to a community and the power that is held in our identities, connections, and shared experiences. Our Centerpiece navigates these facets of our personhood and will beckon you to do the same; other pieces like “Seeking Solace in Solidarity,” “The Queer History of Barnard,” and “The Case of Hannukah,” highlight these numerous facets. As always, we are sure there will be something within these pages for everyone. Behind the Bulletin is a group of phenomenally talented and incredibly diverse collaborators who make this mag with the utmost love and care. We do so for you—a community of equally phenomenal and diverse readers. It is an honor and a privilege for us to make content for you, our Barnard community—and that is a responsibility we will never take lightly. We’ll see you in the New Year, Allisen & Emma
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IN THIS ISSUE SSUE 3 // Letter from the editors 5 // behind the scenes 6 // trending & playlist
HEALTH & STYLE
8 // 2018's Top 10 and Bottom 10 List 10 // All I wantâ€¦
11 // Blizzstagram 13 // Milstein Hacks: How To Make The Most Of It 14 // The Queer History of Barnard 15 // Pop Culture Review: The Rise of Utopian-Dystopian TV 16 // Preparing For Your First Winter Break At Home 17 // Treat Yo Self: Finals Edition 18 // In Defense of Holiday Music 19 // In Her Words: Hanukkah 20 // Centerpiece: Bridging Identities to find belonging 26 // A Perfect Holiday Stroll
POLITICS & OPINION
27 // She Said / She said: A Break from Breaking News 28 // Women in Politics 29 // The Politics You Watch For Fun 30 // The E-Cig Epidemic 31 // Seeking Solace in Solidarity 32 // Perfecting the Pronouns 33 // What REALLY happens at the border
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
34 // Winter Break Reads 35 // Spring Semester Slate 36 // Where Was the Star Born? A Comprehensive History of L. Gaga 37 // New York City on the Screen
NEW YORK CITY LIVING
38 // Bites Outside the Bubble: ootoya 39 // Top 5 Little-Known Diners 40 // Requiem for the L Train 42 // Big Apple Gift Guide 43 // Art on Broadway
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EHIND BEHIND HE THE CENES SCENES Models Lina Ariyan Katia Ariyan Shannon Hui Ankita Acharya Make-up Artist Yuki Mitsuda
photographer // art direction Yuki Mitsuda
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ello activated ctivated hello harcoal toothpaste oothpaste charcoal This whitening charcoal toothpaste from an environmentally friendly company has garnered high ratings across the web and at under $5 a tube, it won't break the bank!
Bar Pa Tea is gaining popularity for its innovative combination of two popular treats -- frozen yogurt and bubble tea. Their froyo bubble tea consists of tea flavored frozen yogurt and tapioca pearls as toppings, and deserves a spot on anyone list of places to visit in NYC.
elvet! Velvet! Velvet is festive for the holiday season without being over the top.
This online shop is an amazing way to get great products for such low prices! Shop for food, kitchen supplies, beauty products, and more all for $3!
ssential Oil il Diffuser iffuser Essential Even if you're stressing from finals seasons, an essential will help you forgot some of that stress. Add some lavender oil to your essential oil diffuser, forgot about your paper for a while.
ueer eye: ye: queer ove yourself, ourself, Love ove your our Life ife! Love you might not have made it into Season 3 of Queer Eye but you can still start living your best, most authentic life with the help of the Fab Five and their new book THE BULLETIN -
6 - December 2018
Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
ar pa a tea ea bar
Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
Through You - Hand Made House
Shallows - Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper
when the party's over - Billie Ellish
Thank u, next - Ariana Grande
Bambi - Hippo Campus
WHo r u? - anderson .paak
98s - Steve Lacy
Malamente - Rosalia
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2018’s Top 10 & Bottom 10 List by Olivia Kowalishin As the new year approaches, it’s time to say our final goodbyes to 2018. This year has seen the introduction of many new trends and products. Some have wowed us while others have flopped, so it’s time to look back and decide the best and worst of 2018.
The Hot List 1. Eco-Friendly Sustainable Fashion With the increasing issue of global warming, consumers have turned to sustainable fashion brands such as Everlane and Reformation this year. 2. Fenty Beauty This year Rihanna’s shadeinclusive beauty brand launched the beauty bomb which has been dominating Instagram for months with its perfect glitter glow. 3. Gloss Out with the matte and in with the gloss! Lip gloss is making a comeback thanks to brands like Glossier. 4. Lots of Highlighter It seems that every makeup company in 2018 was trying to create the most
blinding highlighter. Fenty Beauty’s Killawatt Highlighters and Becca’s Shimmering Highlighters were especially raved about. 5. Plaid Coats Throughout New York, bloggers and celebrities are wearing plaid jackets and oversized blazers for a professional look. 6. Teddy Coats As we move into winter, these fuzzy jackets are perfect for looking stylish while being incredibly cozy! 7. 90’s Hair Clips The 90’s fashion trend returned this year with fun and creative ways to wear butterfly clips and snap clips. Celebrities, such as Solange, have been pictured sporting snap clips all along
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the side of their ponytail to add a old-school twist to a classic hairstyle. 8. Hair Scarfs The scrunchie days are over. This versatile accessory has taken over 2018 as a versatile, trendy hair accessory. 9. Sheet Masks Sheet masks have lingered on the sidelines for years, but 2018 saw the explosion of different sheet mask brands and formulas that target different skincare issues. 10. Mules Easy to throw on, stylish and comfy to wear, it’s no wonder that mules slid into the 2018 hot list.
The Not List 1. Cycling shorts Ever since Kim Kardashian started sporting the look, courtesy of her husband Kanye West’s fashion line, Yeezy, the trend has flooded social media. Many have deemed the trend “prettyugly” questioning why athletic wear has now become high fashion.
4. Fake Freckles This trend has survived the test of time thanks to many beauty gurus promoting the look in their videos. Instead of trying to imitate another person's features, let’s make 2019 the year we embrace our own.
5. Cold Shoulder CutOuts 2. Tiny Sunglasses Shouldn't a long sleeve shirt Tiny sunglasses completely keep you warm instead of disregard the actual func- leaving your shoulders extion of sunglasses: to pro- posed to the cold? Let’s tect your eyes from the leave the cold shoulder in sun. 2018. 3. Faux Fur The production of fake fur is said to be incredibly bad for the environment, and, while faux fur means no animals were harmed, it still promotes the look of real fur.
6. Circular Straw Handbags Sure, this trend was cute for a quick second during the summer, but it was excessively Instagramed and overworn in general.
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7. Overlined Lips With Kylie Jenner removing her lip fillers, it might be time to embrace our real lips too. 8. Sock Shoes Sorry Cardi B, the shoes that look like socks have been so overdone this year. Let’s keep our shoes looking like shoes in 2019. 9. Clear Fashion The clear fashion trend has been exhausted this year with clear jeans, hats, and boots. 10. Corset-Belts Corsets belts are reminiscent of the constraining and often painful fashion of the 1800s.
All I Want…
2. 3. 4.
5. 6. 7.
ith the holidays just around the corner, it’s a prime time to explore every new product and package out there this season. With so much to choose from, here are some things Barnard Bulletin has on our wishlist!
Glossier Lidstar ($18) One of the most recent releases from the beloved cosmetics brand, Lidstar will be your next go-to eyeshadow for the holidays. The eyeshadow, a cream formula in a tube with an applicator, comes in six shimmering shades ranging from green, to rose gold, to lilac. Its buildable formula makes it great for either a soft glow during days of snow or an all-out statement eye for New Year’s Eve. David’s Tea “24 More Sleeps” Set ($25) As it turns out, holiday gift sets aren’t limited to makeup and skincare! David’s Tea, which specializes in flavored loose-leaf tea, knows this well. “24 More Sleeps,” a variety of 24 caffeine-free teas, is one of many holiday tea sets this season. With teas like Apple Cider, Gingerbread, and Peppermint Amour, this particular set has plenty of flavors to get you in the holiday spirit. Everlane Women’s Soft Wool Rib Beanie ($35) To start the first weeks of winter off right, look no further than this beanie from Everlane, made from 98% extra-fine Italian wool. This versatile style comes in four colors, making it a practical and chic option. Plus, since it’s from a clothing line known for its sustainable and ethical manufacturing, you’ll feel twice as good. Fenty Beauty Snow Daze & Snow Nights Frosted Metal Lipstick Set ($36) Rejoice, fellow Rihanna fans, because RiRii has released a host of holiday Fenty Beauty sets this year! This limitededition set of metallic lipsticks comes in two different shade options: a warm-tone, Snow Daze, and a cool-tone, Snow Nights. All six shades promise a sophisticated, wearable luster perfect for completing all of your holiday looks. The North Face Women’s Apex Plus ETip Gloves ($55) No holiday wishlist is complete without the one accessory essential to making winters in New York City infinitely more convenient– touchscreen-friendly gloves. North Face has got you (and your hands) covered, with a sleek pair of gloves that even has a minimalistic gripper palm to keep your phone from sliding out of your hands. Did I mention they’re 100% windproof? Muji Ultrasonic Aroma Diffuser ($69.50) For any snowstorms this season that will keep you inside, you’ll love having this essential oil diffuser in your dorm! In addition to making your room smell incredible, it also has two settings of LED lights, which makes it a beautiful décor item. Another product available all year round, this diffuser makes for an especially great gift around the holidays. Trader Joe’s Festive Food Haul Shoutout to my suitemates for this one! Treat not only yourself, but also your friends as you test out all the best seasonal snacks from Trader Joe’s. Pick up some of their holiday treats, from the Peppermint Pretzel Slims, to the Extraordinary Bark, to the Dark Chocolate Covered Peppermint Joe Joe’s. There’s no better opportunity to taste every holiday item on the shelves you were curious about, all at once. THE BULLETIN -
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Illustration by Sadie Kramer
by Erin Bronner
The Rise Of TheWinter Aesthetic
D Illustrations by Margaux Pisciotta
uring my first winter in New York, I stepped off a curb to cross a street, and my foot plunged into a puddle of cold grey slush I had mistaken for solid ground. I learned quickly that such puddles often lurk alongside curbs, and that avoiding them sometimes requires leaping wildly into the street and hoping for the best. But with some of the other unpleasant parts of winter, like below-freezing temperatures and limited hours of daylight, there’s no way around or over them. I had experienced winter before, but not to this degree. In Seattle, where I grew up, it was not unheard of for a light dusting of snow to fall once or twice each winter, but it usually melted within hours, the weather quickly returning to the mild raininess that characterizes all four Seattle seasons. In comparison, New York winter felt like the real winter, the romantic kind captured in holiday movies and holiday songs and wintertime Instagram feeds. Except for the slush. No media had warned me that the snow drifting down prettily and blanketing everything in a charming layer of white would remain charmingly white for just a brief time before transforming into a greyish, beige, footprint-encrusted hellscape of precarious slipping and sliding. As my third New York winter creeps closer, I think of
by Pavi Chance what lays ahead — the many layers of coats, the cumbersome mittens, the way the cold air will sting my skin and steal my breath away whenever I venture outside. Not to mention the dreaded slush. And yet — I think of the more pleasant elements of winter, the elements we all romanticize — trees wrapped in lights, snowflakes falling, shamelessly sentimental holiday music that can make even a bland drugstore feel almost homey when it’s blaring from the speakers. And the countless people, tourists and locals alike, braving the elements to pose for photos in front of elaborate wintry window displays and the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree and pretty much anything else involving lights or snow, their casual poses and sunny grins belying the discomfort they’re enduring in pursuit of the perfect winter photo. Many of these winter photo are likely destined for Instagram, the preeminent destination for romanticized depictions of people, places, and things. Everyone likes a pretty picture, and pictures of winter are no exception. When writing this article, the hashtag #winteraesthetic pulled up 11,198 Instagram images, a number sure to grow in the coming weeks. Scrolling through a few dozen such pictures, I notice the majority adhere to certain unspoken conventions, all displaying variations on the same
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stock components of a winter wonderland. Brilliantly white snow dusts trees and buildings. Girls pose in oversized Christmas sweaters or tastefully layered coats. Candles, cocoa, and cookies abound. Everything basks in the golden glow of string lights. As I scroll deeper into the #winteraesthetic tag, part of me is tempted to dismiss what I’m seeing as wistful thinking. They’re lying, I think to myself. The people posting these must know it isn’t like this most of time. Where’s the slushy side of winter? Last winter wasn’t a great time for me. I hadn’t exactly been in the best place during the preceding couple of seasons, but when Daylight Savings Time shifted nightfall one hour earlier, my mood sank just like the sun at 4:30 PM. It didn’t help that my room was shafted that year, existing perpetually in a shadowy semi-darkness I often likened to a cave. Even on cloudless days, the most sun I got was a square of light that hovered momentarily on my windowsill before moving on to better places. My parents sent me a SAD lamp in hopes of boosting my Vitamin D levels and my mood, but in a twist of irony, upon first plugging it in, I discovered one of the bulbs was burned out. I eventually returned it for a new one, but
never got around to trying it out. There is nothing particularly Instagrammable about a SAD lamp, though their blinding fluorescent glare isn’t half-bad for selfies, if you can manage to take one without squinting. But the only lights that made it on my Instagram that winter were the lampposts in Riverside Park, cutely capped in snow. It could be argued that the #winteraesthetic populating Instagram and other social media sites is nothing more than a Platonic ideal of winter, a fantasy tricking us into expecting an unattainable and beautiful coziness that the season can never truly embody. But I’ve realized the element of fantasy is exactly the point. The #winteraesthetic is not from a mistaken belief that winter is beautiful and cozy, but a recognition that it often isn’t. It represents fantasy, but it also represents effort, the same effort humans have been making for thousands of years to beautify this coldest and darkest of seasons in whatever ways
possible. I doubt it is a coincidence that Christmas, Hanukkah, and many other winter holidays incorporate lights into their celebrations. Many winter holidays are associated with values like kindness and compassion, and encourage us to seek out closeness, both geographical and emotional, with the people we care about. The Internet phenomenon of the #winteraesthetic is really just an extension of everything else people do to make winter less cold and sad. Just as lights and roaring fires and cookies make the world cozier, images of them
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bring some of that coziness to our social media feeds. The #winteraesthetic has the power to make even snow and ice cozy, photo frames serving as windows through which viewers can admire icecrusted holly berries and snow-covered pines and icicles hanging from branches without the usual accompanying cold of the real deal. No one has forgotten the slush is there, just outside the frame. But as the ones behind the camera and the Instagram account, we can curate a pictorial narrative that comforts and inspires us, an external manifestation of positivity that can exist whether or not we’re able to summon it within ourselves. Because for all the ways in which humans can be pretty terrible sometimes, it cannot be denied that we are a resilient species, one that has found numerous inventive ways to seek out light in darkness—and, when none is to be found, to make our own.
Milstein Hacks: How To Make The Most Of It by Angela Tran
I Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
t’s hard to believe that the Milstein Center has only been with us for a few months. It has quickly become a staple on campus, bustling with activity during most of its open hours. With the six new floors of public space and study areas, it shouldn’t be a problem to find a nice area to get work done, and yet the Sunday morning seat struggle is real. That’s why I’m here to help with some tried and true techniques for scoring a really nice study spot for hunkering down and getting work done. It goes without saying that the easiest and surest way to get a good nook in Milstein is to just go when it opens. Because the building isn’t open 24 hours a day, getting there at eight in the morning will almost guarantee your favorite study spot. This isn't possible for everyone, but on weekends, when Milstein opens at 10 AM, it's easier to wake up and get to grinding early. So, if you can’t stand lines or walking all the way to your favorite desk and seeing it taken, get there bright and early. Of course, there are plenty of well-known study areas on most of the floors, each with its own mix of natural light, availability of power outlets, chatter, and space. But, while the second floor carrels or first-floor tables fill up pretty quickly, there are a few
nooks that may just yet contain your dream seat. One little known space in the building is the fifth floor lounge area, which also boasts a blackboard stocked with chalk and an eraser. It’s only accessible by elevator, which may account for the low numbers of people in the space. Right next to the Vagelos Computational Science Center, this area is great for doing math proofs on a giant surface, or just writing out things that you're studying. This floor is primarily intended for math and science majors, but also offers a smart collaborative space with math and computer science help for all students. It’s open whenever Milstein is open, so you can head on over there whenever you get stumped on a question. Plus, this floor also has a small hallway that leads to the seventh floor of Altschul, which is especially convenient when running from studying to a class right next door. The lower level of Milstein hosts a complex series of tunnels and hallways. These passageways can take you to all of the main buildings on campus, excluding the dorms. On the north end, you can get to the Diana, Altschul, and Milbank at a three-way intersection. It may take a bit of experimentation to figure out where each corridor leads, but once you do, it will THE BULLETIN -
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save a ton of time. On the other end, the tunnels to Barnard Hall require a bit of faith when following, but ultimately they lead to the Barnard Fitness Center and Hewitt. I’d recommend following the Milstein end first before you get lost in the depths of Barnard Hall. The lower level of Milstein also boasts a small sitting area, where you can do work in between classes or just chill beneath the picturesque stairway. There are small padded cushions along the edge of this petite space, which makes it all the more cozy. This area is fairly unknown to everyone who does not have a class on the lower level, but it is typically empty and can be a great place to chat with a friend or crack open a noisy snack. If you've never explored Milstein, or even if it has become your favorite study spot, there are nooks and crannies open to all to explore. From the heights to the depths of this new building, there are spaces everywhere to hunker down or open up, all of which are open to you. Ultimately, it’s what you make of these spaces that matters most. And, if you find a new secret spot, send me an email and next time we can collab.
The Queer History of Barnard by Jessa Nootbaar never married, instead living with one female professor for several decades and another for years until her death in 1965. While Gildersleeve rejected the label of “lesbian,” her relationships can be understood in the tradition of Boston Marriages, late 19th century arrangements in which two women lived together independent of men, often allowing them to focus on professional and academic pursuits. Boston Marriages built upon the 19th century tradition of “romantic friendships,” in which two women would become intimately emotionally and even occasionally sexually involved. Gildersleeve would have tremendous career success as the only woman involved in the foundation of the United Nations. However, her legacy is complicated by the major wrongdoings she was allegedly involved with during her tenure at Barnard. She has been suspected of supporting an unjust selective admissions process to accept fewer Jewish students to Barnard and Columbia, according to American historian and biographer Rosalind Rosenberg, BC ‘05. Pop culture often views historically-women’s colleges as places chock full of lesbians, feminists, and social radicals. The slang LUG (Lesbian Until Graduation) gestures towards a prevalent notion of women’s college as a site of identity reflection and sexual exploration. LUG is a fitTHE BULLETIN -
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ting term when applied to Barnard’s 1907 “crush” culture — no matter how “severe” the affliction may have been, it was expected that all Barnard students would graduate and enter into heterosexual marriages. While some like Gildersleeve and Susan B. Anthony resisted what poet Adrienne Rich would later describe as “compulsory heterosexuality” by never marrying, others like Eleanor Roosevelt would enter into marriages with men and continue to have relationships with women privately. In looking back at Barnard’s history, Barnard’s thriving queer community today is unsurprising. Columbia also made history. In 1966, Columbia was the first university in the world to establish a LGBTQ rights organization — then called the Student Homophile League, now called Columbia Queer Alliance (CQA). Other groups on Columbia and Barnard’s campus, including GendeRevolution, Proud Colors, and Club Q, also continue building queer community with events such as Queer Awareness Month, Genderf*ck, movie nights, and mixers. Let’s hope the Barnard administration can grow upon these traditions, acknowledge the impact of LGBTQ students and faculty, and join the other Seven Sisters by officially recognizing Barnard as a place for trans and gender non-conforming students as well.
Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
n the 1907 edition of Mortarboard, the yearbook staff published a tonguein-cheek lexicon of common Barnard slang. Of the Bulletin, they wrote, “A magnificent opportunity for literary aspirants to get used to seeing their names in print.” A few lines down, they define a “crush” as a strange “illness” caught by first year students. The agents of infection? Barnard upperclassmen. While it’s inaccurate to apply modern terminology such as “lesbian” or “queer” to historical figures or practices, acknowledging when Barnard’s tradition diverts from a hegemonic heteronormative narrative can prevent the erasure of nondominant realities. At the turn of the 20th century, the idea of sexual orientation as a component of identity was only just emerging in medical and psychiatric circles. Engaging in same-sex sexual acts or intimate relationships didn’t make one a different type of person (e.g. a lesbian), and people understood themselves and their relationships within dominant discourses of the time. The Freudian idea of “sexual inversion” conflated gender identity and sexual orientation, so that only those displaying deviant gender expression would be seen as an “other,” while those engaged in samesex activity could fly under the social radar as long as they conformed to gender norms. In 1911, Barnard hired a new dean, Virginia Gildersleeve. Gildersleeve
Mortarboard editors of 1908
Pop Culture Review:
The Rise of Utopian/Dystopian TV
Design by Huntly Cooper
f you’ve been active on Netflix, or even glanced up at posters on the 1 train, chances are that you’ve been exposed to advertising for some sort of dystopian or utopian television series. The dystopian/ utopian genre has especially boomed in popularity during recent times, with releases like The Handmaid’s Tale and The Good Place. For those of you who haven’t quite dipped your toes into dystopian or utopian television, the hype may seem unwarranted, more like a fad. But, below the glossy ads watching over you at Times Square, there lays a more startling relevance in dystopian and utopian television. The term “dystopia” refers to a hypothetical society where everything is dysfunctional. Conversely, the term “utopia” refers to a society where everything is perfect. Although all actualized societies fall somewhere in the middle of the spectrum, at times it may seem as if life is falling one way or the other. With news about the government systematically scapegoating ethnic minorities, or your grades coming in all A’s, you might feel the need to revel in bitterness or indulge in pleasure. In situations like these, a TV show describing the boundaries of your emotions would be a go-to, especially if your emotions are propelled by the political scene. Sometimes, it may not even be clear what emotions you are supposed to feel, or what “good” or “bad” is. Sometimes, each day may seem so bland and uneventful that you may not even remember what you had for breakfast. In such situations, a dystopian or utopian show can also help explore what the boundaries of “good” and “bad” are, defining the terms as livable scenarios. Beyond the same rut of worrying about grades or that internship you still have to apply for, there may not be a real sense of what
by Naemal Bhatti the stakes are when basic human rights are stripped, or when all desires are completely fulfilled so there’s no meaning left to existence. In that sense, dystopian and utopian television provide a gauge to measure our lives up against, so we know whether to be satisfied or not. Perhaps you’ve reached a level where you’re content with your life, or expected something a little less philosophically jarring when opening this issue of The Barnard Bulletin. In that case, dystopian and utopian television are also great for simply having a fun time. You can grab popcorn, a few friends, and unwind with some of these popular selections. The Man in the High Castle: This show explores what society would be like if the Axis Powers had won World War II. It begins by following a young woman on a journey to uncover what her sister’s role was in a resistance against the Nazi government. As she retraces her sister’s steps, she becomes increasingly aware of secret political agendas. Watch if you’re a history buff or enjoy a good political drama. The Handmaid’s Tale: This series will definitely resonate with your identity as a feminist Barnardian. It portrays a world where women are completely objectified, and most of their freedoms are revoked. Offred, a woman who is subjected to ritualized rape to bear children, tells a story of both disappointment and hope as she searches for the resistance. Black Mirror: An anthology is something I can always get behind, as the stories are always short and impactful. This series truly delivers on that with its thought-provoking imagery and creative scenarios. From plots that range from the televised humiliation
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of the British Prime Minister to the resurrecting of the dead, you’ll have your eyes peeled while watching this show. Westworld: If you’re interested in skewed perspectives or unreliable narrators, this show will appeal to you. In this series, Westworld is a western themed amusement park that is run by “hosts” or humanoid robots. The park entertains high paying visitors who can demand whatever they wish of the humanoids without fear of retaliation. The series ironically humanizes the robots while dehumanizing the people, lending thought to who we are as a race. Futurama: Although the term “dystopian” doesn’t lend itself to images of a humorous cartoon, this series does explore what it means to stake out a place in a completely alien world. The show follows the misadventures of Fry and his friends as they navigate a futuristic society trying to find a place in it. Kind of sounds like the freshie experience at Barnard now. Æon Flux: I watched this some time ago on Netflix and found it to be viciously underrated. Although the plot is a bit tired out with the same old totalitarian regime and underground resistance trope, the action scenes are amazing. Charlize Theron really shines as a skilled and sleek protagonist who will stop at nothing to complete her mission. Highly recommend as a dystopian flick that won’t leave you feeling too disoriented! As you go off on your dystopian/ utopian television binge watching, consider what the shows are trying to say; along with having a good time, you can claim to be an intellectual. After developing enough fan theories, you just might find yourself enlightened enough to break away from the sheeple!
15 - December 2018
Preparing for Your First Winter Break at Home
have to take two flights to get home. Traveling is exhausting, and by the time I arrive I’m too tired to to even wrap my head around the concept of home. I get home, I sleep, and in the morning I realize that this is my first time home in a handful of months. My bed is comfortable, more comfortable than the twin XL with a mattress topper, and my dog is curled up next to me, talking up half the bed with his 10 pounds of small, snoring self. It’s almost as if no time has passed. It’s almost as if I’ve taken a little sliver of time — spent it in New York City, miles and miles away from my family — and then put it in my pocket for safekeeping. “Please please please,” my sister rushes out in between bites of breakfast. “Tell me that you said hi to Lin Manuel Miranda.” But time did pass and instead of answering her I’m standing in the front of the kitchen cupboard, perplexed. There’s something different about the cupboard, as if someone has taken all the furniture in the house and moved it three inches to the left. Everything is still there, but off. For the first time, the reality of me being gone sets in. I figure out what’s wrong with the picture. I take a bowl out of the cupboard and put it on the table in front of my sister. “When the hell did we get new bowls?” My sister has her mouth wide open, chewed up bits of food for the world to see. “I don’t know. For a while, I guess. But that’s not a big deal. Did you say hi to Lin? Did you? You can’t say that you took a picture with him and didn’t say anything.” But this is a big deal. They’re something new, something that changed while I was away. It’s proof that when I’m out at school living a new life, home continues on without me. “What was wrong with the old bowls? They were good bowls. Nice bowls.”
“Jeez, Maya. If you don’t want to tell me your super awesome story of meeting Lin, then you don’t have to.” “I just— I didn’t know we got new bowls.” I wonder what else has changed, which other new things reside in my house and my family that I haven’t figured out yet. Yet the house isn’t the only thing that’s changed. I have too. I’m not the same person that lived in this house the past twelve years. Just like the bowls, I’m different — new. And the change doesn’t end with the bowls: my mother has a new license plate on her car, my grandfather has mastered the art of using Facebook, and my dad has a new golf cart that’s an absurdly bright yellow color. It’s small changes that together make home a new place where I don’t necessarily fit in. But it’s not like I don’t fit out either. Instead, I exist in the limbo between my home in California and my home in New York City. Coming back home for THE BULLETIN -
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winter break, I realized there are two places I call home now. And no matter what, these places and I are going to continue to change. The comforting bit of it all is that I’m not alone. I talk to my high school best friends, and they feel the same way too. When we meet up at the it coffee shop in downtown, it’s as if no time has passed at all. The jokes are all still there, the gentle cadence of our friendship hasn’t changed in the slightest. But we’ve all changed. We’ve grown up; we’re not fully adults yet either, but we’re not the same kids who graduated high school on a blistering summer day. “The worst part of it all is getting sick,” my best friend says, and I recall our group message being constantly filled with Get Well Soons and Please Go Check That Checked Outs. “The ER I went to was far from campus and so I had to wait for the bus to show up. And it almost never did. I was waiting for an hour.” It’s a succinct glimpse of our new life. Before, getting sick meant bed rest and warm soup and my mother yelling at me for not wearing socks in the house. But now, it’s something that takes a lot of effort– and a lot of waiting for buses that almost never show up. Yet, we get on that bus and move forward. Changes are jarring. But it’s something that you can’t overcome. So when you go home, maybe for the first time since August, it’s going to feel a little weird. Furniture is going to be moved around; your little sister is going to be missing her two front teeth. But it’s still home. Catch up with old friends; see that everyone’s college experience is vastly different from your own. Tell your extended family a toned-down version of a wild Halloweekend story. Give a multitude of kisses to your pets. And above everything else, don’t fret about the changes. Because you, above all, have changed the most. And hopefully the change is a good thing.
Illustration by Angela Tran
by Maya Sanchez
by Eleanor Murguia
nother semester gone, another finals season approacheth. While it may seem that the start of December means spending every waking minute studying, it is also the most important time to take care of yourself. No one studies their best at four a.m. or when their anxiety levels are through the roof, so treat yourself to some self-care time so you can bring your A-game (literally) to finals.
Illustration by Sadie Kramer
Meditate At this point, the powers of meditation have been talked about by every morning show, magazine, and aspiring Insta influencer. Yes, it is overexposed — but it’s not overhyped. Meditation has been shown to decrease stress and increase your ability to focus, pretty much exactly what you need during finals. There are a number of apps available (like Headspace, which includes ten sessions for free), as well as free meditation podcasts like Meditation Minis, which has over one hundred sessions on everything from stress to self-love. Take a five or ten minute study break, pop on a guided meditation, and come back feeling refreshed.
Laundry Doing laundry is not particularly fun, and few would consider it the ideal study break, but hear me out: there is nothing more luxurious than the feeling of slipping into freshly washed sheets after a long day. Finals are stressful enough without having to dig through your laundry hamper and find socks that are “clean enough.” Take two hours out of your study schedule, throw in your laundry, put on your favorite show, and maybe even pop on a face mask while you fold. The best part is you will feel productive (and ease that “I should only be studying and not wasting my time on other things” guilt) while doing something great for your future self!
Make a plan Fantasizing about finally crawling into bed to binge Netflix when you’re going on hour twelve in Shopping Butler is one thing, but actually making the time to take care When all else fails, go of yourself during finals is another. At the end of the day, what’s shopping (though this doesn’t necessarmore important than how you decide to treat yourself this finals season ily mean pulling out your family’s credit card is actually acting on it. It’s easy to get overwhelmed by study guides and and treating yourself). Looking at a bunch of review sessions and let the nice walk in the park you had planned slip by. pretty shiny things can be a great way to completely Make a plan and stick to it. If you’re a calendar-addict, try using distract yourself from all that finals stress. the Google Calendar Goals feature: you can select an activity you want to Open up a bunch of tabs with your favorite do (like taking a break!), input how many times a week you want to do it, stores and fill up your cart as if you had an unlimited and the app will find time in your busy schedule for you to do it. If calenbudget, or, if you dare, venture out to some brick dars aren’t your thing, hold yourself accountable by making taking care of and mortar stores and gaze upon some glossy disyourself a task on your favorite to-do app (mine is Todoist!) or just texting plays. Since December is holiday season, there are some friends to make plans. tons of fun holiday-themed shopping all around Whether you do all, none, or some of these, the important thing the city: pop down to the Bryant Park this finals season is that you take care of yourself. Self care is different Winter Market for some kitchsy for everyone. Sometimes self care is sleeping in until noon because holiday cheer. you need as much sleep as possible, and sometimes self care is waking up at 7 am so you can get a workout in before breakfast. Just find what works for you, and go for it. THE BULLETIN - 17 - December 2018
In Defense of Holiday Music Holiday music, to me, provides the perfect soundtrack to a season; no other time of year can claim to have a canon devoted to getting into its spirit. I adore the ability of holiday music to lift my mood and to complement a variety of festive activities. Baking Christmas cookies would not be the same without “Jingle Bell Rock” echoing throughout the kitchen, and systematically carving out real estate for ornaments on my family’s tree begs for Jimmy Buffett’s “Christmas Island” (sorry, but truly not sorry). While most people think of holiday music as consisting entirely of upbeat tracks like “All I Want for Christmas is You,” I revel in the diversity among the genre, from artists’ interpretations of the classics to the growing number of entirely new hits. I always appreciate a great rendition of “Sleigh Ride” — fun. anyone? — but some of my favorite holiday songs touch upon more somber aspects of the festive season. “O Holy Night” grounds me and provides a gentle reminder of the beauty of Christmas which extends well beyond gifts, trees, and food. However, I also understand the prevailing notion of holiday songs as cheesy, overplayed, and, frankly, underwhelming. Even as a lover of all things Christmas, I can admit to walking out of Lord & Taylor earlier than expected just to escape another round of “Santa Baby” (one of the few holiday songs THE BULLETIN -
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I do not like). We’ve seen it with almost every Top 40 hit: once recycled so many times, even the best of jams can become stale. To combat feelings of annoyance, I try to listen like a child. Whereas a cynical adult would sigh heavily at the festive playlist blasting at the mall or during one’s morning commute, a child would listen intently, joyful for the most wonderful time of the year. For me, holiday music provides a much-needed escape from the tragic, hateful, and disparaging parts of our world, and replaces them, albeit momentarily, with jingling bells and talks of cuddling by the fire. For anyone feeling disillusioned with the idea of holiday cheer, I recommend Matchbox Twenty frontman Rob Thomas’ 2002 single “A New York Christmas.” Released a year after the September 11th attacks rocked New York, the song is still incredibly poignant in a country and society struggling to find peace. I love and cherish the presence of holiday music in my life, and could not picture the month of December – and let’s face it, November – without my 63-song curated playlist of festive jams. Speaking of jams, I could never forget the world’s most badass holiday track: “Christmas Eve / Sarajevo” by the Trans-Siberian Orchestra. Those of all faiths and beliefs should give that one a listen; it has no words, but plenty of electric guitar.
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an I play it? No, it’s not even November.You know what? If I only listen to one song, it won’t count. “Silver Bells” it is. Such was the internal debate I had upon the release of John Legend’s Christmas album, aptly titled “A Legendary Christmas.” Until October 26, I had relative success abstaining from indulging in my musical guilty pleasure: holiday songs. However, when imagining John’s smooth voice singing about roasting chestnuts, I hit play without a second thought. I have always been a Christmas fanatic. Anything that reminded me of Christmas, no matter the time of year, brought me joy. Any given August growing up, I could be found browsing online stores for potential gifts — despite having an incredibly small immediate family —– ordering peppermint hot chocolates at Starbucks, and conveniently “forgetting” to remove the snow and glitter covered wreath hanging above my bed. In fact, the first musical album I ever bought was Aly and AJ’s masterpiece, “Acoustic Hearts of Winter.” Blasting that album while playing on WeeWorld defined my winter weekends in middle school. As someone who is not particularly religious, certain Christmas songs had the (ironic) unexpected effect of teaching me more about the biblical story of Christmas than any of my religious education classes.
by Collier Curran
In Her Words: Hanukkah by Aliya Schneider
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ather than being a religion for me, Judaism has had to do with my relationship with my family, my history, and my environment. I never thought about Judaism shaping my values, because I did not follow advice specifically because it came from the Torah. However, my values were shaped by being Jewish in a small Christian town where I was the “other.” My values were shaped by hearing my grandparents’ stories of survival, by the communities I found through my culture, and the hard work I put in for my Bat Mitzvah. As the token Jew, I brought dreidels into my class in elementary school and taught classmates about menorahs. Friends bragged to me that Christmas was better than Hanukkah because Santa Claus came and they had a Christmas tree, but I snapped back that more nights meant more presents, which wasn’t necessarily the case. To me, Hanukkah was about the latke making contest at Hebrew School, see-
ing family, lighting the menorah, and of course, a present. One year, my parents told me that I wouldn’t be getting a present because I was able to go to camp during the summer. I now understand what a privilege this was, but at the time, when my peers were bragging about all their Christmas presents, I didn’t understand. The whole present phenomenon, although nice, stems from a mass commercialization around Christmas that has seeped into American culture. I have met families with no religious affiliation who celebrate Christmas, not through a means of culturally connecting with their religion, but through a means of participating in a commercialized and Americanized joyful holiday. This makes sense to me now, but it didn’t when I was younger, when kids were surprised that I didn’t celebrate Christmas, even though I was Jewish, or more importantly, not Christian. In 6th grade, I walked into my THE BULLETIN -
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classroom with a dreidel to show my friend, and an 8th grader yelled “She’s a Jew!” At another point that school year, I got a note inside my locker that said “Happy Hanukkah to you, I am not a Jew.” My classmates didn’t know about Passover or Rosh Hashanah. They associated me being different based on what they understood— Christmas. Without Christmas, winter wouldn’t really be considered the holiday season any more than the times of other holidays. My family members stopped caring about Hanukkah because the holiday didn’t mean much to them compared to other ones, and I realized that my celebration of Hanukkah growing up was in place of Christmas. We don’t celebrate every Jewish holiday, so if Hanukkah isn’t important to my family, why else celebrate it than to validate my brother and me growing up that our culture participated in the holiday season?
Bridging Identities to Find Belonging By Sara Hameed
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he year is 1999, the leaves are just beginning to fall off the trees in Central Park, and my young mother and father arrive in America with two even younger children in tow. This is the same year that the population of the entire world surpasses six billion. For the first time, my mother and father step onto the overpopulated streets of New York City with bated breath, straight off of an overnight flight — weary and anxious and full of anticipation — for all of the reasons immigrant parents do. Hand in hand with their two daughters, they marvel at city sites and muse on the country of opportunity where they have just arrived. Whispering to each other in their native tongue of Arabic, my parents have only us and each other in this foreign land. When one ponders what it means to be raised in the United States, freedom and independence come to mind. Growing up in the U.S., I was fortunate to witness the “American Dream” that is so often discussed in middle school social studies classes come to life. I watched my parents follow this dream as we moved from New York to Missouri to Alabama to Tennessee; I observed in awe as they adapted to a new culture, a new language, a new job, a new lifestyle — all while providing more for their children than they could have ever dreamed of. For my family, the American Dream was tangible and real, and our appreciation for America led us to apply for citizenship ten years later. What does it mean to be a citizen of the United States? Perhaps it’s more than a piece of paper or a passport, but a recognition that the country you live in is built and shaped by its people. Being a citizen means that one has the right and responsibility to vote, to engage in the civic community, to remain informed on public policy, and to vigorously question and critique the power that our government exerts. However, citizenship does not necessarily bring with it a sense of belonging. In 2001, after the horrifying and devastating attacks at the World Trade Center, my parents faced opposition at work, my sister received pointed questions at her elementary school, and our family sustained hateful comments from those who disagreed with our own “belonging” in this country. Moving out of New York to the deep South did not alleviate any of the tensions that we faced. From elementary to middle to high school, I would not speak Arabic in public, and I would avoid answering with the truth
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Photographer: Yuki Mitsuda Art Direction: Yuki Mitsuda Makeup: Yuki Mitsuda Models: Lina Ariyan Katia Ariyan Shannon Hui Ankita Acharya when questioned about my background, religion, or ethnicity, always afraid of being told how much I did not belong. Within my first semester of college, sitting in an Introductory Psychology class, I learned about Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs and the drastic importance of feeling a sense of belonging, a human need just like food or shelter or any other. Belongingness helps one visualize value in life and cope with intensely painful emotions. Some people find belonging in religious organizations, academic groups, or other extracurricular activities, and I wondered where I could find my own community of people who shared my passions. I joined numerous email listservs that caught my interest and flooded my inbox — the neuroscience society, the hiking club, the underground music venue in the basement of the campus church — but none brought me any relief. While I made friends through these clubs, none of these groups quenched
my strong desire to feel understood, to feel appreciated, to belong. Three years into college, I realized that it was true: a sense of belonging and community are intertwined. However, I recognized that the community I had strived so much to carve for myself could not be found in the standard definition of community I had internalized. Community is often easily defined as a group of people living in the same place or having a particular characteristic in common, but I knew I couldn’t find my sense of belonging just by joining one student club that I considered my “niche” activity or by solely living in a residence hall with my peers. I realized my uneasy sentiment towards a sense of belonging was tied to my shaky sense of identity. Was I Middle Eastern? Was I American? Was I some hyphenated version of Arab-American or American-Arab or Kurdish-Arab-American? Which circle do I bubble in or box do I check when I’m asked to describe my identity in one word?
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How can I identify myself as any of these words now, knowing full well I spent almost twenty years of my life hiding from them? Three years into college, and I have not fully decided where my answers lie for these questions. At Barnard and Columbia, however, I have learned that there does exist a collective immigrant experience. I am not the only person who was raised in a household that felt stronger ties to their homeland than for the country they presently inhabit. I was not the only one who felt confused saluting the flag at the front of classrooms growing up or felt the pressure to hide my identity from others in fear of standing out. Sitting on the local downtown 1 with my dearest friend, I listen as she tells me the disconnect she feels towards her mother’s religion, the same religion that caused so much distress within her family when her mother chose to marry someone of a different background. Standing in line at Joe’s, I overhear two men share stories about the uncertainty they felt when coming out to their religious families. As I sit in a long car ride to the airport with my Uber driver, I listen to him speak about all his reasons for moving here and appreciate how each person in NYC brings their own diverse experiences and background to the bustling city. Community is more than a shared place. The recognition that questioning identity is a quintessential and collective college student experience brought me
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a stronger feeling of closeness with the people around me than anything else — whether it be a close friend or a stranger I meet in passing. As I continue to grapple with my personal sense of identity, the only piece of advice I can give to others who are searching for a sense of community or belongingness is simply this: to listen. Share your stories with the people close to you, and listen to your loved ones who take valiant steps to be vulnerable in your presence. As I sit writing this in our shiny new Milstein library, I overhear the velvety voice of a nearby student, a phone pressed tightly against her cheek, describing the state of hopeless homesickness she feels to the person listening on the other line. She speaks in the familiar tongue I have grown to treasure, and the intonation of her words allow me to deduce the homeland she speaks of so highly. When she says goodbye and gathers her belongings to leave, I do not stand or introduce myself. Instead, I smile, and I dial the only number I have ever ingrained into my mind: my mother’s. I think of my peer who spoke her Arabic aloud for all ears to hear, unashamed of her background and identity, unable to contain her loud voice. For the first time, I let myself do the same. My mother listens to me quietly on the other line. All at once, I belong in her warm embrace back in my childhood home, comforted by her silence, and I belong to this place, continuing to grow and learn and explore avenues of myself I have never toured before.
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A Perfect Holiday Stroll
s we slowly embark into the month of December, the days will get colder and the nights will be longer. We should all take time to enjoy the various holiday opportunities offered in the city of New York as a way to mark the end of the semester. Here are several opportunities you should consider during December:
Where to eat?
With the plethora of restaurants that the city has to offer, the following make a true effort to get customers into the holiday spirit: Lucky Strike - SoHo Lucky Strike is known for offering delicious food and a welcoming environment. This French restaurant provides a tranquil ambiance as you eat under white lights and to the sound of American rock. The menus, written over the mirrors, and the posters on the wall make it a warmer environment. There is also a variety of food offered for breakfast, lunch and dinner, including vegetarian and gluten-free options. This restaurant is simple yet elegantly arranged, making it much more inviting to visit during the Holiday time. Tavern On the Green - Central Park West If you find yourself enjoying the snow in Central Park, consider going to Tavern On the Green. This restaurant takes advantage of its stunning location in the park to fully decorate during the holiday season. The lights on the trees, matched with great food, create a much more fulfilling winter experience. While surrounded by the warmth of the restaurant, you get a direct view of nature outside
through its huge glass windows. With its own menu dedicated to children, it’s an elegant version of a typical restaurant with food ranging from pasta and its own ‘Tavern Burger’ to a lobster risotto. This is open for breakfast, lunch, and dinner so consider stopping by after your holiday day to enjoy the food and feel more at home. Not hungry? Feel free to stop by and take in the beauty of the restaurant. Morning Star Cafe- Midtown This 24-hour cafe is considerably cheaper but just as good as the other restaurants. With its typical cafe environment, including seating in the front and comfortable couches, customers can enjoy a long list of sandwiches, soups, and salads all day long. The many menu options, combined with flexible hours, make the cafe a great stop-and-go destination between holiday festivities. You can even consider delivering straight to campus, for an extra charge.
What to do?
As brutal as the winter might be, the endless opportunities allow you to enjoy holiday festivities: NYBG Train Show We should all unleash the child within us and enjoy the Holiday Train Show hosted by the New York Botanical Garden. This setup contains miniature trains that embark on a long journey, as they visit more than 175 landmarks in NYC under the lights and trees. The landmarks include some of NYC’s well-known sites such as the Statue of Liberty, Brooklyn Bridge, and Rockefeller Center. You’ll begin to appreciate the intricate details of the trains as they take a halfmile journey under the Christmas lights. Be sure to watch out for how the trains have changed as you—literally—take a trip back in time. While you’re at it, check out some other exhibits in the garden to look at nature’s best gifts. Union Square Holiday Market Unlike the various shopping centers in Union Square, the holiday market is a yearly event that only occurs during the most wonderful time of the year. Stop by THE BULLETIN -
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here to shop for loved ones or for yourself with the 150+ vendors that hail from around the country. Some highlights include handcrafted artwork, jewelry and Christmas cards. Some of last year’s hits included terrariums with real butterflies (Flutterby Katie) and some great Taiwanese food (Bao by Kia). Each year, the vendors do change, but some always remain the same including NYC Parks Department, which sells merchandise with the infamous NYC Parks logos. There are also multiple food options offered within this space ranging from different types of honey to doughnuts and more. There are also performances by some Broadway stars during specific dates, so be sure to plan ahead! Dyker Heights, Brooklyn If you love to see houses decorated with Christmas lights, take a trip to Dyker Heights. Its residents use thousands of lights, ornaments, and figurines, making it one of the most festive neighborhoods in NYC. All 22 blocks are elaborately decorated and offer a range of different styles of decoration. One house, known as the ‘Lucy House’ is credited for beginning this tradition. The homeowner showcases her massive collection of ornaments that she has collected over the years. A simple walk in this neighborhood has one appreciating the Christmas music and winter snow. Enjoy this lesser known and free tradition with just a train ride to Brooklyn. The residents claim that there is no competition between them, but somehow the decorations continue to get better each year. The lights are available until New Year’s Eve and the best times to visit are from 5-9 PM, as some residents shut off their lights at 9:00.
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By Aisha Saleem
She Said / She Said: A Break from Breaking News
by Annabella Correa-Maynard
BY Noelle Penas
o be cognizant in today’s society means that you are engaging in the political world. Post-2008, however, the vehicles that deliver our breaking news are re-routed through different systems that are connected to us wherever we travel. As opposed to complying to receive news from a scheduled program such as The Nightly News or the morning newspaper, phones and computers bridge the gap between connectedness with the news and our individual selves. There are certainly upsides to this phenomenon. Perhaps one of the most obvious is that the mobilization of computers allows us to communicate with others that we do not get a chance to communicate with on a daily basis. Friends and family members who might live across the globe can partake in vacations, birthdays, and political discussions at any hour of the day. However, we enter the grey zone when we use communication or political involvement as an excuse to engage in the ceaseless news cycle. Unlike commenting on our best friends graduation album or coming into contact with a post from a middle school sweetheart, we uphold an unfair bargain when we receive a notification from a new source. Nowadays, when we give permission for our news sources to regularly notify us about potential breaking news headlines. Death tolls, natural disasters, social injustice, and political scandal inundate our phones along with seemingly innocent social media posts. But the truth is that breaking news cannot be mistaken as a form of entertainment—the psychological impact that it has on us never leaves us well rested, especially if it is harrowing. Perhaps the ugly truth is that engaging with breaking news does not make you (or myself), a more cognizant or politically engaged person. While there are some notifications that are impossible to avoid, it is just as impossible and psychologically damaging to engage with every single news source notification. However, it is very possible to choose what you want to be consumed by whether it be positive or negative.
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he immediacy of the news in our digital age has swept us into an onslaught of often grim headlines, all clamoring to claim our attention. Refreshing news feeds has become a depressing chore of sifting through calamities that can make it exhausting to keep up with current events. In response to this information onslaught, many have stopped reading the news. It’s an understandable coping strategy, but as global citizens, it’s also our moral responsibility to each other that we stay aware of the world we are all a part of. The saturated affectation of the news overwhelms—but discomfort shouldn’t permit a routine avoidance of it. We may not like what we’re reading about, but it’s possible to find other ways of processing the distress without turning away. When we feel disheartened, it means it’s time to regroup, take a deep breath. Time to go for a run, paint, hit a punching bag, share our thoughts with our friends, return to a comforting book or movie. Time to allow ourselves silence to reflect and process, but then to steel ourselves and re-lean into the discomfort of learning about this world. News doses us with the sobering shock of reality, but it’s the cold bath that alerts us to our numbness. We have a choice in how to respond to that reality, and retreating can only ever be a temporary answer. Educating ourselves places upon us a burden of responsibility. It can make us feel discouraged and helpless, or it can energize us into action. It’s our regular wake-up call that gives us fuel to jolt ourselves out from our insulation. We need to move out of this state of anesthesia, to face and experience and learn to deal with these challenges, not shut down. Many of us might have the luxury to turn off the television and return to our relatively safe lives, but others are not lucky enough to be spared from the line of fire. In this increasingly connected world, neglecting the news will protect no one. The need to stay informed shouldn’t control us, and we shouldn’t feel obligated to summon outrage or grief at every news notification our phones alert us to. However, when we are tempted to exempt ourselves from whatever (possibly unwelcome) responsibilities that being informed burdens us with, we have to decide for ourselves what the right thing to do is. We can’t let ourselves grow tired or numb or burnt out, but to face it all, the good and the bad. It is difficult and demanding, but to the best of our abilities, we have to summon the resilience to face the world head on.
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Women in Politics:
mbassador Nikki Haley may be one of the most well-liked politicians in the United States at a time when divisiveness and partisanship are rampant. She was confirmed by a senate vote of 96-4, unaffected by such partisan politics. A poll cited by CNN gives Haley a 63% favorability rating, with only 17% of those polled disapproving, and points out that her supporters span party lines. Her approval rating is seemingly impervious to any public perception associated with the administration, steadily positive in spite of the negative sentiments currently reserved for politicians and the press. Appointed by Trump to serve as the United States Ambassador to the United Nations, Nikki Haley, former governor of South Carolina, became the representative on behalf of the American people on the world stage. After a successful tenure in the South Carolina House of Representatives, Haley was elected as
the first female governor of South Carolina and the second Indian American. During her term as governor, Time Magazine named her to their list of the world’s 100 most influential people. Haley presided over the State of South Carolina and led her constituents through events that drew national attention such as removing the confederate flag from the State House and the shooting in the Charleston Church. After establishing herself as a rising Republican personality, giving the response to President Obama’s last state of the Union, Haley has retained her party’s favor despite Trump’s intra-party divisiveness. She has maintained a precarious position, supporting President Trump’s agenda while expressing her sometimes contradictory opinions. On the one hand, she is a loyal advocate of the President’s agenda, but on the other, she is capable of criticizing Trump while avoiding his ire. She is far from a Presidential puppet and seemingly above reproach. At what most profes-
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sional pundits, politicians, and people, would characterize as the pinnacle of the her career, Haley tendered her impending resignation from her post as U.S. Representative to the United Nations, eliciting speculation across the political spectrum as to her future public sector aspirations. Haley claims she has no intention of a pursuing a Presidential bid in the near future. One can only assume that her considerable political acumen that has served her well thus far will continue to do so. Although Haley may be taking a break from the political arena, her strong record and universal favorability will not soon be forgotten. If Haley plays her cards right, she could, potentially, become the first female President of the United States.
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by Hadassah Solomson
The Politics You Watch For Fun
T Illustration by Stefani Shoreibah
hese days, keeping up with politics can feel like a full-time job, leaving us exhausted and worried about the future of the country. While staying informed and active is super important, it’s also important to give yourself a break every so often. TV shows which satirize American politics or present an alternate version help me keep a hopeful mindset and laugh a little bit when real life politics seems too much, and I hope they’ll help you too! Parks and Recreation It seems that Parks and Recreation has become a mainstream staple of popular TV, almost on par with The Office in “number of Tinder users mentioning in bio.” Nevertheless, it’s a genuinely good show for anyone looking for a laugh. Who wouldn’t be charmed by Leslie Knope’s unshakeable idealism and attempts to improve lives through the power of parks? This show gives a hilarious satirical view of local government, which is unique in a playing field of mostly TV shows about the executive branch. Veep If you’re hoping to forget about the dark sides of politics and throw on
by Sophie Lanier
some rose-colored glasses for a while, Veep may not be the best choice. However, if you enjoy dark political humor, exaggerated reality, and satire, then you might love this irreverent show. Most of the characters are often plainly unlikeable, but this can only make it better! Also: Julia Louis-Dreyfus is a real-life political queen when she’s not in character on Veep. West Wing This may make me a bad political science major, but I’ll say it: I’ve only seen 4 of the 7 seasons of West Wing, and I watched those seasons several years ago. However, I’m including it on this list because I still remember how earnest, charming, and funny this show is. It’s often hailed as the best TV show about American politics, and for good reason: it presents a somewhat realistic alternative reality, while reminding its viewers that hope and idealism are powerful forces! Saturday Night Live This show has everything: smart critiques of many of the political moments we’ve seen lately, performances by your favorite musical artists, and accurate spoofs of what it’s like to be a progressive right now. Many have arTHE BULLETIN -
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gued that SNL has gotten better since the Trump administration began, but maybe that’s just because much of their material is pretty much written for them by government officials at this point. House of Cards Season 6 of this show was recently released – and with Kevin Spacey out of the picture, Robin Wright’s character Claire Underwood is now the first female president of the US. But am I rooting for Claire? Probably not! Like the former President Underwood, Claire is scheming and tricky, so much so that the audience never really knows her aims. This show is very dark, bringing up big questions about corruption and power in politics. It can sometimes be confusing and hard to keep up with, but that’s worth it for the big conspiracy-like plots and dramatic direct-to-viewer moments. It’s likely the next few years will continue to present a dark and difficult political landscape - but since the midterm elections, there is a newfound (if slight) sense of hope in politics! Keep these political TV shows in mind for when you need a little break from reality and to keep that sense of hope alive.
The The E-cig E-cig Epidemic Epidemic other chemicals. It is true that e-cigarettes are less lethal than traditional cigarettes, which contain more than 5000 chemicals, namely because they do not produce the tar or toxic gases, such as carbon monoxide, present in cigarette smoke. But, just because ecigarettes are not as harmful as cigarettes do not mean they don’t pose their own potential health risks. Nicotine is a highly addictive substance that is associated with several negative health hazards, including the onset of type 2 diabetes, increased blood pressure, and the risk of addiction to other drugs (especially for young people until age 25). Plus, the chemical flavorings in e-cigarettes contain a chemical compound called diacetyl, which is associated with bronchiolitis obliterans, a rare lung disease that causes permanent damage to the airways in the lungs. Aside from the health risks, it is crucial to understand how Juuls are being used in practice. According to Ashley Gould, the Chief Administrative Officer at Juul Labs, the company was founded by two former smokers for the sole purpose of creating a product to help adult cigarette smokers quit. On Juul Lab’s website, the company statement acknowledges that Juuls can have a negative impact when used by non-smokers and that they are not appropriate for people who do not already smoke. While the company may utilize an age authentication system and voice its own concerns regarding teen usage, most Juul sales happen in retail stores that are not directly under the purview of the company. Thus, we must ask ourselves: What are the potential consequences of Juuls being used by teenagers for their unintended purpose? Researchers, public health advocates, and school officials point to the potential harm of nicotine exposure for high school students as it can lead to a lifelong addiction problem, modify brain functioning, and create a variety of health-related issues. Further, the large uproar and criticism towards teens using Juuls has a lot do with how they are marketed. Many critics have accused Juuls Labs of using similar channels of communication as big tobacco to market to the teenage audience. This includes their sizable social media presence, the incluTHE BULLETIN -
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sion of cool-looking young models, sleek designs, and tantalizing flavors. Thus, much like smoking cigarettes used to be about the look if it, now it is all about the aesthetic of juuling that makes them appealing to young people. Juul Chief Executive, Kevin Burns, recently announced to reporters that “our intent was never to have youth use Juul. But intent is not enough. The numbers are what matter and the numbers tell us underage use of ecigarettes is a problem.” Now, in response to anticipated crackdowns from the FDA, Juul released a statement on November 13th that it will no longer use social media to promote flavored Juul pods, such as mango, fruit, créme, and cucumber and that it will remove flavored Juul pods from retail stores, unless they invest in Juul’s age-verification technology. These efforts emerged out of criticism and outrage regarding the company’s marketing techniques from public health experts and FDA pressure rather than the benevolence or moral responsibility of the company. Further, it is likely that Juul Labs’ educational prevention programs are as ineffective as they were for big tobacco companies in the past. Yet, the CDC’s reliance on scare tactics as evidenced by their own campaign, “The Real Cost” is arguably not that great either. This gets at the larger issue of how we as adults often fumble in our approach to discussing serious matters with teenagers. As we await the results of the F.D.A. investigation that will be revealed any day now, New York Times reporters Matt Richtel and Sheila Kaplan astutely frame the dilemma of teen Juul use. They write, “will it be possible to get people who are addicted to cigarettes to switch to e-cigarettes, which are less harmful, without enticing a new generation of non-smokers to try them?” Perhaps this is the most important question we should be asking ourselves about the teen popularity of Juuls. At the end of the day, Juul Labs is a corporation who’s estimated worth reaches $16 billion dollars. This once small S.F. based start-up, like all others, is therefore bent on increasing profits for their addictive product, and teens, unfortunately, are their best customers as they can become dependent on them for life.
Illustration by Sadie Kramer
egardless of whether or not you’re a regular Juul smoker, cigarette fiend, or avid non-smoker, we can all take a critical approach towards young adult Juul usage. These days it is the norm to witness classmates and friends indulge in their flash driveshaped e-cigarette in Butler, John Jay, 1020, or even in a Monday morning 10:10 am class. The explosion of e-cigarettes is undeniable as they have become the most common tobacco product among young people, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Additionally, HHS finds that, today, more high school students use e-cigarettes compared to cigarettes and that the use of e-cigarettes is higher among high school students than adults. The FDA has reported that the rate of high school students who have used e-cigarettes in the past 30 days has increased by about 75% since last year, including 3 million middle and high school students. The rapid popularity of Juuls has turned the heads of parents, teachers, public health experts, and government officials attempting to understand what the reintroduction of nicotine in popular culture means for high school students and business regulation efforts. As role models for teenagers and industry influencers ourselves, it is important that we remain informed about the controversy over the usage of Juuls for young adults. While it is in many ways too soon to know the long-term physical consequences of e-cigarettes on young minds and bodies, it is important to ask: What do we know about Juuls and how should this inform our response to teen use? We all know that cigarettes are bad for us. Similarly, we all know that nicotine is incredibly addictive, smoking tobacco is detrimental to our health, and that cigarettes are the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S. So, then, Juuls must be a lot better for us, right? And the answer is, well, maybe. Each Juul pod lasts about 200 puffs and contains the same amount of nicotine as a pack of cigarettes. E-cigarettes operate differently than traditional cigarettes as they create an aerosol by using a battery to heat up the liquid that includes nicotine, flavoring, and
by Emily Supple
I Illustration by Sadie Kramer
magine a world where you are violently persecuted because of an identity you cannot control. How do you feel? Scared? Alone? For many, this is a reality, in which people live in fear of being targeted because of who they are– in fear of hate crimes. 11 people were killed at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh by a man motivated by anti-semitism– this was a hate crime. Just three days earlier, a gunman in a Kentucky grocery store killed two Black Americans, after failing to enter a predominantly Black church– this was a hate crime. Events such as these are deplorable, and can be disheartening and unnerving to comprehend. According to The Washington Post a neighbor of the shooter appeared to be “normal”. Knowing that seemingly “normal” people around us may be filled with hate and bias to a specific group shakes us to our core, making us wonder if safety exists as a member of these persecuted groups. For those both in and outside of these oppressed groups, helplessness is a common feeling; many wonder what can be done to stop these hate crimes and ease the pain of those affected by these senseless acts, questioning why hate crimes persist in the first place. According to the Southern Poverty Law Center, hate crimes are crimi-
by Kayla Legrand nal acts driven by intense bias and bigotry, affecting about 250,000 people in the United States yearly. However, it seems that after the 2016 election, where the presence of white supremacists and neo-nationalists was felt heavily, we hear of hate crimes much more often. The anti-semitic and racist tragedies that recently occurred are of course not the first hate crimes and will most likely not be last. So what is there to do to about these cruel actions? How can a community heal and how can others help a community recover? How can we build solidarity? Firstly, we must acknowledge these crimes and condemn them, whether it be on social media, by showing up for protests, or by comforting those affected. These acts show communities that have suffered that they are not alone, validating their pain and demonstrating that these acts are unacceptable. Take for example Barnard’s response to the tragic events at the Tree of Life Synagogue; by sending out an email condemning the attacks and offering counseling services and holding a vigil hosted by the Jewish centers on campus, we showed the Jewish community here that they are not alone. Other student groups should also show up for others affected by hate crimes, host their own discusTHE BULLETIN -
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sions and listening sessions for their peers that have been affected in order to demonstrate true understanding and solidarity. This also includes condemning hate crimes that may have not received prominent attention, such as the tragedy at the Kentucky grocery store. The story got lost in the news cycle and did not receive recognition from institutions like the College. In light of these vile hate crimes, we must rebuild what hate has brought down by collectively showing that hate does not have a place in our world. To quote Bell Hooks, a prominent black feminist,
“Solidarity is not the same as support. To experience solidarity, we must have a community of interests, shared beliefs and goals around which to unite, to build Sisterhood”. Our beliefs of anti–hate must be shared in order to have solidarity, to fight anti-semitism, anti-blackness, homophobia, xenophobia, racism, and hate crimes. If we all begin to condemn hate crimes and advocate for authorities and government to condemn these crimes as well, hopefully, we may start to live in a world with a little less hate.
Perfecting the Pronouns
t a woman’s college, it is easy and tempting to assume that everyone uses she/her/hers pronouns. After all, the vast majority of students do identify as female, and the title of “woman’s college” seems to imply universal identification with the female gender. However, for the people that prefer they/them/theirs or other gender neutral pronouns, that assumption can be incredibly frustrating. It may seem bewildering to those that use she/her/hers, but assuming someone’s pronouns can be extremely insulting to their identity as a non-binary person. While it may feel tedious and unimportant to ask every new acquaintance for their preferred pronouns, it is a necessary effort and one that encourages people to associate with their most comfortable gender identity. In many ways, assuming that everyone uses she/her/hers pronouns reduces gender to a binary and does not acknowledge that it is in fact a spectrum. Female and male exist at two ends of this sliding scale, and there are those that choose not to conform to either. This concept of gender arises from
the simple fact that gender identity is a social construct to which most people adhere. There are those who may argue that it is actually a biological feature, meant for the reproduction of our species. The falsehood of that statement lies in the distinction between sex and gender, one of which refers to the genitals that we possess, and the other which reflects our outwardly appearing or inwardly conforming ideas of gender. Furthermore, sex does not exist as a binary either; there are many combinations of ovaries, penises, and testicles that prove the diversity of sexes that exist. Intersex people come in all shapes and sizes, and assuming that gender is as binary as sex means nothing at all. Assuming the wrong pronouns, in addition to being disrespectful, questions the identity that non-binary and transgender people have developed over the years. Referring to a non-binary person as she/her/hers may undo years of progress with their own identities. Language and the names we give to things play an important part in how we view ourselves, and therefore, a seemingly miniscule thing such as
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a pronoun may impact what people think of themselves. Sometimes, transgender or non-binary people continue to misgender themselves in their heads, so it helps tremendously when the outside world can respect their true desires to be referred to with their preferred pronouns. Some of you may have tried your best to respect the pronouns that your non-binary friend uses, but continue to accidentally use she/her/hers. This is okay: undoing years of societal preconceptions takes active work, and it may be difficult at times. The most important and respectful action that you can take is to actively work to change this preconception. It's really just easier and more respectful to ask people for their pronouns before you do anything wildly offensive. Although it’s easier to make assumptions, it shows a tremendous amount of respect when you make the effort to ask for someone’s pronouns. In a culture that attempts to directly invalidate the existence of these people, they will be grateful for it.
Illustration by Angela Tran
by Angela Tran
What Really Happens at the Border by Katie Peterson
A Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
lot of conservative fear mongering is centralized around the idea that people from Mexico, Central America, and South America are going to sneak across the border and commit crimes. Not only is that wrong historically and statistically, but it also demonstrates a complete lack of understanding regarding the immigration and asylum processes. The process of seeking asylum in the U.S. is extremely difficult. Many don’t go through the process because they know how slim the odds of being granted asylum are or don’t have time for the screening process due to immediate fears of death or violence. Migrants have to be unable to return home due to persecution based on race, religion, nationality, membership in a certain social group, or political opinion. Many migrants are from the Northern Triangle—Honduras, Guatemala, and El Salvador—and are fleeing gang violence due to their gender, sexuality, or lack of affiliation, which constitutes
membership in a certain social group. When entering the U.S., it used to be legal to claim asylum at any location on the border, but in early November, the Trump administration announced that migrants’ requests for asylum will be blocked if they did not enter through an official port of entry. Even if migrants do enter at an official port, the likelihood of them being granted asylum is slim. Because immigration court is not a criminal court, asylum seekers are not guaranteed lawyers. Additionally, the current immigration system is trying to rush through a backlog of over 750,000 pending cases, which means cases can be decided in less than a day. Due to the complexities of immigration law, this simply is not enough time lawyers to put together a compelling case and gather documents from overseas. The backlog also means that it can take asylum seekers months or even years to go through the entire screening process and receive documentation to work in America. In
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2016, only 11% of those who applied were granted asylum. The main policy solution is to restart programs that the Trump administration ended. For example, the U.S. used to have a pilot program in place of detention that resulted in 99% of those seeking asylum showing up to their legal appointments. Besides policy solutions, there is work that we can do by reframing the issue and educating ourselves about the violence that migrants are fleeing. At this year’s Convocation, Maria Hinojosa spoke to how our language shapes issues; she and her news team doesn’t use the term “illegal” when describing human beings. By taking simple steps like adopting the right language, we are refusing to play into harmful biases and acknowledging our common humanity. When discussing problems and solutions, it is vital to understand that this is not just a crisis concerning legality or resources; this is a humanitarian crisis.
Winter Break Reads
by Annette Stonebarger
W Illustration by Sadie Kramer
inter break has always been my time to finally read all the books that I’ve purchased from Book Culture throughout the semester, but never actually got around to reading. In this list, I have included various writing styles and various genres, so there is something for everyone to enjoy this holiday season. From farming to fiction to fantasy, here are my top 5 books that call for a cozy blanket and cup of tea this winter break: The Dirty Life: On Farming, Food and Love, by Kristin Kimball After interviewing a farmer for her job as a journalist in New York City, Kimball and the farmer she fell in love with set out to produce all the food necessary to feed a community of 100 people every week. This memoir recounts the author’s harsh first winter after uprooting her city life and moving to a quaint and farm across from Lake Champlain. Raw, romantic, and riveting, The Dirty Life will leave you wanting to kick off 2019 with a hike with family and friends. Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind, by Noah Yuval Harari If you’ve ever found yourself thinking about the purpose of human-
ity and why we seem different from other species, this is the book for you. This informative nonfiction book explains the development of Homo sapiens up to the twenty-first century. Sapiens takes the reader through 100,000 years of human history and through every social and political revolution that has shaped who we are today, the good and the bad. This read is more of a long-term commitment, however the questions posed and answers given by Dr. Harari are worth every word. Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance, by Ruth Emmie Lang This fantastic novel follows the life of Weylyn Grey, a mysterious boy who was abandoned by his parents and left to be raised by wolves. Each “chapter” of this story is told from the perspective of someone who he has affected throughout his travels, and the girl who leaves everything to follow this enchanting boy. With an air of magic and secret, Beasts of Extraordinary Circumstance will make you reconsider what love and wonder really mean. Less, by Andrew Sean Greer This fun and fast book takes the reader on the trip of a lifetime along with Arthur Less, a middle-aged
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writer who is constantly living in the shadow of his famous ex-boyfriend. When Less receives a wedding invitation from his boyfriend of the past 9 years, he decides to get out of town and take a literary trip around the world to avoid the defeat of seeing the love of his life marry someone else. Introspective and bittersweet, Less is the modern love story that we have all been waiting for. Harry Potter series, by J.K. Rowling Whether it’s the first or tenth time you read the series, winter break is the perfect time to delve into the world of everyone’s favorite Hogwarts students. With magic and adventure, the Harry Potter series is sure to fill your holiday season with warm feelings of friendship and love.
Spring Semester Slate
f you’ve reached the end of the semester disappointed in the lack of concerts you’ve attended, do not fear! The spring semester is full of concerts to look forward to. Right off the bat, you can start the new semester by fulfilling your childhood dreams at a Jesse McCartney concert. For $30.00 you can see McCartney perform new music, including two recently released singles “Wasted” and “Better with You,” on Monday, January 21st at the Playstation Theater at 8:00 pm. You’ll also get to hear hits like ‘Beautiful Soul’ at this general admission comeback concert. That same week, King Princess plays for two nights: Wednesday, January 23rd at Warsaw in Brooklyn and Thursday, January 24th at Irving Place. Both concerts are general admission and tickets start at $60.00. King Princess rose to popularity with alternative pop songs like “1950” and “Talia” and, based on the success of her recent release “Pussy is God,” it’s clear her popularity will only grow. Summer Salt will play a Valentine’s Day concert at the Brooklyn Bazaar for $20.00 on February 14th at 8:00 pm. According to their website, Summer Salt has deemed themselves a “coral reef rock” group. In dead-of-winter February, their dreamy hit songs like “Driving to Hawaii” and “Sweet to Me” will surely help bring some summer back into your life. In addition to great concerts to go to with friends, there are more formal events as well! Yo-Yo Ma and the New York Philharmonic will be performing at David Geffen Hall from Wednesday, March 6th to Saturday, March 9th with tickets starting in the mid $100s. Yo-Yo Ma’s NPR Tiny Desk Concert will also provide you your orchestral fill at no cost. If you’re interested in a throwback concert, The Monkees will be playing at the Beacon Theatre on Saturday, March 9th with plenty of tickets available for $50.00. Similarly, Fleetwood Mac will be playing at Madison Square Garden on Monday, March THE BULLETIN -
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11th and 18th. Tickets start at $220 for the concert on the 11th and $120 for the concert on the 18th. If you’re in New York over spring break, the band Smallpools will be playing on Thursday, March 14th at the Bowery Ballroom for $35.00. This indie pop band, known for “Dreaming” and “Street Fight,” are currently releasing singles with a calm, yet upbeat mood. The next day, March 15th, Alice Smith will headline the Apollo Theater’s third annual Women of the World (WOW) festival for $35.00 as well. Smith is an established R&B singer who is featured on Tyler the Creator’s album Cherry Bomb and delivers beautifully powerful vocals. On the cheaper side, Conan Gray will perform a concert on Wednesday, March 27th at the Bowery Ballroom for $23.00. Gray began creating dreamy pop music on YouTube in (give year here) and will release his new EP “Sunset Season” on November 16th, which he’s sure to perform. If none of these artists appeal to you or you find yourself looking for live music on any given night, there is an abundance of other options. The Bitter End in Greenwich Village is famous for showcasing artists like Bob Dylan and Lady Gaga before their fame and puts on free shows featuring NYU students or professionals on most nights. The Brooklyn Bowl, a bowling alley in Williamsburg, hosts a mix of shows from live musicians to DJ sets, usually for under $15.00. The Brooklyn Knitting Factory has the same model as The Brooklyn Bowl with a mix of performances for little to no cost. We’re sure to see plenty of concerts popping up in the coming months, but in the meantime, Smoke Jazz Club at 106th and Broadway has no music fee after midnight and always showcases talented jazz musicians. Of course, there’s Postcrypt Coffeehouse in the basement of St. Paul’s Chapel for free shows every Friday and Saturday featuring a wide variety of musicians, including students. With so much to see and hear your spring semester is sure to be full of music!
Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
by Gwyn Reutenauer
Where Star by Alexa Silverman
ince the turn of the 21st century, Lady Gaga has been an undeniably renowned popular culture icon. She is a shapeshifter; capable of pulling off both avant-garde and street fashion and experienced in both singing and acting. She skillfully navigates the pop, jazz, and even country genre. She is real-life royalty: a superstar. Lady Gaga is an iconic figure defined not only by her catchy pop anthems, but also by her raunchy red carpet eye candy. Some of the most dazzling Lady Gaga looks include a dress made of bubbles, her 2013 Christmas tree garb, the Artpop-era Venus mermaid look, an inflatable silver spiked dress, her arrival at the 2011 Grammys inside an egg, and her elegant 2016 Oscars white pantsuit—not to mention the Meat Dress, which single handedly defined 2010. Aside from international stardom, however, Germanotta’s story reflects that of a Barnard woman: it is the story of an incredibly ambitious, talented young woman striving to reach her personal definition of success. Lady Gaga is a New York girl, through and through. Born in Yonkers, Germanotta began playing piano at a very young age. She spent her high school years at Convent of the Sacred Heart in Manhattan (Upper West Side, baby!) and
attended Tisch School of the Arts at New York University. According to an NYU article, she withdrew after her freshman year to focus on developing her music career. Soon after, a star was born in the New York City club scene, and Germanotta became “Lady Gaga”—named after the Queen song “Radio Ga-Ga”—and first performing in a burlesque show. After writing songs for artists such as Britney Spears and the Pussycat Dolls, Akon discovered and signed Lady Gaga to his label Interscope Records in 2007. Amidst the early-2000s trends of low-rise jean skirts and tiny sunglasses, Lady Gaga burst onto the music scene with her first album, The Fame (2008). Iconic tracks such as “Just Dance,” “Poker Face,” and “Paparazzi” still linger on popular Spotify throwback playlists today. During the three years following her debut, Lady Gaga released two successful albums: The Fame Monster (2009) and Born This Way (2011). 2013’s Artpop, an edgy EDM/synth-pop masterpiece, and 2014’s Cheek to Cheek, a jazzy collaboration with Tony Bennett followed, bringing her musical career total to five studio albums, six Grammys, seven Billboard Music awards, and 13 MTV Music Video awards by 2015 (As a note, Lady Gaga has won 249 awards from her 549 nominations, but who’s counting anyTHE BULLETIN -
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way?). 2016 marked a turn in Gaga’s career. Not only did she release Joanne, an album criticized for dipping into country territory, but she also stunned fans with her acting debut as the Countess in American Horror Story: Hotel. A Star is Born, Gaga’s recent feature film debut, is simply the crown jewel in a longstanding career of performance and artistry. As a female superstar who uses her celebrated talents to drive goodness into the world, Lady Gaga’s exquisite ensembles are only part of her allure. Throughout her decade of public performance, Gaga has embraced her role as an advocate for and guardian of marginalized communities, specifically the LGBTQ+: “Born This Way” is a revolutionary anthem of pride, acceptance, and self-love (Gaga herself is bisexual!). In 2011, she and her mother established the Born This Way Foundation, which is dedicated to mediating bullying and ensuring safe spaces for international youth. Stefani Germanotta is a philanthropist, activist, singer, songwriter, actress, performer, and artist. Not many can say the same. In roughly a decade, her impact transformed how music and art intersect with political advocacy. She is a portrait of strength and success and a role model for the ages.
Photographic Collage by Sadie Kramer
New York City
on the Screen by Emily Blake
M Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
anhattan, even with its flaws, is a city designed for the screen. Filled with mystery, history, and aesthetic, TV shows have captured the allure of the city that provides the perfect backdrop for some of the most iconic media moments. Mad Men Mad Men shows the good, the bad, and definitely the ugly sides of being a woman in NYC, especially in the era of the 1960s. However, its aesthetic, its excitement, and its depiction of iconic NYC landmarks and experiences remind you why this city is just so iconic. In one of the early episodes of the series, a friend of Joan Harris’s is brutally laid off from a job. The woman is inconsolable and expresses how she wishes she never even moved to Manhattan. Joan responds by saying “What are you talking about? This city is everything,” which is something almost every New Yorker can relate to. The Mindy Project The opening scene of season 2 of The Mindy Project’s Christmas episode just screams holidays in Manhattan the iconic shot of Rockefeller Center, the shock on Mindy’s face when she hears how expensive a “dead tree” is, and “how impossible it
is to return a bra at a department store” all represent a quintessential New York Christmas. Nothing says NYC more than when Mindy tryies to haul a Christmas tree onto the subway because no taxi will pick her up while she’s carrying it on her back. The episode ends with Mindy finally winning over the dreamy lawyer she’d hosted an entire Christmas party for in the first place. In the typical cliche yet completely magical fashion, the two kiss on the balcony of their downtown office building amidst the falling snow, complete with a sparkly blue dress and sugar cookies in the shape of an evergreen tree. Sex and the City The Sex and the City movies are iconic, but the essence of the original TV series definitely serves as a reminder of the most potent combination there is: the power of sisterhood set in the middle of Manhattan. Carrie Bradshaw is the fearless, fashionable writer and true New Yorker I, myself, and many other girls aspire to emulate. There is something so powerful about watching Carrie and her group of rideor-die girlfriends experience the same dating and life turbulence that we all face, especially within the context of New York City—a place where even the most mundane or disappointTHE BULLETIN -
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ing circumstances can hold a hopeful twinge. Gossip Girl Although this show might have impressed unrealistic expectations of the city upon an entire generation of young non-NYCers , the glamorous allure of this iconic show cannot be denied. Watching Blair Waldorf sit on the steps of the Met holding a Sant Ambroeus cappuccino in her pink tights, plaid skirt, and headband truly encapsulated an aspirational Manhattan moment. The shopping at Bendel’s, the walks through Central Park, and the chic apartment interiors work together to make Gossip Girl the guilty pleasure TV show that never fails to keep the extravagant dream of the Big Apple alive in the hearts of young adults everywhere. While there are more New York City iconic scenes than could ever be compiled into one list, these are a few of the moments that have shaped the way prospective New Yorkers dream of living in the big city. Some of the shows are extravagant and idealistic, but, quite frankly, so is Manhattan. While viewers must take these romanticized depictions of New York City with a grain of salt, any New Yorker will confirm that the magic present in these shows truly does sweep through the streets of this great city.
Photography by Emma Chen
apanese food is always a treat, but sometimes sushi at Diana can become tiresome. If you are looking for some authentic Japanese cuisine (and an opportunity to venture off campus), look no further than Ootoya, located near Times Square. Originating from Tokyo, Ootoya is a restaurant known for its fast and casual dining experience while providing healthy, balanced meals. With several chains of Ootoya in NYC, the original healthy fast-food concept has been elevated to an experience that promotes the cultural aspects of Japanese food. I arrived at Ootoya with a friend during peak lunch hour on a Saturday, greeted with a warm, welcoming ambiance and jazz music playing in the background. Ootoya is evidently popular, as most of the tables were already occupied, but fortunately, we only had to wait for about 20 minutes to be seated. The menu presents a large variety of options, ranging from their signature teishoku (set menu) to sushi and tempura. Everything looked so delicious that I had a difficult time choosing what I wanted to order! Most of the dishes had Japanese names, which helped preserve the restaurant’s strong roots in Japanese culture and cuisine. Ultimately, I de-
Ootoya by Emma chen
cided to order the Shima Hokke (grilled Atka mackerel) and my friend ordered Sukiyaki Nabe (beef stew) from the seasonal menu. The service time for the food was reasonable considering Ootoya’s policy to start cooking only after the customer’s order has been placed, which ensures the freshness of each dish. When my dish arrived, I was astounded by all the side dishes that came along with my mackerel. On the tray, aside from the staples of brown rice and miso soup, there was also steamed kabocha squash,
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a small vegetable salad, homemade pickles, steamed egg custard, and a generous amount of freshly grated white radish. Out of all the side dishes, the stand-out was the steamed egg custard, which had an impossibly silky-smooth texture and excellent flavor. The grill on the mackerel was also exceptional, although picking out the fish bones can be slightly tedious. Even the brown rice was unique, with a hint of purple color and black sesame seeds sprinkled on top. While I commend Ootoya for the effort of grating the white radish immediately before the meal is served to enhance the freshness of the fish, I felt that it did not add anything extremely special to my eating experience. The price range at Ootoya is on the more expensive side, with teishoku typically priced around $22-$25—a definite divergence from prices in Tokyo’s Ootoya, where prices are much lower. The mackerel cost $26 while my friend’s beef stew cost $30. However, given the generous portion of fish and large assortment of side dishes served, I think that Ootoya’s prices are reasonable. My friend and I left feeling satisfied with our meal and excited to return in the future to try more of Ootoya’s specialties.
Little Known Diners
By Elena Nisonoff
hese days, there are few things that we can agree on the same way we agree on diners. Where else do you get to add the words “meat lovers” to every dish (omelets, sandwiches, pancakes?) and get matzo ball soup? Diners are consistently the most democratic dining option. They’re where acquaintances become friends at 3 am, and even the pickiest eaters are sated. Plus, 24/7 hours and booth seating. Need I say more? With that, I present you with top diner picks that aren’t Tom’s. Not because we don’t love Tom’s, but because NYC is big and you’re missing out if you’re not wiping fry grease off your fingers in some other neighborhood.
1. Empire Diner: 210 10th Ave, New York, NY 10011 Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
For slightly sophisticated Back to the Future vibes, there’s Empire Diner. It’s iconic! It’s art deco! It’s a little bit expensive! In fairness, Chelsea rent isn’t what it was in 1946 when the spot first opened (the Meatpacking district was actually for meat packing). You might recognize Empire from favorites like Home Alone 2, Men in Black 2, and the SNL opening credits. With avocado toast, BLATS, and herb fries, Empire covers all the bases with trendy twists. What’s more, Empire Diner is something of a city landmark. Bonus points for the fact that it was a notorious celebrity artist hangout spot in the 90s à la Meryl Streep, Madonna, and Steven Spielberg.
2. Kellogg'S Diner: 518 Metropolitan Ave, Brooklyn, NY 11211
You won’t find your Columbia crowd at this Brooklyn fixture that’s been serving burgers and banana cream pie to Williamsburg since 1973. Kellogg’s got a makeover in 2008 and went from dive to diva diner with a full bar, updated décor and an impressive lobster tank. Close out your Williamsburg excursion with Kellogg’s, since you’ll be steps from the L train. And don’t miss the Kellogg Burger (did you say bacon, mushrooms, sautéed onions and Swiss cheese?). You’ll need the fuel for your hour-ish ride home.
3. Waverly Diner: 385 6th Ave, New York, NY 10014 Waverly hails from the classic diner tradition of vinyl booths, bottomless coffee, and glassed-in gooey carrot cakes and blueberry lattice pies. Stop in after shopping Village digs or a jaunt to Smalls jazz club. Plus, this one’s right off the 1 train for when it’s raining and you need to “just, like, sit down and form a plan.” It’s reasonably priced and solid for the Village peoplewatching experience without breaking the bank next door for a $22 bowl of market vegetables. Because, seriously. They’re just vegetables.
4. Lexington Ave Candy Shop & Luncheonette: 1226 Lexington Ave, New York, NY 10028 When you think Upper East Side, you might not think old-timey, classic American, or malt shakes. But on the corner of 83rd street, enter the time warp and (try to) forget about the $35 you just spent on Soul Cycle. The oldest family owned luncheonette in NYC, Lexington Luncheonette celebrated its 93rd anniversary this year. Party like it’s 1940 and order Coca-Cola with syrup straight from the pump, real malt powder for your malted, and authentic egg creams. This nonagenarian luncheonette hasn’t updated its interior since 1948, so come for nostalgia and a delicious brain freeze.
5. Champs Diner: 197 Meserole St, Brooklyn, NY 11206
Champs is your favorite 100% vegan diner with a retro-cool atmosphere and menu as wide as its traditional counterparts. Bring your vegan friend or your vegan self and fool your palette with cookie dough shakes, Peanut Butter Bomb cake, and cheeseburgers sans animal. Vegans and meat-eaters alike will find delicious indulgences at this unabashedly hipster joint that won’t disappoint even the most carnivorous taste buds.
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Requiem for the By eden gordon In April 2019, the L train will be shutting down for 15 months. With the MTA already beginning to announce service changes to mitigate the loss of this subway line, we asked Barnard Balladeer Eden Gordon to compose a requiem for our beloved Brooklyn line. L Train, late nights, waiting on the platform. L train portal to another land. I slip into the tunnel underneath Union, wormhole of incense and song, the night goes neon, I’m transported. L Train carrying me to Halsey, Myrtle-Wyckoff, DeKalb, Wilson, out of my body, or into it, towards sensations new and wild. L train, do I love him because I love him or because he plays guitar and lives eight stops out in wonderland? You already know how this ends. L Train communion at 4am with a musician in flowing robes and a traveler all lost under Halsey Street, Red Carpet Inn glowing scarlet above, the train going in circles, we help each other find our way to shore. L Train to Lorimer, the Hello Beautiful salon where I meet the stylist who tells me all about her girlfriend the acrobat while she fixes my shredded cuticles. L Train, Wilson stop, rising out of the earth, surfacing at the graveyard which marks the passage to Unruly Collective where I spend two days in a house full of dancers and weed while Bowie watches from the wall. L Train Myrtle-Wyckoff, where part of me is still running through Bushwick, past laundromats and junkyards, shedding selves like we shed our clothes, even though you don’t live there anymore, even though some stranger is sleeping in the bed where our hands first touched and I saw fire. L Train portal to the parking lot we swore was a landing pad for UFOs, by the grocery store where I saw Our Lady of Guadalupe appear like a vision atop the bean cans. L train to blackberry gin, red-lit smoke shops, pink flamingos and palm trees, recording studios, antiques, warehouses, grand pianos. L train whispers I can make it, make a life of this. L train tunnel of light to shows that fill my mouth with stars and make my bones vibrate with the power of music and words. L train humming underneath strange gilded Brooklyn. L Train speaking fractured French, I promise I’ll remember you whenever I’m on this train. L train love train. I’ve kissed three different people on the L train. L train we read to each other and speak in riddles and our bodies are mirrors and we cycle with the full moon. You say you’re in love with me and I believe you. L train shutdown all night so we have to sleep crammed in my dorm bed. L Train to your tiny
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L bedroom, where every night the broken heater billows out moisture that freezes into huge blocks of ice on the windowsill swallowing your candles and books and then melting all over them as the sun rises. L train you could not stay, like time, like theatre, like love, you were always uncontainable, always ephemeral, dying even as you bloomed. L train waiting 27 minutes with strangers on the snowiest, coldest night of the year. L train going in circles waiting for you to get off work. Staring out at the swirling lights, calling my old L train flame. Suddenly our last night. Shivering in the station. L Train DeKalb stop path to my first love. L Train DeKalb stop last place I see you when you are still my love. L Train thank you, L Train I’ll miss you, L Train we have got to move on.. L Train you were uncontainable. L Train you belonged to no one, and I loved you for it. Every ride a blank slate. Every night a blank page. L Train full of rage, speeding and lost, blue-lit, song-lined, ready to be broken again and again. L train I spent so much time alone, these years in New York, but all I remember are the times when you smashed through every wall. They say that you’re a real New Yorker when you can lament the beloved landmarks you’ve lost. L Train, lost. L train you were reverent, ephemeral. I saw your world through meshes, lenses, I wanted it that way, but time passes, we grow older. L Train, everything is changing, this city is being swallowed by cash and skyscrapers. L Train they’ve got Bushwick, what will they take next? L train, fracture. L train haunted by specters of hunger, L train lined by hurricane scars, L train disease and needles, chipped paint and eyes, always eyes, passengers thrown together for a moment, staring out from the impossible loneliness of the real world. L Train holy, laden, lilting, leaden, luminous, lost. L Train, portal. L train to join the El and CBGB’s and Dreamland. L Train those loves are over, the storms tore them apart. But you’re in my bones L Train, somewhere deep like November rain. L Train, forever and always in my heart.
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Big Apple Gift Guide by Veronica Suchodolski
For the caffeinated one: Coffee beans from Joe Coffee If you know someone who’s a real coffee snob, why not give them the gift of your campus’ star blend? With three locations in spitting distance of the Barnard gates, nothing says local coffee quite like a package of beans from Joe. These beans generally run around $20 a package. Know multiple people who would love this gift? They have a punch card just for beans, so you can work your way up to a freebie! For the one who knows their sours from their lagers: Beer from Greenpoint Beer & Ale New York City has perhaps more breweries than it knows what to do with, so if you’re over 21 and know
someone who would love to try a new brew, you’ll hardly be at a loss for places to grab an NYC-based beer. If you need a recommendation, Greenpoint Beer & Ale has a stellar selection of IPAs in well-designed cans that generally run $7 each. For the artist in your life: Something from the Met holiday collection The Met gift shop is a one-stop shop for a unique NYC-related gift for anyone you know who loves art. As a bonus, they always have a stellar selection of holiday-themed items, from ornaments to cards featuring holiday-related art from the museum’s collections. Plus, with a wide range of items to choose from, this shop is flexible to your budget, with items ranging from $10-$100. For the one you can’t quite figure out: Something from Lady J + 1 Located in Crown Heights, Lady J + 1 is the storefront for the Brooklynbased company Lady J Jewelry, but don’t let that name fool you—Lady J sells way more than just jewelry. They also sell clothing, an array of apothecary items, and just about any aesthetic knick knack you can think of. Know someone who needs a tote bag? Some raw amethyst? A
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cocktail muddler? Lady J has what you need, all while supporting a local company. Their clothes and jewelry can run in the hundreds, but most of their gift items fall in the $15-$50 range. And for the bookworm: Minor Characters by Joyce Johnson A huge number of writers have graduated from Barnard, and with names like Jhumpa Lahiri, Ntozake Shange, and Mary Gordon to choose from, you’ll be able to satisfy the taste of any reader in your life. However, if you really want a gift that’s specific to home, Joyce Johnson’s memoir about her time at Barnard with other Beat Generation writers like Jack Kerouac and Allen Ginsberg is an unbeatable choice.
Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
nother semester in the Big Apple is coming to a close and that means that many of us are heading home for the holidays and looking for gifts to bring back with us. Sure, you could give you little brother an I <3 NYC shirt and call it a day, but if you want to give a unique gift that still screams, “I live in New York now,” then this article is for you. Below are five recommendations for various gifts specific to the city that will blow your family and friends’ socks off.
Art on Broadway with allusions to mythology and classical legend that fans of Greek myths will appreciate, but they push even further into the realm of wondrous fantasy and dreams, as if those time-worn myths are not enough on their own anymore. Take “Topsy Turvy” on 117th Street, for instance, the upsidedown figure of a woman in deep turquoise, which every Barnard student has passed innumerable times while crossing Broadway. Her expression is impassive, yet determined, her hair spreading out from her head in thick, bracing curls that feel utterly Medusalike. Perfectly vertical and perfectly naked, she holds a large, earthy sphere on the tips of her toes, and it is challenging to not think instantly of Atlas, the Titan god charged with holding up the heavens for all eternity. The globe itself is covered in an assortment of shimmering gold animal figures: a deer, a snake, a seahorse, and another striking Medusa figure. At first the reverence and respectful tenderness with which the globe of animals is supported seem at odds with the realities of the natural world in 2018, especially in the context of the latest damning IPCC report on climate change and claims of a sixth mass human-caused extinction happening all around us. But with further consideration the precarious nature of the globe becomes more evident. One slight push would topple the
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entire mini-planet onto the pavement, where it would shatter into thousands of tiny ceramic shards. One certainly hopes the figure supporting the globe is up to the challenge — her headstand seems hazardous, and a sudden loss of balance would spell instant doom for us all. But there is no one else to help, so she alone must be trusted. In Dreams Awake is not, however, a pessimistic or cynical installation. As a whole the six statues take the viewer instantly back to childhood make-believe, when mice wore trousers and deer-people waltzed with tree-people in polished oxblood leather shoes. There seems to be a consistent emphasis on the female perspective, with the majority of the figures embodying women as either nude humans or feminized humanoid animals, such as “Ms. Mighty Mouse” on 79th Street. The result is a fantasy world accessible to everyone, regardless of gender, race, and even species. If Thoreau is right that “our truest life is when we are in dreams awake,” then our truest life is a mingling of the real with the fantastic in which humans live in perfect symbiotic harmony with nature, an enchanted land where childlike wonderment at each and every beautiful creature is only the norm. Maybe such a dream is not as far off as it seems, or so the statues in Ruttenberg’s installation seem to claim. Indeed, the only disappointing thing about the statues is that there aren’t more of them.
Disclaimer: The Bulletin does not own any images on this page
he homepage of New York-based artist Kathy Ruttenberg’s website is an animated treasure map of Manhattan, an aged parchment scroll covered in miniature, dancing illustrations of her newest installation In Dreams Awake. This series of six unique statues can be found on medians throughout Broadway from now until February 2019. Each colorful sketch feels drawn from the mysteriousness of the fantastical creatures of Alice in Wonderland combined with the purity of the woodland inhabitants from Winnie the Pooh. Even more extraordinary in person, Ruttenberg’s silicon bronze statues contain a larger-than-life quality that instantly captivates. One feels as though the urgent urban intensity of the surrounding city streets is a mere facade: a thick curtain made flimsy and suddenly transparent by the presence of her statues, each a mystical portal to the land of dreams. Her sculptures brim
By Sarah Wallstrom