Fall 2020 Issue | Untold Magazine

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Letter from the


We both started at Untold as contributors in Spring 2019, and since then we have climbed the editorial ladder and learned so much along the way. With all the experience and knowledge we had, we were so excited to see how the magazine would unfold, even before the semester started. We had a list of article ideas by the first day of school, and couldn’t wait to table at the Org Fair, to talk to students about Untold. Even with COVID-19 and social distancing in place, we wanted to make genuine connections with staff and with the rest of campus. We wanted others to be just as excited and enthusiastic about the magazine as we were. Hiring staff and contributors was such a joy: we found so many folks who were just as excited as we were (and they found us too), even though things looked a bit different this semester. Our hired staff brought in great ideas and passion to build the magazine. The development of this issue has not been without its challenges. There were no late-night editing meetings in our office and there won’t be a launch party. Regardless, our staff’s enthusiasm was overflowing, agreeing to brainstorm over video calls and collaborate on their documents. The commitment to the magazine has been overwhelming and has brought us immense fulfillment. In this issue we’ve compiled an array of stories from across Hamline. There are stories of truth, hardship, selfexpression, and joy. Getting to see them grow from small nuggets to full-grown articles has been such an absolute pleasure and gift. We are so proud of the end result of this magazine and can’t wait for you to read through and see what has been created for our Fall 2020 issue of Untold Magazine! Sincerely, Ally Gall and Kat McCullum



Personal and Permanent: Hamline through Tattoos by Sabrina Merritt 8 Getting Tangled Up in Knitting by Anne Salmi 11 Touring my Bullet Journal by Ally Gall 14 The Art of Self Expression by Eliza Hagstrom 4


18 Collage by Tjessa Arradondo 19 Dangerous Keyboard by Emily Brown 20 Her (the) sun by Josephine Olson


21 Fear the 15 by Taylor Lander 24 Hollywood Needs to do Better by Khadija Sharif 26 The Damage of Ableism during COVID-19 by Emily Brown

Front cover photo taken by Sophie Warrick

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Personal and Permanent: Hamline through Tattoos by Sabrina Merritt


Photos of tattoos courtesy of interviewees

As more and more young people are allowing their skin to double as canvas, the culture around tattoos is changing rapidly. And of course the Hamline community are at the forefront of this ink movement. From cultural roots to creative expression, humans have been tattooing skin for a very long time. According to the McGill University article “What is The History of Tattoos,” tattooing practices have appeared in just about every human culture in historic times. A long way from traditional application styles involving tapping ink into the skin through the use of sharp sticks or bones, modern electric tattoo machines deliver pigment through needles that move 50 to 3000 vibrations per minute. While some industries are more tattoo-friendly than others, a growing number of individuals are entering the workforce holding résumés with ink-covered arms. That holds true on Hamline’s campus. Students senior Lucy/Luca Fisk (she/her/hers or he/him/his), sophomore Emily Hilderbrand (she/her/hers or they/them/theirs), and senior Molly Landeta (she/her/hers) and Untold’s own advisor and Assistant Professor Jen England (she/her/hers) are sharing their stories of the permanent and personal art on their bodies.

Who, or what, was your first exposure to tattoos? Were tattoos stigmatized when you were growing up? Lucy/Luca: My mother had given herself tattoos when she was in college, the word “love” on her arm and a heart with an arrow shot through it. They are light green and barely visible, but as a kid I liked looking at them. Emily: I don’t know what my first exposure to tattoos were, I think I just always knew about them. In my household growing up, my parents were always anti-tattoo. Like, “no one in this house can get tattoos until they’re 60 and they’re bad, and they’re on their body forever and they’re bad!” And I don’t know when their attitude on that changed as I got older...from there they relaxed their view on tattoos quite a bit. Molly: My situation is kind of weird because while I grew up around tattoos, my dad

has a bunch of big pieces, but I also grew up with the stigma that I wasn’t supposed to get them. It wasn’t explicitly said...but some of my other immediate and extended family were not super into tattoos. They have since warmed up to them (more as a “as long as it’s not in my face” kind of deal), but it definitely came from some deeply imbedded misogyny since it was okay for my dad but not for me, a girl.

Was there a particular catalyst for getting (a) tattoo(s)? Or was this something you always knew you wanted?

Lucy/Luca: I got my first tattoo with my best friend, it’s black line art of two cherries on a stem. It wasn’t really spur of the moment because I had bought some temporary tattoos and had been working myself up to get one. Emily: It was something I wanted to do SPRING 2020 | 5

right about as I turned 18, because I just thought it would be a good exercise for me. I say it would be a good exercise, I mean that it would be a good exercise in kind of loving and seeing my body as a piece of art that can hold something cool and meaningful to me. Jen: The earliest I remember wanting a tattoo is 13. I didn’t buy the demonizing arguments about tattoos. But I also knew that the sky would rain blood before my parents would let me get one. So I waited until I turned 18 before disappointing them.

Prior to getting your tattoo(s), did you worry about negative reactions from family members, or friends or employers?

Lucy/Luca: The tattoos I have are purposely easy to hide because in my field (STEM) tattoos are seen as undesirable. Otherwise my partner is afraid of snakes [one of Lucy/ Luca’s tattoos], so he squirms a little if he looks at my other tattoo but it’s in good humor. Emily: I did! I did worry about having negative reactions from my friends because I got my first tattoo when I was 18 and I still had a semester and a half left of high school. And I was definitely worried about what people would say about being a high schooler who got a tattoo, even though it wasn’t a huge tattoo. Molly: I did worry a bit about my family, but by the time I knew I was ready for a tattoo, I knew I was ready to defend myself, if necessary. My older sibling had already gotten some, which helped my case, and like I said my dad has a bunch... So I knew it would be okay.


Jen: I knew my parents would be pissed, and they were. My friends were supportive of my choice to do what I want with my body. In fact, several of my tattoos are designed or picked out by friends. Was I worried about employers? Honestly, yes. But I decided early on that if having tattoos is the thing that prevents someone from hiring me then I don’t want to work for them.

How many tattoos do you have? Do you have favorites? Lucy/Luca: I have two but I have another one planned. The other one besides the cherries is a full color illustration on my ribcage. I guess that is my favorite, because it was like a full-year process. Honestly though tattoos become a part of you, I don’t think I notice it anymore than a mole on my skin at this point. Molly: I have one professional tattoo and five stick-and-pokes. The sun on the back of my neck is probably my favorite because it’s so sneaky. I have to wear the right shirt and the right hairstyle to show it off, which makes it extra special. Jen: I have 14. The two on my upper arms are favorites because they’re a bit more meaningful, but I also love the one on my neck because I think it’s hilarious in a millenial dark humor kind of way.

What is a meaning or story of one of your tattoos, particularly of one of your favorites? Emily: I have a tiny, tiny equal sign on my finger. That’s for LGBTQ rights. That was prompted for me to get that tattoo after I led a walk-out for LGBTQ rights at my high school...That event empowered me to continue doing activism work….[the tattoo] is a reminder that me, as a queer person, I’m equal to other people. Molly: My “GRL PWR” tattoo has a lot of significance for me. Part of it is simply the message behind it, because I’ve spent my whole life fighting to be a powerful woman, and because of it’s placement. It’s on my upper thigh, where I have scars and stretch marks, both things that have made me the woman I am today. It’s private, and it’s just for me to look at. It empowers me everytime I see it.

Emily: For my next tattoo, I want to do a circle of flowers up here on my other forearm. I want it to have a lyric from a hymn that I heard that really impacted me once. It’s Draw the Circle Wide, and on the inside I’d like the line “draw it wider still”. It’s a reminder to always be welcoming people in and to include other people. Molly: My next tattoo is either going to be a baby mangrove tree, which I planted while doing my study abroad in Thailand, or the outline of a cute picture of my dad and I walking on the beach. Jen: I have TOO MANY ideas. The majority of ideas are for another Stephen Kingrelated tattoo, either Misery or The Stand. But I also want a tattoo of my dog Charlie. Because she’s an angel and deserves to be immortalized on my body.

Jen: My mid-20s were rough mental healthwise. I spent the better part of a year quite literally fighting to survive. When I finally got help (thanks to some amazing friends) and started working on recovery I “treated” myself to a tattoo. It’s based on a Nietzsche quote roughly translated to “... throw roses into the abyss and say: ‘here is my thanks to the monster who didn’t succeed in swallowing me alive.” It’s my permanent reminder of overcoming.

Do you have any ideas about your next tattoo? Lucy/Luca: I want to get a black line art piece of an armadillo being hoisted by balloons that are tied around its torso. Pretty whimsical, I guess.

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Getting Tangled Up in Knitting by Anne Salmi


Photos taken by Sophie Warrick

I was fourteen years old when I first picked up a pair of knitting needles. It was Thanksgiving, and I sat in front of my living room fireplace, running my fingers through our faded brown carpet. I was beside my older sister, watching as she pulled the yarn around the needles, making loops on what would become a large scarf. After a few minutes, she handed them to me, and I tried making my first stitches. They looked wonky and were far too tight, but she didn’t take them out until later. After I started to get a handle on the way her needles felt in my hands, she left, and I watched as she walked down the stairs. She came back a few minutes later with another pair of needles and some cheap acrylic yarn that had probably come from the clearance section at

Walmart. I learned how to cast the stitches onto a needle, and I started making my own knitted project. I remember the way it turned out—it was supposed to be a dishcloth. I didn’t learn until later that you weren’t supposed to make dishcloths with acrylic yarn. The stitches were uneven and somehow it had wound up being shaped like a triangle, despite my every intention to make a square. I practiced, and my second project, a long, skinny, striped scarf, turned out somewhat usable. It’s been nearly five years since I first started knitting, and I can safely say that I still have a long way to go before I can consider myself an expert. I’ve made scarves, hats, blankets, and most recently, SPRING 2020 | 9

mittens, but I would be lucky to go more than one row without having to go back and try again. And for me, this is one of the best parts. Sure, there’s a hint of frustration when I realize that I accidentally made one stitch too many, or one too few, but the feeling of accomplishment that comes from the journey is one that I’ve rarely found in other hobbies. Mistakes are a part of learning, and I think I would’ve driven myself crazy had I held the expectation that everything I made had to be perfect. I’ve been knitting for a handful of years, but it’s a craft that I intend to keep up for the rest of my life. Since I was little, I’ve been a fidgety kid, and having something to do with my hands has always made it easier to focus. I used to knit in class in high school. I was a bit obnoxious— sometimes I found myself shoving a two and a half foot long blanket into my backpack and hauling it from class to class. In the classes where my teachers didn’t mind my antics, I found it a lot easier to pay attention. There are plenty of people who laugh when I say that I like to knit, and in some ways they’re right (I really do act like a grandma); but it helps to relieve stress along with keeping me focused. Instead of letting myself fall into the depths of my anxiety, I get lost in the repetitive motion of making each stitch. There are few things that let me out of my mind like the act of knitting.

I’ve also strengthened my friendships through yarn projects. When I was fifteen, I remember going to the movies with one of my friends, and we both brought something to knit and tried to work in the dark. We ultimately failed, but we still love to laugh about it. My roommate and I bonded over our fondness for yarn projects. She crochets, but the two aren’t really all that different. I love it when people ask me what I’m working on. Knitting is an easy way to start a conversation. If you see someone frantically knitting somewhere on campus, it’s probably me. Feel free to come say hello— I’m probably stressing about an upcoming exam and would love the company. Knitting is a craft that most associate with elderly women in rocking chairs, but they’re not the only ones who love the feeling of knitting needles between their fingers and a ball of yarn on their lap. More than anything, knitting is an escape, and it’s one that I couldn’t live without.

“The feeling of accomplishment that comes from the journey is one that i’ve rarely found in other hobbies.”

“Instead of letting myself fall into the depths of my anxiety, I get lost in the repetitive motion of making each stitch.”


Touring my Bullet Journal by Ally Gall

Last spring I had multiple, neverending to-do lists, all living between separate notebooks and my brain. When COVID-19 hit mid-semester, I was really struggling to keep track of everything. So one night to soothe myself, I went down a rabbit hole on Instagram and I came across videos and photos of folks creating their personalized notebooks, planners, and journals. I loved watching people organize their thoughts, to-do’s, and all the while making it look absolutely gorgeous. Overnight, I had filled my social media feed with people bullet journaling — which is a fancy way of creating and maintaining a personalized planner.

It combines different aspects of organization and creativity, two things that I crave. There are many different ways to organize it, personalize it, and be creative with it, even if you don’t have a lot of experience with drawing. At a Glance: This is how the beginning of my monthly themes look: the month’s name with the theme (June was lavender). The next spread is my “At a glance” page, which lays out the entire month. This is where I’ll put important dates: birthdays, holidays, etc.

So, I started doing it myself. Bullet journaling was invented by Ryder Carroll, a digital product designer in Brooklyn, New York. He was diagnosed with learning disabilities when he was young, and through a lot of trial and error, finally found a method that helped him — bullet journaling (bulletjournal.com). Bullet journaling is beneficial and fun for so many reasons. SPRING 2020 | 11

Habit/Mood Trackers: Every month, I pick eight habits I want to keep track of. I color the boxes of what habits I complete that day. Then I slide on over to the next page, where I track my mood for the day. I pick the overarching feelings I had that day, and decide between five different moods.


Goals/To Do: Every month, I write down goals for myself. I usually have three themes: mind, school, and money were the three for September. I try to focus on what I need the most and what I’m struggling with. The “Things to Do” list was something new that I incorporated. I liked the idea of having a running list throughout the month, of maybe bigger things that I didn’t necessarily need to keep track of day to day.

Gratitude: My gratitude log is one of my favorite parts of my notebook. It forces me to think about what I appreciated during the day or what I liked, even when I have a day that wasn’t all that great in general. I tend to only write a few words, but I leave space if I want to write a longer sentence. My pumpkin patch page is unique to October, since it’s fall and there are pumpkins everywhere. I decided to create a page where I could go to see what I needed the most, which is why there’s a range of things that are helpful and motivated for self-care.

Weekly Spread: This is a weekly spread I had during July, which was a primary colors themed month. During July (and the rest of the summer) I had my entire week on one page spread. I’ll make small to-do lists for each day, and move them to the next day if I don’t finish it. Looking at my entire week at once is helpful in planning when I have time (or when I don’t). Since school has started, I changed my layout.

End of Month/Blank Page: This is the end of my monthly spread. I usually leave it blank until I get to the end of the month, so that I can shape it with how I feel then. The blank page next to it is where I’ll start my November theme, which I’ll start with planning pages out with pencil.

Photos taken by Sabrina Merritt

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The Art of Self Expression by Eliza Hagstrom


Photo taken by Sophie Warrick

Hamline Students describe their fashion style and what influences it. Walking across Hamline’s campus you see most students express themselves through the clothing that they decide to wear. With individuals’ styles changing and becoming vastly different from one another, it makes sense that this is reflected on our campus. Some of these students start to stand out as time goes on: First-year Jewels Thao, sophomore Will Nelson, and senior Rose Marie Athiley. Jewels Thao is a first-year with bright blue hair and eyeliner that’s always on point. She describes how her love of K-pop influences her style, as well as social media, especially TikTok. “The E-girl speaks to the inner trash part of me,” Thao said. “All black is a cool vibe.” Most of her clothes are from thrift stores, antique stores, and hand-me-downs from her seven older siblings, helping influence her unique style. Thao said “I love when my friends let me raid their closets and I can find something they loved that I now can.” Thao also emphasized how her mom’s job as a seamstress has helped her create her style. Over the years, Thao has also learned how to sew, allowing her to alter the hand-medowns and thrift store clothing. She can tailor these clothes to fit her style and size. “I would rather buy something from the thrift store and make stuff from that,” Thao said. She loves the sense of freedom this gives her with her style, because if she made something solely for herself no one else has it. Will Nelson is another student who seems to be recognizable across campus. Who else carries a lawn chair with them? Nelson is double majoring in English and Environmental Studies, and his vibe is either that of a pirate or a Hobbit. He considered getting a tattoo of a map of Middle Earth, which fits with his aesthetic. Most days his outfits align with a character theme: pirate,

lifeguard, substitute teacher, or lumberjack. Nelson said, “I wanna be a pirate so I’m gonna dress like a pirate.” He achieves this by wearing clothes from his dad or from his dress-

Photo courtesy of Eliza Hagstrom up clothes he had as a kid. His costume box of a closet rounds out his thematic outfits. Nelson views his wardrobe more as an art because that is how people present themselves to others, whether they realize it or not. He also admits; “I want attention, I’m not gonna deny that.”

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In the middle of our interview, he pulled out his phone and said, “There’s a poem by Charles Bukowski about this.” He sent me the poem, “Style is the Answer to Everything.” Nelson continued, “It’s really cool, it shows how someone can solve a math equation with style. I can’t do that.” This poem really embodies what style means to him; lines from the poem that speak most to him are “Loving can be an art. Opening a can of sardines can be an art.” What he wears is an expression of himself and who he is. Owning name-brand things doesn’t matter much to Nelson, but he adds that ”Converse are different and personal.” For example, the Converse that he owns are falling apart at the seams. Nelson doesn’t mind if he has to sacrifice comfort for something that he thinks looks cool. He wants to keep his aesthetic of being a hybrid of a Hobbit and a pirate. He views this as a sacrifice to make art, and that “beauty is pain.” “Nah fuck that,” is what senior RoseMarie Athiley thinks about the whole notion of having to be in pain to be beautiful. “I hate being uncomfortable,” Athiley said. When something’s too tight or too itchy that’s all she can think about. As an RA and a senior, she has enough to deal with without wearing clothes that she doesn’t like. Athiley is an RA in the apartments this year and has been an RA since her sophomore year. I was one of her residents last year, and I have seen her take off her heeled boots to run from Anderson to Drew because she was needed there. Because of these things she likes the athleisure style. She doesn’t just hop on


Photo courtesy of Will Nelson something because it’s trending though, rather she is inspired by things that trend. “Nobody actually does their own thing, it’s like art, it doesn’t happen in a vacuum,” Athiley said, describing social media and how we all take inspiration from those around us. We get inspired by what we see and like. She says that “We are failing as a society if, even with all these algorithms that know everything about us, I still have to specify ‘black women’ when searching on Pinterest.” She does appreciate that on Pinterest you can

now choose from a skin tone range when looking at hairstyles. She considers things like this to be a step in the right direction for inclusion and acceptance. She adds, “My Twitter knows that I’m black so that helps... TikTok knows me better than any of my other apps.” Athiley wants to look great but realizes that she would not be true to herself if she was not comfortable with what she was wearing. She knows she can be her best self when she is comfortable. There is no wrong way to express yourself unless you’re culturally appropriating. Have fun with what you wear and don’t be afraid to try new things. These three students show this through their wardrobe and are recognizable on campus. In the words of Gerard Way, lead singer of My Chemical Romance, creator of The Umbrella Academy, and immortal vampire: “Anything can be art. Anything can be self-expression. Now you take the weapon and run with it.”

Photos taken by Sophie Warrick

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by Tjessa Arradondo


Dangerous Keyboard

by Emily Brown They say The pen is mightier than the sword A keyboard in the hands of a disabled, young woman Is downright dangerous Not for her loved ones She would never hurt them Not for herself The keyboard actually is protector, her lifeform Not for anyone’s safety She is a protector, not a fighter They are dangerous to society She wants to destroy its structure with her keyboard

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Her (the) sun A confrontation between a man and woman A poem by Josephine Olson He, the moon, cut her chin like he didn’t want to hurt her He lifted her jaw up--and They gaze into each other Him: (mouth unmoving even though he speaks), mountains parting to reveal small teeth over lips, head cocked and eyes ‘a questin’; unmovin’ Her: jawline taught tendons lips closed (even though she’s found other ways to speak); defiance and eyes stone-like, like a marble wall or statue He’s never known her to look at him like that before: all ugly White, stone arching up into oh so delicate features She’s pretty like blood The kind the moon draws from his knife tip, an artist, as water with a terracotta vase Pretty in the way her as a figurehead at the prow of a ship looks In the way she scowls, daring the bathing creatures to scorn her You open flesh that only shows her sun And you Are blinded.


Why we shouldn’t fear the 15

Why the “freshman 15” is doing more harm than good for first-year students. By: Taylor Lander (Content Warning: Body-image, eating disorders, and weight gain) I find my hand instinctively resting over my abdomen. I arise from my chair sucking in my stomach and wrap my arms around my torso. This shield against onlookers serves no purpose, and I know no one is really looking. However, this has been a habit of mine since middle school and followed me to my first year of college.

Not only is the stigma of the 15 psychologically harmful, but it’s incredibly unfounded. According to The Atlantic, 14 different studies of about 1800 people showed an average gain of about 4.6 pounds in their first year of college. 1

Sometimes I still can’t escape the feeling of eyes that scan over my body and the silent whispers of unintelligible words that seem to aim right at me. This not only made the transition to college harder but the fear of the “Freshman 15” even more drastic.

“You’re living in a place you weren’t living in before. It’s a new transition… It’s a complete 180 in your life and schedule.” - Hannah M. (She/her), Sophomore Being a first-year is…terrifying. While watching my parents leave my dorm room on move-in day, I felt the space around me expand. Moving my belongings to a new place where every face is unfamiliar was hard, but actually finding the courage to make them feel familiar was even harder. Stigmas like the Freshman 15 enlarge these issues for incoming freshmen and engraves fear into them. They fear the weight gain just as much as they fear not being able to eat.

Photo taken by Sophie Warrick

“I’m eating a lot less healthy because I have the stigma of Freshman 15 in my head already, so it’s causing me to act upon it like a self-fulfilling prophecy.” - Serena X. (She/her), First-Year Stigmas like the Freshman 15 cloud first-year minds on what they believe to be important. While the changes may be subtle and unconscious, there is a real danger in them. They are silently working behind the scenes


Olga. “The Origin of the ‘Freshman 15’ Myth.” The Atlantic, Atlantic Media Company, 6 Sept. 2014

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of every meal we have, and every calorie we count. Weight gain is inevitable and natural for most people, but we continue to associate it with negative stigmas. It doesn’t matter if the added pounds are four or 20, any weight gain in the public’s eyes is seen as unfavorable.

“I want to be able to talk about health and fitness and not have it be so focused on shaping and toning your body. I think there is a huge difference between those two conversations. When I feel good, I look good.” - Hannah M. (She/her), Sophomore In 2009, Kate Moss infamously said in a magazine interview that “Nothing tastes as good as skinny feels.” She explained she used this as a motto to keep her diet and workout regimen to standards for her career as a model.

“Self-image has always been important to me. My mom has always struggled with her weight, so when I grew up I told myself ‘Oh god, I need to be careful’ because it’s such an important thing to her. I thought it was an important thing for everyone!” - Hannah T. (She/her), First-Year According to the National Eating Disorder Association,“ an ongoing study in Minnesota has found the incidence of anorexia increasing over the last 50 years only in women aged 15 to 24. Incidence remained stable in other age groups and in men.” 2 I asked Dr. Ryan LeCount, a sociology professor here at Hamline, how stigmas such as the Freshman 15 are created and influenced by society. “Like other forms of socialization, stigma are consistently reinforced and related by all of the agents of socialization listed here and often without explicit intent or ‘malice.’ This is the reason, of course, that stigmatization is so powerful.” “Evidence suggests that rates of anxiety and depression have increased substantially across society, but in particular for people under 20, especially for young women,” he continued.

Photo taken by Sophie Warrick

Stigmas serve a purpose to control and promote conformity in society. I believe it is through false advertisements like the 15 that people of all ages are constrained by this definition of “normal” and “abnormal.” Our weights and bodies as individuals may not have physical eyes picking at our clothes and imperfections, but the judgmental words 2 ”Statistics & Research on Eating Disorders.” National Eating Disorders Association, 8 May 2020


thrown in our ears is enough to add on another heavy layer. Sometimes, the words hurt more.

“Way back in middle school there was a huge shift in mental illness, especially females. It affects so much more than just yourself. It affects your relationship with others and so many other things. In a college setting, especially Hamline, I think we are learning and aware of social media.” - Erin C. (She/her), Sophomore Our generation is nicknamed “technological natives.” We were born, raised, and eventually sent into a world of extensive technological advancements. Additionally, as technology began to rise we saw an influx in social media sites and accessibility. Apps like Instagram, Snapchat, Twitter, and TikTok are hard to avoid. Social media has been argued to have both negative and positive impacts on society and the mindsets we hold; but how does social media influence negative stigmas like the Freshman 15?

“I’m super comfortable with my body! Curvy girl! I came into college totally authentic with who I am. ” - Erin C. (She/her), Sophomore I am worried about classes, schedules, friends, and experiences. Where the heck is the library? How many pages is that essay supposed to be? These are all things I wish, and expect, to worry about. Worrying about whether I will gain 15 pounds from my time here at Hamline is not a weight I wish to bear. During my freshman year, I hope to lower my hands. I hope to relax my shoulders and exhale, knowing that no one is staring or whispering.

“Things have changed! I think no matter what my body shape is, it’s still something that I love. I’ve grown to love it through society and the changes from advocates who promote body positivity.” - Serena X. (She/her), First-Year

I see the effects of social media every day, both negative and positive. Many of us seek comfort and humor in the many aspects of social media. Not only do I actively post on platforms such as Instagram and Snapchat, but I find my sense of humor to shift with whatever TikTok I found funny in the last week. The powerful effects of social media are right in the palm of our hands, but it takes turning away to truly look at the effects they have.

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Hollywood needs to do Better True diversity needs to happen behind the scenes and onscreen in Hollywood. By: Khadija Sharif Throughout my childhood I looked for myself in the media I consumed, and there weren’t a lot of films that really portrayed the experiences of a Black girl in the United States. You can’t imagine how excited I was when The Princess and the Frog first came out, and how there have been milestones in media representation for Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) since then. As I grew older, though, and got more invested and interested in film, I started to notice a pattern in how production agencies treat “groundbreaking representation” and how in many cases it falls short. The Disney Corporation’s new liveaction era is a key example of where onscreen representation falls short. A prime example of this is Disney’s Mulan. Although having an all-Asian cast is a milestone for representation, it’s important to note that the composer, director, and writers are all mostly white. You have to wonder why a movie marketed as a new step towards a more progressive era for Disney is so white behind the scenes. Hua Mulan is a popular folktale in Chinese culture, so it would’ve made sense for the behind-the-scenes crew to look as diverse as the film’s cast. Disney has hollow representation; they reap all the benefits from presenting BIPOC stories but from the white lens. They don’t open opportunities for BIPOC writers, directors, and composers because they don’t really care about doing the work. Disney would prefer to present BIPOC stories through the lens of white writers and directors because it’s easier and they can still push this idea of progress and 24 | UNTOLD

representation. Mulan suffers the same fate that many “multicultural” Disney films do: homogenizing a culture to profit off of it while largely ignoring the actual people from whom the movie is based. To me, it felt like a cash grab for quick nostalgia and the magic that I felt as a kid was gone. When Carmen Garcia, a first-year at Hamline was asked what representation meant

to them, they said, “I haven’t felt represented growing up as a Latinx person with all of the kids’ media I used to consume. I feel like Hollywood needs to start talking to communities and including BIPOC when making movies about Image © Disney.com

their culture. Some people are taking these steps but not as many as there should be. It’s important for kids growing up to see themselves in the media they consume.” On the flip side, we see stories of real progress in Hollywood. A key example of this is Lulu Wang’s The Farewell. The Farewell is the story of a Chinese American daughter going back home to visit her family and feeling disconnected from family in a place she once called home. It’s a powerful story, full of culture and life because director and writer Wang based it on her own experiences. There is no white gaze present. This movie was a milestone for Asian American representation because people actually saw themselves on screen and the story resonated with them since the lead is Asian American and the crew is much more diverse.There is a distinct joy I felt since the story was authentic to not only the filmmaker but everyone involved in its making. It felt like it was opening doors for more unique stories like it. Minha Virk, an incoming first-year, who plans on majoring in Digital Media Arts, had this to say about the film: “The way that The Farewell beautifully portrays aspects of Asian American culture and really resonated with me as a first gen. The entire movie sparked such joy in me—to feel that representation on screen that many of us minorities are robbed of day-to-day”. At the end of the day, Hollywood executives reject screenplays like The Farewell for fear that it won’t make any money, but Disney gets to produce watered down, whiter versions of stories already told because they have such a hold over the industry. It’s time to stop applauding Hollywood for doing the bare minimum and start supporting films that are made by BIPOC communities. There are some wonderfully crafted films made by BIPOC

that don’t make groundbreaking box office numbers, but are still completely deserving of our support. Among these include Miss Juneteenth, The Last Black Man in San Francisco, If Beale Street Could Talk, and Sorry to Bother You. It’s time to throw away the idea of hollow representation and opt to support fresh and actually diverse stories in Hollywood. It’s not fair that there are only a select few films that showcase the experiences and lives of BIPOC in America. We need more stories where we can see versions of ourselves on the screen.

Image © IMDB.com

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THE damage of ableism during covid-19 A disabled student’s take on the current ableist climate. By: Emily Brown I have Cerebral Palsy, and people with Cerebral Palsy are in one of the highest, if not the highest, tier of risk with COVID-19. My mom told me that the first or second day of quarantine and it honestly scared the daylights out of me. It also angered and frustrated me. Why does my disability have to make my life not only harder, but also more fragile in this case? At first, I thought I was going to only be in quarantine for two weeks… a month… two months… the end of the summer. Now, I don’t know how long I will be stuck in my home. Quarantine hasn’t been stress free for me. There is a virus everywhere that can kill me. I used to love going out and seeing the world, but ever since March I’ve only been out of the house a handful of times and actually got out of the car less than 10 times. I feel like I’m constantly walking on eggshells. To add to my stress, not everyone has the priority of staying safe as my family and I are. For a handful of months, my mom would come home telling my sister and I only half the people at the store had masks on. When I would go on Facebook, there would be arguments about how masks were leading to complete government control and how they were useless. I could say I’m exhausted. There have been a couple times I had to call my mom just for comfort. I could say I’m pissed. I am. I know that people value money and the market over my life, and it feels terrible. And then an information bomb dropped September 1st. The Center for Disease Control came out with a statement 26 | UNTOLD

that said 94 percent of all COVID-19 deaths also had contributing factors. The Internet went wild about this. People made the bold assumption that 94 percent of COVID-19 deaths were people who already had a disability or medical condition. While it is true that most people who die from COVID-19 already had previous health conditions, which we will touch on later, this is not what this means. What it actually means is that people who die from COVID-19 also died from the side effects of it. Some of these deadly side effects are respiratory failure, pneumonia, and liver failure. But the numbers and what they mean don’t matter in some aspects. The damage has already been done, and the ableist comments have already been all across the Internet. People were trying to use this 94 percent to justify not following pandemic protocols such as closing schools, wearing masks, and then whining about why they have to isolate themselves when they are healthy. COVID-19 is not affecting only the disabled and chronically ill, but let’s say it is, for argument’s sake. The way we would treat this pandemic is disgusting. People are calling it a hoax and calling mask-wearing a political issue. It’s great to know that my health and livelihood is a political issue. Some comments have completely thrown disabled people under the bus. I’ve seen several people ask why healthy people have to stay inside when only disabled people are getting sick and dying. If this statement was true, I would still want people to go into

pandemic mode, but I would not expect it to happen. It isn’t already happening properly. We’re six months into the pandemic and we were only in complete lockdown for two or three months and, even then, people were still breaking protocol and claiming that was total government control for forcing everyone to stay home and watch Netflix. People are still partying, forcing teachers back into schools, and not wearing their masks correctly. The main emotion I’m feeling is complete and utter fear. I am so afraid of getting COVID-19. I am also afraid of the ableism surrounding COVID-19. Disabled people are seen as burdens to society, and COVID-19 has shone a light on this.

Can we finally allow disabled people to be exhausted and stressed? Because we are. We just are trained from a very young age to hide it. It’s one in the morning, I’m exhausted, and I don’t know how to end this. I don’t feel like I can properly end this. We are still in the middle of a worldwide pandemic, 200,000 people are dead in the United States alone, and people are still out partying and not wearing masks. You might be expecting me to give you an inspirational ending, but I feel like that would be unfair to me and every other disabled person who is exhausted from fighting ableism. We deserve better.

“Disabled people are seen as burdens to society, and COVID-19 has shone light on this.” But, it also has presented a couple of solutions for disabled people such as working from home. In some aspects, I have gotten used to life at home. I got a new iMac with two side monitors, I’m working on my dream novel, I’m learning graphic design and video editing, and I now live in my pajamas. I am more productive when I don’t have to spend time driving back and forth to campus. I can stay in my own personal bubble and get my work done. I hope COVID-19 teaches us about ableism. Can we finally get universal healthcare? Can we finally make employment more accessible for disabled people? Can we finally stop calling disabled people inspirational and brave to cover up all the ableism in our society? Can we finally… SPRING 2020 | 27





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Sabrina Merritt, Anne Salmi, Ally Gall, Eliza Hagstrom, Tjessa Arradondo, Emily Brown, Josephine Olson, Taylor Lander, Khadija Sharif


Untold Magazine is a paying publishing market for written and visual pieces on all topics surrounding Hamline’s campus. We tackle the strange, the quirky, the serious, and the overlooked once a semester through our print magazine. We offer students a place to contribute their work and gain insight into the editing and publishing process.


We are looking for contributors and staff members to join our Untold community. Untold is a wonderful way to get involved, whether through writing or visual art, get paid for your creative work, and be a published creator.


Email: untoldmagazine@hamline.edu Social Media: @hamlineuntold Website: hamlineuntold.com

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