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Mandl College of Allied Health ​yes we are moving onto it Michelle our last one for the day so has two other faculty that this here garter slipped acknowledge but they're weird I'm having to support yourself um and yeah anyways collagen and so just videos for new it's a 10 to 12 minute presentation shall have you cue cards every year from sameera regarding in time and in after that is open to questions and answers which we love to dear student questions for people can be very convertible so Michelle will move whenever you're ready let's start so good afternoon everyone my name is Michelle sue and I'm a biology and interdisciplinary studies major with a concentration in human aesthetics today I will be presenting my capstone research on the importance of physical beauty to the modern American woman first I'd like to start with my acknowledgments I'd like to thank my ideas advisor Stephen Calvin for helping me since 2012 my IDs faculty mentors since Gardner from visual arts dr. Cynthia Wagner from biology and dr. Elizabeth Picciotto from philosophy I'd also like to thank my inds 480 instructor dr. Eric Montgomery my ids faculty and staff we've been with me throughout this whole process dr. Steve freelan Eric Brown Carrie sauder oestrogen and Samara son I'd also like to thank the non inds faculty and staff that helped me with the writing and art that went into my comic which includes dr. tamara Mendelsohn biology dr. Kate ribbon ski from gender and Women's Studies dr. Mike Nance from philosophy Debra rudisill from English and Joanne Gatsby and semhar Johannes from the library finally I'd like to thank my funding source dr. fizza Majid who provided me with his aim de dongxi scholarship that I'll be using for the printing and publication of my comic so first I'd like to introduce someone that may be familiar to all of you and this was me and as you can see I look kind of different from the way I do today and so my investment in this topic is personal I frankly had a hard time growing up as a chubby asian girl in America I had issues making friends and this led to quite a lot of social introversion for the most part I vividly remember a lot of the insults that were directed towards my physical appearance even after I said the baby fat that you see here however there wasn't upside to all of this through my social introversion I looked inward and I developed my skills and art and writing here you can see me at the national gallery of art posing in a somewhat similar fashion to that sculpture behind me and I usually ask my mom to bring me to museums so that I could garner inspiration for my artistic and creative works here is one of my first polish comics that I developed in 2006 it was autobiographical and I considered this to be one of my first successful tonics and so I just provided that for some actual comic relief throughout middle school I started developing a personal style in both of my physical appearance and in my heart work and from that I actually managed to make some friends made some good impressions and I started creating comics about my friendships and that in turn not only led to the attention of my friends who wanted to read them but also like ears and my teachers who are interested in looking at my work from then on comics word my thing and so I have some examples of comics from late middle school here this is a cartoon really and it incorporates a bunch of simplified versions of my dog that I was practically obsessed with when I was little here is a comic that I made in 2007 regarding me and my relationships with my three best friends at the time in high school I diversified my use of comics a lot and I started using them for school projects and a variety of other things for example this is from my AP chem course where I submitted this comic in order to teach brief lessons about organic chemistry this one is an example of a comic that I did about a modern retelling of handling for AP lit class and finally although this was kind of a risky move I used a comic in order to make a supplemental essay for my columbia university admissions and so i think there's a lot of poetic justice in my project overall today I want to talk from the perspective of a woman who's a lot more confident and my physical appearance and my skill set and so I want to reflect on the importance of beauty to the modern American woman through a medium that I'm really comfortable with Congress so here are my objective and research goals first I wanted to create an effective and engaging comic book I used to particular sources in order to inform my making of a comic for this project one being on the flattening by Nexus honest and the other one being understanding comics the invisible art by Scott McCloud my second objective was to explore the following research question what is the importance of physical beauty to the modern American woman and I can strain my research of it first I only focused on physical beauty you that specifically pertains to the human physical form second I define the modern American woman as any woman in the general age range of about 18 to 29 the overarching category for all women in my study with cisgender these are women that identified with the gender they were assigned at birth additionally these subcategories were also studied heterosexual homosexual and sexual women as well as the major demographics of this nation to white women black women Hispanic women and Asian women I

drew early inspiration from the following comics one being you Yasha I rumiko takahashi when my favorites growing up the uncanny x-men by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby and akita by katsuhiro otomo and so I thought it was pretty intuitive that reading these comics I would get the sense of the storyline the action in a very intuitive sense but I couldn't describe in an intellectual way how exactly these comics worked and this is where I go back to the comics that i use to specifically hug me understand comics one being on flattening and the other being understanding comics which I actually have today to pass around there are two bookmarks here and one bookmark page points to a thoroughly categorized pictorial graph of character designs and how they work in the conjunction between pictures images and pictures text and reality additionally another page talks about a 90's protect gravity actually reasoning through analogies in which we talk we're in which McCloud talks about how art and words can combine in order to enhance them in a natural way so let me talk a little bit about my actual comic here's the premise I the researcher fall asleep out of sheer exhaustion I've just been working so hard on my researcher to pass out and in a dream I encounter a well-versed alter ego of myself that happens to know everything that I need to know for this project so how convenient the alter ego and I converse with each other and she guides me through various disciplinary perspectives that ultimately answer my research question so here you see an example of a conversation between the end my alter ego as you can see their fashion a little they were existing works on physical beauty that I worked off of in order to inform my research one being survival of the prettiest by Nancy ed foth a psychologist at Massachusetts General Hospital and the other game face value the politics of beauty written by Robert Robin Lake off and Rec he'll share linguist so they both provided me with important pre 21st century perspectives on physical beauty and its importance to the modern American woman however they did not really incorporate images something that I personally thought was very important and the understanding of this topic so I'm going to go over my research methodology I borrowed strategies the mind yes the two overarching ones being instrumental interdisciplinarity through my use of comics as a medium in a pragmatic approach to problem solving and critical interdisciplinarity the goal of my research being to illuminate a society driven problem physical beauty in a way that interrogate dominant ideas about it the research methodology that I utilized was interpretive ism which is something that comes out of social science research it involves researchers having to literally interpret elements of their study and it assumes that you cannot separate the researcher from the research topic and that ways of knowing the topic are assumed to be highly subjective and relative to the person the primary relevant disciplines that I utilized throughout my comic were the following evolutionary biology and psychology in order to provide an instinctive and adaptive explanation for why women care about beauty so much gender and women's studies and sociology in order to investigate social and economic motivations for caring about beauty and finally art history in order to provide interesting examples of beauty as showing a popular culture and media throughout the years the specific scholarship of interdisciplinary that I utilized in order to connect my disciplines with the following one being building complex multi causal explanations and this was done through the development of my graphic novel narrative as a whole which relies on the answering of my research question through a variety of cohesive disciplinary to was checks and balances it's a system of keeping everything intellectually famous I literally had my two characters talk to each other about the disciplines that were involved pointing out flaws with one that were also answered by others and third theory expansion do the conclusions that I drew because a lot of the researchers would say hey my subject is the only one that's right obviously this is all about being an aching but then somebody else think you're wrong it's not about me even making a lot of this has to do with social and economic benefits that we see today she'll talk about in a second so these were my conclusions beauty is neither shallow your frivolous beauty is and likely always will be important for women for the following reasons there are instinctive and adaptive benefits clearly beauty standards and the things that we find beautiful and people are not are not arbitrary and they've been shaped by evolution and a variety of benefits that have occurred throughout time for the human species and so physical beauty is actually not just important to women but to the whole species in general there are social benefits as well frankly every single study that I've looked at in gender and women's studies and sociology pointed to the fact that physical beauty aided and allowing women to develop meaningful connections with others in a readily available fashion it also allowed them to communicate their social cultural and sexual identities in a very easy way this leads directly into economic benefits so women were generally able to get hired for jobs get higher paying jobs and also be able to network effectively with others in different companies and different settings through their attractiveness another thing that I discovered was that the stigma that beauty has the idea that a lot of women feel a little guilty about investment beauty or the idea that I'll never really be able to be beautiful comes from the fact that there have been there's been a dominant beauty standard that's been established in the US since practically the beginning of its inception which was caused by the first wave of immigrants and Western European men but the future is bright and diverse so for the most part beauty is defined by G an interaction of jeans and environments it's highly

subjective and it drives on diversity and the fact is that by 2050 a renowned demographer William fry actually predicted that there won't be a dominant race it'll be a very mixed melting pot really of people in the US so a general critique of my project as a whole is that in my comic I would incorporate a little less text and some more images I feel like I tried to cram a lot of information into my comic and so in some parts it may seem a little congested would text additionally I would think of perhaps getting IRB approval in order to conduct personal interviews I think that might have been able to strike a more emotional accord with my female audience additionally more research into the role of beauty and other groups such as transgender women and asexual women and finally just making my comic longer so that I could cover more intellectual ground questions yes could you go back to the so I see that those are written before the 21st century has this end change or evolve so what's remarkable about a lot of the predictions made within these books is that they're remarkably accurate things have gotten more diverse although the research that they cited didn't necessarily reflect that there were a lot of studies that were focused primarily on white women and white heterosexual women at that and in my own research I sought to diversify my focus and make sure that a lot of a lot more groups were covered although regrettably I couldn't talk about everyone any other questions I can't wait to read the comic by the way yes I'm here about for a long time but it comes back to serve the politics representation right here representing yourself in your alter ego as yourself as a particular as a particular body in this particular moment that's race sex etc and so I'm wondering if you can speak a little bit to the struggles that you had using yourself as a subject but also trying to speak to the sort of universal problem so I don't think that my character necessarily interfered with the storytelling for the most part I made sure to objectively talk about a lot of different topics in a lot of different groups of people although one section I do point out where I discussed asian-american women and their struggles I say oh I actually went through a lot of these myself and so for me I think that what's really personal is that even if i have over bump certain issues with my physical appearance such as body weight and yeah basically primarily body weight there are other issues that i've been suffering from as a result of my asian american identity something that i managed to talk about in the comic for example my grandparents will even told me when i visit now they'll be like you know you look great but you know you could use double eyelid surgery to make your eyes a little finger you know all that stuff and it's like really okay it's a nice suggestion thank you but I won't be taking not that there's anything bad about plastic surgery free director Trump's are you good just following up early break back there to some extent that sounds like really you're focused through the business the way that discipline load through these two works right psychology on the rights and evolutionary biology my left is that right well I think that evolutionary biology and psychology helps establish that the beauty standards that we have in physical features that we have are not arbitrary and that they come from somewhere and then ultimately I use the other disciplines that I talked about general understanding sociology all those in order to kind of contextualize everything into present day so a lot of my newer research actually came out of sociology and general study of a lot of the illusionary biology and psychology studies for the most part of stayed about the same although there are newer works a lot of the conclusions aren't all the same so i'm looking through the understanding comics and what jumped out the most was how light and how LaGuardia Community College, Hunters Point, Long Island City.