MARCH 16, 2021 | VOLUME CII | ISSUE XI ‘A BIG OL’ TWERK, HEVE!’ SINCE 1918
THE PHOTOS ISSUE
2 | Editor's note | MARCH 16, 2021
The U Ubyssey VOLUME CII | IS SUE X I EDITORIAL
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S TAFF Sarah Zhao, Charul Maheshka, Paloma Green, Safa Ghaffar, Mahin-E-Alam, Tianne Jensen-DesJardins, Maya Rodrigo-Abdi, Danisa Rambing, Sydney Cristall, Silvana Martinez, Sophia Russo, Joey He, Hannah D’Souza, Vik Sangar, Jackson Dagger, Winnie Ha, Tina Yong, Shanai Tanwar, Owen Gibbs, Maheep Chawla, Kaila Johnson, Nathan Bawaan, Elif Kayali, Hannah Dam, Iman Janmohamed, Peyton Murphy, Lalaine Alindogan, Melissa Li, Ella Lewis-Vaas, Tony Jiang, Polina Petlitsyna, Alan Phuong, Kathryn Helmore, Eashan Halbe, Edith Coates, Tova Gaster, Thomas McLeod, Isaac You
L AND ACK NOWLEDGEMENT We would like to acknowledge that this paper and the land on which we study and work is the traditional, occupied, unceded territory of the Coast Salish peoples, including the territories of the xʷməθkwəy ə̓ m (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō and səl i̓ lwətaɁɬ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations.
LEG AL The Ubyssey is the official student newspaper of the University of British Columbia. It is published every
Tuesday by The Ubyssey Publications Society. We are an autonomous, democratically run student organization and all students are encouraged to participate. Editorials are chosen and written by the Ubyssey staff. They are the expressed opinion of the staff, and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Ubyssey Publications Society or the University of British Columbia. All editorial content appearing in The Ubyssey is the property of The Ubyssey Publications Society. Stories, opinions, photographs and artwork contained herein cannot be reproduced without the expressed, written permission of The Ubyssey Publications Society. The Ubyssey is a founding member of Canadian University Press (CUP) and adheres to CUP’s guiding principles. The Ubyssey accepts opinion
articles on any topic related to the University of British Columbia (UBC) and/or topics relevant to students attending UBC. Submissions must be written by UBC students, professors, alumni, or those in a suitable position (as determined by the opinions editor) to speak on UBC-related matters. Submissions must not contain racism, sexism, homophobia, transphobia, harassment or discrimination. Authors and/or submissions will not be precluded from publication based solely on association with particular ideologies or subject matter that some may find objectionable. Approval for publication is, however, dependent on the quality of the argument and The Ubyssey editorial board’s judgment of appropriate content. Submissions may be sent by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please include your student number or other proof of identification. Anonymous submissions will be accepted on extremely rare occasions. Requests for anonymity will be granted upon agreement from four fifths of the editorial board. Full opinions policy may be found at ubyssey.ca/ submit-an-opinion. It is agreed by all persons placing display or classified advertising that if the Ubyssey Publications Society fails to publish an advertisement or if an error in the ad occurs the liability of the UPS will not be greater than the price paid for the ad. The UPS shall not be responsible for slight changes or typographical errors that do not lessen the value or the impact of the ads.
Editor’s note. T
o commemorate the first anniversary of the pandemic, we’ve created a sequence of photo essays that encapsulate the theme of adapting to change. The last year has seen all of us reorient our lives, modifying our norms and behaviours to fit with ever-changing and unprecedented circumstances. While the ways in which we have adapted to the new pandemic environment are obvious and have been covered in depth by news outlets worldwide, this photo issue is a representation of how people have always adapted to inevitable change. From architecture and gender identity to migration and mental wellness, the following photo essays attempt to visualize the journeys we take as individuals and in turn, as a collective. Of course, four stories are not at all representative of the myriad instances where humans have adapted to their environments. But they are certainly an entry into the topic. It is always easier to compare yourself to where you’d like to be in the future. But, we hope this issue highlights the extraordinary human ability to adapt to change and that on a personal level, it reminds everyone of the progress they have made and will continue to make. Presenting The Ubyssey’s first-ever photos issue!
Jasmine Foong PHOTOS COORDINATOR
MARCH 16, 2021 | UBC Then and Now | 3
UBC then and now. PHOTOS BY ZUBAIR HIRJI WORDS BY JASMINE FOONG
While UBC Vancouver has always existed on unceded Musqueam territory, various development projects have taken place to turn it into the higher learning institution it is today. UBC was officially established in 1908 when the BC legislature passed the University Act. Construction of the first buildings for the Point Grey campus began in 1914 and despite many bumps in the road, UBC has continued to expand, both in population size and number of buildings. The following photographs offer modest insights into the immense changes undergone in the last few decades to develop UBC’s Point Grey campus. Mirroring select photographs retrieved from the UBC Archives Photograph Collection, Ubyssey photographer Zubair Hirji took the following images on Ilford Delta 400 B&W film with a Canon AE-1. U
Union College, photographed by Leonard Frank on Nov. 25, 1934.
t hen now
Iona Building in 2021.
now Science Building, photographed by Leonard Frank on Jan. 1, 1926.
Chemistry Building in 2021.
4 | UBC Then and Now | MARCH 16, 2021
Irving K. Barber Learning Centre in 2021.
Main Library entrance, photographed by Leonard Frank on Jan. 1, 1927.
Main Library, photographed by Leonard Frank on Jan. 1, 1927.
t hen now
Irving K. Barber Learning Centre in 2021.
t hen Great Trek Cairn and Main Mall in 2021.
Great Trek Cairn and the old bus stop, photographed by Leonard Frank on July 20, 1929.
MARCH 16, 2021 | UBC Then and Now | 5
Irving K. Barber Learning Centre in 2021.
Main Library, photographed by Leonard Frank in 1927.
Mathematics Annex in 2021.
Agriculture Building, photographed by Leonard Frank on July 17, 1927.
Fire Hall, photographed by Stuart Thomas or Leonard Frank c. 1926.
Old Fire Hall in 2021.
6 | UBC Then and Now | MARCH 16, 2021
Museum of Anthropology, photographed c. 1974. Photographer unknown.
Applied Sciences Building, photographed in July 1927. Photographer unknown.
Museum of Anthropology in 2021.
Geography Building in 2021.
Brock Hall, photographed c. 1960. Photographer unknown. Brock Hall in 2021.
MARCH 16, 2021 | to wear or not to wear? | 7
To wear or not to wear? PHOTOS AND WORDS BY MELISSA LI AND JASMINE FOONG Gender identity and expression often go hand in hand. We asked four UBC students, past and present, about their clothing choices and how those choices have informed and been influenced by their gender identities.
Edit h Coates
Edith Coates is a fourth-year linguistics major at UBC. As a transgender woman, Coates said that trying on different fashion styles has been a good way of presenting feminine. “Knowing about fashion and different ways that you can wear things to minimize some things or draw attention to other things really helps with presenting female or feminine [and] building confidence,” she said. Coates said her striped sweater and jeans help make her shoulders appear less prominent and her waist a bit narrower. “It’s all about having a good fit which is difficult when you’re trans and don’t exactly have the same body shape as what women’s clothes are cut [for] and made to fit best on.” As an exception, Coates said the dress in the photos makes her feel good about herself. “I always feel confident wearing [this] dress because I love the fabric, the pattern on it, how it’s cut and how it fits on me. These shoes ... are the only heels I’m confident enough to wear.” Coates added that she would love to dress up for events if she had more to attend. But on a daily basis, Coates said that it is not a lack of confidence that stops her from wearing certain clothes, but the reality of trying not to stick out too much from the crowd as a trans person. “I still get people staring at me. I’ll be walking somewhere and I’ll see other people just looking me up and down.”
8 | to wear or not to wear? | MARCH 16, 2021
Isak Makynen Isak Makynen majors in English literature and minors in French. He struggled a lot when he was younger to find clothes that fit his body, being “on the bigger side.” But with age came confidence. “It didn’t have to do necessarily with me losing weight or me changing my body in any way. It was more so just realizing that whatever I put on my body, if I felt happy in it and I felt comfortable in it, even if I didn’t think I looked particularly good, I could go outside and just feel good in general,” he said. Makynen got more serious about fashion when he bought two staple pieces late in high school. “I think I bought a pair of brown leather boots and a nice oversized sweater and thought it was the peak of fashion. I really thought I was everything,” said Makynen. While hindsight made clear that Makynen did not peak in high school, he said that’s where it all started — when he wanted to start wearing things that are different from the norm. But clothes and accessories aside, Makynen said that confidence is the best accessory and that he’s never really been afraid of hiding who he is. “I think that [difficulties surrounding Queerness] can lead to us to try to hide our identity and hide who we are, for fear of persecution or anything negative coming our way ... But I think that journey with my fashion in terms of the colours that I wear and how bright and loud everything is now, is a testament to the pride I feel in myself, and the pride I think most Queer people should feel in themselves. “If you exude joy and happiness in what you’re wearing, regardless of how good it actually looks, people are going to say, ‘Hey, that guy looks good. Hey, that person looks great. They look so happy with what they’re wearing.’”
MARCH 16, 2021 | to wear or not to wear? | 9
Angelic(a) Proof Angelic(a) Proof is a UBC media studies alum. A longtime poet and performer, Proof said t(he)y have been able to explore t(he)ir gender identity through poetry, music and clothing. “I like to be creative and dress in ways that inspire me and make me feel playful and wonderful. And I mean, like, literally full of wonder,” said Proof, explaining that t(he)ir clothing choices are a perpetual reminder of the sense of curiosity and discovery t(he)y want to bring to t(he)ir gender. “The process of writing freely has [also] always granted me that ignition to explore myself and explore my truth and to excavate — which is the word that I have been using a lot — because I feel like I do unbury parts of myself that I didn’t necessarily have direct access to at different points in my life because of conditioning of cishet standards of living.” For Proof, gender and other parts of t(he)ir identity are not separate in this process of self-exploration. “In a lot of ways, I do identify my gender as Jewish. As a first-generation immigrant [and] as somebody who is putting to sleep a lot of ancestral wounds — a lot of ways that Jewish people in basically all of existence have had to flee, had to run, have been prosecuted — there’s been so much that has lived in my body. “And now that I’m here as a first-gen immigrant, I feel really lucky and thankful to be able to put that stuff more and more to sleep in my body to hold peace with who I really am.”
10 | to wear or not to wear? | MARCH 16, 2021
Ryli Wartelle Ryli Wartelle is a third-year forestry student at UBC. Until recently, they were never really interested in fashion. “I was the type of, ‘Well, why would you want to wear anything except what’s practical?’ Like, if there was a zombie apocalypse right now, I need to be ready for it,” said Wartelle. But as they started becoming more comfortable with their Queer identity in the last few years, they’ve paid more attention to the way they dress. “Most of my life, I totally thought that I was a [straight] cis man, which is not true ... and my fashion was literally just jeans and a T-shirt and nothing else, every single day. “And then I finally came out to myself as bisexual and I was like, ‘Now that I feel a little more [like] myself I should decorate myself a bit.’ That’s why I got an ear piercing, started wearing rings and stuff like that,” they said. Wartelle only started really playing with their fashion in the past year as they’ve realized their gender identity and progressively accepted themselves for who they are. “Now that I feel comfortable in my own body, I feel like I want to celebrate it and so, I want to make it look cute and make it look pretty and all that stuff,” they said. For Wartelle, wearing things that reminds them of the people they’re closest to makes them feel good. Most of Wartelle’s jewelry is made by their mother and many of their clothes are hand-me-downs from friends. U
Close to home. The emotions and behaviours tied to resettling in a country vastly foreign to one’s own are nuanced and difficult to generalize with any one story. The following three photo essays do not intend to illustrate migrant stories at large. Rather, they are individual stories of students at UBC and how they have preserved parts of their national identity, despite being oceans away from home.
MARCH 16, 2021 | Close to home | 11
A M al ay si an fla g st an ds in th e co rn er of Le e’ s ro om , w he re th e w in do w m ee ts he r w or k de sk .
Lui Xia Lee FROM MALAYSIA
Lui Xia Lee moved to Canada in August 2015 when she began her undergraduate studies in Ottawa. She is now doing her masters at UBC, studying Malaysian history. Lee said that she knew she would miss home even before she left for Canada but she wanted a university education abroad, where she would experience different cultures. “I think I’m the only one in my family who has ever been to North America. So it was very exciting,” she said. But Lee’s excitement eventually turned into longing as being away from home for long periods of time cemented her appreciation for Malaysia. “I think in my first two years in Canada, I really wanted to assimilate in the sense that I wanted to make much of my experience about being in Canada, not trying to be so associated with Malaysian culture, just because that’s why I left,” Lee said. As time went on, however, she found herself missing home and her culture. “I do miss home a lot,” she said. “I have a lot of dreams about home [and] about my family.” Lee said that occasionally indulging in Malaysian food and holding on to mementos like her batik mask, Malaysian flag and photo wall of friends and family, are nice reminders of home.
PHOTOS AND WORDS BY JASMINE FOONG
Lee’s shelf is filled with books about Southeast Asia, her area of study.
, n d e m ic w a lk le a r t a p a r fo r o o ty le o f te x ti g o u t th e d L e e h e a d in k m a d e o f b a ti k — a s as w e a ri n g a m n d in M a la y s ia . u c o m m o n ly fo
Two miniature lion figurines dance on Lee’s window sill, a reminder of home.
12 | Close to home | MARCH 16, 2021
Marian Orhierhor moved to Canada in August 2018 and is in her second year of her graduate degree in the School of Population and Public Health. Fashion has always played a big role in Orhierhor’s life but wearing African prints became more meaningful as she grew older. “The funny thing is, while growing up, I wasn’t really so [keen] on wearing African prints. I always preferred English clothes. But that changed when I got older. I really liked the colours and how I could just have a piece of material and I could probably make it into [anything],” Orhierhor said. Orhierhor finds that wearing clothes with African prints sets her apart. “It’s a different print, material [and] style. It just really pops.” Aside from clothing, Orhierhor also finds herself staying connected to Nigeria through food and the Catholic Church. While being a master’s student does not leave Orhierhor with much time to cook, let alone visit the few African grocery stores in Vancouver, she’s learned to improvise. “This new African restaurant [VanSuya] just opened and I’m like their favourite customer.” Orhierhor orders the food in trays and stocks up in her freezer to last for a week. But just as food can seem to transcend borders, so does attending church. As a Catholic, Orhierhor said that going to church is a very significant part of her life, especially when she’s at her lowest points. “That’s where I go back to re-strategize, to calm myself and to just breathe,” Orhierhor said. “It’s a home away from home.”
PHOTOS AND WORDS BY JASMINE FOONG
The entrance to St. Mark ’s Parish at UBC.
MARCH 16, 2021 | Close to home | 13
FROM THE PHILIPPINES
On New Year’s Eve in the Philippines, dining tables are covered with a spread of Filipino dishes — leche flan, lumpia shanghai, palabok, pancit, adobo, mechadong baka, lechon and more. Extended families feast together at a party lasting hours into the night. Once the clock strikes 12, the pops and crackles of fireworks and firecrackers, clangs of pots and pans, and the blares of torotots (blowing horns) would blend into a rapturous cacophony across the streets, where crowds of Filipinos celebrate by making as much noise as possible. Moving to Canada, my family brought along the cultural cuisine and noisy New Year’s traditions. As a first-generation Canadian, I’m fortunate enough to experience a teeny, tiny version of the highly energetic celebrations through growing up in a predominantly Filipino community in South Vancouver. We would join our neighbours outside our apartment complex — banging our pots and pans, blasting my dad’s homemade, ear-deafening torotots. And to this day, my parents still cook side by side to prepare the usual spread of delicious traditional dishes — too much food for our six-person family, one might argue. My mom always pan fries the lumpia, my dad stir fries the bopis and with bloated bellies, we stay up to count down the seconds until our midnight ruckus. U
PHOTOS AND WORDS BY LALAINE ALINDOGAN
14 | FIVE DEGREES OF DEPRESSION | MARCH 16, 2021
Five degrees of depression. PHOTOS AND WORDS BY JASMINE FOONG
MARCH 16, 2021 | FIVE DEGREES OF DEPRESSION | 15
Adapting: the photos issue. Our first ever photos issue!