Showing posts from March, 2017

Gendering Adderall: Weight Loss, Work, and Cat Marnell's Memoir

Augmenting the Body: Disability, Care and the Posthuman is an interdisciplinary research project that explores practices of bodily augmentation, from caring robots to prosthetic limbs, across the fields of English, Engineering, Healthcare, Philosophy, and Robotics. The project, led by Professor Stuart Murray and funded by a Wellcome Trust Seed Award, involves collaborators from the University of Leeds, the University of Exeter, and Sheffield Robotics. In this post, Dr Sophie A. Jones (Leeds) reflects on the way contemporary writing figures the relationship between bodily extensions and beauty demands. How do practices of cognitive augmentation intersect with the gendered labour of beauty management?   As part of my contribution to the Augmenting the Body project I have been exploring cultural representations of so-called “smart drugs”—psychostimulants like Ritalin and Adderall, often prescribed for ADHD but also taken off-label to increase stamina and concentration. A partic

Racialised Beauty - Skin Colour & Skin-lightening for British South Asian women: Socio-Historical Nuances Matter

Images taken of ads for clothing and/or jewellery, and advertising by make-up artist in South Asian shops in Birmingham Across South Asia and the South Asian diaspora, the symbolic value of fair skin remains a contour of social reality, particularly for women (Jah, 2016; Malik, 2007; Shankar and Subish, 2007) – both perpetuating, and facilitated by the continued; veneration of fair skin as best, and the proliferation of skin-lightening products. Consequently, in my PhD project I am investigating cross-culturally British South Asian (BSA) women’s lived experiences of racialised beauty, with a specific focus on skin-lightening and skin colour. By doing so it has become increasingly apparent that there are nuanced differences in histories and socio-cultural mores and practices, across but also within large arbitrary categories like South Asian, which mean how the preference for fair skin as an aesthetic ideal and norm manifests and is enacted, can diverge. Thus, greater deliber