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|An interactive talk/workshop.
Recent studies show that body image concerns, including unfavorable self-comparisons to others, and also teasing of peers with visible differences, can begin as early as in kinder years. It is also my belief that the earlier we intervene and challenge children’s ideas about what constitutes an ‘acceptable’ body, the better we can promote body diversity.
As a woman with extensive non-facial scarring acquired during my childhood, and a mother of a child with albinism, I share my own perspective of how life can feel for children who look different. I also discuss what I learned from my own experience not to do with my child, how my son’s upbringing differs from mine. I then prompt a group conversation about how we think about our and other people’s bodies, and how we understand beauty and ugliness. We discuss popular culture’s representations of differences, for example Harry Potter’s facial scar. My aim is to inspire honest conversation and promote body diversity by helping my audience reflect on our culture’s judgements and preconceived ideas about appearance.
In the increasingly multicultural Australia many of us navigate our lives within, and between, several cultures and several languages. Such navigation can be both difficult and deeply enriching, and being a writer who writes in a language that is not their mother tongue has its own unique challenges. As a twice-migrant and a writer who […]
What makes a literary work truly original is not the degree of its polishing, but the writer’s voice: his or her particular joy, angst, humor, credo, the word choices and the worldviews expressed. The emotional truth of the voice is everything in writing. Even the best story won’t work if you don’t get the voice […]
We like to say that beauty is skin deep, and that all bodies are beautiful. But my experience of having a body punctuated by numerous scars and parenting a child with albinism, as well as all the research I did both in my academic work and for my recent memoir Imperfect tells me that the […]
An interactive talk that engages the audience in discussion. In 2017, Mission Australia survey of 24,000 young people showed that anxiety about not being beautiful enough is one of the three most significant issues that torment this cohort, superseding concerns about drugs, alcohol, depression and suicide. Peer pressure and social media promoting unrealistic expectations about […]