This has become a mini series of posts on decolonisation on this blog. I thought the ‘red pill’ metaphor makes an apt title, as you cannot unsee structural inequality once you see it. Though it has struck me that it could be misinterpreted as the metaphor has been appropriated by anti-feminist and white supremacist groups online. The irony of ironies.
I can’t think of a better title yet, so I will carry on adding to it for now. This post is about climate change and how it is a colonial issue.
The all-girl middle school I went to was obsessed with rhythmic gymnastics. It was out of character for a school in such a modest catchment area, but we had this one lady teacher who was responsible for the entire dance-related curriculum, and apparently she was a big shot when she was younger.
We also had a random ‘sister partnership’ with a school in Russia. A small group of girls around our age would come for a few days in summer and practise gymnastics in our facilities. I seriously doubt that our gym was worth the yearly trip, but again rumour had it that it was a reputation thing.
We would sometimes go watch the practice because it was mesmerising. One day, as I still vividly remember, one of the girls took a bite of an apple, and as soon as that happened, their coach smacked her full force across the face that she literally flew a little. Mind you, we were no stranger to the concept of corporal punishment in school, but that day seems to have left such a lasting visual imprint on me. Or rather, I didn’t realise it did, but the memory resurfaces every time I read an article like this one.
Reading these two articles, published 22 years apart, side by side has given me many feelings. I am no stranger myself to tirelessly making such lists and being all hopeful (e.g. here, here, here, here, and here). For this year, however, I have a much toned-down one.
📌 File away papers as they come in. 📌 No new proposals. 📌 Resume yoga. 📌 Move into Ugly. Really move in.
On the slow mend from a sickly December. The past few days have been particularly bad. At first I couldn’t believe that my precious winter break was disappearing through my fingers just like that, but according to my 사람 잡는 다이어리™, it looks like this has indeed been a yearly pattern and I have been refusing to acknowledge it.
Now the additional complication is that when noticing a “bodily glitch“, I can’t quite be sure if it is simply a part of ageing (and hence to be embraced), or if it is something to act upon, Covid or otherwise.
Anyway, I have had no choice but to lie down and ‘recharge’ for a week straight. Perhaps there is some goodness to that.
Seasonal reminder to academics that the rest you take now makes the work ahead faster and better. You can cut down a forest with a dull axe but it takes forever. Sharpen the axe when and how you can, friends (1)