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How media sexism demeans women and fuels abuse by men like Weinstein Culture Featured 

How media sexism demeans women and fuels abuse by men like Weinstein

(Conversation) – The sexual abuse scandal currently embroiling media mogul Harvey Weinstein has stunned the United States, with Hollywood and the fashion industry declaring that “this way of treating women ends now.” As an Argentinean woman who studies gender in the media, I find it hard to be surprised by Weinstein’s misdeeds. Machismo remains deeply ingrained in Latin American society, yes, but even female political leaders in supposedly gender-equal paradises like Norway and Switzerland have told me that they are criticized more in the press and held to a higher standard than their male counterparts. How could they not Read More

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Real beauty doesn’t need to be retouched Beauty Featured 

Real beauty doesn’t need to be retouched

(Conversation) -The giant global photographic agency, Getty Images, has announced it plans to ban retouching of images of models “to make them look thinner or larger”. The move follows a change to the law in France that requires images where the “body of the model has been modified … to either slim or flesh out her figure” to be accompanied by a “photographie retouchée” label. These are groundbreaking developments which could be incredibly important, not just for the fashion industry, but for generations to come who may no longer grow up with unrealistic expectations of how their bodies should Read More

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Are baby advice books making mothers depressed and anxious? Health 

Are baby advice books making mothers depressed and anxious?

(Conversation) – Becoming a new parent certainly ranks up there in the exhaustion and anxiety stakes. Countless parents find themselves questioning at 3am whether their baby is feeding too much, if they should be sleeping through the night by now, and wondering if there is anything else they should be doing differently. Social media posts often boast of sleeping, contented babies while in reality many parents feel unable to put their baby down. Some want a miracle solution – and quickly. Ever since the publication of Dr Benjamin Spock’s multi-million selling baby and childcare title, the Common Sense Book Read More

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Citizen aid – and why ordinary people are founding their own development projects Charity Featured 

Citizen aid – and why ordinary people are founding their own development projects

(Conversation) – At the height of the European refugee crisis, volunteers delivered goods to makeshift camps in Calais, set up soup kitchens, and helped recent arrivals on the Greek island of Lesvos. But such grassroots humanitarianism does not always play out on Europe’s doorstep. “Citizen aid” – whereby driven individuals set up their own, small-scale aid projects – is taking off in the Global South, too. The number of these micro-organisations has risen dramatically in the US, the UK and other European countries in the last ten years. Many, but not all of them, are registered as charities. They Read More

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Survivors use humour to challenge rape culture Badass Women 

Survivors use humour to challenge rape culture

Canada (Conversation) – After Heather Jordan Ross reported her sexual assault, she felt conflicted about mixing it into her standup comedy. She hated rape jokes, but she wanted to talk about her experience. Over beers, her friend Emma Cooper jokingly suggested they put together a comedy night that featured only survivors. The first show went up in Vancouver three weeks later. It sold out, and so did the next two. Rape is Real and Everywhere (RIR&E) was born. RIR&E has since played across Canada, made national and international news and even been the subject of a CBC radio documentary. Read More

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Do ketogenic diets help you lose weight? Health 

Do ketogenic diets help you lose weight?

(Conversation) – Is a ketogenic diet effective for weight loss? The answer depends on whether it achieves a reduction in total kilojoule intake or not. What is a ketogenic diet? A classical ketogenic diet follows a strict ratio for total grams of fat to combined grams of carbohydrate and protein and typically has 80-90% of total kilojoules coming from fat, which is very high fat. Carbohydrate intake varies from 20 to 50 grams a day, or 5-10% of total energy, while protein intakes are moderate. The difference between a strict ketogenic diet and diets that are described as low-carb Read More

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Roots of racism: 6 essential reads Featured Human Rights 

Roots of racism: 6 essential reads

(Conversation) – These stories from The Conversation archive explore where racism came from and why it persists. 1. Going back to Europe American University historian Ibram Kendi has traced the history of racist ideas in the U.S. back to the European societies that largely populated our nation. In an essay based on his award-winning book “Stamped from the Beginning,” Kendi rejects the conventional wisdom that hate and ignorance breed racist policies. Rather, Kendi writes: “Time and again, powerful and brilliant men and women have produced racist ideas in order to justify the racist policies of their era.” 2. Myths Read More

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Women and war: after Afghanistan, there’s a chance to deploy gender-led approaches to conflict Culture 

Women and war: after Afghanistan, there’s a chance to deploy gender-led approaches to conflict

United Kingdom (Conversation) – As a member of the Royal Navy, I never really thought that being a woman affected my work. Whether I was making safety decisions about flying helicopters or participating in operational planning, my contribution was listened to and respected. I wasn’t sidelined or disadvantaged for being a woman in a military largely populated by men. I was just one of the team. I joined Britannia Royal Naval College straight from school so I grew up in the institution. As a young recruit, I knuckled down to basic training and got on with it, accepting the Read More

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Science or snake oil: is manuka honey really a ‘superfood’ for treating colds, allergies and infections? Health 

Science or snake oil: is manuka honey really a ‘superfood’ for treating colds, allergies and infections?

Australia (Conversation) – Manuka honey is often touted as a “superfood” that treats many ailments, including allergies, colds and flus, gingivitis, sore throats, staph infections, and numerous types of wounds. Manuka can apparently also boost energy, “detox” your system, lower cholesterol, stave off diabetes, improve sleep, increase skin tone, reduce hair loss and even prevent frizz and split ends. Some of these claims are nonsense, but some have good evidence behind them. Honey has been used therapeutically throughout history, with records of its cultural, religious and medicinal importance shown in rock paintings, carvings and sacred texts from many diverse Read More

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Health Check: is makeup bad for your skin? Health 

Health Check: is makeup bad for your skin?

World (Conversation) – Makeup is an everyday item for many people and non-negotiable for some. Is it bad for our skin? As always, the answer is not clear-cut and depends on the individual, their skin type, and the products they use. With an overwhelming choice of cosmetic products available, most people don’t even know where to start with makeup. Organic? Natural? Fragrance free? Hypoallergenic? Non-comedogenic? Paraben free? What does this all mean, and are they any better? The term makeup generally describes the group of cosmetics that are used for beautification. Other cosmetics include products that are used to Read More

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