#anatomie

  • The anatomy of Zoom fatigue

    Covid has flooded our lives with online encounters and interactions. We work, minding our image on screen, or struggle to socialise in a hall of mirrors. Geert Lovink considers what we have lost and how we can reclaim our bodies, relationships and shared physical spaces.

    ‘The body has been drained of its
    sedimented meanings through the
    sheer persistence of the recording device
    and ceased to be a body productive of meanings
    or connotations beyond its materiality and motion.’
    Marina Vishmidt

    This is it. During the 2020 lockdown, the internet came into its own. For the first time ever, it experienced a sense of completion. Glitches were common enough. A video call lagged, then froze. Laptops or routers had to be restarted. In the early days of lockdown few dared to complain. Mass quarantine did not culminate in a public sense of being trapped in a virtual prison.

    Welcome to the electronic monitoring programme. As we continue to develop our online personas, real-life meetings feel clandestine. We are trapped in the videophone future. J. G. Ballard foresaw this ending only in collective mayhem and mutual murder, once flesh re-encountered the world of the living.

    Around mid-2020, I began collecting evidence on the trending topic of ‘Zoom fatigue.’ Needless to say, experiences of this kind are not, by any means, limited to Zoom. They extend to Microsoft Teams, Skype, Google Classrooms, GoTo Meeting, Slack and BlueJeans – to name but a few major players. In the ‘corona’ era, cloud-based video meetings have become the dominant private and work environment, not just in education, finance, and health care, but also in the cultural and public sector.

    All layers of management have withdrawn into new enclosures of power – the same environment that both precarious freelancers and consultants use to speak to clients. Their lives have little in common, but they all make and take very long hours.

    Devouring time

    Zoom has multiplied work, expanded participation, and engulfed time for writing, thinking, leisure, and relations with family and friends. Body Mass Index levels increased, affective states and mental health have been hammered, motor coordination wrecked, along with the ability of the brain to negotiate movement through physical space as a result of excess screen time.

    Video vertigo is a peculiar condition that also prompts more widespread forms of disorientation. Minka Stoyanova teaches computer programming and spends 20 hours a week on Zoom:

    ‘My ability for non-work-related social-distancing encounters has gone down greatly,’ she says. ‘While some, craving human contact (no doubt), schedule Zoom cocktail parties and birthday meetups, I dread having to log back into the interface.’1

    It is a question of strategy. Should we resist the state of exception, go on strike and refuse to give further online classes, hold management meetings or offer cyber doctors’ appointments? This is easier said than done. Pay checks are at stake. Initially, being able to stay home felt like a privilege that produced a sense of guilt when others had to go out. Now, many fear that video calls are here to stay.

    Fast Company forecasts that

    ‘companies big and small, all over the world, are transforming themselves into a business that is more digital, more remote, and more nimble’.2

    Expensive real estate can be sold off, expenses dramatically reduced, and discontented staff effectively isolated and prevented from coming together. The IT management class is already promoting a cost-cutting ‘blended’ model, expecting a backlash after the excessive video conferencing sessions of 2020.

    The video dilemma is also intensely personal.

    ‘If work exhausts my videocall time, I intuitively cut informal video calling with allies, friends, possible collaborators,’ Rotterdam designer Silvio Lorusso observes. ‘This makes me sad and makes me appear rude. It’s a self-preserving attitude that leads to isolation.’

    The debate should not be about hanging out on Facetime or Discord with friends for a game night, doing karaoke, holding a book club, or watching Netflix together. Video-time is part of the advanced post-Fordist labour regime, performed by self-motivated subjects who are supposed to be doing their jobs. But then you drift off while pretending not to. Your eyes hurt, your concentration span diminishes, multi-tasking is a constant temptation, and that physically, psychically uncomfortable feeling hums in the back of your head… You’ve heard it all before.

    In 2014, Rawiya Kameir defined internet fatigue as the state that follows internet addiction:

    ‘You scroll, you refresh, you read timelines compulsively and then you get really, really exhausted by it. It is an anxiety that comes along with feeling trapped in a whirlwind of other people’s thoughts.’3

    On 22 April 2020, Nigel Warburton @philosophybites on Twitter asked: ‘Does anyone have a plausible theory about why Zoom, Skype, and Google Hangout meetings are so draining?’


    https://twitter.com/philosophybites/status/1252148409672380424

    He received 63 retweets, 383 likes, and a few replies. The responses closely mirrored popular diagnoses and advice now offered across the web. The main supposed causes of the ‘fatigue’ that follows Zoom sessions include the brain’s attempt to compensate for the lack of full body, non-verbal communication cues; a sense of constant self-consciousness; engagement in multiple activities with no real focus; and a consistent tugging temptation to multi-task.

    Suggested remedies are predictable: take breaks, don’t sit for too long, roll your shoulders, work your abs, hydrate regularly, and integrate plenty of ‘screen free time’ into the day.
    Living in videospace

    For Isabel Löfgren, teaching in Stockholm, Zoom has become a place of residence. The mobile device is her office.

    ‘Our living rooms have become classrooms. Does it matter what is on display behind you? What does it say about you? If you have a bookshelf in the background, or your unfolded laundry in a pile on the chair behind you, it’s on display and up for scrutiny. What is personal has become public.’

    Zoom has become another room in the house – something Gaston Bachelard didn’t predict in his Poetics of Space. Nor did Georges Perec envision a screen as part of the architecture of his fictitious apartment block in the novel Life: A User’s Manual.

    But the Czech philosopher Vilém Flusser could, and did. He foresaw ‘the technical image as phenomenology’. Yet, for Löfgren, Zoom functionality is surprisingly simplistic.

    ‘You can raise your hand and clap like a pre-schooler, chat like a teenager, and look at yourself in your own little square as if peering at a mirror. Showing your face becomes optional, you can go to school in pyjamas, or do it all on the go. Cats, dogs, the boyfriend working in the background, the student who forgot to turn off her mic while she was doing the dishes. Everyone’s Facebooking alongside the lesson.’4

    Lorusso describes the dysfunctions of the first days of use:

    ‘I couldn’t install Microsoft Teams, my camera wouldn’t activate, and, worst of all, the internet connection had hiccups. The connection was neither up nor down; every other attempt it just became super slow. Let me help you imagine my videocalls: all would be smooth for the first five minutes and then decay took over – frozen faces, fractured voices, reboots and refreshes, impatience and discouragement. A short sentence would take minutes to manifest. It was like being thrown back to the times of dial-up connection, but within today’s means of online communication.’5

    Then things went ‘normal’. We adjusted to a new interpassive mode. None of us realized that videotelephony was no longer a matter of becoming. This was it. The Completion.
    Discipline or performance

    Take a condensed list of uses: social media, work, entertainment, food orders, gaming, watching Netflix, seeing how family and friends are doing, live streams to observe what’s going on for those in hospital. What else do we need during a lockdown? Teleportation, for sure: a way of circumventing trains and airports.

    We need to go back to early science fiction novels to read up what we all wished for in the Future. Utopia and dystopia have never come as close to merging as in 2020. All we want is to recover the body. We demand instant vaccines. We want less tech, we long to go offline, travel, leave the damned cage behind.

    Back in pre-Covid days, Byung-Chul Han proposed that we were no longer living in a disciplinary society but one defined by performance.6 Since then we have discovered that spending hours in virtual conferences is neither a paranoid panopticon nor a celebration of the self. We are not being punished, nor are we feeling productive. We are neither subjected, nor activated.

    Instead, we are hovering, waiting, pretending to watch, trying to stay focused, wondering when we might squeeze in a lunch break or recharge with a caffeine hit. It is questionable whether Zoom fatigue is the product of an ‘excess of positivity’, as Han suggests. Much like the Covid crisis itself, we are being asked to endure never-ending sessions on Zoom. The Outlook Calendar is the new jail warden.

    What’s wearing us out is the longue durée, not exhaustion after a peak performance. In response, the system has turned emphatic and switched to worry-mode about our mental state. Screen Time apps and MyAnalytics summaries now inform us how our lives are being wasted as we calibrate our productivity and efficiency to collaborate with colleagues.

    It’s hard not to wonder if the IT sector isn’t about to get into bed with big pharmaceutical companies: the society of synthetic performance enhancement is ready for expansion. Soon after the introduction of lockdown, with quarantine in place, the authorities set about investigating whether their pitiable subjects were still coping. There is no hope that this simulacrum of life can ever protect us from accelerating economic and social collapse.

    Despite the guilt trips, we are allowed to admit that we’re not achieving much. With society on hold, it is the waiting that tires us out. Trapped in the waiting room, we are being asked – very kindly – to stay in survival-mode, keep going despite the burnout and master the anger. Our task is simply to watch our individual versions of David Wojnarowicz’s personal ‘disintegration’ – barely different to his all-consuming contemplation of the ‘fatality, incurability and randomness of AIDS… so powerful and feared’.7

    ‘I am utterly zoomed out and exhausted,’

    Henry Warwick writes from Toronto.

    ‘Between watching the nation of my birth (the United States) commit a long slow political suicide and having friends die of Covid and working like a dog while on what is de facto nine months of bio-house arrest, I’m not in a great mood.’

    Henry’s summer was spent making video bits and preparing for the delivery of asynchronous class material,

    ‘…not really a university education – it is a step above a YouTube playlist. Sitting in front of a Zoom window makes it difficult to forge those friendships and networks, and it’s certain a buzzkill for adventure. In addition, there is the issue of Internet Time as I have students all over the world. It’s hard for them to attend a two-hour lecture when it’s 2.00 a.m. where they are. It’s utter madness. Making these videos was a serious time drain. I refuse to give Adobe my money, and Apple screwed Final Cut Pro so badly that I am editing my videos in DaVinci Resolve, which has the benefit of being free-ish. I have never used Resolve, so the learning curve was not insignificant.’8

    Zoom doom

    It took just days for the ‘Zoom fatigue’ trope to establish itself – a sign that internet discourse is no longer controlled by the ‘organized optimism’ of the marketing lobby. Managerial positivism has made way for the arrival of instant doom. According to Google Trends the term made the rounds back in September 2019 and reached its peak in late April 2020.9 That was when the BBC ran a story about it. One expert commented:

    ‘Video chats mean we need to work harder to process non-verbal cues like facial expressions, the tone and pitch of the voice, and body language; paying more attention to these consumes a lot of energy… Our minds are together when our bodies feel we’re not. That dissonance, which causes people to have conflicting feelings, is exhausting. You cannot relax into the conversation naturally.’

    Another interviewee describes how on Zoom

    ‘everybody’s looking at you; you are on stage, so there comes the social pressure and feeling like you need to perform. Being performative is nerve-wracking and more stressful.’10

    Maybe Han’s performance prediction was correct.

    As programming teacher Stoyanova noted, the ability to see oneself – even if hidden in the moment – creates a tiring reflective effect, the sensation of being in a hall of mirrors. Educators feel that they are constantly monitoring their own demeanour, while simultaneously trying to project, through the interface, to students. It is like practicing a speech in front of a mirror. When speaking to yourself, you experience a persistent cognitive dissonance. In addition, there is the lack of eye contact – even if students have activated their video – which also makes live lectures more difficult to conduct.

    ‘Without the non-verbal feedback and eye-contact one is used to, these conversations feel disjointed.’11

    Curiously enough, speaking into the void nevertheless kickstarts the adrenalin glands, which certainly isn’t the case when rehearsing in front of a mirror. We have entered a strange mode of performance that aligns with predictive analytics and pre-emption. Even though the audience might just as well not be there, the very fact of performing in the Zoom schedule is sufficient to activate biochemical responses in the body.

    In a post on his Convivial Society blog, L.M. Sacasas describes the effect of paying so much attention to one’s self:

    ‘We are always to some degree internally conscious of ourselves, of course, but this is the usual “I” in the “I-Thou” relation. Here we are talking about something like an “I-Me-Thou” relation. It would be akin to having a mirror of ourselves that only we could see present whenever we talked with others in person. This, too, amounts to a persistent expenditure of social and cognitive labour as I inadvertently mind my image as well as the images of the other participants.’12

    Online video artists Annie Abrahams and Daniel Pinheiro point to the rarely discussed effects of delay.

    ‘We are never exactly in the same time-space. The space is awkward because we are confronted with faces in close up for long time spans. We first see a face framed like when we were a baby in a cradle as our parents looked down upon us. Later it became the frame of interactions with our lovers in bed. This makes it that while video-conferencing, we are always connected to something very intimate, even in professional situations.’

    In a passage titled What is Seen and Not Seen, posted in April, the Journal of Psychiatric Reform advises psychotherapists to ‘redefine the new frame prior to the commencement of video therapy’ for online psychotherapy sessions.13

    Abrahams and Pinheiro also observe that it is impossible to detect much detail in the image we see.

    ‘Video conferencing is psychologically demanding because our brains need to process a self as body and as image. We lack the subtle bodily clues for the content of what someone tells. Our imagination fills the gaps and makes it necessary to process, to select what to ignore. In the meantime, we are continuously scanning the screen (there is no overview and no periphery). We are never sure we are “there”, that the connection still exists, and so we check our own image all the time. We hear a compressed mono sound, all individual sounds are mixed into one soundscape.’14

    Isabel Löfgren responds that we should think of Zoom as a ‘cold medium’ – one which demands more participation from the audience, according to Marshall McLuhan’s concept of cold and hot media.

    ‘The brain needs to fill in the gaps of perception, which makes our brains (and our computers) go on overdrive.’

    In terms of camera angles, Löfgren adds that we are constantly looking at a badly framed medium-shot of other bodies.

    ‘We have no sense of proportion in relation to other bodies, we also lose the “establishing shot” of the room. The close-up shot used for emotional closeness to the subject on the other side of the camera is eliminated with the lack of eye contact, no “pheromonal connection”. The Zoom terminology is correct, our experiences of others occur in “gallery mode”.’15

    Zoom gloom

    New York cultural theorist Dominic Pettman regularly tweets about Zoom frazzle. His main learning outcome is ‘not dying.’ He admits he is still using Skype ‘ironically’. In a tweet he refers back to his 2014 critique of MOOCs, an almost forgotten online .edu hype that anticipated the existing online teaching default of 2020.

    Some weeks into lockdown, the question arose why video conferencing was so exhausting. Zoom fatigue is ‘taxing the brain’, people complained.16 Why are classes and meetings on Skype, Teams and Google Hangout so draining? This was expressed not as some sort of interface critique but as an existential outcry. Popular articles on Medium name it as such. Common titles include variations of

    ‘Do you have “Zoom Fatigue” or is it existentially crushing to pretend life is normal as the world burns?’

    and

    ‘The problem isn’t Zoom Fatigue — it’s mourning life as we knew it’

    Varied multiplicities of voices, moods and opinions expressed via parallel chat channels or integrated polling and online voting have not been widely promoted as yet. We feel forced to focus.

    Keep your eyes on the camera, our digital alter-ego whispers through our earphones.

    The inertia upholds contradictions – until the body gets depleted, bored, distracted and ultimately collapses.

    No more signals!

    Please provide less, turn the camera off. The number one piece of popular advice on combatting Zoom fatigue is simply, ‘do it less’, as though that’s an option. (‘You don’t hate Zoom, you hate capitalism.’). Should we be designing indicators of group sentiment?

    In what way can we fast-forward real-time team meetings? More backchannels, for sure; less ongoing visual presence. But wait, isn’t there already enough multi-tasking happening? If anything, we long for intense and short virtual exchanges, followed by substantial offline periods.

    According to Sacasas, video conference calls are

    ‘physically, cognitively, and emotionally taxing experience as our minds undertake the work of making sense of things under such circumstances. We might think of it as a case of ordinarily unconscious processes operating at max capacity to help us make sense of what we’re experiencing.’17

    We are forced to be more attentive, we cannot merely drift off. Multi-tasking may be tempting, but it is also very obvious. The social (and sometimes even machinic) surveillance culture takes its toll. Are we being watched? Our response requires a new and sophisticated form of invisible day-dreaming, absence in a situation of permanent visual presence – impossible for students, who are not afforded their grades unless the camera stays on.

    Video conferencing software keeps us at bay. Having fired up the app and inserted name, meeting number and session password, we see ourselves, as part of a portrait gallery of disappointing personas that constitutes the Team, occasionally disrupted by partners who walk into the room, a passing pet, needy kids and the inevitable courier ringing the doorbell.

    Within seconds you are encapsulated by the performative self that is you. Am I moving my head, adjusting myself to a more favourable position? Does this angle flatter me? Do I look as though I’m paying attention?

    ‘Thanks to my image on the screen, I’m conscious of myself not only from within but also from without. We are always to some degree internally conscious of ourselves.’

    Sacasas describes the experience as a double event, which the human mind experiences as if it were real.
    Looking for an escape route

    Why do I have to be included on the screen? I want to switch off the camera, be absent, invisible, a voyeur, not an actor – until I take the stage and appear out of nowhere. I have the right to be invisible, right? But no, the software lords have decided otherwise and gifted the world with the virtue of visible participation. They demand total contribution.

    The insistence on 24/7 mindfulness can only lead to a regressive revolt, an urge to take revenge. The set is designed to ensure that we stay focused, all of the time, making the fullest possible contribution, expending maximum mental energy.

    Meanwhile, I long to be frozen like an ancient marble bust, neatly standing in a row with other illustrious figures, on the palace corridor, turned on by a click, brought to life much like the figures in Night at the Museum.

    You have to take a break and OMG, you hate so much having to dress up for that video call (but you do it anyway). Bored and tired of the emotional labour, you change your living room background to a tropical beach to cheer up and shroud the situation. How can we blow up the social portrait gallery, with its dreadful rectangular cut-outs? Jailed inside the video grid you drift away from the management meeting and enter a virtual Rubik’s version of Velasquez’ Las Meninas (1656).

    Then you move on to the next room, the Kazimir Malevich 1915 Suprematist exhibition.

    After which you wake up and realize you’re back inside your own sad version of The Brady Bunch opening credits.

    ou’re on Zoom, not roaming inside some artwork. We’re not a photograph or video file either. We happen to be alive, and have to come to terms with being inside Existential Reality (ER).

    Writing for Artforum, Paula Burleigh observes that

    ‘the most pervasive of Covid imagery has little to do with the actual disease: it is the digital grid of people congregating virtually on Zoom for “quarantini” happy hours, work meetings, and classroom instruction.’18

    The grid Burleigh describes as a hallmark of minimalist design and modernist art,

    ‘conjures associations with order, functionality, and work, its structure echoed on graph paper and in office cubicles’.

    In his two-part History of the Design Grid, Alex Bigman describes how the system of intersecting vertical and horizontal lines was invented in Renaissance painting and page layout. This lead to the development of graphic design. The assumption that images are more dynamic and engaging when the focus is somewhat off-centre is something video conferencing designers have yet to take on board.

    The Haussmann-style grid cuts through any rational divisions between boxed-in subjects. Individuals are unable to spill-over into the space of others, except when they gossip on a backchannel or use the ‘vulgar’ theatrics of Zoom bombers who, early on in lockdown, carried out raids on open sessions until they were expelled.

    As Burleigh concludes, ‘the grid is rife with contradictions between what it promises and what it delivers.’ The individualized squares are the ‘second modernity’ post-industrial equivalent of a Le Corbusier housing nightmare: we are sentenced to live in our very own utopian prison cells. Within these condensed volcanic flows of violent energy, one may find tragic normalcy at best, while deep despair is the standard deviation.

    Platform paradigms

    A media-archaeological approach to Zoom would require a return to 1990s cyber phantasies of mass live castings such as Castanet – a system designed by dotcom ‘push technology’ start-up Marimba (‘a small group of Java Shakespeares’, according to Wired).19

    The idea was to make the Web to look more like TV by overthrowing the browser paradigm (which the app, in part, later succeeded in doing). Much like Zoom, Teams and Skype, the Castanet application had to be downloaded and installed in order maximize bandwidth capacity. Two decades later the basic choices are still more or less the same, with Microsoft (owner of Skype and Teams) still active as a key player.

    Each individual webcasting technology uses its own, proprietary mix of peer-to-peer and client-server technologies. Zoom, for instance, looks smooth because it compresses and stabilizes the signal of the webinar into one stream – instead of countless peer-to-peer ones that constantly need updating. It also pushes the user into a position of ‘interpassivity’: a passive audience mutes its audio and shuts up, much like a pupil listening to a teacher in the classroom.

    This is in contrast to free software peer-to-peer architectures (such as Jitsi) that go back to the free music exchange platform Kazaa. This is, ironically enough, also listed as one of the inspirations of Skype, which revolves around collaborative exchanges between equal partners. So, are we watching a spectacle as an audience or working together as a team? Are we permitted to vote, intervene, freely chat?
    The pandemic as pretext

    On the nettime mailinglist Michael Goldhaber notes that there is something inherently flawed about the user interface.

    ‘I usually stand and move around when lecturing, sometimes making large gestures. Just sitting at a desk or wherever is sure to be fatiguing. Doing this in a non-fatiguing way will require fundamentally re-thinking the system of camera, mic and screen with respect to participants.’20

    The sad and exhausting aspect of video conferencing can also be attributed to the ‘in-between’ status of laptops and desktop screens that are neither mobile and intimate, such as the smartphone with its Facetime interface, nor immersive such as Oculus Rift-type virtual reality systems.

    Zoom fatigue arises because it is so directly related to the ‘bullshit job’ reality of our office existences. What is supposed to be personal, turns out to be social. What is supposed to be social, turns out to be formal, boring and (most likely) unnecessary. This is only felt on those rare occasions when we experience flashes of exceptional intellectual insight and when existential vitality bursts through established technological boundaries.

    In her Anti-Video-Chat-Manifesto, digital art curator Michelle Kasprzak calls on us to turn off our video cameras.

    ‘DOWN with the tyranny of the lipstick and hairbrush ever beside the computer, to adjust your looks to fit expectations of looking “professional”. DOWN with the adjustment of lighting, tweaking of backgrounds, and endless futzing to look professional, normal, composed, and in a serene environment. DOWN with not knowing where to put your eyes and then recalling you need to gaze at the camera, the dead eye in your laptop lid.’21

    She calls upon us to

    ‘refuse to fake living in an IKEA showroom with recently-coiffed hair, refuse to download cutesy backgrounds which take up all our CPU and refuse to fake human presence.’

    Michelle also asks the question who else is present during our calls:

    ‘Hello NSA, hello Five Eyes, hello China, hello hacker who lives downstairs, hello University IT Department, hello random person joining the call.’

    Social media as medicine?

    Cultural anthropologist and research consultant Iveta Hajdakova, currently based in London, writes:

    ‘Last week I had three nightmares, all related to remote work. In one, I was fired because of something I said when I thought I was offline. In the second, my colleagues and I were trying to get into an office through a tiny well. We were hanging on ropes and one of them became paralysed, which I think was a dream version of a Zoom freeze. The third nightmare was about me losing track of my tasks. I woke up in panic, convinced I had forgotten to send an important email.’

    In the early days of lockdown, she struggled with headaches and migraines. Luckily, she writes, these have gone

    ‘perhaps due to a combination of factors, having a desk and a more ergonomic setup, being able to get out of the flat, limiting non-essential screen and headphone time, and adopting lots of small changes to my routine. The head and the ears are feeling much better now but something isn’t quite right, as the nightmares signal. I’ve started feeling disconnected and I think this is not merely a result of social isolation but of a more profound sense of disorientation.’

    Hajdakova is noticing a growing sense of confusion and uncertainty.

    ‘I’m losing a sense of what people at work are thinking, feeling, what they need and expect, what I’m doing well and what I can improve, which has a detrimental effect on my self-confidence. To be clear, everyone at work is providing these in abundance but with so much time passing without seeing my colleagues face-to-face, I feel like I am losing the ability to anchor our interactions in embodied human beings and shared physical environments.’

    Zoom is on its way to becoming a social environment acting like a re-mediation of office life gone by.

    ‘In the beginning, recreating the office experience over video calls worked because all of us still had the shared reference point,’ Hajdakova continues. ‘We were imitating the real office and it was a fun challenge we could all participate in. But the more we’re removed from the office in space and time, the more I’m forgetting what it is that we’re imitating.

    We’re creating something new, a simulacrum of the office. The difference between the two is: when I imitate the office, the office is still there and my efforts are judged on how close I get to resemble the real thing. But if I create a simulacrum of the office, I no longer need the real thing. To adapt to the simulacrum, I’ve started incorporating other aspects of my digital life into my remote working life so that my life and work online feels more whole… I don’t want to be just a face and voice on Zoom calls, an icon on Google docs, a few written sentences, I want to be a person… Social media helps so I’ve been posting on social media a lot.’

    Friedrich Nietzsche once noted:

    ‘When we are tired, we are attacked by ideas we conquered long ago’.

    When Facebook is experienced like a panacea, we know something must be deeply wrong. But why is this feeling of discontent so hard to pin down? The inert state is essentially regressive.
    No diagnosis, no cure

    ‘The more I try to be a real person, the more I’m getting trapped in the simulation of myself,’ Hajdakova says. ‘I’m communicating and sharing just to remind people I exist. No, it is to remind myself that I exist… Like McLuhan’s gadget lover, like Narcissus, staring at his own image.’

    We are losing a sense of reality, memory and confidence, Iveta argues,

    ‘but also losing a sense of understanding for other people. Just knowing that they feel X or Y but having no way of connecting with them through some kind of mutual understanding. In general, Zoom is traumatising for me because of the way my mind works – I need physical things, shared environments etc., otherwise, I lose not only confidence but also memory and motivation.’22

    Danish interface design researcher at Aarhus University, Søren Pold comments:

    ‘At your desktop you can change your view, mute your microphone and stop your camera or change background and filters, but you can’t see if others are looking at you and they can’t see if you’re looking at them. There’s only a slight overview and control of the sound you’re receiving and transmitting. I have often struggled with figuring out how to transmit sound from the videos I’m showing or with trying to ensure that the sound of the computer fan does not take over. Zoom becomes a layer, an extra operating system, that takes over my computer and leaves me struggling to get through to the other software I am aiming to control. Besides, Zoom prioritizes loud and deep voices to more quiet and higher pitch voices and thus creates a specific speaking order, prioritizing male speakers.’

    The new video filter that adds a mask, a funny hat, a beard or a lip colour demonstrates that Zoom is watching how you’re watching through face tracking technologies. This Zoomopticon, as Pold calls it, is the condition in which you cannot see if somebody or something is watching you, but it might be the case that you’re being watched by both people and corporate software.

    ‘Zoomopticon has taken over our meetings, teaching and institutions with a surveillance capitalistic business model without users being able to define precisely how this is being done.’23

    Harm reduction

    Is a different kind of Zoom possible? We have found the experience draining, yet coming together should empower. What’s wrong with these smooth high-res user interfaces, accompanied by the lo-res faces due to shaky connections? It’s been a dream televising events and social interactions, including our private lives. How can we possibly reverse the Zoom turn?

    Is the ‘live’ aspect important to us or should we rather return to pre-produced, watch-‘em-whenever videos? In education this is not a marginal issue. There is a real, time-honoured tension between the all-consuming exciting ‘liveness’ of ‘streaming’ and the detached flat coolness of being ‘online’.24

    Six months into lockdown, online conferences on spirituality and self-awareness began to offer counter-poison to their own never-ending sessions. They staged three-day Zoom events (twelve hours a day). They introduced Embodiment Circles,

    ‘a peer-led, free, online space to help us stay sane, healthy and connected in these uncertain and screen-filled times. The tried and tested 1-hour formula combines some form of gentle movement, easy meditation and sharing with others.’25

    The organisers promote

    ‘embodied self-care for online conferences. With such an amazing array of speakers and other offerings, the conference-FOMO is real. Let’s learn a few self-care practices that we can apply throughout the conference, so we arrive at the other end nourished, inspired, and well-worked… rather than drained, overwhelmed, or with a vague sense of dread and insufficiency.’26

    Given this context, should we be talking in terms of ‘harm reduction’?

    Online wellness is the craze of the day: our days on Zoom include breaks with live music performances, short yoga and body scan sessions. It is Bernard Stiegler’s pharmakon in a nutshell27: technology that kills us will also save us. If Zoom is the poison, online meditation is the antidote.

    After the Covid siege, we will proudly say: we survived Zoom. Our post-digital exodus needs no Zoom vaccine. Let us not medicalize our working conditions. In line with the demonstration on Amsterdam Museumplein (2 October 2020) where students demanded ‘physical education’, we must now fight for the right to gather, debate and learn in person. We need a strong collective commitment to reconvene ‘in real life’ – and soon. For it is no longer self-evident that the promise to meet again will be fulfilled.

    https://www.eurozine.com/the-anatomy-of-zoom-fatigue

    #zoom #fatigue #corps #anatomie #distanciel #videoscape #santé

  • Tout sur la bite – Binge Audio
    https://www.binge.audio/tout-sur-la-bite

    Dans cet épisode d’éducation sexuelle, on s’intéresse à l’anatomie et au fonctionnement du pénis, des testicules, de la prostate et du périnée.

    Du côté des vulves, on part de très, très loin dans l’ignorance, même si heureusement ces dernières années les initiatives se multiplient pour mieux connaître l’anatomie et le fonctionnement de l’appareil génital féminin (Connais toi toi-même de Clarence Edgar-Rosa, le livre Notre Corps Nous Mêmes, des comptes Instagram comme @thevulvagallery…). Les organes génitaux masculins restent eux aussi assez méconnus, parce qu’on a souvent la fausse impression qu’ils ont un fonctionnement simple et évident.

  • La Suicida punita - Bizzarro Bazar
    http://bizzarrobazar.com/2016/10/25/la-suicida-punita

    Padova, 1863.

    Una mattina, sotto un cielo color cenere, una giovane ragazza saltò nelle acque fangose del fiume che scorreva proprio dietro all’ospedale cittadino. Non conosciamo il suo nome, soltanto che lavorava come cucitrice, che aveva diciotto anni, e che il suo suicidio era con tutta probabilità dovuto a una delusione d’amore.
    Un triste ma anonimo episodio, uno di quelli che la Storia è incline a dimenticare – se non fosse accaduto, per così dire, nel posto e nel momento “giusti”.

    La città di Padova era sede di una delle più antiche Università della storia, ed era riconosciuta anche come la culla dell’anatomia. Fra gli altri, vi avevano insegnato medicina il grande Vesalio, Morgagni e Falloppio; nel 1595 Girolamo Fabrici d’Acquapendente vi aveva fatto costruire il primo teatro anatomico stabile, all’interno del Palazzo del Bo.
    Nel 1863, la cattedra di Anatomia Patologica era occupata da Lodovico Brunetti (1813-1899), il quale, come molti anatomisti del tempo, aveva messo a punto un suo personale metodo per preservare gli esemplari anatomici: la tannizzazione. Il processo consisteva nell’essiccare i campioni e iniettarli poi con acido tannico; si trattava di una procedura lunga e difficile (e come tale non avrà infatti molta fortuna dopo di lui), ma nonostante ciò dava risultati qualitativamente straordinari. Ho avuto l’opportunità di saggiare la consistenza di alcuni suoi preparati, e ancora oggi mantengono meglio di altri le dimensioni naturali, l’elasticità e la morbidezza dei tessuti originari.
    Ma torniamo alla nostra storia.

    Quando Brunetti seppe del suicidio della giovane, chiese che gli fosse portato il corpo, per i suoi esperimenti.
    Per prima cosa realizzò un calco in gesso del volto e della parte superiore del busto. Poi rimosse tutta la pelle dalla testa e dal collo, facendo particolare attenzione a preservare la bella chioma dorata della ragazza. Si accinse infine a trattare la pelle, sgrassandola con etere solforico e fissandola con la formula di acido tannico di sua invenzione. Una volta salvata la pelle dalla putrefazione, la stese sul calco in gesso che riproduceva i tratti somatici della giovane donna, e aggiunse alla sua creazione occhi in vetro e orecchie di gesso.

    Ma qualcosa non andava.
    L’anatomista si accorse che in diversi punti la pelle era lacerata. Erano gli strappi lasciati dagli uncini, usati dagli uomini per trascinare il corpo fuori dall’acqua, sull’argine del fiume.
    Brunetti, che evidentemente doveva essere un perfezionista, ricorse allora a un’ingegnosa trovata per mascherare quei segni.

    Piantò dei rametti vicino al busto e vi attorcigliò attorno dei serpenti tannizzati, posizionando attentamente i rettili come se stessero divorando il viso della ragazza. Fece colare un po’ di cera rossa per simulare degli spruzzi di sangue, ed ecco fatto: una perfetta allegoria della punizione riservata all’Inferno a coloro che avevano commesso il peccato mortale del suicidio.

    Chiamò questa sua composizione La suicida punita.

    Se questo fosse quanto, Brunetti potrebbe sembrare una sorta di psicopatico, e il suo lavoro sarebbe inaccettabile e spaventoso, sotto qualsiasi prospettiva etica.
    Ma la storia non finisce qui.
    Dopo aver completato il suo capolavoro, la prima cosa che fece Brunetti fu mostrarlo ai genitori della ragazza.
    E qui le cose prendono una piega davvero inaspettata.
    Perché i genitori della morta, invece di essere scioccati e orripilati, gli presentarono i loro complimenti per la precisione mostrata nel riprodurre le fattezze della loro figliola.
    “Sono riuscito a conservare la sua fisionomia tanto perfettamente – annotava orgoglioso Brunetti – che tutti hanno potuto riconoscerla”.

    Ma aspettate, c’è di più.
    Quattro anni più tardi, apriva a Parigi l’Esposizione Universale, e Brunetti chiese all’Università di assegnargli dei fondi per portare la sua Suicida punita in Francia. Ci aspetteremmo qualche tipo di imbarazzo da parte dell’Accademia, e invece non vi furono problemi a finanziare il viaggio a Parigi.
    All’Esposizione Universale migliaia di spettatori, provenienti da tutto il mondo per ammirare le ultime innovazioni tecnologiche e scientifiche, videro la Suicida punita. Cosa pensate che successe a Brunetti allora? Il suo lavoro causò forse uno scandalo, venne forse criticato o esecrato?
    Non proprio. Vinse il Grand Prix per le Arti e i Mestieri.

    Se a questo punto avvertite una leggera vertigine, be’, probabilmente fate bene.
    Considerando questa sconcertante storia, rimaniamo con due opzioni soltanto: o tutti nel mondo intero, Brunetti incluso, erano palesemente pazzi; oppure dev’esserci un enorme scarto di percezione fra il nostro sguardo sulla morte e quello della gente dell’epoca.
    Mi colpisce sempre come non ci sia bisogno di allontanarsi troppo sull’asse temporale per provare questo tipo di vertigine: gli eventi di cui parliamo risalgono a meno di 150 anni fa, eppure fatichiamo a capire come ragionavano i nostri bis-bisnonni.
    Certo, gli antropologi ci ricordano che la rimozione culturale della morte e la medicalizzazione del cadavere sono processi avvenuti in tempi relativamente recenti, cominciati all’incirca a inizio Novecento. Ma finché non ci troviamo faccia a faccia con un “oggetto” difficile come questo, non riusciamo veramente ad afferrare la distanza abissale che ci separa dai nostri antenati, l’intensità di questo cambiamento di sensibilità.
    La Suicida punita è, in questo senso, un complesso e meraviglioso indizio di come i confini culturali e i tabù possano variare nell’arco di un brevissimo periodo di tempo.
    Perfetto esempio di intersezione fra arte (che incontri o meno il nostro gusto moderno), anatomia (serviva in fin dei conti a illustrare una tecnica conservativa) e sacro (in quanto allegoria dell’Aldilà), è uno dei reperti più impegnativi tra i molti ancora visibili nel Museo “Morgagni” di Anatomia Patologica di Padova.

    Il volto anonimo di questa giovane ragazza, fissato per sempre in un’agonia tormentata nella sua teca di vetro, non può non suscitare una risposta emotiva fortissima. Ci forza a considerare molte essenziali questioni relative al nostro passato, al nostro stesso rapporto con la morte, al modo in cui intendiamo trattare i nostri morti in futuro, all’etica dell’esposizione museale di resti umani, e via dicendo.
    Proprio in virtù della ricchezza e fecondità dei dilemmi che pone, mi piace pensare che la sua morte non sia stata del tutto vana.

    #misogynie #anatomie #suicide

  • Ca a l’air intéressant, je lirai ca plus tard...

    Procrastination : c’est la taille (de l’amygdale) qui compte
    Pierre Ropert, France Culture, le 29 aout 2018
    https://www.franceculture.fr/sciences/procrastination-cest-la-taille-de-lamygdale-qui-compte

    Selon des chercheurs allemands, notre capacité à la procrastination dépend beaucoup de la taille de l’amygdale, une zone du cerveau impliquée dans notre capacité à la prise de décision.

    Non, les plus procrastinateurs d’entre nous ne sont pas ceux qui ont le plus gros poil dans la main, mais la plus grosse amygdale dans le cerveau, à en croire une équipe de chercheurs allemands. Dans une étude publiée dans la revue Psychological Science, intitulée The Structural and Functional Signature of Action Control, les scientifiques racontent comment ils ont cherché à comprendre si la procrastination peut trouver une explication anatomique, et non pas uniquement psychologique.

    Pour ce faire, les chercheurs ont soumis 264 volontaires à une IRM, après leur avoir fait remplir un questionnaire sur leur tendance à remettre ou non les choses au lendemain. Les scientifiques se sont attardés sur l’amygdale et le cortex cingulaire, deux zones du cerveaux liées à la prise de décision. Ils ont ainsi constaté que non seulement l’amygdale était plus grosse chez les personnes les plus "paresseuses", mais également que, chez elles, les connexions entre les deux zones étaient moins importantes.

    Or l’amygdale a pour rôle de nous prévenir des conséquences négatives de nos actions, quand le cortex cingulaire, lui, utilise les données envoyées par l’amygdale pour choisir les actions à accomplir. Il "priorise" ainsi certaines actions sur les autres, ainsi que les émotions ressenties. En d’autres termes : si certaines personnes ont tendance à procrastiner, c’est parce que leur amygdale, plus développée, leur fait voir avant tout les conséquences négatives de leurs actions. Et si la connexion entre le cortex cingulaire et l’amygdale est plus faible, alors il devient plus difficile de choisir quelles actions réaliser.

    Heureusement, si avoir une amygdale plus importante ou un cortex cingulaire un peu moins connecté tiennent du péché capital, la paresse n’est plus si mal vue. Ainsi, une étude de la Florida Gulf Coast University stipule que les personnes ayant un QI élevé sont plus paresseuses que les autres, alors qu’une autre étude menée par le professeur Eisuke Hasegawa montrait que les éléments considérés comme paresseux sont nécessaires à la société.

    En février 2018, l’émission "Une histoire particulière" consacrait deux documentaires à la procrastination. Dans l’épisode "Cherchons F/H paresseux pour un poste de directeur", la psychologue Gwenaëlle Hamelin, spécialiste du stress au travail et du burn out, expliquait ainsi que "faire moins est une stratégie gagnante". Et Bill Gates l’affirmait lui-même : "Je choisis une personne paresseuse pour un travail difficile, car une personne paresseuse va trouver un moyen facile de le faire."

    Déjà en 2012, dans l’émission La Grande Table, il était question de l’ouvrage du philosophe américain John Perry, La Procrastination : l’art de reporter au lendemain, où il développait un plaidoyer en faveur de la procrastination structurée, un "défaut" susceptible de transformer son récipiendaire en foudre de guerre. Le philosophe Mathieu Potte-Bonneville voyait dans ce livre "une tentative de déculpabilisation de la procrastination" : "John Perry se prétend procrastinateur, et essaie de voir comment il est possible de s’en servir. Il explique qu’explorer sa propre procrastination lui a permis de retrouver l’estime de lui-même et l’estime des autres. La procrastination, c’est aussi une expérience profondément désespérante, un dégoût de soi, un revers noir de la satisfaction du travail bien fait, et le livre constitue à cet égard une tentative de déculpabilisation. Il s’agit de montrer que le procrastinateur est extraordinairement actif contrairement à ce qu’il croit, car pour ne pas faire ce qu’il a à faire, eh bien il fait tout un ensemble d’autres choses. John Perry produit une méthode de procrastination structurée, qui permet de classer les corvées par ordre d’importance, et de se consacrer aux tâches les moins importantes pour éviter de s’occuper des plus urgentes. Ce livre ne se veut pas profond, il n’est pas question d’une recherche des causes. On l’affirme comme un fait, un peu comme la différence entre gaucher et droitier. Le moralisme se pose une question que résume Ovide : « Je vois le meilleur, je l’approuve, et je fais le pire ». Le procrastinateur est celui qui sait que ça n’est pas bien de procrastiner, d’ailleurs il n’en est pas heureux, mais il n’arrive pas à faire autrement. On peut l’expliquer par l’environnement dans lequel nous sommes pris et qui nous dit qu’il faut impérativement se réaliser et prendre des initiatives. Aujourd’hui, on a une épidémie de dépressions liée à ce que l’injonction dans le monde du travail est : soyez proactif. Plutôt que de sombrer dans la dépression, on développe une activité frénétique, dont on peut se demander si elle est du côté de la productivité ou de l’improductivité. Plus que l’absentéisme, le présentéisme en entreprise est un gros problème car les gens sont là mais font autre chose que ce qu’ils devraient faire. Si la philosophie permet d’échapper à la procrastination, la littérature permet d’en explorer les affres et l’expérience. C’est Marcel Proust qui en parle le premier : La recherche du temps perdu, qu’est-ce que c’est sinon l’immense odyssée de quelqu’un qui n’a pas vécu ce qu’il avait à vivre, et qui ne peut le vivre qu’en décidant de l’écrire ?"

    Articles cités:

    The physical sacrifice of thinking: Investigating the relationship between thinking and physical activity in everyday life
    Todd McElroy, David L Dickinson, Nathan Stroh, and Christopher A Dickinson
    Journal of Health Psychology 21:1750-1757 (2015)
    http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/1359105314565827

    Lazy workers are necessary for long-term sustainability in insect societies
    Eisuke Hasegawa, Yasunori Ishii, Koichiro Tada, Kazuya Kobayashi & Jin Yoshimura
    Scientific Reports 6:20846 (2016)
    https://www.nature.com/articles/srep20846

    The Structural and Functional Signature of Action Control
    Caroline Schlüter, Christoph Fraenz, Marlies Pinnow, Patrick Friedrich, Onur Güntürkün, and Erhan Genç
    Psychological Science, in press (2018)
    http://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0956797618779380

    #Procrastination #Paresse #Science #Psychologie vs. #Anatomie #Amygdale

  • Clit’info par Odile Fillod
    https://odilefillod.wixsite.com/clitoris

    Parce que le clitoris est encore mal connu, vous trouverez dans ces pages quelques éléments d’histoire le concernant, des informations sur son anatomie, des outils associés, ainsi qu’une liste commentée d’informations erronées ou douteuses circulant à son sujet. Pour plus d’infos sur le site et sa bibliographie, voir la page A PROPOS.

    Bonne exploration !

    #clitoris #féminisme #femmes #anatomie #sexe #sexualité

  • Clitoris : pourquoi avoir attendu 2017 pour le représenter dans les manuels scolaires ?
    https://www.franceculture.fr/societe/clitoris-pourquoi-avoir-attendu-2017-pour-le-representer-dans-les-manu

    Pour la première fois, le #clitoris a été correctement dessiné dans le nouveau livre de SVT des éditions Magnard, destiné à entrer dans le cartable des collégiens à la rentrée prochaine. Avec sa double arche interne de 10 cm de long. Cette représentation vient briser un tabou anatomique de longue date. Pourtant, les premières représentations anatomiques correctes du clitoris remontent à 1600... Retour sur l’histoire et les raisons de cette longue #omerta.

    #femmes #anatomie #sexualité #sexologie #plaisir #masturbation_réciproque #orgasme #Freud #protestantisme

    • Grâce à seenthis, j’ai appris qu’il manque un bout dans cette histoire, discutée aussi ici :
      https://seenthis.net/messages/542035

      C’est certes Freud qui a popularisé ce mépris du clitoris vs. le vagin, mais il avait piqué cette idée à un marin français du XIXème siècle, médecin amateur, Pierre Garnier :

      #Sylvie_Chaperon, « « Le trône des plaisirs et des voluptés » : anatomie politique du clitoris, de l’Antiquité à la fin du xixe siècle », Cahiers d’histoire. Revue d’histoire critique, 118:41-60 (2012).
      https://seenthis.net/messages/389255

      Contrairement à ce qu’affirme Thomas Laqueur, Freud n’est pas le premier à s’opposer radicalement à la tradition triséculaire du clitoris comme siège du plaisir. Il ne fait que reprendre à son compte des conceptions formulées dans les années 1880.

      En France, Pierre Garnier est le premier médecin à se livrer à une sape consciencieuse de ce qu’il nomme la « doctrine de la toute puissance du clitoris ». Ce dernier a tellement été oublié de l’historiographie qu’il a été systématiquement confondu avec le médecin homonyme plus connu, Paul Garnier.

      Pierre Garnier n’est pas un anatomiste, il n’a jamais réalisé une seule dissection. Après une carrière dans la marine marchande, il devient sur le tard un spécialiste des troubles de la sexualité qui s’appuie, du moins le prétend-il, sur des centaines d’observations personnelles. C’est aussi un vulgarisateur prolixe : il publie près de dix opus aux titres aguicheurs qui se répètent mutuellement et se vendent très bien.

      De livre en livre, il réhabilite le vagin comme organe sensoriel et tend à diviser les femmes en deux catégories. C’est dans le vagin que « s’élabore toute la sensation progressivement accrue et de là aussi, [que] s’élance l’irradiation terminale du spasme vénérien sans que le clitoris paraisse y prendre aucune part ». Inversement, « faire de cet organe minuscule, véritable bouton insensible, le plus souvent tant qu’il n’a pas été touché, ébranlé artificiellement, le foyer érogène le plus actif, c’est accuser implicitement toutes les filles d’onanisme antérieur ou de libertinage plus tard ». Les tenants de cette thèse auraient « surtout vécu avec des femmes galantes, qui connaissent et emploient de préférence ce rudiment de l’amour » (1889).

      Cette dualité orgasmique sera reprise ensuite par bien des auteurs, avec ou sans les jugements moraux afférents. À la fin du XIX e siècle, l’opinion médicale dominante est que la majorité des femmes se désintéressent du coït. « La frigidité est tellement fréquente chez la femme, qu’elle peut à peine être considérée comme un état morbide », résume par exemple Auguste Lutaud, médecin adjoint à Saint-Lazare puis à Lourcine.

      #historicisation #histoire #femmes #Odile_Buisson #Pierre_Garnier #plaisir #vaginal #clitoridien

  • Un clitoris imprimé en 3D, une première en France
    http://www.makery.info/2016/07/26/un-clitoris-imprime-en-3d-une-premiere-en-france

    Un bond en avant pour l’éducation, la science et l’égalité… Pour la première fois en France, un clitoris à taille réelle a été modélisé et imprimé en 3D par la chercheuse Odile Fillod au fablab Carrefour numérique.

    Odile Fillod ne fait pas que tenir son blog… :)

    #clitoris #anatomie #éducation #femmes #sexe #sexualité #science #Odile_Fillod

  • Brain-immune system connection lymphatic vessel - Business Insider
    http://www.businessinsider.com/brain-immune-system-connection-lymphatic-vessel-2015-6

    Antoine Louveau was looking through his microscope at thin membranes that protect the brain when he saw something that absolutely shouldn’t be there: a lymphatic vessel.

    (...)

    Experts greeted the resulting study, published Monday in the journal Nature, with a mixture of excitement and caution. The main hurdles: Other researchers must replicate the work and confirm the vessel exists in humans, since the study primarily examined mouse brains.

    #anatomie #physiologie #cerveau

  • Ceci n’est pas un beau-livre
    http://www.laviedesidees.fr/Ceci-n-est-pas-un-beau-livre.html

    Situé au XVIe siècle, l’ouvrage de S. Kusukawa analyse la première élaboration d’un régime propre à l’image scientifique dans les savoirs d’observation, en #botanique et en #anatomie notamment. Il montre comment ce nouveau régime de l’image s’avère capital dans la genèse des sciences modernes.

    Livres & études

    / #image, botanique, anatomie, #Renaissance, #livre, #science

    #Livres_&_études

  • « Cliteracy » de Sophia Wallace : tout ce que vous pensiez savoir sur le #clitoris est probablement faux
    http://www.huffingtonpost.fr/2013/09/01/clitoris-sexe-orgasme-sophia-wallace_n_3851364.html

    « Il est affligeant et choquant de penser que scientifiquement, le clitoris n’a été découvert qu’en 1998, a-t-elle déclaré au Huffington Post US, dans son studio de Brooklyn, la semaine dernière. Mais en réalité, quand on voit l’ignorance qui règne au sujet du corps de la femme, on aurait tout aussi bien pu ne jamais le découvrir du tout. »

    Le clitoris, décrit comme la seule partie du corps humain uniquement dédiée au plaisir, n’est pas qu’un simple petit « bouton » caché entre les cuisses des femmes, mais un organe principalement interne dont les gens ne savent pas grand-chose

    [...]

    « La cliteracy, c’est de ne pas voir son #corps contrôlé ou réglementé. Ne pas avoir accès au #plaisir, qui est un droit de naissance, est un acte politique fort ».

    En jaune :

    #femmes #sexe #anatomie #orgasme

  • La chirurgie des petites lèvres ou le fantasme de la #vulve idéale

    Même si la plupart des femmes n’ont pas l’intention de laisser leur vulve entre les mains d’un chirurgien (avec les risques que cela comporte de cicatrisation, de modification de la sensibilité, de déception (10% dans une étude française)), il est important que les #femmes prennent conscience de la grande variabilité naturelle des vulves et des #clitoris. C’est le premier pas pour se réconcilier avec son aspect intime. Aimer sa vulve est en effet, selon une étude du Pr Debra Herbenick parue il y a deux ans dans l’International Journal of Sexual Health, prédicteur d’une plus grande satisfaction sexuelle. Paradoxalement, les hommes sont souvent plus avisés de la variabilité du visage vulvaire, dès lors qu’ils ont connu plusieurs partenaires. Surtout, le fait que les petites lèvres dépassent des grandes lèvres, qu’elles soient plus foncées et de tailles différentes (asymétriques) n’influe pas sur la satisfaction sexuelle ou l’excitation du partenaire, contrairement à ce que de nombreuses #femmes pensent. On ne peut que se réjouir de voir les militantes d’Osez le #féminisme mettre bientôt (en juin) le feu aux poudres en lançant une campagne sur le clitoris qui, n’en doutons pas, rappellera à tous la nécessité de poursuivre les recherches sur l’#anatomie féminine.

    | Magpatients
    http://www.magpatients.org/sexologie-urologie/la-chirurgie-des-petites-lèvres-ou-le-fantasme-de-la-vulve-idéale.html
    Forcément, l’uniformisation des monts chauves allait déboucher sur la normalisation des vulves... C’est quand même gravement n’importe quoi !

    « Il y a un rejet du sexe féminin qui m’effraie. Entre le diktat de l’épilation intégrale, et maintenant le rabotage des petites lèvres, il y a vraiment un fort désir de ramener le #sexe de la femme à une fente, lisse, comme l’orifice d’une tirelire. Une fente de poupée #plastique, propre, lisse, imberbe ». Voilà une nouvelle étape vers le corps artificiel féminin idéal (pour qui ?) pour les femmes, à qui l’on faisait déjà miroiter des mensurations impossibles à atteindre ! Ainsi la fameuse poupée barbie aurait-elle, si elle prenait vie et taille humaine, des mensurations de 95-56-82. Même monstruosité pour Lara Croft, l’héroïne de jeux vidéos, qui fait un télégénique 90-60-90...des chiffres presque atteints par son incarnation au cinéma, Angelina Jolie, avec 90C-65-90 ! Tout cela serait risible si cela ne générait pas une image du corps perturbée chez certaines femmes qui mesurent leur écart (inévitable) à ce corps idéal, pourtant irréaliste. Or, une image du corps diminuée perturbe également l’estime de Soi (et réciproquement). Sans compter que cela retentit aussi sur la #sexualité !"