July 27th, 2017

Agoraphobic Traveller, globetrotting from home via Google streetview

http://www.metafilter.com/168444/Agoraphobic-Traveller-globetrotting-from-home-via-Google-streetview

Jacqui Kenny is searching for the perfect Google street photo (Wired), as seen on her Instagram feed, Agoraphobic Traveller/ Streetview Portraits. Kenny especially likes when you can see the Google car's shadow or dust kicked up as it rolls by. "It gives it an otherworldly feel," she says. At first, she would pick locales more or less at random, poking around the streets of faraway towns and taking screenshots whenever she stumbled upon a striking image. After a while, she began seeking out certain kinds of views: arid regions with clear horizons; latitudes where she found that the sunlight fell at a dramatic slant. (New Yorker)

Her Instagram name isn't just a name (Nat Geo). As noted in the New Yorker article by Andrea DenHoed:
Kenny, who is friendly and witty in conversation, suffers from anxiety that, on a bad day, can make it difficult to leave the house. Contrary to a common misconception, agoraphobia is often less a fear of open spaces than it is a fear of losing control. Sometimes, she has difficulty going to aisles of the grocery store that are too far from the exit, and getting on a plane is a huge ordeal. To go to her sister's wedding, in New Zealand, she told me, required months of therapy beforehand. The Street View project has become a way for Kenny to visit places that she could never go to herself—the more remote, the better, she said. It's also a practice that involves a tension between control and surrender: she has the ability to parachute into anywhere in the world, but her views and angles and lighting are in Google's hands. "So many times," she said, "I'll see something in the distance that looks amazing, but then the car stops or something gets in the way. It happens ninety per cent of the time. I always have to be prepared for that disappointment."

Now is that a real poncho or is that a Sears poncho?

http://www.metafilter.com/168445/Now-is-that-a-real-poncho-or-is-that-a-Sears-poncho

Cultural Appropriation: Whose culture is it anyway, and what about hybridity? (Sonny Hallett, Medium)
I was on-board, more or less, with the anti-cultural appropriation arguments when they mostly centred around condemning the use of racist stereotypes in halloween and fancy dress costumes. Dressing up as 'default Indian woman' or 'stock Chinese man' almost always has the unwholesome whiff of racist cartoons about them, often only serving to promote absurd stereotypes, disrespectful by nature. If I had a penny for every time a kid in school or in the park pulled the corners of their eyes up and shouted "ching chong chang" at me, for instance, or for every "oh but what about maths?" comment I received when I said that my favourite subjects were art and literature... Even as a kid I wanted this stuff challenged. But I also never for a second believed that the way to challenge these instances of ignorance, and ignorant othering, (which is essentially what they are) is to fence off areas of culture to be the sole preserve of specific peoples, based on some kind of birthright.