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Faces and Races

Hi guys!

I know that the class is now officially over (sad!), but I thought I would share this with you anyway. When I visited the “alllooksame” website, I decided to take the identification test out of curiosity, and got a terrible score. I then remembered another website I had found a couple of years ago, called “The Postnational Monitor”, and the series I recalled is called “World of Averages”. Among other things (lame political stuff), it contains series of images from all over the world which are composite photographs- basically, they will take the average dimensions of 10-30 faces and combine them into a single image. In addition to containing male and female averages for many different countries, there are additional minor series that look at Hollywood as well as Bollywood actor composites.

The site is intriguing and troubling at the same time. On one hand, the pictures and the process of editing them is really cool. One well-documented side effect of averaged faces in general is that they tend to be more beautiful than individual faces, and this series is no exception. Another thing that I personally noticed is that, like the alllooksame test, I could not reliably tell each country of origin based on the mere appearance of peoples’ faces.

On the other hand, the site produces the same sense of discomfort when viewing the images, because it places the viewer in the position of categorizing people into subgroups based on some notion of “race” -notions that don’t even turn out to be correct (again, personal experience, although alllooksame reports an average of 7/18 correct answers, which is still quite low).

I encourage you all to investigate the website and form your own conclusions!

Link

http://yellowyellowfever.wordpress.com

My solo blog Yellowyellowfever.wordpress.com, is about investigating the phenomenon of Asian Fetish/Yellow Fever as I am sure many of you, if not all, have heard of this term before. This project serves as an educational purpose for myself as I attempt to understand the basis behind this particular “interest” and how it was created. Using my following resources I intend to argue that stereotypical media depictions of Asian women generate and perpetuate the distinct phenomenon of Asian Fetishism and also critique media/internet examples of “Asian Fetish”. If you want to learn more check out my blog! I would suggest you read from the bottom to the top for optimal understanding!