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The Weekly Round-Up: Love Drugs, Artistic Misery and Refraining from Celebrating Choice With A Biscuit

Each week we share five exciting and provocative ideas, links and articles making waves on the internet.

THE GENTLEMEN OF GRINDR REMEMBER THE HOLOCAUST, BUT MISS THE POINT SOMEWHAT

Jennifer Mills, writing for Overland’s blog Loudspeaker, alerted the world to a British blog which collects Grindr profiles featuring profile pictures of dapper young men taken inside the labyrinthine cement depths of Berlin’s Holocaust Memorial. The result, Mills points out, is a strange and sad forgetting. Approximately 15 000 gays and lesbians were victims of the Holocaust. Is it not strange trying to pick up in the middle of the memorial created to pay tribute to their suffering? The blog, she says, is “a portrait of a human failing. As we have slowly become ‘users’ instead of people, we have carved out new public spaces, falsely distinct from physical spaces, and in these new spaces, the past cannot infiltrate.”

FEMINISM AND THE POWER OF CHOICE

Clementine Ford wrote another fantastic article this week exploring the celebration of choice in modern feminsm.”Choice and the ability to freely make it is central to feminist ideology; but it doesn’t follow that all choices should be accepted as feminist acts and therefore given a free pass.” She points to Katy Perry, who has openly distanced herself from feminism, and radio host Jackie O, as women whose choices might be in need of some scrutiny. “Celebrating choice as a feminist act in and of itself,” she writes, “regardless of what that choice might be, paints a very limited and patronising view of women’s rights and capabilities. We’re not children who need to be rewarded with a biscuit every time we have the fortitude to choose our clothes for the day.

TAKING LOVE DRUGS MIGHT BE A MORAL OBLIGATION

The Atlantic this week published a fascinating interview with Oxford ethicist Brian Earp. In the wake of much medical jiggery pokery and pharmacological tinkering, it is increasingly likely that we could design drugs to make us more affectionate and loving, or indeed do the opposite. Earp argues that couples should be able to use ‘love drugs’, and in fact in some cases – like the breakdown of a marriage of people with young children – people may be morally obligated to do so.

WHY ARE CREATIVE PEOPLE MORE DEPRESSED THAN EVERYONE ELSE?

ArtsHub this week published a feature exploring a question that people rarely ask but which is evident to just about anybody. Artists, writers and indeed all creative people are 15% to 50% more likely to have depression, bipolar or commit suicide than the general population. Why? And does that mean that profound misery is the price we must pay for art?

UKRAINIAN WOMEN’S RIGHTS ACTIVISTS PROTEST AS ONLY LADIES CAN

The Guardian this week featured a video of the increasingly vocal Ukrainian women’s rights group, Femen, protesting at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. One of their primary tactics is protesting topless. At Davos they painted their chests with SOS Davos to call attention to the male domination of the world economy and the poverty of women across the globe.