Lotte Herrlich

This postcard dating from 1934 forms a rather obscured image of Lotte Herrlich’s (1883-1956) photographic oeuvre. This is due to the fact that, after the rise of Nazism, her work was regarded as “degenerate” and has since largely been forgotten. Lotte Herrlich was one of the most important nude photographers of the 1920s. She started […]

Alice Ball

Alice Ball (1892-1916) was the first African American woman to earn a PhD in Chemistry in 1915. At the age of 24 she became a research chemist and instructor at the University of Hawaii. Alice Ball is most known for developing an effective cure for leprosy – a disease that had haunted humanity for hundreds […]

The Rose Thorn

A woman gets into a heated argument with her vulva. The two decide to part, but to reunite again soon. This is a simplified version of the plot of a medieval “vulva monologue,” the 13th-century (!) German poem usually referred to as “The Rose Thorn.” In 2019, experts made a discovery in the abbey library […]

Hidden Mother Photography

These unbelievable images attest to a 19th-century photographic genre, later known as “hidden mother photography,” that rose to popularity during the Victorian era. At the time, photography was seen as a respectable profession for middle class women, which is why we can assume that many of these pictures were taken by women. Due to long […]

“Si”

In 1974 the Italian singer Gigliola Cinquetti entered the Eurovision Song Contest for the second time, after winning it ten years prior with her hit „Non ho l’età“. While her 1960s song talks about a girl being too young to date, her later song “Si” speaks of a mature woman who fully commits to a […]

Facekini

The Facekini is a Chinese beauty accessory invented by Zhang Shifan in 2004, used to protect against sunlight while swimming, as well as jellyfish stings and sea weed. The name is a reference to the Burkini (a combination of the words Burka and Bikini) which is mainly worn in the Middle East by religious women […]

Erwina Barzychowska

While doing research for my current theater project—a stage adaptation of Günter Grass’s iconic novel “The Tin Drum”—I came across the tragic story of 10-year-old Erwina Barzychowska. Erwina was the daughter of the caretaker at the Danzig post office, where he and his family lived in an apartment. On September 1st, 1939, World War II […]

Aunt Luisa

Recently my mother went to a small venetian village in Northern Italy, to attend her cousin’s funeral. This is where my grandparents lived as a young couple, together with their first-born child – my aunt Luisa – before emigrating to France in 1951. My mother (born later in France) took pictures of the village and […]

Rosemary Kennedy

Kennedy, sister of JFK and Robert Kennedy, was born in 1918, when the specter of influenza was haunting the world. As a result, doctors were in high demand and overworked. When Rose Kennedy went into labor with Rosemary at her house in Brookline, MA, no doctor was present. The midwife therefore forcefully pushed Rosemary, her […]

The Merkin

A merkin is a pubic wig worn by all sexual identities, made out of animal or human hair (sometimes even real pubic hair), which is either tied or glued onto the body. The merkin came into fashion in the 17th century, but prevails until today. The word merkin first appeared in the 15th century and […]

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