Monday, January 08, 2007

Although the premise sounded promising, The Beauty Academy of Kabul was a bust.

The American women involved in the facilitation of the beauty school were awful, simply awful. At numerous points I literally gasped at their audacious cultural insensitivity: how they scoffed at the Afghani women for adhering to the gender roles prescriptive of their society, how they continually judged those women by the incompatible standards of western culture.

But, aside from the troubling ineptitude of the American "teachers," there were two Afghani women who had immigrated to the US in the 70s, who returned to help establish the school, who seemed to be genuinely interested in teaching. Also, the students were quite endearing, and the shots of the decimated Kabul landscape are still haunting me now as I write this.


To perk up the mood, click here to check out Thirteen Photographs That Changed the World, including Philippe Halsman's super sweet "DalĂ­ Atomicus":