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The liberatory power of makeup

Lisa Eldridge’s first book, ‘Face Paint: The Story of Makeup’ is a reminder of human social obligations; of wanting to belong and feel accepted



This book review/feature was first published for The Hans India

"Makeup, as we know it, has only been commercially available in the last 100 years, but applying decoration to the face and body may be one of the oldest global social practices.”
London-based makeup artiste, Lisa Eldridge has added another shade to her palette of achievements with her first book, ‘Face Paint: The Story of Makeup’.

In ‘Face Paint’, the red carpet specialist with over 20 years of experience in the industry reveals the history of makeup, from Egyptian ages through the Victorian age and the golden era of Hollywood, and surveys the science of cosmetics for what lies ahead in it. She narrates a story tracing the origins of makeup to its development over centuries citing anthropological, psychological, evolutionary and sexual significances as she uncovers the answer …

Knowledge - A Transition?

'The road to knowledge begins with the turn of a page.' - Anonymous

How rightly has someone said this. Those of us who read (and to some extent those of us who do not) know this, for a fact. The obvious reason being its experience in our lives since the day we started to read up to today.



When one thinks of knowledge, the mental image of scores of books neatly stacked or randomly scattered builds up in the mind’s eye. This image provides ample amount of pleasure to the person, provided one is truly intending to gain knowledge. This might come out as an exaggeration, but believe me, while I am writing about this, I can view stacks of books, old and new, arranged neatly in rows. Imagining the smell of it all makes me so delighted, that I wish to stop writing and run off to a library!

However, in the recent past this has come to change. Recently, I read an article in The Times of India – Education Times, dated 25th April 2011, titled ‘Knowledge is Power’. Without going much into the details of the article, what captured my interest was the picture associated with the article.

 
It struck me that though knowledge in itself is always the same; the mode of obtaining it has (perhaps) changed. For years, we thought (or had the impression) that the internet is a source of information and not a source of knowledge. This has unmistakably changed. In support of this, we see examples such as students referring the internet during their project works at schools or colleges. The material that is unavailable to them in their texts, they find it on the internet. I myself turn to the internet for (yes) knowledge now!
  
E-reading and e-writing have become so a common thing now. Heck! I am writing this article on my MS-Word and not in my journal! (Yeah! I’m one of those unlucky ones who have fallen prey to e-writing. Thankfully, I do not e-read!)

But why fume over this one might ask? No reason at all of course, I say. Try as one might to shut them self from this change, it will shine out of the darkness they have created by closing their eyes to it. ‘Change is the only phenomenon permanent in this world’. Accept it to understand it.

The saying now might be:

The road to knowledge begins with the click of a mouse

Cheers!

PS: Reading and drinking tea are two things that I prefer to do in the traditional way! :-)

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