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…what Hampshire is really good for is teaching you to be self-reliant and self-motivated, and I discovered that I had it in me to have a dream, make it a goal, and make it happen. That’s what I experienced with my final thesis project, In My Genes, which was a documentary about the experience of being a person with albinism in Kenya. I don’t think I would have discovered that kind of self-sufficiency had I gone to a more structured school, where people told you what to learn, how to be, and how to go about it.

Lupita Nyong’o

Check out the full Vanity Fair interview here!

(via hampshireadmissions)

My 5-year-old insists that Bilbo Baggins is a girl.

The first time she made this claim, I protested. Part of the fun of reading to your kids, after all, is in sharing the stories you loved as a child. And in the story I knew, Bilbo was a boy. A boy hobbit. (Whatever that entails.)

But my daughter was determined. She liked the story pretty well so far, but Bilbo was definitely a girl. So would I please start reading the book the right way? I hesitated. I imagined Tolkien spinning in his grave. I imagined mean letters from his testy estate. I imagined the story getting as lost in gender distinctions as dwarves in the Mirkwood.

Then I thought: What the hell, it’s just a pronoun. My daughter wants Bilbo to be a girl, so a girl she will be. And you know what? The switch was easy. Bilbo, it turns out, makes a terrific heroine. She’s tough, resourceful, humble, funny, and uses her wits to make off with a spectacular piece of jewelry. Perhaps most importantly, she never makes an issue of her gender—and neither does anyone else.

Bilbo Baggins is a girl: Until children’s books catch up to our daughters, rewrite them. (via sashimigrade)
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