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Designing Bodies From a Place of Empowerment

Another great talk from TED.com. I posted it initially on Twitter but the video has a place here. The content is fantastic and far-ranging, including graphics, design, aesthetics. Ultimately it is an example of how design can affect lives for the better.

Aimee Mullins and her 12 pairs of legs: TED

Athlete, actor and activist Aimee Mullins talks about her prosthetic legs — she’s got a dozen amazing pairs — and the superpowers they grant her: speed, beauty, an extra 6 inches of height … Quite simply, she redefines what the body can be.

About Aimee Mullins

A record-breaker at the Paralympic Games in 1996, Aimee Mullins has built a career as a model, actor and activist for women, sports and the next generation of prosthetics. more


I first knowingly met my grandparents when I was about five, we had returned from Singapore. No-one thought to remind me that Granny only had one leg, I suppose my parents thought I may have remembered from seeing her when I was about two, who knows? The little pattern of air vents on her calf certainly intrigued and perplexed this five year old.

Granny was a Scot, there were many shortbread tins around her Portsmouth terrace which she rarely left, not even to go to the shop at the end of the road. There was one exception to this, if she left the house at all it was usually to go to Canada. Yes, being a true Scot she had a sister who had emigrated there.

It would appear that as a young woman Granny had some form of blood poisoning from a sore on her ankle and the dye from her stockings. This resulted in the loss of her leg below the knee and a far greater loss, her freedom.

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