Italy: The place to go for delectable cuisine, breathtaking culture and that creeping sensation that you’re living in worst of the 1950s. From Berlusconi’s many, many gaffs to the abuse thrown at black footballers, news from Italy has made us despair on many occasions.
The latest reason to shake our heads comes from Italian health minister, Beatrice Lorenzin, and her nosy insistence on butting into women’s lives to increase the birth rate in the country. Earlier this month, Lorenzin launched a series of posters to promote Fertility Day, which took place on 22nd September.
The posters featured women with hourglasses to demonstrate their ever dwindling biological clock and included slogans such as “Beauty knows no age. Fertility does” and “Reproducing is the best way for young couples to be creative”.
The Italian government and Lorenzin were roundly mocked for the sexist and ageist campaign, which was reminiscent of the fascist slogans of 1930s that encouraged women to have more children for the country.
Like most people stress can get the best of me. Project after project, priority after priority: it can eventually become too much. I started to look for ways to tend to my depleted emotional wellbeing and put an end to the monotonous cycle of stress I had become caught up in; but what should I choose? Yoga just confused me and meditating made me sleepy. I thought I was at a loss until I discovered a local women’s singing group.
While it may be a pastime usually relegated to the stage or the shower, depending on the singer, singing is proven to be incredibly beneficial to your mental and physical well being. The Sidney De Haan Research Centre for Arts and Health recommends singing as a way of promoting mental wellbeing and researchers at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden have discovered that choir members’ heartbeats synchronise when they sing together. This brings on a calming effect similar to yoga.