Thursday, 19 April 2018

On the Swedish Underground

Photo:  The Guardian
I haven't been particularly squeamish since I did a placement at Treliske Hospital with a supervisor who specialised in treating lymphodema.  Part of the time was spent with an enthusiastic tissue viability nurse who loved wounds.  There was some pretty gory sights in a big county hospital I can tell you.  'Don't look away.' instructed the nurse.  'Look without preconceived ideas.  Look at the colours. take in the smell.  They can all tell you something about the stage of the healing process.'  This  detached way of observing has held me in good stead in the mental health as well as the physical arena.

So the depiction of menstrual blood with a streak of felt tip pen doesn't really bother me too much. But apparently it's been causing a bit of a stir on the Stockholm Underground which uses the station walls to host an informal type of art exhibition.   I read in the Guardian that the work of Liv Strömquist has been causing outrage.  'It’s not fun explaining to a four-year-old about the red between the legs,' the paper quotes one tweeter as saying.  It seems that one of the article's commenters  comment has provided the perfect answer to this.

'Well son (or daughter), every month a woman's body prepares itself for pregnancy.  If she doesn't get pregnant a body discharges a mixture of blood and mucus through her vagina.  It's all perfectly normal, naturally it happens to all women.  Now do you fancy that McDonalds?'

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