[Day 3] The use of the speculum on a practical way - Transfeminist Hard Lab

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#1

The use of the speculum on a practical way - Transfeminist Hard Lab

The main hardware is the body.

The proposal of the sessions was to discuss transfeminism, to discuss these intersection with OSH. Also, there were two workshops proposed by Paulq Pin: Vinagourt and The vinegar test for HPV. The first wasn’t realized because of the time, but it consist in make yougourt with vaginal bacterias. The second will be explained later. The sessions was separeted in two parts: discussion and practice.

Discussion

Paula told us about many projects related to the workshop that followed:

  • Calafou is post-industrial community in Spain that, between many others things, develop open hardware and biohaking.
  • Gyne punk
  • Mobile labs is project that aims to produce many research equipament labs in a DIY/hacker philosofy and fit them all in a case. Some of the equipaments are: microscope, incubator, centrifug, PCR, transilluminator.

A picture of the documantatin of the Mobile Lab.

Hardglam

  • “Hard” from hardware + “glam” as in spell, or magic

  • Documentation: hacketeria

  • Zines and education: some zines about andrology, transgender, health and anti-patriarcal resistence.

The zine “Anarcha Glam, Lucy y Betsey” tell us the patrical and racist story of gyconoly. It demand that the name of female glands are not called by the name of the (men) scientists that discovered them through torture of women (black) bodies, but by the name of these women: Anarcha, Lucy and Betsy. The zine also teaches more about the female glands, vulva and pleasure, more than the scientific books dare to teach.

Paula reinforced that they aren’t performing doctor, but sharing tools so different people can share their skills. There is a big net of people interested on the subject because science taught at school is not enought to makes us safe, nor able to undersantd our own bodies, neithere complete, mainly because exclude the information of not binary bodies and genderes. Also, not well represented minority communities are not safe at hospitals, neither the results of exams ar not shared with the pacients. Therefore we need information to emancipate or to feel more safe at hospitals (and with our bodies).

Tha vinegar test

The vinegar test allow the identification of anomalies cells on the cervix.The material needed are: speculum, swab , vinegar, flashlight, gloves. If the test is performed solo, it will be needed a mirror or a webcam connected do a computer, if performed with others people, this material is not dispensed since the person tested should also see her resultus.

The test consist in sweeping vinegar into the cervix. To have acess to the cervix, the speculum is used. The cells that don’t grow well get white with the vinager, what can be checked optically with the help of the flashlight, mirror or/and webcam.

Paula show us the vaginal channel, and point where are each part of it. On the second photo she show us how to use de speculum.

Practice

Part of the group went to a more private, safe and confortable room to take make the test.

Actions

The group gathered on Practice committed to keep the discussion and sharing via e-mail.


#2

I am copying everything over from the current version of the report so nothing is lost, here! Because I think there should only be the summary in the report, and am not sure if this is totally redundant to everything above!

The use of the speculum on a practical way - Transfeminist Hard Lab 

DIWO bio.electro.chemical experiments on Noise, Body and Ecology autonomy.
Participants:
Convener: Paula Pin
Marina, Agnieszka, Diego,

Summary:
“The main hardware is the body.”
The proposal of the session was to discuss the transHackfeminism context and the intersection with OSH. There were two workshops proposed by Paula Pin: Coñurt (making yougurt with the vaginal lacto bacilus) and the easy vinegar test for HPV. The session was based on a extended introduction about how transfeminist are having more autonomy on ecology and gynecology to focus later on the body itself. We decided to go into exploratory inner body, offering the participants speculums, the device that gynecologist use to check the cervix, and then run an easy fat test to check for weird growth of cervical cells. The test is calling acid acetic or more commonly known as the Vinegar test. We made a private space in the director’s office, and we ran the experiment on a few participants. If the test is performed solo, a mirror or a webcam connected to a computer are needed. If performed with other people, this material is not dispensed with, since the person tested should also see her results.

The test consist in sweeping vinegar onto the cervix wait 1 minute. To have access to the cervix, the speculum is used. The cells that don’t grow well get white with the vinegar, what can be checked optically with the help of the flashlight, mirror or/and webcam. If there are many white cells, a follow-up with a gynecologist for a pap smear is recommended.
We also did proto-cytology and checked vaginal cells on the DIWO microscopes from pechblenda Hackteria and other models at the meeting.

The sessions were separated in two parts: discussion, practice and very intense moments of shared intimacy about how many of us feel about restrictions or problems on the main health institutions.

Discussion
Paula told us about many projects related to the workshop that followed:
Calafou is post-industrial community in Spain that, among many other things, develops open hardware and biohacking from a transhackfeminist perspective.
For them the Hardware is extended from the noiSex throgh body to the ecology and they look at the body not separated from the environment. We create Pechblenda hardLab bio.electrochemistry experimental space. https://network23.org/pechblendalab/devhardware/anal-gital-synthetizers/ do Noisex !

they were researching from 2013 the reason why in the Anoia river is full of estrogens and they were disseminating and put the focus on body and environment from time ago, arriving to develop not only tools but context were non binary or heteronormative people can develop ideas. As they consider very important seeds they give us some of the links here :
https://calafou.org/en/content/thf-2014-transhackfeminist-call started at calafou on 2014 with the topics of Autonomous server Anarcha server and Gynecology colaborative Bio punk Lab.
https://transhackfeminist.noblogs.org/call-for-proposal/.
Pechblenda from 2012 facilitate the space and context to generate technological autonomy check here all the event we produce, there is many technologies develop for them https://freakabolic.hotglue.me/?events/
https://freakabolic.hotglue.me/
Pechblenda BioAutonomy https://www.hackteria.org/wiki/BioAutonomy
Bioresearch GYNEpunk: Autonomous gynecologyLAB https://www.hackteria.org/wiki/BIO-reSEARCH research, protocols and more.
Pechblenda materialization of the autonomous gyn:andro:eco.logy Mobile Lab = BioTranslab
https://prototypome.gridspinoza.net/index.php/HARDglamBiotranslab
documentation of the process :
https://prototypome.gridspinoza.net/index.php/Prototyp-ome_autoresidence

zines that address the issues of interest


The vinegar test

The vinegar test allow the identification of anomalous cells of the cervix. The materials needed are:
1- speculum,
2- swab,
3-vinegar,
4-led light,
5-gloves.

If the test is performed solo, a mirror or a webcam connected to a computer are needed. If performed with other people, this material is not dispensed with, since the person tested should also see her results.

The test consist in sweeping vinegar onto the cervix wait 1 minute. To have access to the cervix, the speculum is used. The cells that don’t grow well get white with the vinegar, what can be checked optically with the help of the flashlight, mirror or/and webcam. If there are many white cells, a follow-up with a gynecologist for a pap smear is recommended.


#3

I believe it’s missing some participants. I do have a list of e-mails, but I don’t have their names. I’ll aske them.