Psychology researchers at New York University equipped each of 12 high school seniors with a portable, low-cost electroencephalogram and gathered the gadgets' brain-wave readings over a semester's worth of biology classes (11 sessions lasting 50 minutes each). Writing in the journal Current Biology, the researchers reported that when students were most engaged with each other and in group learning, the readings on their electroencephalograms, or EEGs, tended to show brain-wave patterns that rose and dipped in synchrony. Such shared entrainment shows up on EEGs as neural synchrony. "Brain-to-brain synchrony is a possible neural marker for dynamic social interactions, likely driven by shared attention mechanisms," the group wrote.
Seeing the frequency of such language inspired Lewis years later to create a feature-length documentary to interrogate and explore race, desire and body image, and the ways in which they're informed by media, pop culture and capitalism. The Times spoke with Lewis, who's known online as Fat Femme, following his-her recent West Coast visit about the documentary -- which is slated for a 2017 completion date -- how people "fail gender" and how gender deviant and trans people fit into the Black Lives Matter movement. The "no fats, no femmes" ideology is often used by gay men [on dating sites] situating their desires within a framework that excludes particular kinds of bodies, mostly those fat, feminine, disabled, HIV positive and the list goes on. How do the topics you're raising in "No Fats, No Femmes" intersect with the Black Lives Matter movement, and what seems like the exclusion of black trans and gender nonconforming people in that movement?