A site dedicated to Faces, Facial Differences, and Heroes, Villians and Fools

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You’ve come to the right place to learn about faces, especially ones that stand out in a crowd—the good, the bad, and the “ugly.” Together we’ll learn and share insights—via blogs, guest blogs, comments, and even painted portraits—about the social and psychological aspects of living with “facial differences” in a world that emphasizes looks.

What you bring to the discussion:

  • a lifetime of experience looking at and reacting to faces
  • a willingness to be open-minded and to engage and comment when so moved.

What I bring:

  • I’ve produced TV documentaries on the stigmatizing effects of oral-facial disorders and the psychological issues around reconstructive surgery.
  • Because I grew up with a cleft lip and palate, I’ve studied the social-psychological aspects of facial differences and painted many portraits celebrating faces.
  • I’ve written a memoir, Cleft Heart: Chasing Normal, which conveys my experiences as a cleft kid. It is the first published memoir by a cleft about the cleft experience.
    When Wayman Publishing released the book, rave reviews poured in. Cleft Heart shows bullied clefts and others that they can survive and thrive, giving them and their loved ones hope that they can live normal lives. [Continue reading]

Brexit, cleft lip abortions, and EU eugenics.

Young woman with bowed head and folded arms in hospital gown.

 With all the news of Britain's exit from the European Union (EU), we should note a reason a number of Brits gave for voting for Brexit.  It's not one of the usual immigration or economic reasons. Instead, it's that they feel bullied by the … [Continue reading]

Heroes for Father’s Day…and any day.

Jack Schonborn with cleft lip and palate son.

Noticed the following list of America's top 100 cinematic heroes (and villains). What a perfect topic for Father's Day, "heroes." I nominate my dad.Though my dad never starred in the movies, he did shoot and produce educational films for … [Continue reading]

Anti lookism: an open letter to photogenic people.

Woman with bronze laptop computer on lap.

Stumbled across this anti lookism rant from back in July 2012. New Yorker Chelsea Fagan, who actually blogs about financial matters, unloosed these unbridled comments which capture what many of us think as we see the uncurbed selfies proliferating … [Continue reading]

Cleft palate speech evaluation ain’t easy.

Diagram of child beginning cleft palate speech evaluation.

 Typically in the US, specialists evaluate children born with a cleft lip and/or palate after his or her lip and palate are closed in year one or two. If they find deficient structural elements (e.g., a short soft palate) for producing intelligible … [Continue reading]

Cleft lip doesn’t stop nation’s #1 rusher.

Head shot of Zamir White, a black hi school running back born with cleft lip.

Imagine if you had a cleft lip and palate and your hi school football coach said this about you:“There is really nothing on the football field that Zamir can’t do. Zamir is an every down [running] back. He has the ability to run between the tackles. … [Continue reading]

“Lookism” and dishonesty about ugliness.

Bust shot of anti lookism author Robert Hoge.

In my last blog, I wrote about the kids edition of "Ugly." Today, I'm writing about the adult version that brings up a complicated lookism issue: can we be butt-ugly honest about the role of looks in society?Ugly & Lookism.First, let's hear from … [Continue reading]

Lookism couldn’t defeat the author of “Ugly.”

Yellow —anti lookism—book with cartoon ugly face with author Robert Hoge's name on it.

Googled for books with "ugly" in their title the other day. Here's what I found.  Go here for blurbs about some of the "ugly" books.  (Who said you can't judge a book by its cover?)Besides the Ugly Face Booth  and Confessions of an Ugly Girl, a book … [Continue reading]