A magazine for friends of the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University.

Tell Me About Your Hair


Bad hair day.

“From an early age I understood that hair had power,” Rohina Gandhi-Hoffman ’90 MD’94 says. “At the age of 7, my own two ponytails were chopped off very unceremoniously and for a good part of my childhood I sported a boy’s haircut. … The trauma of losing control of my identity has stayed with me my entire life.” Gandhi-Hoffman explores women’s relationships with their hair in her “Hair Stories” project. She photographed and interviewed almost three dozen women of varying ethnicities and ages about their hair. She discovered that “hair is a language, a shield, and a trophy,” she says. “Hair is a construct reflecting our identity, history, femininity, personality, our innermost feelings of self-doubt, aging, vanity, and self-esteem.” A neurologist in California, Gandhi-Hoffman took her first photography class at the Rhode Island School of Design while a student in the Program in Liberal Medical Education at Brown. Her photography will come full circle in January 2019 when “Hair Stories,” Hoffman’s first solo exhibition, will be mounted at the Warren Alpert Medical School. You can see her work and read her subjects’ stories at womenshairstories.com.


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