'Faces are not born; they’re made. Sometimes they’re made up. The face we show the world takes on the characteristics and quality of our relationship to the world, so that if your face is never seen, you are right to wonder if you have one. If you are sure you have one, you are still never sure how it looks. Having a face is like holding the long spoon of hell to the soup bowl of personhood: No matter how we twist, we see our faces not in the flesh but in reflections. The iPhone screen literally flips the gaze, locks it. We can make faces at the faces that we make. We can hold our face at arm’s length and judge it, can like it or stare at it or unsee (delete) it and, in so doing, gain the same power held over us by any dumb stranger on the street. (Which is why I resist correlatives between the selfie movement and hot-girl narcissism: Not only was the first selfie taken by a grown man, but also, all you must do to disprove the collective dads is scroll through the #me, #pretty, #selfie, and #selfienation tags on Instagram to see not a sea of young money shots, but a far wider variety of faces than almost any filmmaker or fine-art photographer or fashion magazine editor would deem worthy of recognition. The faces say, “See?”)'
Read the essay here.