An Artist Reimagines the Periodic Table. And It Looks Downright Scary!

Thinking of the days when she used to adopt different techniques to memorize the periodic table, Kaanchi Chopra realized something very interesting – that every chemical symbol can be an acronym for a global issue. Here is the re-imagined table.

Chemistry in Everyday Life. Unit 16. Part 2 – As I flipped through the pages of this chapter trying to decipher the meaning of the title, a flashback from Class 10 suddenly reminded me of the periodic table. I started thinking of how we used to come up with various mnemonics to memorize those rows and columns of alkali metals, alkaline earth metals, noble gases and more.

Recalling the days of indulging in that rote learning process, I found something different, interesting and probably as meaningful as those elements. I realized that each and every chemical symbol for the elements in the periodic table can be an acronym for a global issue.

Ti, V, Cr, Mn – Terrorism, Violence, Corruption, Malnutrition, and the list goes on.


While some of them can be expanded to form words that represent humanity’s worst vices, there are a few that represent the various movements and social issues that gained attention in the recent past. Have a look:


One person develops Alzheimer’s in the US in every 66 seconds. In India, more than 10 million cases are reported every year. No cure exists for the disease, but medications and management strategies help fight symptoms temporarily.


According to estimates by some experts, paedophiles account for 20% of sexual abusers. No cure for paedophilia has been developed yet, but there are therapies that can help reduce the number of such incidences.


This is a potentially life-threatening eating disorder marked by binging, followed by methods to avoid weight gain. It is estimated that up to 4% of women in the US suffer from bulimia during their lifetime. Around 10 million cases are reported in India and Australia per year. The treatments include counselling, medication and nutrition education.


The deep-rooted fear of or prejudice towards foreigners, strangers, or even the unknown has led to 2,053 racist and xenophobic hate crimes in Germany, and 2,768 in Sweden.


n The consumption of an excessive amount of alcohol in a short period of time – binge drinking costs approximately £20 billion a year to the UK economy because 17 million working days are estimated to be lost due to hangovers and drink-related illness each year.

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About the author: Kaanchi Chopra, a 17-year-old resident of Delhi, is passionate about using her love for art and research for social good. She believes in artivism – a combination of two most meaningful words for her – art and activism. An ardent feminist, she has previously drawn on issues like women empowerment, poverty, body shaming, acid attacks, colour discrimination, anti-tobacco themes, global warming, etc. You can read her blogs here.

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