... which is really only about six inches away from here:

Amateurism, sentimentality and kidney stones.


Jul. 20th, 2010 09:40 am
  • Announcing The Society of Friends of the Text. This is an outgrowth of what we did in Bristol and while there isn't a lot of content there yet, there will be soon. I'm hoping to finish my conference report tonight to post there and will post my response to the paired paper there eventually as well.

  • [livejournal.com profile] usullusa recently came out to her (I actually don't know your pronoun preference, let me know if I should change this) parents as queer. Their response has been to bar her from their house (when they are not trying to confine her to it), threaten her physically, use dehumanizing language towards her, demand she beg their forgiveness, harass her when she has been outside the home and engage in gender-policing towards her. Read more... )

    If you can assist her in this NYC-area hunt for long-term or odd job employment, please let her know. She has posted a remarkably sanitized run-down of her situation here. She is someone Patty & I both know in the face-to-face world, and we are frustrated not to be able to offer the types of resources needed here. I can, however, be loud.

  • The auction to help [livejournal.com profile] theotoky graduate college is also ongoing. You can find it at [livejournal.com profile] graduate_maria. The fundraising goal is $5,000. Right now, including donations, buy-it-now items, and bids for items that haven't yet closed, we're just past the $1,000 mark. Please consider bidding, offering an item or boosting the signal. Why we're holding this fundraiser is explained in the community profile information.

  • Heaven help us: [livejournal.com profile] newyorkers is a spotlight community on LJ currently. Meanwhile, I may strangle someone. Look at the tags. Be specific in your queries. And don't tell us about how you love New York City but have never been here but really miss it. Or post your crappy photo essay about it from three years ago. Or otherwise get in the way of what the community is for: practical help on specific issues for people living here, people visiting, and people thinking about coming here. Arrrrrrrgh!

  • Problems with early breast cancer detection.

  • Constance McMillan has won: Her school will update its anti-discrimination policy to include sexual orientation (a first for Mississippi) and pay her $35,000.

  • Gay marriage and the Indian diaspora in California. via [livejournal.com profile] redstapler.

  • Essentially teen-retailer (okay, Patty and I both totally shop there) Forever 21 is now marketing maternity wear in, coincidentally, states with higher than average rates of teen pregnancy. They deny the marketing strategy (try harder, folks), and soon enough, you'll hear various squeals of outraged horror that someone is suggesting that young pregnant people be allowed to wear something other than sackcloth, ashes and a wooden sign that says "whore" around their necks. This one isn't going to be fun. via [livejournal.com profile] redstapler.

  • [livejournal.com profile] bitsyrant talks about a relatively innocuous-seeming (if catty) tweet from Steven Moffat and why it can/will/may actually create a big mess by implication and, as such, was a pretty ill-advised moment.

  • I hate this Auggie/Jack story. I've written it three different ways three different times and it's STILL NOT WORKING. Read more... )

  • I haven't looked at this in a while, but moving into SDCC and with the not-unsurprising aftermath of Infinitus at hand and a current Twitter kerfluffle or two (not directly related to Moffat), it seems a good time to relink patronage, transactional relationships and fandom. Maybe if I have time later (and let's be frank, I probably won't), I'll write a bit about for-profit and non-profit cons and why neither should suck, but sometimes both do for totally different reasons. Of course, both versions can also bring the awesome.

  • Last night Patty and I returned to Angel. Read more... )

  • Meanwhile, who wants an "Angel vs. Torchwood: Cracky Spinoff Deathmatch" panel at Gallifrey? I don't really know what it would be about, but I think it would be AWESOME.
  • I'm back in the hotel room after the conference. There's an informal next steps meeting tomorrow, but for all intents and purposes this very strange odyssey, which hasn't been a year long, but which I keep describing that way, conflating, or perhaps reasonably dating even before it had conscious intent, my work for this conference to the events of "Day 4" in Torchwood: Children of Earth.

    I don't, yet, necessarily have a lot to say about the conference, but I took copious, though perhaps somewhat incoherent notes, which I'll type up and put here under general lock in the next few days while I can still make sense of my admonishments to myself to relate this or that random phrase to this or that random thing.

    One of the many themes that emerged today was that of exile, which was something we came to from multiple places. This felt personally resonant for me in a way that's hard to articulate without going into a very long and somewhat boring narrative about my 20s but is, trust me, central to my essential melancholy.

    Exile from normativity, from acceptable levels of fascination, from narrative, from desire, from home, from the idea of home -- all of these came up over and over again, and, in a discussion at dinner got related back to the idea of secrets, which aside from the personal resonance, I thought spoke to particular elements of my paper. To condense drastically, it would be fair to say the fictional mourned have secrets and are exiles, and those who so mourn have secrets and are exiles for doing so.

    Among the many remarkable things about the conference was the degree to which for most of it I thought the anxiety that I often see from institutionally affiliated scholars about the seriousness, reception of, or personal involvement in fandom was largely absent. This was refreshing, but somewhat peculiar, although I found it not less aggrieving when those anxieties ultimately did bubble up to the surface at the end of the day.

    I recognize, that in all and any things, being out is a privilege. In regard, particularly, to fandom activities and academics there are a number of issues in play including the sexism of the Academy that must necessarily make women work harder to prove their seriousness and make women more easily judged for and harmed by any and all indications of sexuality or lack there of.

    Having stumbled on my own history and proclivities more than once, I now live a necessarily, sometimes uncomfortably, public life. Nothing is more dangerous to my mind than secrets (except perhaps heights, cobras, certain species of jellyfish, and large dogs), than having something someone could hold over my head, ever and at all. Of course, I have the luxury of making that stand, being without institutional affiliation wherein everything from my grief to my sexual expression to my gender identity would make my words and my intellect suspect.

    Being out -- about anything you feel you need to be closeted about -- can be a hard, miserable thing. It is not always safe or pragmatic. But if we treat our passions, our intellectual fixations, our modes of being as shameful, we are in exile, from our selves, from our kind, from those we speak for, and from our fellow travelers, no matter how different from us they may be.

    If, in the scholarship, we continue to disguise, misrepresent and masque our fannish investment when doing work about or through the lens of fan studies, we are creating work that is suspect because its originating perspective is, often obviously, obscured. This impacts not just the quality of the finished product and its reception (because thanks, I can tell when a paper is produced by an acafan trying to hide that fact and it muddies the work for me), but also impacts the scholarly relationship with fandom which is already damaged and toxic due to a history of bad actors.

    Coming out, in this regard or any other, comes with costs. Always. But in all this talk of exile and secrets today and all this time I have spent with fictional men without faithful friends, consistent lovers, and loyal families, all I can ask is that you think of what truth remains unoffered in your life and offer it. This is, perhaps, the only thing I know how to ask on behalf of the stories I love, but it feels, right now, very important to me that I do so.

    We all have secrets, and we are all in exile, but we do so many so much honor every time we choose to speak and come a little bit closer to home.

    May 2016

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