.return/transition/begin.

Dear friends/lovers/comrades/internet-sojourners/mom:

I started this blog about a year and a half ago, eager for an outlet to process my thoughts about politics, sexuality, media, labor, current and quotidian affairs. As a first year PhD student, trained to use my brain as a tool for deconstruction and (for some of us) political creation, I had self-important urges to share my thoughts. In the fourteen months that this blog has been in existence, I’ve created a whopping 27 posts. Not so prolific.

To be fair, I’ve been a student. Reading, writing, teaching, and engaging in various activist projects. And today, as I write, I am still a student, but I’m about to transition into a “doctoral candidate,” a title reserved only for those academics who have completed course work, comprehensive examinations, and are given the green-light to begin the dissertating process. Course work: check. Exams: end of June. Dissertating: in progress.

This is all very exciting news! But the relevant thing to note here is that no more course work will ideally mean more blog time, and my narcissistic urgent need to share my brain babies with you should be matched with more frequent posts. The entries may not always be so loquacious or “think-y” (a relief to us both, perhaps). I’ve been inspired by a lot of lady-bloggers who provide a nice mix of political stuff, academic-ish stuff, and everyday inspirations (such as the lovely&radical absolutely ayurveda).

As you can see, the blog has a new format (I’m still not 100% sold on this, but I think I prefer it to my old layout), and I’ll be editing the other pages and links sections in the next week or so. Until then, I thought I’d give a mini recap of what I’ve been up to since I last wrote in March:

1. I got my hair cut short for the first time in years; I stopped cutting my hair short because every time I do, I end up regretting it. But committed as I was to my femme-tastic locks, I wanted to channel a more retro look, inspired partly by images like the one below (of the smokin’ hot Mia Kirshner, aka Jenny Shecter). Note to self: if everytime you cut your hair short, you regret it, stop cutting yr hair. love, yrself. It’s not so bad, but I’m already in the process of growing it back out:

2. Took a trip to Boston over spring break to visit friends, enjoyed what felt more like a “real” city than my humble minnie apple, ate delicious raw vegan food, and pet cute duck statues in the lovely urban parks.

3. Continued to enjoy the crap out of the two courses I was enrolled in, the Intellectual History of Race and Queer/ing Ethics. My favorite reading from this semester was probably Roderick A. Ferguson’s Aberrations in Black: Toward a Queer of Color Critique (2004). A queer of color critique that engages with Marxism and Munoz (<3!!). I had some disagreements (and my Marxist partner had even bigger ones), but overall, it totally pushed me in important ways. And Rod’s a prof at my university, to boot!

4. Had the privilege of being invited to be a coordinator on the “Whose University?”  project. Whose University is a campaign dedicated to challenging the University (of Minnesota, to start) by asking “who has access?” “whose knowledge is valued?” and “who is represented?” We hosted a day of education with speakers, musicians, and teach-ins, all in an effort to mobilize a movement that demands higher education be accessible to all, regardless of race, class or immigrant status. Our work will continue on in various forms, including an upcoming documentary film. Stay tuned: http://www.whoseuniversityfilm.com/

5. Participated in my second Minneapolis May Day (my gazillionth in general May Day). Clearly, International Workers Day–one that has now officially acknowledged its intersectional connection to the immgrant’s rights movement–is one of my favorite days of the year. This year was even more special, but I’ll write more on that in future posts….

6. Wrote two final papers. One examined representation, ethics and “agentification” in Original Plumbing magazine, an FTM quarterly. Another discussed the neoliberal, colorblind agenda perpetuated in post-recession television advertisements, and how this move erases class from the current ‘crisis.’ The two commercials in question? Levi’s “Go Forth” and the Chrysler Eminem/Detroit commercial.

7. Celebrated the end of my LAST semester of PhD coursework with an epic long bike ride, the May issue of Vegetarian magazine, and a night out with friends. ❤

Coming soon:

prelim question reflection! my may day surprise (& the politics of a queer girl in love with a cisgender boy)! recipes! music! love!

xoxo

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4 thoughts on “.return/transition/begin.

    • I’ll send you the paper! I’ll be curious to hear your thoughts. Like most seminar papers, it’s not totally polished/developed, but I do hope to go somewhere with it, so I’d love yr feedback!

      Thanks for the congrats! It feels great! Now to study! Then you should come visit. : )

  1. congrats on all your hard work and thank you for the shout out grrl!

    and i can’t wait to see what wonderful insights you have in store for us…

    binya

  2. I like the new format! Funny, I too am writing about beginning to blog more post coursework…I really like doing it, and I just don’t get to enough! Ugh! Can’t wait for more. I feel humbled and fortunate to be your friend.

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