It has been a while since I have posted anything here, but my writing energies have been directed towards #finishthedamnbook and drafting funding applications to support the next big thing. My other energies have been ricocheting in and around pedagogical spaces, where my students have taken, are taking, and will take what they have learned from the localized, intellectual communities we created together to forge new ideas, actions, pieces of writing, objects, &c, in new spaces with new communities, and so forth. I am endlessly inspired by these processes of collaboration and the way they have the power to cut through the solitary, individualistic, and self-serving imperatives that (still) define success in academia.
All this said, I was excited yesterday to learn that a roundtable proposal—about reading practices and bibliographic "depth"—that I helped put together on an airplane 30,000+ feet in the sky over America—in real-time collaboration with colleagues on the flat ground below (thanks, in-flight wifi!)—has been accepted for the Modern Language Association's convention in Chicago next January. The roundtable will put our literary reading practices (deep and surface) in conversation with the multi-dimensional, embodied, and experiential reading practices that we see as having been vital to early modern encounters with hand-press era books. Read More
Last year, I started reserving a day in each of my Shakespeare courses for students to "make" quartos. I wrote at some length (almost exactly a year ago) about the experience of making Q1 Hamlet with my students at VCU and posted instructions, information about supplies for the activity, and a link to the sheets (which I made from EEBO printouts).
This semester, I'm teaching a senior seminar called "Early Modern Drama: Manuscript, Print, Performance" that focuses on the material-textual processes that facilitated the making of theatrical performance and printed texts of the plays. So far, my students have reverse-engineered scribal backstage plots of Doctor Faustus, performed a scene from the same play using cue scripts, and "made" quartos. Read More
Last weekend, quite literally half a world away, my grandmother died. She had survived a long illness many years ago—had come back stronger. But this was not that. This was her heart. And it happened very quickly.
Hours after I hear the news, I walk alone to campus to pack up my office. I'm changing jobs and moving states at the end of the month, more specifically, on the day I'm now scheduled to return from her memorial service. Everything has to be ready to go, so I switch into organizational overdrive, which is good because it's distracting. I want to be distracted because I'm too far from the rest of my family who are processing their grief together.
Then, among the books in my teaching collection, I find her high school copy of As You Like It. Read More