Work Play Space in Process

3 June 1975
External Services:
  • becoming_writer@livejournal.com
Biography - a story of (a) life. Here's one version: I was born in Iowa in 1975. From age 4 to 18 I lived in a tiny village where I was, in some respects, considered queer, heathen and geek. While I recognise that I was also valued for questioning accepted truths, I had to get out. Academia was my route of escape - four years at Grinnell College (including a couple of three-month breaks in Stirling) introduced me to all sorts of exciting things. After graduating, I returned to Scotland where I enrolled in a PhD not the least for immigration purposes. I don't like borders. So I interviewed folk about their relationships and desires and then wrote an anarchist critique of sexual orientation. I graduated with my PhD in 2005 and am in the process of recognising that an academic career can provide a space for useful contributions to radical social change. Now maybe I'll get a job. . .

I largely think of my practice as storytelling, though I sometimes use other words: research, teaching, theorising, anarchism, love. For me, at this point, the question is not whether stories are true or false (I may well create stories that I disagree with for the exercise), but whether they are helpful. Does a story (theory, whatever) help someone think about how to live their lives differently, to feel more capable, to listen to possibilities that has never before seemed possible? Does it challenge stories justifying/underlying/enacting domination (e.g., you just have to put up with it; that's just the way it is; the state keeps us safe; heterosexuality is natural; inequality encourages creativity)?

I'm just here to practice my storytelling.

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