another great academic gathering
The Writing Center Technology Summit in Texas A&M last month was a pretty remarkable gathering of academics. And now I've been part of another uncommon academic event. The Critical Hmong Studies Workshop convened on Monday and Tuesday of this week. Nine of us spend two full days together, and I am, again, really amazed at what academics can actually do when they come together in a spirit of collaboration and conversation (rather than posturing and puffing). It was a very stimulating, if exhausting, environment. I think we all felt our specific papers were improved by the rich and careful feedback and that we discovered generous and loyal colleagues for life. It was profound.
The feedback on my Alphabet Wars chapter from the workshop will help inform some of the changes I make in presenting that chapter at the SHARP conference next week. This is the first time that I am able to make a conference presentation where I feel like I am actually presenting a longer work. Since I have actually written much of this chapter, I think I will be able to say things like, "In the introduction to this chapter, I lay out framework X," without having to take the time to actually lay framework X out. I think that will save me a lot of time so I can talk about specific examples (which I assume will be of greatest interest to my audience), and it will save me from spending all of my time on the introduction and framing (which is my tendency). So this is a unique experience for me in preparing/presenting a conference paper. I'm excited.
All of this slows down the work on my Generation(s) of Diaspora chapter. I have a few movies to watch and write about. I think I am starting to migrate towards an emphasis—at least a partial one—on romantic melodrama/comedy. Those movies are abundant and popular. I think a genre has emerged and evolved that reveals an important progression in diasporic community and diasporic thinking. Get the popcorn.