Conversations with Dead People: On Archives and the Humanities

“The past is always tense, the future perfect.”

Zadie Smith, White Teeth

I spent this weekend helping my good friend Maeve with a conference of her own devising and orgainisation on Sylvia Plath. It was an enormously edifying experience, not least because it meant I got out of my own eightenth-century headspace for a few days.

Continue reading “Conversations with Dead People: On Archives and the Humanities”

Confident Conferences, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Public Speaking

“Proper words in proper places, make the true definition of a style.”

Jonathan Swift, Letter to a Young Clergyman

 

Full and lethargic from Christmas overindulgence, I am preparing to go back to work tomorrow. Specifically, I am preparing to get a 5.30 train to go to Oxford to deliver a paper to the British Society of Eighteenth Century Studies annual conference. Continue reading “Confident Conferences, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Public Speaking”

Managing Multitasking

“Never half-ass two things. Whole-ass one thing. ”

Ron Swanson, Parks and Recreation

A PhD is not just the thesis. Ask any PhD student at any stage – except, perhaps, for the month or so leading up to their viva – and they’ll tell you that they’d love to spend more time writing the thesis, but they’ve got an article to finish, a conference paper to check, a book review to complete, and they’re behind on their teaching hours. Continue reading “Managing Multitasking”