grading, climate change 

I'm sitting here grading journal entries for an environmental history course where all the students are like "yeah the world is burning we need to stop it" and I'm just like........trying to figure out how best to steer them towards a framework that includes praxis from the impersonal medium of fucking CANVAS and I'm FRUSTRATED.

khan academy 

Anybody have the down-and-dirty on Khan Academy? What is it and why is it so many students' go-to resource? I've looked it over a little and it seems....fine. Pretty uncritical, but fine. Am I wrong/did I miss something?

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How can we on scholar help each other during this time?

I know a lot of us are still pressured to produce research, teach, and everything else.
What are some ways that we could use this platform to help each other deal with typical academic nightmares that are now amplified?

footnotes 

Minor thing but it's that time of year when I have to actually write the 70+ footnotes I've been creating placeholder notes for. I refuse to learn from this.

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kommunist manifesto | yorkshire dialect 

The opening paragraph of Steve McCaffery's homolinguistic translation of Marx/Engels into Yorkshire dialect:

"Nan sithi, thuzzer booergy-mister mouchin un botherin awl oer place—vunnits booergy-mister uh kommunism. Allt gaff ers errawl Ewerup’s gor-rawl churchified t’booititaht: thuzimmint mekkers, unt jerry plain cloouzvboobiz."

-- From "The Kommunist Manifesto, or Wot We Wukkerz Want Bi Charley Marx un Fred Engels"

experimental classrooms, ablism 

There's a lot of scholarship out about how the primacy of the written word in historical practice has traditionally reinforced certain imperial norms by devaluing oral testimony and traditions. This has me thinking: could I teach a history course with no reading or writing? That was purely done by memorizing orally transmitted histories? It's intriguing, but also might exclude some people with certain disabilities which is a real concern I'm trying to sort out.

rejection 

I had an article rejected from a journal, which I was prepared for. What I wasn't prepared for was the feedback suggesting I adopt an outdated analytical framework from 1991 and I really don't know how to feel about that.

messy desk 

CW but also messy desk pride.

Russia, UFOlogy 

I've had a project in mind for a while that would consider how the role of Russia has changed over time in US UFO conspiracy lore, in part because it would mean reading a whole bunch of books on UFO's from the 60's and 70's and that sounds like a great way to pass a summer break.

Resolutions 

Resolutions for the next year: publish an article on "Hominology" in Russia so that I can list "Russian Cryptozoology" as an interest on my page for the department and thereby attract the attention of anyone seeking someone at a university who will listen to their bigfoot theories. I just need this, ok?

Forelaws On Board 

A group (or individual?) called Forelaws on Board appears to have sent a somewhat rambling email to everyone in the history department asserting, "Forelaws on board is an effort to update history generally, in line with the origin and progress of astrobiology". Anyone ever heard of this group? The internet says they launched some lawsuits in the 80's and they have an archived website that I'll post shortly.

I just submitted a paper to the Alaska History journal. Fingers crossed! The title is "Uninhabited Alaska: Counterfactual Reflections on the Russian Invasion of Alaska", and I'm quite happy with it and excited to get some peer-review feedback from it!

student feedback 

Sometimes student feedback...is good. :')

So the theorist Zooey Sophia Pook has some excellent work on the transformation of difference into data by way of neoliberal technologies that I found to be incredibly useful. Both her "Queer is the New Capitalism" and "If We Are Compelled to Suffer" contain some useful ideas for anyone in the humanities.

digital humanities 

And hey, as long as I'm posting controversial opinions about tech and the humanities: a huge amount of what's been written about why we should do digital humanities is just advertising and is devastatingly uncritical of the economic, social, and political infrastructure of the technology they pitch. To be clear: digital humanities, including your favorite project: generally good. Scholarship about why we should be doing digital humanities: generally quite bad.

Hey I really don't like the word "data". Like really at all. It's not that I don't like evidence, that I don't like math, or statistics, or anything like that. It's just that every time I hear it I feel like the massive advertising campaign that's been launched at us to convince us of the existence of a completely quantitative universe which can be understood by very rich companies (and us too if we buy their products and study things that are useful for them) has been allowed to succeed.

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Me << did I get tricked into getting a history degree >>
Weird roommate << isn't theory knowing history >>
Me <<...why would you remind me of the truth >>

The entire discipline of history is extremely uncomfortable with the supernatural. It's like,

Sources: The gods did this, demons are everywhere, a spirit lives in the lake and god told me to do it.

Historians: Culture and discourse did it, it was a...uh...complicated nexus.

In 2020 the burden of proof is on the disenchanters.

Archival question, climate stuff 

I saw an article posted here a few months ago that I've been looking for ever since. It was about using radical empathy to do archival work in light of the approaching climate catastrophe. Ring any bells for anyone?

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