last night aliza and i talked for 2 hours, then worked on w&p for several more, then around 11:30 marc got home from vegas and took us for drinks across the street. we discussed level 4/stage 4 feminism, banana slug sex, reproductive collectives, the inevitable woman in the casino who isn’t used to wearing heels and has to hold on to both of her friends, and where we can find aliza’s unethical scientist. expelled from high-profile genetics program, currently living in basement of his parents’ house? maybe the only way to reach him is xtreme jdate; i told aliza i would crop myself out of this picture.
kate zambreno, heroines
these photos are for dr. laura, who bequeathed her dissertation writing t-shirt to me, which is truly full of good vibes, and also made me feel artsy.
it took everything in me not to tell a group of fellow professionals to just look at my tumblr, where things far more ostensibly private than the case studies we were discussing have been posted ad nauseam. but i don’t really like people looking at my tumblr in front of me.
instead i talked about the feminist posting of okc interactions. “no, they don’t always delete the names” and “yes, there is often a picture.”
i softened when one person talked about his work in the herstory archives and lesbians who were terrified of being outed.
it was good. everyone was interested in how to handle ephemeral archives, and even when i talked about how feminists on tumblr delete or deactivate all the time, and how the way to handle this, from a scholarly point of view, is in the framing. (easy, since it’s part of my point.)
later, a woman noted that she can’t understand her friend, who leaves his ex-wife out of his facebook timeline and deletes any posts that he later decides make him look bad. i asked if narrative is ever the most interesting way to tell a life story. one of the best things about psychoanalysis—which i don’t really use in my work—is that it accounts for gaps. lies. incoherence. etc. also, i think, one of the best things about tumblr.
aliza shvarts and kara jesella. this is my favorite picture of us that has ever been taken. which way to the mall?
today i met with barbara for the first time this semester so we could talk about archiving, unpredictability, time-wasting, sociality, exposure, generosity, the erotics of the internet, the usual.
barbara said she thinks the idea that someone can “bat their lashes” and something can happen is very feminist. anti-mastery.
i told her that i’ve thought most about my dissertation topic in terms of public vs. private and that i really believe that surveillance can be good for feminism. she grinned and said “i’m not scared.” i laughed and said “i’m not scared, either.”
she also told me that i looked so cute she wanted to take a picture, which i feel like i should have said i would take care of.
this is the beginning of my second book and i have real feelings about it. this is exciting. i really loved writing a book the first time.
today in diss prop aliza asked if we could embrace narcissism in our dissertation. she argued that we are all writing about ourselves anyway, that narcissism is important to feminist and queer theory, and after enthusiastically and specifically supporting the dissertation objective i’d written added, “kara is interested in viral feminism because she does it.” i was sitting next to her, so it was easy to look at her lovingly and giggle.
later, our professor was like, “people in performance studies are familiar with the first person,” and i giggled again.
home forever, though we’re on a timeline now, we have agreed to be done in two years, we are all too fucking lazy for fellowship applications.
later, at our favorite terrible nyu bar, aliza said: “sex should only be discussed if it’s about you” and “we don’t need to talk about sex because it’s what we are doing all the time.” i said: “their clothes aren’t jokes.” the waiter said: “oh, you’re splitting” and one of us said “no, one of each.”
Donna Haraway, The Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in Late Twentieth Century, Routledge
i went over aliza’s so we could work on our dissertations which means we took pictures of each other and talked for 8 hours.