Sometimes, there’s a man….I won’t say hero, because what’s a hero anyways….but sometimes, there’s a man, well, he’s the man for his time and place. He fits right in there.

I keep thinking that maybe it’s time to get back to writing, and then i let another week go by. I abide.

The problem i keep having is that I have no idea where to start anymore. It’s all a jumble in my head, of semi-wordless ranting directed at some of the usual suspects. Which, to be honest, makes me feel tired.

So here’s the post that has shaken me from my slumber…

Giving credit for a job done is pretty much what makes academic careers. Whole theories are built around the work of a single scholar (see Frued, Marx, Foucoult, Spivak etc). There are literally thousands of theorists world-wide who would not have jobs if it weren’t for the fact that they became expert translators of a major theorist. Similarly, there are thousands of scholars who would not have jobs if it weren’t for the fact that the translators of major theorists hadn’t done their jobs. Scholars need and are dependent upon each other, even as they fight for their independence and name recognition. Careers literally wouldn’t exist if names and work aren’t cited. For example, if all queer theorists used Judith Butler’s ideas, but didn’t cite her work, she would have long since been shoved out of academia–at the best, she’d be teaching at a community college some where.

From BFP…

What does it mean to be a translator…. What would it mean to break new ground?

I still go over and over again, in quasi-regret of a life that might have been. But I think most of my regret is simply nostalgia for a misconception, that somehow the study of religion was going to be a life of the mind.

The reality of the academic field is that it’s pretty damn difficult to get by, and certainly as an activist.

Really, what i do best…is I write summaries. I found this talent sometime in my senior year of college, and used it to wing my way through grad school with very few truly original thoughts. I write excellent book reviews, and i don’t mean the kind that just sum up everything that got said. I trace arguments, i offer cogent criticism, and analyze strengths. You know the kind…that show up as lit reviews in academic journals.

And it feels like that’s what I’ve been doing here. Parallel process, only with blogs. It’s more fun…i get to snark much more than I did, and people line up for snark. The highest hitting post I ever did was a merciless kneecapper on Hugo, who for the record deserved it and more. Tenured bloviators are about my favorite target.

Eh. I’m tired. I have so much to write, really…life has been really interesting, difficult and fun lately. The SO and I, working out the dynamics of the relationship, what I’ve learned about gender, depression, vocation, queerness…

I can’t write that stuff when all I’m stuck writing reviews. When i know…there are folks who are writing the truly original material on which I depend….

And people won’t even acknowledge that debt.

-sly

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