Poetry is a Weapon Loaded with the Future

This term I’ve been working on poetry by former ETA prisoner and Basque exile, Joseba Sarrionandia, with my final-year students. His poetry has really made us stop and think about a lot of things, most notably the need for and value of literature and I wanted to share some striking texts in translation. The first is…

Taking stock

Taking Stock As part of #AcWriBloMo, an academic writing blogging month where the aim is to write a blog post a week and to keep it up, I’ve been challenged to write a post about ‘taking stock’.    Milestones This week I finished the first full draft of my PhD thesis. I use the term ‘finished’ loosely,…

Paradigms of conference questioners

The question and answer part of delivering a conference paper is often the most nerve-wracking aspect for presenters. It can be a chance for interesting and thoughtful discussion that frequently highlights new or different perspectives within our work. But all-too-often it becomes a showcase for various paradigms of conference questioners.   We firstly have the…

Enough

Doing enough fast enough There’s a lot of talk within academia about how the PhD alone is not enough. No. As well as completing an original and rigorous thesis, we are also supposed to gain experience in teaching, administration, and event coordination, have a track record of publications and conference presentations, and have mastered professional…

The Active Academic

The PhD experience often seems to lead to a combination of restlessness and guilt. We are consistently striving to carry out the best research we possibly can, whilst juggling conferences, the need to publish, admin, career progression, and (for the lucky few that have it) teaching. Faced with overarching and often overwhelming to do lists,…