In addition to this blog, I am actually a design and art history historian as well as a cultural anthropologist. It’s a quite a mouthful I know. Though much of my academic writing and research has taken a back seat since receiving my masters last spring, I have made some efforts in the final months of last year to expand on some projects I had started in graduate school, including my paper on Target, its designer collaboration collections and plus size blogging– a paper I submitted last October to be considered as a possible presentation for the Fashion, Style, Appearance, Consumption and Design area of the 2015 Popular Culture Association and American Culture Association’s National Conference.
I was told that once you send in your abstract for consideration it takes approximately a minimum of two weeks to hear back from the area chair, I heard back in two days. From that day I was in crowd-funding and paper editing mode. It was an intensely stressful time given the the other responsibilities I had to deal with such as work, looking for another job, apartment hunting, eventually moving, and starting this blog. It should come to no surprise then that I did my final edits to the paper and accompanying PowerPoint the week before I was set to present. Yet even with all the anxiety fueled by the craziness that is my life, I was very excited to spend Easter weekend in New Orleans for my first (national) conference.
I think my abstract is the longest in history; there was so much to cover in such a little space.
I arrived the day before I was scheduled to present which gave me a chance to sit in other panels for different academic areas, such as Film Adaption, Fat Studies, Tolkien Studies, Material Culture, as well as Libraries, Archives and Museums, to name a few. Admittedly the experience did shake my confidence as I started to question the significance of my paper as the work by my fellow scholars was not only impressive, but presented in such a way that kept the audience engaged for the entire panel. I was in awe of these scholars who clearly have had much more practice than I. Continue reading