So, as I’m drowning under an electronic and paper sea of university-related research I can’t really justify spending time writing anything other than notes (and shopping lists full of comfort food) at the moment.
But don’t feel too sorry for me; my areas of research for this term include ghosts, devils, gay vicars, and lesbian vampires. So yeah, I have to read a lot of essays, but lesbian vampires are never dull. Plus, it turns out that the kind of people who write essays on that kind of thing have a pretty good sense of humour. And a tendancy to read sex into everything. Honestly, everything. So although I don’t have time to write my own funny stuff, I have no compunction against copying and pasting other people’s. Here are some little gems of academia…
1. For the teenage boy in us all… (Not like that. Ew.)
Nameless Offences: Homosexual Desire in the 19th Century is incredibly insightful and basically a godsend to anyone researching the prosecution of homosexuality in the 1800s.
The author? H. G. Cocks. Putting two naked men on the cover of a book about 19th century homosexuality is fair enough. But then writing ‘Cocks’ over the top of them? Genius. Hats off to Cocks.
2. For every academic who, well, needs to get out more.
“Hogg knew very well that some of his readers would prefer an endless strip-tease to the pleasure of climax, but he nevertheless offers the possibility of a converging significance for those readers who wish to go all the way”.
(Extract from ‘Beyond Closure: Buried Alive With Hogg’s Justified Sinner’ by Magdalene Redekop.)
Seriously? The analogy works like this: finding meaning in James Hogg’s cryptic novel The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner is like having sex, as opposed to not having sex. Now, I once challenged Boyfriend to include the word ‘armadillo’ in an essay about the Cold War (his teacher wrote a big red question mark next to his description of an “armadillo-like iron curtain”) so I have to ask: was this a dare, Magdalene? Come on, you can be honest with us.
3. For Freud. Just Freud. Nobody else.
“‘Go and hang yourself!’ was equivalent to ‘Get yourself an erection at any price!’”
(Extract from Freud’s ‘The Interpretation of Dreams’.)
Some context here: Freud’s is arguing that his female patient telling her husband to hang himself is because what she really, unconsciously, wanted, was to have sex with him. Aww, Freud, you old sexed-up sexist, you. I’m betting it was because she wanted him to go away and leave her alone.