Research

 

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My book, Crafting Feminism from Literary Modernism to the Multimedia Present, is forthcoming from Oxford University Press in October 2022. The project focuses on how writers recover, reposition, and repurpose craft materials and processes from photography and needlework to painting, collage, and digital making. The result of these various threads is an alternative, “willful,” to use Sara Ahmed’s key term, reorientation of patriarchal temporalities and ideas about what counts as creative work. Craft offers the ability to hold several things in sight at once, revealing the complexity of material objects, multimedia, art history, and visual cultures—with a focus on how these encounters underpin narratives of survival and resistance in texts by Virginia Woolf, H.D. (Hilda Doolittle), Lorna Goodison, Ali Smith, Zadie Smith, and others. 

I have further research interests in queer art cultures and contemporary global literature, feminist archival studies, eco-intersectionality, and creative non-fiction. More generally, I am interested in practice-based, experiential research methods in the humanities. In my research, I practice all of the art forms I study, and I conceptualize my work as an embodied practice of studying the intellectual contours of materials, objects, process, and physical spaces. In combining my scholarship with these methodological concerns, I aim to be more specific with my analyses, foregrounding lost or marginalized archives, and revealing the potential of hybrid narrative genres in academic research. Reflecting this work, each scholarly chapter of my first book is prefaced by a Techne interchapter, spaces of creative and archival encounters, which reveal the seams between the chapters and range from the personal to the very theoretical. Techne is a term that conveys essential linkages between ideas of art, craft, literature, and technology, which—especially in Crafting Feminism—get woven together.

I have started a new book on bathing culture, swimming pools, and geothermal springs in writing and art from 1885-1965. Building on my first book’s study of queer community, healing and repair, and affect, I read these warm water sites as historically — and ecologically — linked to theories of wellness-as-resistance.