Return of the Sara

I’m baaack!  I had a posting hiatus due to academic priorities (1 month oops).  I have not done a lot in the past few weeks because I hunkered down to work on two term papers and my dissertation proposal.  I did, however, manage a Birkbeck-funded trip to Nottingham for the NUS LGBT Conference before diving into my proposal.  I will tell you all about that in another post.
My first paper, for Equality and the Law, was on accessing gender through the protected category of sex under UK and EU Equality Law.  I argued that the law conflates sex and gender irresponsibly, but that it’s rootedness in a binary system of sex/gender is more harmful and misrepresentative of human identities and thus experiences.
My second paper, for Queer Histories Queer Cultures, discussed the consistency of discourse on AIDS and sexuality in the UK newspapers surrounding Freddie Mercury’s illness and death.  I think it was quite good.  I now have a needless amount of knowledge about Freddie Mercury’s life.  In the near future, I hope to put that to use in a blog post.  To access this knowledge, however, I was finally motivated to get my reader’s pass for the national library of Great Britain- the British Library- which happens to be a 10 minute walk from my flat.

I feel like a proper researcher now that I can use the British Library.  They have ALL THE BOOKS.  But, me being me, doing my obscure research, I already found a number of books that they *don’t* have.  So contrary to my prior belief, they only have nearly ALL THE BOOKS.  You can’t take books out of the British Library- you must access them in the Reading Rooms.  That’s a shame for a couple reasons.  1- They’re the only library near me with the entire collection of Neil Gaiman’s Sandman comics, so I can’t lounge around the park with Sandman unless I buy them.  2- I like to hoard books (admitting my problem).  I check them out from the library and keep them as long as possible, until I’m forced to return them to get a new book or am completely finished with them.  I suppose this second reason is a mixed blessing.  I don’t get my fulfill of hoarding fascinating books, but I am forced to minimize my hoarding to other libraries…:P Another mixed blessing is the inconvenience and motivation of having to get up and go to the library and plan to research during their opening hours.

The British Library also hosts cool events.  In the near future, I’ll be attending their “Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK” exhibit.  Recently, Neil Gaiman and Tori Amos came to chat with the curators on stage a the Library.  It is a very nice place.  Even if you are not a registered reader, you can attend events or bask in the lovely stone courtyard partitioned off from the busy bustle of Euston Road.

Never fear, I will post again soon.  Farewell, for a moment.

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