Welcome to my new blog! My old blog, which was called “Sapience Speaks,” has been defunct for a while: I hadn’t posted on it in almost a year, and then I hid it away from view as I was trying out the job market, at least partially because I didn’t think potential employers should be confronted with what I posted as a college student. There was nothing that would be damaging if colleges or search committees saw it, but much of it was a record of my pre-grad-school self, and some of the content was a decade or more out of date. Nothing wrong with that, of course, but when searching for a tenure track position you want to be judged on what you write now, not what you wrote when you were twenty. (Especially if your writing was as crappy as mine was at twenty.) After taking what amounted to a two-year break from blogging, I decided that I wanted my online presence to be a bit more focused. That meant creating a little bit of a separation from the old blog–hence this new one.
One factor in the decision was I was beginning to think a little harder about my different online presences: my blog had increasingly become associated with my academic work as I posted larger thoughts from my research, while bits and pieces of fluff were more and more being relegated to Facebook. There will probably continue to be some crossover between the different types of material I post on the two forums, but this is more a space for academic or semi-academic musings, while facebook is more for personal or very short bits. (To students who may find this: I will not friend you on Facebook until after you graduate or at least leave my class.)
The two titles of this blog, one from the address (“Reforming Authorship”) and one from the official title space (“Sapience Reading,”) are meant to reflect some of that change but also some continuity with the old blog. “Reforming Authorship” reflects the two major intellectual projects I’m committed to in my research: first, exploring how the religious reformations of the 16th and 17th centuries affected conceptions of authorship; and second, reforming the modern ideas about authorship that are still focused on claims of originality and isolated genius. Both of those issues were represented on the old blog, but perhaps less clearly. “Sapience Reading” maintains the pseudonym I’ve used online for well over a decade now, but moves the emphasis from speaking to reading, the primary activity that shapes what I choose to write about here.
So, in the near future, you can probably expect a few posts about my on-going research and attempts to finish revisions on my “problem” chapter. This summer I hope to blog about a research trip I’ll be taking and the final preparations for my dissertation defense. In the fall, there will perhaps be a few posts relating the usual job-market angst, as well as some excitement about getting back into teaching after being on fellowship this last year.