When You Present Critical Findings About Your Friend at a Conference…and She’s in the Audience

Earlier this month I presented a small part of my research at the National Women’s Studies Association conference in Montreal, Canada. The conference took place in the wake of the devastating election results. The timing of the conference couldn’t have been better. I needed to get out of D.C. and not worry about turning onContinue reading “When You Present Critical Findings About Your Friend at a Conference…and She’s in the Audience”

The Dissertation Is My Olympics. The Olympics Is My Dissertation

Thank goodness for the Rio Games. Just when I was falling into a rut with my doctoral work, the Summer Games begun. It’s early to feel burnt out considering I just started the dissertation journey. Perhaps defending my proposal only a few months after giving birth and then moving to the other side of theContinue reading “The Dissertation Is My Olympics. The Olympics Is My Dissertation”

Using Pinterest for Thesis Inspiration

Social media is usually a productivity deathtrap. This is especially true when we’re trying to write. Too often I have to turn off the Internet as a safeguard against checking Facebook for the 17th time, that day. When I was prepping for my qualifying exams I deactivated my account. But social media isn’t the enemyContinue reading “Using Pinterest for Thesis Inspiration”

My Postpartum (Blogging) Hiatus

The last eight months of my life have been one transition after the other. Here are the most notable highlights: I had a baby! It was a long time coming. Transitioning to parenthood has been intense. Two months postpartum I cleaned up my dissertation proposal, defended it, and became ABD. Two weeks after that, weContinue reading “My Postpartum (Blogging) Hiatus”

Can We Move on From Mother’s Day Please?

Every Mother’s Day is wrought with complex emotions for me (as well as thousands of others). Here are two main reasons why: I lost my mother when I was 20. Five years before that, we all knew she was going to die of cancer. I’ve been painfully trying to become a mother for the pastContinue reading “Can We Move on From Mother’s Day Please?”

Crowdfunding Your PhD?

Doctoral work is a privilege. And PhD programs are saturated with people of privilege. Despite the increasing rate of student diversity (in all manners of the word), a vast majority of us PhDing come from relative degrees of privilege. It seems oxymoronic to consider oneself an underprivileged (and I’m writing largely in terms of SES)Continue reading “Crowdfunding Your PhD?”

Loving Research Even When It Sometimes Doesn’t Love You Back

Research is really exciting. From my undergrad, master’s, and (now) PhD programs I’ve had the privilege to dabble in several kinds of research methods: statistical analysis, content analysis, experimental design, ethnographic work, focus groups and key informant interviews, oral history, archival research, survey implementation and analysis, program evaluation, build environment assessments, and etc. Research projectsContinue reading “Loving Research Even When It Sometimes Doesn’t Love You Back”

Nominated for Something I Wrote?

When people say, “I’m just happy to have been nominated” for a particular award nomination, I tend to roll my eyes. Really? That statement often seems disingenuous. And yet here I am feeling genuinely happy to be nominated for the 2015 Biography Prize for student work at the University of Hawai`i. In the mix areContinue reading “Nominated for Something I Wrote?”

Passing the Qualifying Exams

If we analogize the PhD journey to climbing an Everest-like mountain, I’m heaving to catch my breath right now. I just passed my qualifying exam. After reviewing two hundred (plus) books—divided into three reading lists (“Gendering American Studies,” “Body Politics,” and “Contemporary Life Narratives”) that culminated in a week long examination where I wrote threeContinue reading “Passing the Qualifying Exams”

Writing About My Friend, the Olympian

There’s nothing like signing up for a writing course to kick my ass into writing gear. Some people are self-motivated and determined to pump out pages without externally imposed deadlines and accountability. I’m not that type of person. I respond well to external pressure and deadlines, especially from an authority figure or someone scores smarterContinue reading “Writing About My Friend, the Olympian”

Breast Cancer and Its Metaphors

After reading Susan Sontag’s Illness as Metaphor and AIDS and Its Metaphor I’m left wondering whether the stories we tell others and ourselves about our bodies are truly ours—especially stories about diseases. Sontag’s work has me reconsidering my mother’s experience with breast cancer and how she carried herself as a woman with this disease. MyContinue reading “Breast Cancer and Its Metaphors”

PhD Exam Prep: It Begins

It’s time. Since day one of my PhD program I had spent too many moments fretting over the qualifying exams and doubting how I could ever read, discuss, and write about ~200 books in time. We didn’t read this copiously in the social sciences and I wondered if switching to the humanities was too loftyContinue reading “PhD Exam Prep: It Begins”

Guest Post: The One-Body Problem

Originally posted on Tenure, She Wrote:
by @scidoctress I hold immense respect for my female friends and colleagues who are struggling to advance their own academic careers alongside a spouse’s. I’ve watched brilliant women find a plethora of creative solutions to the “two-body problem,” as it’s termed, from negotiating spousal hires to commuting great distances…

“Coming Out” About (In)fertility

I haven’t been keeping my fertility challenge a secret per se. I have, however, for the past three years struggled negotiating the elusive “outside world” in relation to my frustrations, disappointments, and fears trying to conceive, which have wreaked havoc on my sense of self. More often than not, it has been easier (and feltContinue reading ““Coming Out” About (In)fertility”