transatlantic pursuits

a heavily-condensed version of my MPhil thesis has been accepted for a conference at UIUC in March next year — the 9th annual graduate symposium for women’s & gender history — w/ potential for publication, though it may be that I am to publish with another journal, if/when I get my act together. despite my various reservations about gender history (and the discussion on that link may be worth reading), and despite having moved on to something rather different for my PhD, I think I’ll nonetheless do it. apart from being my first international conference experience, it will be fruitful to pose my methodological discomfort to what I suspect will be a very large group of women writing women’s history, to see if and how any of them share and respond to it. besides, this means that I can finally justify an extensive trip through American academia! — Expect Much Bookporn. I plan to visit and spend a long, long time in Cornell’s Southeast Asian library; thus, apart from Illinois & Chicago, NYC is on the cards, as is New Haven, and anywhere else I might dig up relevant material. somewhere in there I may even have time to be a normal tourist, insofar as “normal” involves an inordinate obsession with bookstores and coffeshops, and a gallery or ten. any & all recommendations to this end welcome.


12 responses to “transatlantic pursuits

  • Tim

    If you’re on the eastern seaboard, I definitely recommend visiting Philadelphia and Washington along with New York and New Haven. Baltimore has a pretty sexy library too. And do let me know if you come to Philadelphia; I’d be happy to meet and set up access for you at a few choice places.

  • Darby O'Shea

    If you were happen to pop in at Harvard, let me know. Our libraries aren’t *bad.* Especially this one, http://hcl.harvard.edu/libraries/#houghton , where I once saw an 80 year old man (at least) leap out of his chair and shout “Eureka!”

  • Rachel

    I intend to see as many as I can while still being …. academically productive. we’ll see how far this gets me🙂 what’s most amazing is that america is so huge! — I’m told it’s TEN HOURS from NYC to Cornell. so much for my wild fantasies of academic toil in the daytime interspersed with lunchtime jaunts to the MoMA.

  • Rich

    The Philadelphia Museum of Art has a great collection. If you’re going to be in Connecticut to check out the Beinecke Rare Books Library at Yale, good choice. However, I would urge you to skip the Yale Art Museum and go to the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art in Hartford. One of the most underrated art collections in the United States. It was the first established art museums here, so it’s had a lot of time to build.

    I can also point you to some great eateries in Philadelphia. The Good Dog, for one. Great working class bar with better food.

  • Rich

    Hartford is about 45 minutes north of New Haven, for geographic reference. Same state. I don’t know how much you know about the area.

  • Kyle

    New York is a BIG state, sad to say, though 10 hours from Ithaca to NYC is perhaps a little exaggerated. We will be discussing this trip further in a forthcoming e-mail🙂

  • irina325

    The south side of Chicago — where the University of Chicago is — has wonderful bookstores. The Seminary Co-op Bookstore (and its other branch on 57th St) is amazing, and Powell’s Bookstore, a used bookstore further east on 57th, is well worth a look through.

  • Bug Girl

    Chicago also has some amazing music stores, if you like musicporn too.

    Also, the Field Museum is fairly easy to get a behind-the-scenes look at, although I don’t know if you’re seeking biology books. It’s an amazingly orderly mess behind the public part of the museum–lots of old specimens and journals.

    Congrats on the acceptance of your paper!

  • Tim

    If Cambridge’s libraries are bookporn, then Chicago’s Seminary Co-Op is like a furious, drunken, and passionate groping session in a Paris park. The aesthetics are different, but if the intensity of your satisfaction is what counts, then you know where you stand.

  • Kevin

    UIUC’s main library has a beautiful main staircase, complete with mahogany rails, painted maps on the celing, great turn-of-the-century stuff. And the Reference Room and Circulation Desk area both have the classic vaulted-ceiling arena of scholarly pursuits look. Not as swanky as the V&A or Harvard, but when I was at UIUC I found the library beautiful in its own charming midwestern way. Worth checking out since you’re there…congrats on your work’s being on the program; that’s a great conference.

  • Rachel

    oh I’m thoroughly intrigued by this Chicago seminary co-op already. and I will certainly be attempting to see UIUC’s main library — that is, if I am actually allowed to. my trip is a whole three months away, the tickets have not yet been booked, & I am already all breathless with anticipation.

  • AWOL « a historian’s craft

    […] 3, 2008 by Rachel I’m away for a conference! Hopefully, there is internet in America. I will be in Chicago, Urbana-Champaign, New York City, […]

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