Tell us about what you’re doing and what you’re working on during this COVID-19 lock-in.
I admit that I have been fairly distracted since I started effectively self-isolating around the 10th of March. I’ve got only a few days, if not hours, left before I go on Maternity Leave with my first baby, so keeping my household healthy and safe has occupied a lot of my brain space.
That said, I had some pretty tangible goals that I wanted to achieve before stopping work, so I’ve been working as much as I can on those. I’ve been adjusting a workshop that was set to meet in-person in July, on embodiment and the senses called What the Body Knows, which now has funding to hire a PhD helper — the workshop is going to be online now, so it has taken some creativity in figuring out how that will work! I am very pleased that the second issue of JIBS, on transgenderqueer and genderqueer perspectives on biblical studies was released last week, guest edited by Caroline Blyth. I’ve also just finished up an article co-authored with Sarah Rollens and Eric Vanden Eykel, for JIBS’s forthcoming issue on Activism in the Classroom, guest edited by Johanna Stiebert. I’m also chipping away at a text book that Sara Parks and Shayna Sheinfeld and I are co-authoring, on Women in Ancient Religions, and an essay on angelic eating in Good Omens.
2. Which aspects of your work might be particularly interesting or relevant for Shiloh Project readers?
The textbook that Sara Parks and Shayna Sheinfeld and I are writing might be of interest to friends of the Shiloh Project. It’s based off of a class the three of us used to teach when we were finishing up our PhDs at McGill University. Our aims in the text book are intersectional, trying to look at overlapping identities that women held in antiquity while providing an accessible and progressive introduction to the topic that will make teaching it easier for those who would like to do so. We invariably will have to wrestle with texts and images which depict or advocate sexual violence given the nature of women’s lived experience then and now.
3. How are you bearing up and what’s helped you most?
It feels good to be working on collaborative pieces right now, and having regular contact with my colleagues (as well as with friends) has been really helpful in keeping my head above water. Work is sometimes a welcome distraction from the chaos outside. I’m also doing a lot of baking, taking my state-sanctioned daily walks in the nice weather, reading non-academic books, and trying to spend quality time with our cat Button while he is still an ‘only child’.