#teachcomUAL Context

I’m aiming for a blend of Make, curate and share + Contribute to discourse/knowledge by figuring out how to shape a blog space that isn’t academic (the last three I’ve managed were all linked to school – one to our tcg/lrng center, the other two to specific courses), which is a start to having me do something different in virtual space. That something different is still a blog, with motivations that are more personal than professional, and content interests that require me to learn in disciplinary and experiential realms that are new to me.

So, to make things just a little interesting, I’m organizing this blog around DNA “stuff” – drawing soon on colleagues’ genetic counseling research, on a friends genomics-related courses, and on related fiction/non-fiction works.

I have a long-term interest in genomics, and when I’m writing by choice it’s creative non-fiction with local/family history springboards for “bigger” discussions. Also, I’m one of the now many whose DNA profiles have turned up what’s known academically as “non-parental event” and colloquially as “not parent expected.” At this point, most of the secret group discussion spaces on this topic are decidedly unfriendly to feminist, race/ethnicity-informed/nuanced, queer friendly, non-hristian perspectives and experiences. I want to figure out how to talk to that space – as well as to make a place where I can talk, and begin imagining, creating that necessary particular space.

Ida Context

Sometimes writing on paper isn’t enough.

Writing on paper definitely isn’t enough when the writer is trying to tell oscillating stories – stories that see, capture, hold for a minute, invent while thinking – that capture life in the middest of learning that the paternity I carry in my heart and head, soul and history does not match the paternity I have just learned that I carry genetically. There’s Pops. There is a bio dude.

In stitching together these various stories, songs needs to play in between paragraphs, sometimes even need to play to define or context as single word. Images need to show up as part of description, as springboard for description – or to set a tone, to bring a particular hue to a story’s register, to stand in for nascent notions.

Words on paper aren’t enough. Secret spaces for people addressing DNA surprises mostly set limitations on discussions linking to queerness, feminisms, race/ethnicity, politics, and sociopolitical constructs. They aren’t enough.

All sorts of media in virtual space could well support the storytelling. All sorts of truth-sorting tools could well enrich the storytelling.

Storytelling is the essential human activity. The harder the situation, the more essential it is.

~ Tim O’Brien