This blog will comprise a collection of ephemera, mess and miscellaneous artifacts reflecting on the writer's life.

Sunday, March 25, 2007

dialogic objects

Inspired by Gaby's visit, (Gaby came from Germany where she teaches socio linguistics to hear about Charmian's project in Tower Hamlets)
I am thinking about the way that objects speak with two voices.
For example, quilts in Pakistan can mean one thing, that is, warm coverings for wearing in the winter.
In Rotherham, quilts become duvets, they cover you at night in the cold Rotherham winters.
The object is the same, but has different uses and meanings in different spaces.
Here is our textile case in our exhibition (still on at Rotherham Central Art Gallery till 14th April).
The cotton was also grown in Manchester, but from our informants, was grown in Pakistan, on the farm.
It too has a dialogic quality and like Bakhtin's texts, speaks with two voices.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Living normally

is something I try to do, and I was pleased to find this book which celebrated ordinary homes.
What I love about normal homes (as opposed to 'styled' ones in magazines)
is the way objects and artefacts are acrrued.
People give you stuff, and even if it is faintly tasteless, it stays, as a trace of the giver and also as an acknowledgement of the messy realities of daily life.
Even better, cats, children, playstations, clutter up more of it.
There is even a website dedicated to people's homes which you can find here.

Friday, March 09, 2007


This week I have been here, here and to talk to the people at this project here.
You ofcourse should go here to see the wonderful exhibition.
My knowledge of the UK rail network has now reached doctoral proportions.
I am hoping to offer an online doctorate in the manner of this marvellous course with modules in
GNER studies (including reading on theorising "trans" status objects and the death of the train company, with Derrida thrown in for free)
The Midland Mainline module will include sedimented literary theorists such as Raymond Williams and Richard Hoggart as it has an old school Marxist feel.
Virgin meanwhile will include a whole section on risk theory (Beck ofcourse) and include theorists such as Bev Skeggs on class while my favourite module will be,
Northern Rail which will have wonderful sections on children's popular culture, girls talk and ethnographic positionality.
Suggested dissertation topics:
Visual cultures
Viewing cultural spaces
Criticality and the train
Travelling and tourism
Must start the e-forms now.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Ferham families

had its grand opening on the 3rd March at Rotherham Art Gallery and the opening party was a great success.

All sorts of famous people came.

I was very excited by our gold case

our wonderful wall placards

and by the elephants.

This quote is from Jaan Khan and I think it is very poetic.

Here are some advance pictures of the exhibition but really, you have to be there.

On until April 14th so you have no excuse.