Ushering in 2017… (a brief update)

We’re only just over a week into the new year and already 2017 is shaping up to be an incredibly busy year all round.

Since the turn of the year I’ve spent much of my time working on my first chapter, provisionally entitled ‘Future Soldiers’, and am currently up to around 7,500 words including footnotes. This will come down a bit once I’ve got the main structure sorted and can tidy up the footnotes, but it’s a pretty good start considering at the end of 2016 I had nothing in terms of written argument at all. Continue reading »

A mantra for academic research

'Resilient Life' coverAs part of my ongoing research, I’ve recently been reading through Brad Evans and Julian Reid’s Resilient Life: The Art of Living Dangerously. I’m not normally one for prefaces and acknowledgements, but this book’s front matter really struck a chord with me. In it, the authors rework Foucault’s own preface in Deleuze’s Anti-Oedipus to create a series of basic principles that they believe every intellectual project ‘of a political kind’ should follow. Personally, I believe these principles should be applied to all research, and I will certainly do my best to be guided by these principles in my own work Continue reading »

Lessons from my first research conference

I’ve just got back from the final day of the NWCDTP postgraduate conference, ‘Creative Humanities: Thinking, Making and Meaning’ at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester.

I’ve attended many conferences in my time, but up to now, only ever as a journalist, and never a truly academic conference such as this – so it has very much been a new experience for me, and one which given me a great deal to ponder. Continue reading »

The Darwin dilemma: on greatness, and the game of chance

I recently had the pleasure to take a trip to the home of Charles Darwin, Down House, a lovely residence near Orpington in Kent. In the first of my research blogs series, I would like to take a closer at the life of Darwin the man, and what the extraordinary circumstances of Darwin’s rise to greatness tells us about the world we live in. Continue reading »