Books Acquired Recently: Post-Birthday Edition

I got some money as a gift for my birthday a few weeks ago and used it to buy some books that I’ve had on my wish list for a while. They arrived in the mail (which thankfully is still running) today. All three books are queer.

Castle, Terry. The Professor: A Sentimental Education. 2010. New York: HarperPerennial, 2011.

I read Castle’s book The Apparitional Lesbian during the first year of my M.A. (2004-5) and it taught me to see and do scholarship in new ways. It has continued to be an important text for me. I recently heard about The Professor, a collection of personal essays, and decided to buy it because of Castle’s previous influence on me.

Parker, Pat. The Complete Works of Pat Parker. Ed. Julie R. Enszer. Dover, FL: A Midsummer Night’s Press, 2016.

I’ve read some of Parker’s letters but not any of her poetry, and I know very little about her as a writer overall. I’m looking forward to reading more of her work. Queer person of color voices are especially necessary in times of societal upheaval like these.

Springgay, Stephanie, and Sarah E. Truman. Walking Methodologies in a More-than-Human World: WalkingLab. 2018. London: Routledge, 2019.

I’ve been interested in walking as a political act since I began reading about psychogeography about seven years ago. This book looks at walking through a queer, decolonial, affective lens, which is a much-needed approach. It will be an especially fascinating text to explore now while movement (though not walking in New York currently) is curtailed during the pandemic.

Published by danielshankcruz

I grew up in New York City and lived in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; Goshen, Indiana; DeKalb, Illinois; and Salt Lake City, Utah before coming to Utica, New York. My mother’s family is Swiss-German Mennonite (i.e., it’s an ethnicity, not necessarily a theological persuasion) and my father’s family is Puerto Rican. I have a Ph.D. in English and currently teach at Utica College. I have also taught at Northern Illinois University and Westminster College in Salt Lake City. My teaching and scholarship are motivated by a passion for social justice, which is why my research focuses on the literature of oppressed groups, especially LGBT persons and people of color. While I primarily read and write about fiction, I am also a devoted reader of poetry because, as William Carlos Williams writes, “It is difficult / to get the news from poems / yet [people] die miserably every day / for lack / of what is found there.” Thinkers who influence me include Marina Abramovic, Kathy Acker, Di Brandt, Ana Castillo, Samuel R. Delany, Percival Everett, Essex Hemphill, Jane Jacobs, Walt Whitman, and the New York School of poets. I am also fond of queer Mennonite writers such as Stephen Beachy, Jan Guenther Braun, Lynnette Dueck/D’anna, and Casey Plett. In my free time I’m either reading, writing the occasional poem, playing board games (especially Scrabble, backgammon, and chess), watching sports (Let’s Go, Mets!), or cooking (curries, stews, roasts…).

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