kat_lair: (B5 - delenn)
***

Because it's reading and thinking time again in this house and in this hat. And since General Elections are looming in here, and Finland just had its parliamentary one, the quote seemed particularly apt! Also, Delenn icon because politics.


“If income, wealth, and economic position are also political resources, and if they are distributed unequally, then how can citizens be political equals? And if citizens cannot be political equals, how is democracy to exist?” (Dahl, 1989: 326)


Full ref:
Dahl, R.A. (1989). Democracy and its critics. New Haven: Yale University Press.


***
kat_lair: (HP - dangerously over-educated)
***

“Interspecies sexual assault is the product of a masculinity that sees women, animals and nature as objects that can be controlled, manipulated and exploited. Listen only to some of the sexist language that prepare the way for bodily sexual assault […] When a man describes women as ‘cows’, ‘bitches’, ‘(dumb) bunnies’, ‘birds’, ‘chicks’, ‘foxes’, ‘fresh meat’, and their genitalia as ‘beavers’ or ‘pussies’, he uses derogatory language to distance himself emotionally from, and to elevate himself above, his prey by relegating them to a male-constructed category of ‘less than human’ or, more importantly, ‘less than me’." (Beirne, 1997: 327)

Full Ref:
Beirne, P. (1997). Rethinking bestiality: towards a concept of interspecies sexual assault. Theoretical Criminology 1, 317–340.


***

\o/

Aug. 5th, 2014 07:05 pm
kat_lair: (BANDOM - light 'em up)
***

Guess who's DONE with her MA assignments? That's right, THIS ACADEMIC ROCK STAR RIGHT HERE. The celebratory soundtrack in my mind sounds a lot like this.


Anyway, let's do a writing meme to celebrate. Because reasons. The first line of the last 20 fics posted, newest first.


Contrary to all expectations, Monroe falls asleep the moment his head hits the pillow. - not your average lullaby

John doesn’t know what else to do so he does what he does best. - Courtship

The way Dean sees it, it’s going to happen one way or another, and probably sooner than later. - Full Tang

“I can get out of this,” Sherlock says. - your frayed ends all tied up

Nick is running. - Catch of the Day

“The scumbag’s never going to show up,” Doyle grumbles. - Birthday Stakeout

What did you get a Blutbad for a birthday? - Birthday Gamble

“You’re spoiling him rotten.” - Birthday Treat

It’s always like this, or at least they feel like always; these middle-of-the-night, heart-in-mouth, blood-rushing-rushing-possibly-literally visits. - sing no songs except of restless blood

The dreams start gradually. - All Things Mortal

Robbie remembered being a fresh faced recruit, attending his first week at the training school and being told that being a copper meant you had to be prepared for anything. - Life's Sweetest Reward

Another day, another tedious industry party. - Caricias

The hospital smells like pain and disinfectant, all the things Patrick associates with the last few months, all the things that tell him he’s alive. - i know i’m bad news

“Oopsie-daisy. There we go,” Danny says, hoisting Steve out of the car. - A Hard Day’s Night

"You're late," Robbie says. - is not the past all shadow

“No,” Danny says firmly. “Absolutely not.” - Ready to Rock, Ready to Roll

The thing is, in their line of work they eat a lot of biscuits. - Jammy Dodgers Are Not the Only Fruit

There are no prophesies about Sam Winchester because no one sees him coming. - what rough beast, its hour come around at last

Lewis chooses to have this confrontation in the hotel where Williams and the other NDA agents are staying. - Prophesy in Part

Sam is bored. - Summer of ‘73


Well that covered 12 different fandoms: Grimm, Lewis, Hawaii Five-0, Strictly Come Dancing, Great British Bake Off, Masterchef, Supernatural, Harry Potter, The Professionals, Bandom, The X-Files, Sherlock. Wow, I really do get around :D Also I clearly have a thing about dropping the reader right in the middle of action/dialogue which isn't that much of a surprise.

Well that killed some time. Goes to contemplate dinner now.

***
kat_lair: (GEN - books)
***

Hah! I am DONE with the long MA assignment (except for ref checks and appendices but pfft) and because almost all the note-taking has been completed for the two shorter ones I'm pretty much at least 70% with all the MA assignments. Unless they come back with major revisions from tutors... *crosses fingers*

To celebrate and help my brain relax, I thought I'd do the Grill the Writer Meme again, just in case someone has questions.

Ask a question about my writing and I'll try to answer it:

1) What I was thinking at the time I wrote a story/series or a question about my writing as a whole. It can be absolutely anything including about my WIPs. (I don't post WIPs, but I guess you can ask about them in general re fandoms or pairings or quotes, idk)

2) Pick a character/pairing I've written and I will explain the top five some ideas, concepts, etc. I try to keep in mind while writing that character/pairing.

3) Quote a few lines from something I've written and I'll comment on them.

4) At AO3 I have posted xx works. Pick a number from 1 (the most recent) to xx (the first story I posted there) and I'll tell you three things I currently like about the story. IDK why this is so complicated a question and also, as much as I love AO3, the casual assumption that everyone posts fics there is annoying. Well. I do post most of my fics there. But not all, e.g. none of the unmarked_place stuff is there because of reasons. Anyway, rather than play with numbers, why not just randomly select a story and then I can tell you some things about it. Probably not 3 and probably not why I like it. But things.

Oh yeah, you can find my fics via LJ Masterlist or via AO3.

***
kat_lair: (GEN - stand out)
***

Return to academic reading and writing means return of slinging random quotes at the flist. This is what struck me today.


“Voice is an expression of self; it is rooted in the belief that what we have to say is relevant and of value. The simple act of listening, respectfully giving one’s full attention, is an act of personal empowerment..." (Ledwith, 2006: 257)


Full Ref:
Ledwith, M. (2006) ‘Personal narratives/political lives: personal reflection as a tool for collective change’. Reflective Practice: International and Multidisciplinary Perspectives, 6(2): 255-262.


***
kat_lair: (GEN - medusa)
***

I have many, MANY notes re my MA assignments. I do not yet have any finished MA assignments. This is the equivalent of having painstakingly turned all the jigsaw puzzle pieces the right way around and collated them on the table so that I can now start putting it together. Except for how there probably are some pieces still missing but I don't know that until get to that part of the puzzle.

And in kink-related things, these are the three messages I've received lately, in summary and translated.
1. Hello, are you still looking for a sub because I'm interested. = I'm polite and pretty cute, TOO BAD I LIVE IN OHIO, AHAHAHA.
2. Hello, nothing will ever happen in real life, but I'd like to talk about some scenarios with you. = I'm married, my wife doesn't know, and I would like you to provide me some wank material.
3. Hello, YOU ARE A GODDESS-ON-EARTH, LET ME WORSHIP THE GROUND YOU WALK ON. = I'm afraid of real women, with real faults and feelings and all that messy stuff so I prefer the fantasy, thx.

Sigh. Beyond the Valley of the Femdoms has helped. A lot.

***

Anyway, I promised some vids. These are all gathered via flist over the last couple of weeks.

Am I a good man? Doctor Who Official Trailer )


Doctor Who 50th Anniversary Lego Tribute )


Got To Dance is back... With Adam! )


Swedish Marines + Greased Lightning )


Word Crimes )


British villains always drive Jaguars. Advertising done right. Tom Hiddleston quotes Richard II. I don't even care about cars. Gah. )


***
kat_lair: (TNG - jess)
***

I have finished and submitted my PGCLT (post-graduate certificate in teaching and learning) portfolio.

I will now ignore all other work for the rest of the evening and flop in front of the telly with some food and pretty people dancing covered in glitter (cheers Strictly).

*face-plants into sofa pillows*

***

Autumn...

Sep. 28th, 2013 11:13 am
kat_lair: (GEN - autum)
***

...has arrived. I've still been braving it and sitting outside with the laptop (and layers and quilt and hot tea) to work during my 'work from home' days. Not sure how long I can keep it up though.

In other "news":

I have a new layout from [livejournal.com profile] minty_peach. I'm still fiddling with the coding though to make it work for me but I like it. New header too from [livejournal.com profile] roxicons with narcissistic text added by me.

Laptop touchpad finally went properly bonkers and after a frustrating day where everything took five tries to get it right I stomped to the supermarket and bought a wireless mouse. I have now names him Ryan because he essentially saved Spencer (i.e. my laptop) from a fate in the trash heap. Another lease of life although I do know I need to upgrade to a new laptop probably within a year. Sigh.

First lectures for next week are written and include a lot of lolcats. As is my prerogative.

Research funding application has been sent off. It's only for some internal funding to cover travel expenses etc but still, fingers crossed

***

Thinks that have entertained me lately.

Oscar Wilde and Walt Whitman totally did it! Whitman opened a bottle of elderberry wine and he and Oscar drank it all before Whitman suggested they go upstairs to his ‘den’ on the third floor where, he told Oscar, ‘We could be on ‘thee and thou’ terms.' DELIGHTFUL! As the author explains: "History has reached out to you specifically and given you a gift."

Victorian vibrators! Here and also here and there's this one for 'horse exercises at home'. Yeah... :D

So I gather this is making a lot of waves but I just saw it for the first time yesterday when I had some random music channel on the background and suddenly what I was watching registered with my brain and it basically went 'WTF AHAHAHAHAHAHA' Man, Norwegians, got to love them.



I'll leave you with that.

***
kat_lair: (GEN - lalala)
***

The days before a holiday I find it increasingly difficult to actually motivate myself to do some work. All I've done today and yesterday is wield various emails regarding this conference handbook I'm organising, and copy-paste text around in an effort to put together the skeleton of my next teaching portfolio assignment. Word-count wise I think I'm actually almost 50% there, although it doesn't translate to actual effort still needed for it. But I just can't muster the energy to care. Here are the mental justifications for what is essentially laziness:
1. I am actually more than half done with this teaching portfolio now (nevermind that I still haven't got any formative feedback on it and if that turns out to be not so positive I may very well have to redo stuff)
2. The deadline for this is not until end of October (nevermind that I have conference paper, resit grading, and at least ten lectures to pull out of my ass by then as well)
3. Just because I've got two weeks off and mum is here, doesn't mean I can't do some work. She's got books and crafts with her and doesn't need entertaining 24/7 (nevermind that I was hoping to use such spare time to write my challenge fics and make some icons)
4. All in all I have 10 unused holiday days and no time to take them so surely doing barely half days for a couple of weeks is justified

*handwaves*

Anyway, today and yesterday I've also had some builders around to sort out my bathroom roof and other small things that needed fixing. Which has been another convenient excuse for not getting much work done.  But, at least house things are now fixed.

Tomorrow I have a tutorial with my challenging dissertation student (will she ever finish it? WILL SHE EVER LEAVE? I just don't know) followed by attempt to further my teaching portfolio assignment some more. [livejournal.com profile] pushkin666 is coming for the weekend and may be roped into cleaning the house with me. On Sunday afternoon I'm going to head over to Gatwick airport, stay overnight at the Premier Inn there and pick up mum bright and early Monday morning.

Ugh, right now I think I'm going to go and organise some paperwork in the office and call British Gas about fitting smart meters. That should assuage my guilt of not working a little. But first, a meme I snagged from [livejournal.com profile] beedekka a while back.

Meeeeemeeeeee )


***
kat_lair: (PSYCH - you know that's right)
***

  • I've had 6 cups of coffee today

  • This may be why I'm finding it hard to sleep at the moment

  • Which is annoying as I need to be up at decent hour tomorrow for potential house repairs

  • On the positive side, and largely thanks to coffee, I've finished one of my teaching portfolio assignments today

  • And because I finished another one yesterday it means that I am now 50% done with that tomfoolery \o/

  • Lately I have also kicked ass with volunteering/sustainability module planning (fuck yeah networking, fuck yeah potential development money) and conference handbook organising (and putting in a paper for said conference)

  • I have not yet kicked any ass regarding my challenge fics. And yet... I cannot muster any panic about this.

  • People whom I've promised icons: They will materialise, please be patient. I'm currently still in the cropping stage (damn I love cropping... um, cropping pictures. But yeah, also the other type of cropping though sadly not getting to do any of that at the moment, apply within if interested)

  • I'm in the mood to read aaaaaaall the Frank/Mikey fics at the moment and have been going through my old favourites but am now hitting a dead end because I don't want to read anything tagged with 'alcoholism' or 'drug use' or 'adultery'. Or... well okay, I'm being super picky atm but I really just want to read seventy-thousand fics about them being roommates and falling in love and if there's some d/s vibe (with Mikey as the 's' in the equation, then all the better). SPECIFIC FIC NEED IS SPECIFIC.

  • My mum is coming for a visit next Monday. We are planning a day in London to visit Madam Tussaud's which has been her long-held dream to see. It makes me happy to be able to facilitate that. I asked mum if there was anything else that she would like to see or do in London and she said she'd think about it. Today she rang to inform me of her choice. What was it, you may ask. The Big Ben? The Buckingham Palace? Shopping spree on the Oxford Street? No, no and hell no. My mother, she told me excitedly, had 'looked at things in the internet' and found that there was a Sherlock Holmes Museum (the emphasis was most definitely there) in London and that she would very much like to visit that if possible. Then she asked for some floor measurements because she's making me a rug and asked what flavour vodka I would like from the airport. If I am even a little bit awesome, it's because of her <3

  • Okay, writing this post has killed sufficient amount of time that I actually feel vaguely sleepy now. I should probably get on that.


***
kat_lair: (GEN - apple)
***

“The appeal to the tree of knowledge is necessary, but to be educational, university studies have to be more than extensive reading, more than `knowledge for its own sake’, or pursuing the argument wherever it leads’, more even than the `disinterested pursuit of truth’ and the formation of judgement under the influence of the educated. The tree is of the knowledge of good and evil…Education has to be a form of the pursuit of the good. This is the principle missing from the modern university which, if brought back into it, would rid it of its clutter of corrupt specialization and turn back a pile of twigs into a living tree again.”  (Maskell and Robinson 2002: 171)


Full Ref:
Maskell, D. & Robinson, I. (2002). The New idea of a University. London: Imprint Academic


***
kat_lair: (GEN - books)
***

Introduction to Forensic and Criminal Psychology by Dennis Howitt – One of the most used textbooks on the topic, currently on its 4th edition. This is a good introductory text and gives you a solid chapter in almost everything. The problem then is, of course, that it doesn’t have time to go in depth with anything but that’s common to these kinds of texts and shouldn’t be held against it. The layout is clear and the online resource centre adds value. Brilliant for first year students. This also has the added bonus of the author being British so it covers a lot of things from UK perspective.

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes – I read this last autumn after picking it up from a charity shop for the train journey. It’s not a traditional love story and the ending is a realistic one, all of which I found really refreshing. Deals with a difficult topic well. Good writing, definitely an above average read.

The First Detective: The Life and Revolutionary Times of Vidocq by James Morton – I would recommend this if you are interested in French and/or police history. If neither of those rings your bell, you’ll probably find this hard work. I did at times. This is a superbly researched biography of Vidocq, the infamous criminal turned detective. The author clearly loves his subject but doesn’t shy away from showing Vidock's many less than appealing characteristics or deeds either. Writing is entertaining although the level of detail (especially with places and people) is exhausting and confusing at times (stay away from the footnotes unless you are seriously into French Revolution). I found this a fascinating read.

What The Night Knows by Dean Koontz – Another book of Koontz’s that I enjoyed muchly. This is a story of a detective who thinks a murderer who killed his family when he was a boy has come back as a spirit to have another go. The ending gets a little too meshed in Christian concepts of good and evil, but I can deal with it for the writing and characters. One of Koontz’s strengths is to create believable and personable characters, and he handles several voices, including those of child narrators, here with much deftness.

Where Have All the Intellectuals Gone? (2nd Edition: Including a Reply to Furedi's Critics): Confronting 21st Century Philistinism by Frank Furedi - This is not an easy book to read. I spent the whole of it being vexed and slowly persuaded although I am still chewing over a lot of his arguments. Furedi's central thesis is that the political agenda of inclusion and access (to culture, arts, higher education) is responsible for falling standards. But don’t dismiss him as a snob yet. For Furedi, “dumbing down does not refer to the intelligence of people. Rather it is a statement about culture – more specifically, about the elites who influence and regulate the flow of cultural ideas” (p. 156). Indeed, it is not the ethos of wider participation of the public in cultural life and education that Furedi disagrees with but the way in which it is promoted. He argues that the top down social inclusion agenda only serves to infantilise the public. The lowering of standards reveals a belief that the public is unable to reach the level of excellence required while the constant demand for relevance presumes the public incapable of understanding anything that isn’t immediately familiar. It is elitism in disguise. The idea of inclusion is admirable and worth struggling for but the ideology of it, as it is currently conceived, is not only patronising but also deeply problematic. By viewing social exclusion as a condition people suffer from pathologises the problem as something internal to the individual instead something endemic in the social system itself. The problem is articulated in terms of people feeling like they’re not part of some things, and the solution therefore is to ensure people feel better about themselves. This ignores the social and economic inequalities that indeed ensure that some people are not part of some things. In other words, it’s the ‘get on your bike and look for work’ argument dressed up. - I could talk about this for much longer and will indeed be posting some quotes from the book. Needless to say, however, but I highly recommended this book for anyone who enjoys a challenge.

***
kat_lair: (HP - dangerously over-educated)
***

"The principles of the market and its managers are more and more the managers of the policy and practices of education ... there is a new concept of knowledge and of its relation to those who create it... Knowledge should flow like money to wherever it can create advantage and profit. Indeed knowledge is not like money, it is money. Knowledge is divorced from persons, their commitments, their personal dedications... Knowledge, after nearly a thousand years, is divorced from inwardness and literally dehumanised. Once knowledge is separated from inwardness, from commitments, from personal dedication, from the deep structure of the self, then people may be moved about, substituted for each other and excluded from the market." (Bernstein, 1996: 87, original emphasis)

Full Ref:
Bernstein, B. (1996). Pedagogy, symbolic control and identity: theory, research, critique. London: Taylor & Francis.


***
kat_lair: (GEN - books)
***

So, here are the first 5 out of the 50 book challenge I’ve set for myself. Note that I’m a relatively slow reader so there will likely be long stretches between the posts. And because I need to at least skim-read a lot of academic books as well due to my job, I’m including those as well as fiction or other non-work related literature.

There is some back-catalogue here from my ‘have read’ mental list but not from years and years ago. The rule of thumb is that if I’ve read it recently enough that I can write a short review without having to go back to the book, it’s included. In practice that means 'last 6 months or so'.

Anyway, first 5! Enjoy :D

***


Lightning by Dean Koontz – Koontz is one of my favourite authors and I’m pretty sure I’ve read most of his books. This is an older one and it shows; the author’s excellent use of simile and metaphor is not quite as honed as in the later books and his personal philosophy/worldview which is always there is pushed a bit too explicitly here. Still, as always, the characters are vividly drawn and personable, the plot twist is pretty cool, and the ending, as always, is a happy one.

Persian Boy by Mary Renault – As a rule, I’m not very keen on historical novels and fictionalisation of real historical people. Even in fanfic I tend to skip historical AUs unless the concept really grabs me or I trust the author. Anyway, this book was pushed into my hands by [livejournal.com profile] pushkin666 who will talk your ear off about Alexander the Great if you give her half an opening *g* And I’m glad it was, because I really, really enjoyed reading this. It takes a while to get used to the language (although, to be honest, getting over my instinctive dislike of first person narrative was a bigger obstacle) but the story of Bagoas, a noble born turned slave who ends up sharing Alexander’s bed and his last years, soon pulls you in. The ending was too abrupt as I would have liked to know more detail about what happened to Bagoas after, but apart for that I have no complaints.

Psychology and Crime (Key Approaches to Criminology) by Craig Webber – This is a very readable introduction to the topic of criminal psychology. It doesn’t cover everything (indeed skipping some key areas) but on the other hand it focuses on areas often ignored by other texts. There’s a genuinely integrated approach to psychology and criminology, and the first chapter does a great job at teasing out the parallels in the development of two disciplines.  Chapter 4 on Crime in Groups is the only one I’ve seen that summarises relevant social psychological research in the context of group offending. Chapter 5 and 6 cover mass murder, genocide, war crime and terrorism, which are also areas rarely given this level of depth in general textbooks.

Teaching for Quality Learning at University by John Biggs – One of the ‘bibles’ of higher education literature, I’m told. I’ve read this for the post-graduate teaching certificate I’m doing, first resentfully but then with some appreciation. Biggs sets out an argument for his concept of ‘constructive alignment’ (between teaching and learning activities and assessment) which has basically become the gospel of current educational philosophy in universities. Sick of ‘learning outcomes/objectives’? Take it out with Biggs. Useful books for parts of my assignment, but more useful for articulating some stuff I instinctively knew but can now put in fancy academic terms. More useful still for giving me quite a few good ideas for teaching/learning activities and assessment tasks to try out on my students next year.

White Weddings by Milly Johnson – If you have ideological problems with the concept of marriage, this probably isn’t a book for you. However, if you can suppress your rage against such a heteronormative institution, this is an above-average ‘chick-lit’ (I have issues with that term but that’s another rant) novel; well-written and engaging enough that you care about the characters even though you spent most of the book wanting to smack them on the head. Fair warning: it does all centre on weddings and ‘finding the one’ so if that’s too nauseating for you then give it a miss.

***
kat_lair: (GEN - photos)
***


"International study teaches that other people may be good and beautiful despite being different. With respect to criminal justice, societies that are organized in very different ways may provide equal measures of justice and order. One society neither monopolizes nor exhausts the potentialities for virtue." (Bayley, 1999: 11)


Full Ref.
Bayley, D.H. (1999) 'Policing: the World Stage'. In R.I. Mawby (Ed.) Policing Across the World. Oxon: Routledge, 3-12.

***

Weekend

Mar. 2nd, 2013 12:29 pm
kat_lair: (GEN - medusa)
The only good thing about having to spend entire weekend writing lectures on psychology and sexual offending is the fact that I have a legitimate reason to introduce my students to the Evolutionary Psychology Bingo.

In other news: I cannot get Tricks to swallow the goddamn worming tablet no matter what I try or how I hide it.

Actual update soon. Maybe even tomorrow.
kat_lair: (KINK - cane of thorns)

Steps to a headache:

1. Revamp a module that I have to teach but didn't design and don't like the learning outcomes that I'm stuck with

2. Go through the lecture slides from last year (like, ones done by a colleague)

3. Come across this sentence: "Not all psychopaths are sexual sadists although all sexual sadists are psychopaths"

4. Literally head-desk.

5. Lie there torn between tears and laughter

6. Remember that as a psychopath such an emotional response is not allowed

7. Dammit, failed again

8. Close work files

9. Leave office in search of something alcoholic.

10. Happy Friday?
kat_lair: (GEN - stand out)
Life has continued at mostly leisurely pace; research assistant job, picking at articles, household chores, running, swimming, seeing friends... Nothing hugely exciting.

However, that is about to change, at least for one day. I'll be graduating this Monday (Tudor Bonnet!!!) which I'm getting quite excited about. Mum is arriving tomorrow and my god father on Saturday so I'll be busy with family for the next week. They're both leaving on Wed the 18th but the following Thu and Fri are all booked with work stuff. End result is that I'll probably be a little absent from the land of interwebs for the next little while. However, I promise photos (Tudor Bonnetttttttttttt!!) when I'm back.

Stay awesome <3
kat_lair: (Default)

In the future, I will make all my research methods students sit through this. Possibly, I will make them learn it off by heart.



Proper post another day...

\o/

May. 18th, 2012 01:09 pm
kat_lair: (Default)
Thesis corrections have been signed off without a problem. All I need to do now is to print off, bind and submit two copies of the revised thesis and then I AM DONE WHOOOOOOOOOOO!

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