I write this on Monday, April 9, the day that the Lecturers’ Employee Organization was initially going to begin its work strike, protesting the University of Michigan’s hypocrisy and greed in their ongoing bargaining negotiations.
I don’t know. I don’t know what I’m going to be doing after this. I don’t know how to assess whether I enjoyed the University of Michigan, whether it was good for me. I think it was, when I look around at my friends, when I think about how much I have learned in the past four years. I’m so grateful to all the people I have met here, my professors, everyone. It’s been largely really good.
I’m taking a class right now about the history of LGBTQ studies, and it’s having a profound impact on how I see myself and my own sexuality. We often discuss the social construction of gender and sexuality. This is what that means: To say sexuality is constructed is to point out that when we describe someone as homosexual or heterosexual, we are saying that person has their eyes on a love object whose sex does not change. They will spend their whole lives pursuing sexual partners of this same sex, and anything that falls outside of this pattern is deviant, unexpected and/or wrong.
I recently saw “Battle of the Sexes,” a movie about tennis star Billie Jean King beating self-proclaimed “male chauvinist pig” Bobby Riggs in 1973.
I didn’t think the movie was very good, but that’s not what I want to talk about. I want, instead, to point out that the film speaks specifically to the #MeToo campaign and the slew of disgusting men who have been exposed as such in the past several weeks.
In the past several days, my 92-year-old grandmother’s health has starkly declined, and she is currently in the hospital. The consensus among my family, based on what doctors have told us, as well as my grandmother’s chosen course of action, is that she is going to die soon.
My grandma — my father’s mother, whom I call Bubba — is the only grandparent I’ve ever gotten to know. My mother’s parents were both gone by the time I was born, and my dad’s dad died when I was almost 2 years old.
Last week, I got my ear pierced. I had wanted to do it for several days before, to change up my look — to try something new. There was, in other words, no larger, existential reasoning behind this desire, no deeper truth I thought a piercing would illuminate or help me enact.
In my Modern Political Thought class, we’re reading, among other things, Thomas Hobbes’s “Leviathan.” Themes in the book reminded me of thoughts and feelings I’ve experienced under Trump’s administration, so I decided to write this column.
Hobbes suggests that the people will sacrifice their own “natural right” — that is, their right to preserve their own life — for the sake of the Sovereign, a figure who has absolute power to do as he wishes.
As the kid of psychoanalysts, I’m often asked whether my parents analyzed me while I was growing up. And I don’t really know the answer to that question. I used to immediately, assuredly say, “No, of course not,” thinking that there was no way my parents saw me as they saw their patients. I was their youngest kid, their baby, not some confused, sad, lost person who paid for their service twice a week.