Miss Gwenllian Lâs

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 A page from the first draft of Traed mewn Cyffion, by Kate Roberts. From the digital archives of the National Library of Wales

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Kate Roberts gydag un o ddosbarthiadau Ysgol Ramadeg y Merched, Aberdâr


 

Clockwise, from top left

Oriel Yr Ysgol Gelf, Aberystwyth

South Marine Terace, Aberystwyth Harbor

Llyfrau Ystwytyh  gyda Mererid Williams

* Aberystwyth Castle

Y Lolfa Cyf., Talybont, Ceredigion, Cymru

* Aberystwyth Promenade 

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Gwenllian Lâs

Awdures Gymraeg

“It is only possible to betray where loyalty is due.” — Muriel Spark, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1961)

Mae overgrown schoolgirl yn ysgrifennu. Gwisgo gwisg ysgol gymslip, gwïar, gê yn y grug. Gwyddbwyll. #peta #Annibyniaeth And have always been a woman.

HIRAETH AS PSYCHIC SELF-DEFENCE. This blog is a wry diary of a Welsh-learner encountering the 21st century politics in of language rights activism, through the persona of my Welsh-language penname. …  analysis from sovereignist, nationalist Celtic language news. Although relatedly in their consistent themes, I prefer to keep my scholarly and my fictional writings seperate. As a boon to the imagination, I went with the custom of a pen name. My novels are written only yn Gymraeg, for reasons of personal artistic conviction.

Gwenllian thus is a pseudonym for my Welsh-language fiction writing.  Dear friend and native speaker, Mererid Williams, gifted me with the ffugenw Gwenllian Lâs — … the second name being a mutated adjective (glas); which means blue, but also poetically as ‘verdant, springlike, dark green foliage” in Middle Welsh literature and onward.

It’s of huge interest to me how varying languages construct colour differently. As a linguist, my background includes fluency in Japanese, with interest in Hawai’ian, and competency in reading Old and Modern Irish. Previous hobbies included Brazilian Jiu Jitsu (3 years/blue belt, 2 stripe) and hula dancing (not for too long). I quit both because of overt transphobic elements; I have nil tolerance for bigotry these days. Anyway, languages, chess, gardening, and folk harp keep me busy. But mostly writing.

MANUSCRIPTS IN PROCESS

Current project 1: Yr Hwyaden Fach Ddychrynllyd [The Frightful Duckling] — in Welsh and Wenglish, about an eggmode trans woman in her early twenties navigating gender through language, calligraphy, useless teachers, and queer friends — set in Aberystwyth, mid 90s. Nofel gwïar am ddod allan am y tro cyntaf fel menyw drawsrywiol drwy bŵer y Gymraeg fel ail-iaith. Dw i’n ysgrifennu nofelau a phenillion i blant gwïar am fy mod i’n hoffi plan.

Project #2: yn yr iaith Gymraeg, entitled L10n ffeindiwch fi’n farw yng nghaliffornia  [L10n find me dead in California]… — about a Welsh language terrorhacking group in a guerilla text war with imperial monoglots and their lexical economy of anglo-american technocracies.

Project #3: a psychoanalytic study of female embodiment and new materialism, It Petrifies the Will: Sexual Politics in 1960s Radical Women’s Writing, argued from a transgender inclusive and gender affirmative approach. Chapter descriptions, author list, theoretical influences are described under menu option  publications.

FIRST BOOK

Ancestral Recall: The Celtic Revival and Japanese Modernism (McGill-Queen’s UP, 2016)…..…. considers in detail current legacies of the Celtic nations reacting against Little England sensibilities since the modern period.  This monograph developed out of my PhD dissertation, which examined the interconnected politics of nostalgic affect, linguistics, and historical consciousness in twentieth century transnationality. My book was funded and supported with a SSHRC post doctoral fellowship and an Aid to Scholarly Publications grant. Previous peer-reviewed articles and chapters have researched sexuation and Catholicism; psychoanalysis and gender ideolects; culture, phenomenology, and girlhood. Please see menu option CV.

Unsurprisingly, I support Plaid Cymru. Leanne Wood, Plaid’s leader, has been powerfully urgent in warning how the chauvinist isolationism of Brexit will be a disaster for subordinated nations like Wales. As Leanne says, “I will forever remain a Welsh European.” I am this a passionate supporter of independence movements in the Celtic Nations, in response to #Brexit. Mae’n amser i Lywodraethau wrando ar gymunedau Cymru. Gyrrwch y neges drwy fwrw pleidlais i Plaid Cymru.

ABANDONED HOPES

Having presented on the subject at WPATH (UCLA, 2017) and participated in a retreat for Catholic psychotherapists, I was eager to publish a work on transsexuality and Catholic dogma:  Aquinas, Nancy, and Ratzinger: Theology and the Marginal Body. Publishers have been politely cold about coming on board with the manuscript, at least based on cover-letter enquiry. It’s very possible I’m the wrong person for the task. And I’ve been informed that Catholic publishers are unwelcoming to anything trans, and academic routes don’t see an audience. For all of these reasons, I’ve shelved the work. Regardless, there has been repeated rejection of transgender medicine by ecclesiastical authorities.

ABOUT AOIFESCHATOLOGY 

If you’re interested in my opinions on ‘gender critical feminism’ — tldr; I disagree with it and therefore reject it —please read my interview with The Transadvocate.  Essays and posts from before 2017 are personal selections I made from writing I did aoifeschatology. Tl;dr — if you want to know what I think as a trans woman, please consider buying my books! All profits go straight to Stonewall Cymru.

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Winchester Mystery House, San Jose, CA

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Old Burying Point / Charter Street Cemetery , Salem, MA

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