Miss Gwenllian Lâs

AOIFE ASSUMPTA HART, PhD

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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

Gwenllian Lâs

Awdures Gymraeg

 

CONFESSIONS OF A HUMANITIES EXILE

Vastly disappointed by the feeble folly of the academic liberal left and their hollow solidarity. Ex-adjunct professor (comp lit, feminism). If I — a trans woman with a PhD, UP published book, scholarly articles in monographs and journals on three continents, a SSHRC postdoc, and two teaching prizes — couldn’t find any gainful employment after five years of searching, adjuncting, and applying by the hundreds — … what else was I supposed to do? Add to that the gossip following coming out on the job; and that was the end of that. Amazingly, most liberalism is an act.

I research independently on conceptual sex, psychosexual development, and gender inculcation in girlhood. Like thousands, I had to reconfigure and reapply my academic skill set on a second carreer. HAVING CODING AND UNIQUE SECOND-LANGUAGE PROFICIENCIES MADE ALL THE DIFFERENCE. Aside from English, I speak Japanese (JLPT 1), Welsh, and am getting slowly improved in Russian.

 

HIRAETH AS PSYCHIC SELF-DEFENCE

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.

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 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 Blaid Cymru.

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