Tuesday, 26 August 2008

My Queer Studies

I hope you'll excuse me for deviating from my normal standards of trivia and frippery to discuss something that matters to me.

Some of you know, and some of you don't, that I've been working on a PhD thesis, and a fine old mad-making piece of merriment it has proved to be.

I've been researching Lloyd's of London: how the insurance industry negotiates contracts, and the difficulties of designing an electronic environment to negotiate in, instead of doing everything face to face in this fine, shiny building on the corner of Lime Street.

Over the weekend I discovered an important concept that explains something what I've been trying to explain. To my surprise, the insight comes from Queer Studies; specifically, it comes from the insights we get once we stop thinking about nature and culture as fundamentally separate, and look at meeting the universe halfway: how we perform the world into existence by the ways we study it, interpret it, and try to change it.

So there you have it: the application of Queer Theory to the insurance industry. For example, performing New Orleans into existence, again, after Hurricane Katrina. (That seems to be a very slow project.)

I shouldn't allow myself to get distracted, but there's another chapter in the same anthology called 'An Unfinished Conversation About Glowing Green Bunnies'. I mean, that's got to be worth a read, hasn't it?


Michelle said...

Honestly, I need to read this post again. My baby brain is getting the better of me... I heard PhD, insurance, Queer Studies, meeting the universe halfway, Hurricane Katrina and something about glowing green bunnies?

No wonder you write so much trivia :P

Gordie said...

At last, I've met somebody who understands me.