Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Happy!

The rest of the FAHE conference went very well. I thought I would be blue when that conference ended and most people left; while I was a little sad to see friends go, I was also simultaneously happy that I did not have to leave so soon myself.

I have been working further on my research, using the excellent Quaker library here. The rhythm of the days, and the wonderful spirit here, make for a very supportive and inspiring atmosphere. I would add that the beautiful gardens help as well, but instead they are quite distracting, really! When I go for my daily walk, it's hard not to spend hours and hours out there! But I'm not really complaining, and, to tell the truth, this does add to the supportive and inspiring atmosphere, of course.

On Thursday, those who went on the 1652 Quaker tour will come back through, and it will be fun to see them again. On Friday, the joint conference of the Quaker Studies Research Association and the Quaker Historians and Archivists begins. I chose not to present my work to these groups, because sometimes historians think that the way philosophers work with history is strange! Instead, I will talk informally with people about what I am working on and ask for suggestions and advice. And I will attend the presentations of others to get a feel for the world of high-level academic Quaker Studies.

So far, I have been getting good encouragement about how I am bringing my philosophical and my Quaker interests together directly in my research. It is very exciting to me to be doing this. And to find that others find this interesting too and are encouraging me is just wonderful. I feel like I am finally more directly moving into the kind of academic identity I really want -- one that includes my Quaker self integrally.

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