Hello friends,

Several people over the past few years suggested I ought to set up a blog, and seeing as I enjoy blathering on about things but in the post-PhD blues phase of life I can't muster up the energy for much academic writing, I figured now is an appropriate time to have a go.

My primary research concerns film and visual culture in contemporary Northern Ireland, particularly ways in which film-makers and visual artists address issues that can be regarded as deriving from post-Agreement (rather than post-conflict) society in our wee country. These issues include questioning ideologies generated by mass media representations of conflict, the Troubles as a mediatized war, and confronting individuals' internalizations of complex sociopolitical upheaval. My broader interests include avant-garde/experimental/modernist film and documentary.

I am hugely passionate about creative arts and the people who drive them in NI. I intend to largely use this blog to write reviews or commentary about exhibitions and films, etc. I may also go off on long-winded rants about the deplorable treatment of shop assistants by the general public, such is my current and past means of survival. I may also dispel some myths about academia along the way. Many of us are not dealt an easy hand in life, and everything takes graft and struggle. At 27 I feel spent and broken, such has been my efforts with education for the past decade or so. The qualifications are what they are, they do not guarantee a secure future. Nothing does. And if one more woman from my native East Belfast tells me I need to find a rich man to marry, I may become violent. But enough of this tangent...

We have a wealth of creative talent in NI, and I strongly believe that collective healing processes can be found through means of expression alternative to conventional methods - i.e. many people I have spoken with who have experienced traumatic pasts have found involvement in community arts projects more effective than any therapy or counselling. I want to join such people in promoting acceptance, acknowledgement, and self-expression. And sure, we'll try to have a bit of craic along the way.



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