I eventually had supervision the other day with my PhD Supervisor. This hasn’t happened in a while and I think the further I went without it, the more I was dreading it. We organized an over-the-phone session due to time and location constraints. This for me added an extra worry as although my day-job consists mainly of talking to people over the phone, I am not so confident in my personal life with telephone talking.
It went surprisingly well however and I got ALOT of out of. I made sure I recorded the conversation (sounds a bit phone-hacking-like but wasn’t!) by having my phone on loud speaker and a recording device next to it. Listening back was a little torturous (who likes listening to themselves?) but it was really, really successful. I think I probably got more out of it than a face-to-face actually.
So after a long wait and a lot of worry, finally I feel back on track. My supervisor listened to my ideas and gave me her thoughts on theoretical tools and gave me some direction on what I should be aiming for in the next few weeks. Just what I needed.
The main ‘new’ aspect I need to think about it the use of psychoanalytical tools in my work. Although I have ‘touched’ upon this area in previous academic work, and certainly discussed it at under grad level; I have always shied away from it – predominantly I think, because of the links to Freud. As a post modern feminist, I have always worried that psychoanalysis may be a little to essentialist in it’s thinking, standpoint and ontological grounding. However, I agree with my supervisor in that cultural psychoanalysis would enable me to explore and track the affective dimensions of gender performance and body modifications; which is of course an important part of my work. Psychoanalysis would allow me to theorize about what’s happening at the the level of subconscious – an interesting angle when considering Women, Body Mods and Gender Performance.
With this in mind, my next task PhD-wise is to read around the subject of psychoanalysis…. easy to say, perhaps not so easy to digest?! I may be blogging my thoughts and frustrations around this a little more often….. we’ll see.