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#BlogHer2012 #BHIdentity Panel Snippet

There were major delays at LaGuardia airport. My flight was supposed to arrive in Memphis at 6p.m., but I didn't get home until after midnight. I'll be posting a little post mortem post on the conference later this week.

In case you didn't make it to the panel with myself, Deb Rox & Kelly Wickham, I thought I'd post a portion of my notes for your reading pleasure. I know most people use bullet points, but my style for speaking is to write a script for what I'm going to say and then never look at it again. Once I write something down, it's generally committed to memory.

Hope your summer is wrapping up and your ready for the fall to push on through.

From "Blogging the Fine Line Between Your Identity and The Issues" panel at Bogher 2012

In what ways does your identity limit or enrich your blogging?

 My identity enriches everything that I do. A friend once that told me she was envious of my identity -- the rich cultural heritage, the religious aspect, and the sense of community it brings me and the inspiration that community gives me. What my friend didn't realize is that everybody has multiple identities and that thoughtfully recognizing those identities helps create a community.  -- whether I'm writing to reinforce, defend or to dispel and reconstruct, identity is always a factor for me. Religious, national, cultural, gender, sexuality... Can an identity limit you? Definitely. That's why I added the "thoughtfully" part. I feel like this is the issue with our political landscape right now, we are being conditioned to think of identity as kool-aid drinking instead of viewing it for what it is: a malleable and fluid state that is in a constant state of evaluation or even reconstruction. As a Muslim, for example, I'm critical of structures within my religion as it's practiced -- that critical eye feels like an appropriate application of identity. If I thought I had to think a certain way and that being critical was never appropriate, then my identity would limit me a lot. 



Reader Comments (5)

I make list and then never look at them. :)

Loved your panel.

August 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMegan

I think about my identity as a lesbian and a mom when I write. Mostly now it is little moments where I respond strongly as a lesbian and friends of mine are shocked. I always question that because I thought I was out and proud. Unfortunately I may not have been out enough, and I now may be scaring them with my thoughts and opinions. I wonder, how is one supposed to get past that? I may never know.

August 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterBecca

@megan I loved that you loved my panel and I don't think you'll ever really realize how important it was to me that I was able to spend so much time with you this weekend.

@Becca Wow, yes, YES. I feel the same way. When those little moments create awkward situations and I think, "wow, how do you not know this about me? Has some level of compromise on my part led to your surprise?" Not going to lie, but I'm also a little hurt when that happens, too.

August 6, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterFaiqa

Enjoyed your panel for the reason that you so graciously encourage civil discourse. It's when we disagree that we can be introduced to the reasons behind a differing opinion.

Your gentle way, your open heart: truly a pleasure to sit and learn from you.

August 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commenteralexandra

I agree that writing and talking about these issues thoughtfully enriches our identities and can build a community. I have felt disillusioned and disconnected from my own 'community' because I don't feel free to thoughtfully consider why we believe what we believe or why people do why they do. They're 'drinking the koolaid' and that just isn't enough for me.

Your panel discussion helped open my eyes to the fact that their are smart women having smart discussions about things that I care about. Thanks for that.

August 7, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney Schmidt

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