Kelly Quinn

It seems like forever ago that Kelly Quinn spoke at (to? with?) the Davies Forum. But I just made a vow to finally finish blogging all of our speakers (it is kinda required) in chronological order, and Kelly is where I left off.

Kelly was an awesome speaker. Her presentation style, content, and overall message were amazing. Some of the highlights:

-A grid is the most democratic way to lay out a city because it allows anybody to find his/her way without asking for directions. In a conversation the next morning, Kelly mentioned to me that some feminists argue that a circle is the most democratic, for what reason I do not remember. "I bet it's psychoanalytic feminists who say that," I responded, as if the term is a slur. "You bet." Damn you, psychoanalytic feminists!

-"Homogeneity is important to a lot of people... It's important to 92% of the people in my town." (on the homogeneity and the white population of her town)

-More than being democratic, the grid also allows for an element of surprise in the city. You turn a corner, and suddenly you bump into a neighbor, or a garage sale, or a flier for a lost kitten. Or, in Kelly's world, it would be nice to bump into a bit of history about your neighborhood, possibly printed on the back of a paper fan.

-"I like saying the word intercourse in public" (on social intercourse)

-Kelly met with some of the Davies students Friday morning, and she and I took a short walk around around the USF neighborhood. During the course of the stroll, Kelly stopped next to a box that holds plastic baggies for dog poo. The university erects the boxes in the hope that dog owners will clean up after their pets. Kelly pointed out how something such as the "doggie pot" can show what we value in our society - in this case, dogs, but not poo.

Thank you so much for speaking to (at? with?) us, Kelly!


david silver said...

yeah, so much of what kelly said is still resonating with me. also, as you, sara, know, i think many of our ideas for the library project/reading fort came directly and indirectly from our visit with kelly. i'm glad you were able to recall more ideas and interactions with prof quinn.

oh, and i believe the full quote was: "I like saying the word intercourse in public, especially at a jesuit school."

indil said...

Why would psychoanalytic feminists say that? I don't get it.

It's amazing what other observations you can make about what society values. Apparently, we like food too, but not bee stings. Do you feel blessed by my presence yet? ;-)

Sara said...

My beef with psychoanalytic feminists is mostly just known to my friend Cassidy, who took Feminist Thought with me (taught by the amazing Bernadette Barker-Plummer), but I would be happy to sum up my issues here.

1. Psychoanalytic feminists use Freud's writings as the basis of their theories. To put it bluntly, Freud was an incredible chauvinist. As such, I have a problem with calling his theories "feminist", or even adopting them with some edits.

2. Psychoanalytic feminists are really into "feminine" forms of things. Like "feminine" writing, and "feminine" ways of thinking, by which they usually mean free-flowing in any direction and without any sense of logic. Because logic is "masculine." Not only is such a standpoint based on the belief that men and women are inherently different (which I don't believe), it's also based on the belief that women are illogical, which I have a *huge* problem with.

3. To put 1, 2, and circular sidewalks together (from the original post), psychoanalytic feminist would see straight perpendicular and parallel streets as too masculine. The feminine response would probably be something like the layout of suburbs with streets curving every which way. Thus, the compromise would be curvy streets in one general direction - a circle.

In regards to the food/bee stings comment, what part of a neighborhood would show you that? Or are you just trying to be a thorn in my side? If so, I am calling off the blog pact. ;-)