It would probably be more appropriate to call this "Day One Half," since the conference panels began late this morning, rather than the usual time of (gulp) 8 a.m. This allows people to get here, check in, find the proper location and so on before the conference proper gets going, which is a wise idea, because once it does get going, it's on full-tilt until Saturday night.
My goal here is to try to include at least a brief post each day, but it's late and I have an 8 a.m. panel I want to see tomorrow morning, so this will be very brief.
There's no reason to not love this conference. So many disciplines, so many ways of looking at texts and nearly everything is delivered by people who care passionately about their chosen subject matters. It goes back to what I always tell speech students - no, no, I'm not about to choose your topic; that's your job and therefore, if you choose something you don't care about, that's your fault that you're bored. Really, life would be so much more interesting if people spent large chunks of their time working on things that truly interested them, don't you think? Oh, sure - you hear a fair amount of jargon, but that's to be expected. The trick is to make sure you explain the jargon to your audience so you're not just speaking to a teensy, tiny little sliver of the folks out there. Case in point - my studies never took me into the circle of Mikhail Bakhtin's literary theories (I was a theatre major, then I studied law), but if you break it down for me, I can follow a discussion on heteroglossia just fine.
I also had my presentation today, which seems to have gone just fine. I was cutting even as I was presenting, but made my time limit and just may have given my audience a few things to think about. I spoke on the origins of the character of Buffy Summers in the Marvel X-Men character of Kitty Pryde and used a few examples to show the (to me) clear links between Whedon's work and earlier work on Marvel titles. I think Whedon deliberately acknowledged his debt to the earlier writers and artists. What do you think? The left hand image is the cover of Whedon/Jeanty Buffy #35 and the right is the Claremont/Bryne Uncanny X-Men #138. The texture of the background is made up of smaller versions of previous covers.
Enough. The presentations went well and it's done now. FryDaddy presents on Breaking Bad tomorrow afternoon and there's much more to do and see and hear.
Until then, True Believers!