Academic Multiple Personality Disorder

For the past few days I’ve been writing several academic articles, switching off and on between them as my mind wanes or items come in via InterLibrary Loan (ILL). Because the projects aren’t terribly related, I’m beginning to feel like my academic personality is fragmenting. (Though, truth be told, one look at my CV — where works on John Gower, J.R.R. Tolkien, and James Joyce all sit side-by-side — reveals that this is nothing new for me.)

The subjects of the current articles on my desk:

The Alliterative Morte Arthure (a circa 1400 poem)

— Anasazi Cartography (a circa 1000 petroglyph)

— Aphra Behn’s “The Disappointment” (a 1680 poem)

— H. G. Wells’ War of the Worlds (an 1898 novel)

I’ve thus far managed to keep these subjects separate, but I’m not going to be shocked to be reading a draft of one and find some sort of line about how Behn’s portrayal of human sexuality in petroglyphs is troubled when King Arthur’s tripods arrive.

In addition, I’ve started getting back editorial comments on my upcoming edition of The Middle English Metrical Paraphrase of the Old Testament. So starting tomorrow I can add that to my confused mind.

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