Recent Posts

Hold the Door

Hold the Door

When was the last time you were running in the rain and cold, perhaps loaded down with packages or groceries or unwieldy children’s art projects, and someone held the door open for you? Maybe they held it for quite a while while you shuffled along.…

Look for the Helpers

Look for the Helpers

As noted in my previous post, I’ve been doing a bit of cartooning for the Hampshire Gazette. There are a few reasons for this– one, I really miss the culture, pace and visibility of newspaper work. This was where I started out in the early…

due north

due north

I’ve been on sabbatical this semester, which I think is supposed to be a time to vary one’s routine, experience new things, rest, reconnect, and work to freshen up one’s academic and other perspectives. In addition to lots of time to think and read deeply at home, I’ve also had the pleasure and honor of being this semester’s Distinguished Visiting Professor of the Liberal Arts at the University of Minnesota’s Morris campus. Not only have the folks in Morris welcomed me so beautifully, I’ve also had a chance to focus on my work in new ways. The students with whom I’ve had a chance to interact, the critical conversations I’ve had and the space the appointment has given me for creative work have all been nothing short of transformative.

In addition to teaching two mini-classes (“The Subversive Classroom” and “Creative Research in Gender, Childhoods and Families”) I’ll be giving a series of workshops and public lectures. If you happen to be in the Morris area, I encourage you to come on over and join me. Details are below!

I am excited beyond words to be giving a lecture in a place called the Cow Palace!

Finally, one part of my joy at this appointment–beyond the obvious honor and excitement of being a part of the Morris community this spring– is the chance to experience Minnesota winter! I know, I know, it’s cold– really cold– but it has been possibly the most beautiful and crystalline winter landscape I have experienced. Long walks and hoar frost have hopefully translated into new creative work, and I hope the landscape will continue to inspire as spring springs this March!

parenting transgender children

parenting transgender children

I’m the parent of a transgender child. It’s complicated and beautiful and emotional and painful and wonderful all at the same time. It is the easiest thing in the world to love and parent a child who is transgender. It’s not any more heroic than…

Lifeboat

Lifeboat

Because I’m not just an Academic In The Streets/Artist In The Sheets, but rather a real deal arts-based researcher and working artist, I like to publish things in lots of places, but I particular like the popular press– both for visibility reasons as well as…

#dangersafetybravery

#dangersafetybravery

The editors at Paperbark asked if I would be interested in submitting a piece of visual scholarship to their upcoming issue on Resilience. I jumped at the chance to publish creative work in a literary magazine venue. The Resilience issue came out in hard copy this week, and I am so pleased to be featured alongside some beautiful writers, poets and artists– many of whom are right here at the University of Massachusetts– creating a chorus in the tune of hope.

The issue asks the question, “What is resilience and what does it look like in this time and space?” Editor Rachel Berggren writes in her introduction that “Resilience theory is the study of the impact of traumatic events on people and society, and seeks to understand the way in which people and the environment respond to these events. According to this theory, resilience is the ability to persist in the face of prolonged contact with adversity” (p. 8).

My piece featured here is titled #dangersafetybravery, an incantation. This piece began as a performance piece contrived over drinks in smoky San Jose with my colleagues and fellow anthropologists Ellen Skilton and Melisa Cahnmann-Taylor. While the performance piece never took off, what I wrote from our meditations became this piece. What I’ve drawn is a troika meditation on resilience as a kind of bravery. I use three stories: one about how safety is in fact very dangerous, a second one about how danger can save you, and a third about how even those who may feel powerless can use truth and danger to save the world. It’s an incantation, which is a different kind of poetry, a spell or protective chant, and throughout I exhort you to repeat it after me until you, too, feel brave.

Galman, S. C. (2019). #Dangersafetybravery: An incantation [Visual scholarship]. Paperbark, 1 (2) 70-78.

Words, pictures and method

Words, pictures and method

My friend and colleague, Professor Ian Barron, director of the UMass Center for International Education, was kind enough to express interest in my research and its implications for comparative international work. As an arts-based researcher and cartoonist, I have used methods in childhood in the…

No more dumb posters

No more dumb posters

I know we are all tired of the same old clunky academic conference poster, but folks are often unsure of where and how to break the rules and if it is even possible to do something different with the “Poster Presentation” genre. Instead of using…

nice work and near enemies

nice work and near enemies

My newest piece appears in Angelina Castagno’s gorgeous edited volume, The Price of Nice: How Good Intentions Maintain Educational Inequity. Before this project came along, I was relatively certain that I was done done DONE with my decades of work around workplace feminization and ethnographies of the young, white women who want to become teachers– mostly of black and brown students in the public schools. Then this project appeared and I could not resist the opportunity to work with Angelina. It is certainly my last hurrah; That said, it is the chapter I’ve always wanted to write, that I’ve been trying to write, that only needed a home, and the right timing to make the connections I needed to make. I have to say the book itself is a beautiful, elegant collection ideal for teaching and essential for any critical educator’s bookshelf. I am honored and delighted to be included amongst so many esteemed scholars in the field. Enjoy some juicy snippets below and then, of course, order your copy today.

Three Cheers for Inktober!

Three Cheers for Inktober!

I’m a university professor and a scholar and writer and ethnographer and all that stuff, but as an arts-based researcher, sometimes the Art part gets shoved off to the side and hidden away, especially when times are stressful or busy and I have a thousand…