Monday, September 24, 2012


by J J Cohen

I'm just back from the BABEL Boston conference, a marathon of intellectual and creative delights which afforded little time for sleeping. My one "early night" was, I believe, 2:30 AM. The following evening, at 3 or so, a Boston police officer out of central casting warned me that if my fellow BABELers did not lower their voices while standing outside a 24 hour pastry shop in the North End, he was going to bring me to a quiet cell. For all of a minute I contemplated agreeing to go with him.

I want to thank everyone who participated for the energy and engagement brought to the conference. What an astonishing event. All praise Eileen Joy and Kathleen Kelly. Once I've recovered a little I may share some thoughts, but meanwhile check out Steve Mentz's post on the event.

(Illustration: my conference notebook. A small group of us sat at the Cambridge Brewing Company late last night and attempted to capture some of the values of the BABEL Working group. You'll see one of my favorite words in a box, because it well articulates what BABEL kindles).


Mary Kate Hurley said...

I love the fact that the way your handwriting records it suggests that one of our values is "Tiny Shriner" or, maybe "Tiny Shrines."

Steve's post is fantastic -- sets the bar quite high for the rest of us as we compose our own thoughts, and regroup our individual and yet interdependent subjectivities as the transjects of the past few days recede and "real life" (whatever that might be) awaits. What an astonishing event indeed.

Eileen Joy said...

What Mary Kate said.

Jonathan Hsy said...

YES. Ditto MK's comment.

Jonathan Hsy said...

Jeffrey: I want to know what's crossed out under ERROR!

Jeffrey Cohen said...

Tiny Shriners need tiny shrines, so it's all the same.

Jonathan: the world will never now what value was deleted from the BABEL repertoire!! But let me just tell you that it involved a traffic in organs.