Inspired by the image of the mermaid as a symbol for a forbidden love (that beckons as a siren, but will never become reality), I made many trips – from Stockholm to Saint Petersburg and from Helsinki to Azerbaijan. But not all treasures are hidden at a great distance. Last year, I boarded the train to my neighbouring city The Hague, for some good old-fashioned musicological strolling in the analogue archives. The gem that attracted me? A 1918 song called “Meirminnen”. For the Dutch journal “De Liedvriend” (the friend of the art song), I wrote a short article about this charming song, that just got published. Sheet music and piano in the YouTube below… enjoy!
The theme for BWQ’s Spring issue is “Firsts” and I wrote a personal essay – with soundtrack! – about two of my first experiences: the first time I felt rejected, judged and excluded as a bi-romantic misfit, and the first time I felt how I could claim my place in space.
As a (ludo)musicologist, I was delighted to see today’s Google doodle: an ‘AI’ powered Bach simulator. But that is not the only Google product I am excited about, the American multinational made waves earlier this week when it unveiled its long-awaited console project, the Stadia. What is this Stadia thing and why are gamers so excited about it?
Last week, I re-read one of the books I loved when I was a teenager: The Scarlet Letter (click on the title to read it online for free). This blogpost explores how this 1850 novel illustrates that love can actively resist patriarchal and neoliberal structures.
Romantic comedies, who doesn’t watch them every now and then? Cozy in your onesie, with Ben & Jerry’s on the couch, swept away by the handsome man and the beautiful woman in the familiar plots. At first they hate each, but eventually they fall in love (which, unfortunately, I see reversed more often). Or: they have to overcome all kinds of obstacles in the outside world in order to live happily ever after (at least that is what the characters think at the time). Since the early beginnings of movie making, the so-called “romcom” has been a popular genre, which served as an identification for heterosexual, monogamous, cis-gender viewers (and made their expectations unrealistically high). And then, last year, on the Dutch Netflix suddenly an alternative romcom popped up, about polyamory: You – Me – Her
This morning, I was chatting with a friend about how we feel that most policies fail: because they do not consider the uniqueness of women’s and girls’ issues and needs. My friend recently spent some time in Canada, and told me about Canadian politics, in particular about their foreign policy. I am not a political scientist (and have no ambitions in that direction either), but much of what I learned about Canada this morning seems to resonate with the feminist framework that I use for the Cyborg Mermaid. I decided to write a blog about these connections, to generate some discussion and perhaps inspire soms real political scientists.
Two and a half years ago, my partner and I went to EuroBicon, the European Bisexual Conference in Amsterdam. There, I presented a paper about queer mermaids, hosted a workshop on the bisexual mermaid, played games both analog and digital, went to an awesome 80-90’s disco, had fabulous food and… met Robyn Ochs. As an academic cum activist, Robyn immediately made an indelible impression on me. Therefore, I am very happy that she invited me to write for her grassroots publication Bi Women Quarterly – aka BWQ – and that my writing even made it to the front page. Thank you so much, Robyn! With her permission, I publish the integral essay in this website.