Meet 2017-2018 Woodruff Fellow – Lily Levy

Lily LevyThis is the second post in a series of interviews conducted by the Woodruff Library with the 2017-2018 Woodruff Library and Emory Center for Digital Scholarship (ECDS) Fellows. Funded by the Laney Graduate School School, the Woodruff Library and Emory Center for Digital Scholarship (ECDS) awards fellowships to advanced graduate students expecting to complete their dissertations by the end of the fellowship period. Fellows are placed within the Woodruff Library and ECDS to work in an area related to their subject specialization or interest, culminating in a formal presentation in the Spring.

1. Tell us a little bit about yourself. Where are you from? What’s your favorite book? What’s your favorite thing about Emory/Atlanta?

I grew up in Glen Ridge, NJ which is a suburb just outside of NYC. After finishing my BA in Philosophy at Vassar College, I lived in Philly where I worked a variety of jobs including co-writing a handbook for the implementation of a whistleblowing tool in conflict mines in the Great Lakes Region in Africa. I moved to Atlanta in 2012 to start my Ph.D. in Philosophy at Emory.

My current favorite book is called So Many Olympic Exertions by Anelise Chen. It is a contemporary experimental novel written in the style of Aurelius’ Meditations from the perspective of a graduate student struggling to finish her dissertation while processing the death of a close friend. I’m reading it slowly because each page contains so many incisive observations that speak to the unique headspace of late-stage Ph.D. pursuit. I highly recommend it to academics everywhere. Whenever I read a book that really captivates me, it becomes my favorite for a time.I enjoy music, poster design, cooking, reading fiction, swimming, and yoga. By far, my favorite thing about Atlanta is Your Dekalb Farmer’s Market. It is the first place I bring visitors and I will sorely miss it wherever I live next.

2. What are you researching for your dissertation?

My dissertation, This Pain Which is not One: Gender, Medical Intelligibility, and the Dispossessed Subject examines the social, political, and ethical implications of theorizing pain on the basis of a thoroughly relational subject. Building upon Judith Butler’s recent work on dispossession and relational response ethics, my dissertation seeks to to address questions of medical unintelligibility, legibility, and legitimacy of pain in the contemporary American sexual and reproductive health care, particularly with regard to the denial, dismissal, and misrecognition of pain in women.

3. What interested you about the Woodruff Library Fellowship?

I was particularly drawn to this fellowship because it offers opportunities to learn many transferable skills and allows me to coordinate events that directly support graduate students.

4. What will you be working on this year for your Woodruff Library Fellowship?

My fellowship is split 50-50 with the Emory Writing Center. In addition to tutoring at the EWC and running a staff group of undergraduate tutors, I am also responsible for coordinating and facilitating the dissertation boot camps. I benefited greatly from the boot camps last year and I am committed to continuing and improving them. I also help out with outreach and education programming.

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