Comment on Paradox

  1. a ginger and a pair of wicked cats

    First, thank you for this comment! It was absolutely wonderful to read, and I'm sorry to have been so long about responding (I had watched a chapter deadline sail past and really needed to get caught up). The Boswell line is actually from Carolyn Dinshaw's Getting Medieval, in a chapter where she talks about Boswell a lot. I didn't set out to use it, but I had gone to Oxford for a research trip in early December and because I was there at Christmas time, was thinking a lot about Doomsday Book and what Yuletide story I was going to write. I was curled up rather late at night in the Gladstone Link, the part of the Bodleian that is underground, reading through Dinshaw for my totally-unrelated-to-Yuletide thesis and ran across that quote. It's from a letter a man wrote to Boswell after having read Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality--he was a historian at another university, I'm not sure who or which one, and had that exact same feeling you talk about, of not being alone. (It ends with something like, 'now I have gay friends through the centuries.') And I realised that's so it, that's exactly why we're historians or medievalists or whatever, because there are people in time we connect with so completely that we feel like we know them.

    Thank you for the story, about Boswell's book outing you to your mother and how it all comes full circle. Really, truly--I got teary reading it, because I know we're all really just doing fanfic and Yuletide presents and stuff here, but if something you write connects with another human in a meaningful way, that is basically the most awesome thing in the world.

    (And it was indeed a reference--I haven't even read the book, but like most of the world I know the title, so there we are!)

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