Social aspects of doctoral writing, courtesy of Marmalade the rabbit

By Susan Carter

You probably don’t pay much attention to the image we have as our banner branding the DoctoralWriting SIG blog. Take a look at it now—there’s a hand at the keyboard of a computer, and it holds a ballpoint between two fingers telling of work on both hard and soft copies and thinking across both. Over to one side there’s the top of a notebook and a document held together with a binder clip, evidence of all the reading and interconnection of texts that sit behind academic writing.

That’s a pretty neat image for a blog on doctoral writing, right? But what you do not know about is the back story to this image, a story that contains a rabbit. This post discusses why the rabbit is missing as an analogy to what you might leave in or take out of doctoral writing.

The photograph is Claire’s, and it features her daughter at work some eight or so years ago. Why would she have taken such an image of her daughter’s writing hand at work? Well, the original photograph included the family’s pet rabbit, Marmalade, performing the loyal-pet task of sitting with her while she worked, and looking as though it was interested.

I mentioned in my previous post how acknowledgments fairly often mention gratitude for loyal pets,…

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