Legacy is not just what you leave behind after you are gone. In fact allowing others to be in charge of your legacy after you are gone will pretty much guarantee that nothing you intended to leave behind will be left as you hoped.
I do not like to be moribund or pessimistic; I like to think that I am an optimistic pragmatist. That thought is actually supported by my recent lack of posts. For over a month! You can read about my intentional slow down in this recent post. During that slow down I listened to audio books, did a lot of thinking, mind-mapping, and perused many of my writings from over the past few years and allowed myself to contemplate my last post, before the January – February hiatus, on digital legacy.
I think I have found the connecting thread within and between my interests, writings, academic & educational areas of dalliance: women, information and legacy. At first glance my interests may appear to be all over the place, but that is not quite the case.
Culture and demography delight me. I grew up memorizing genealogies and visiting cemeteries as though they were historical parks. The rather strange relationship I had with my mother fostered my early and ongoing interest in both the enabling and limiting constraints of women’s information systems, including the lack of historical depth in maternally linked information. The feminine divine inspires me and the continuously added nuances to the exclusion of women as players in the “major” religions of today disturbs me no matter what the type of fundamentalist group doing it.
Whether it be the stuff of a trunk in the attic or truck bombs in the neighborhood, women are concerned about the legacy we leave to our children. I have been an independent scholar for many years. While it surprised me to find legacy as the connecting theme in my writing, it should not have. My father loved history and valued what community over time could fashion. I am a cultural anthropologist by training and well-versed in the semiotic concerns of American Pragmatism.
Some of the recurrent topics in my writing over the years:
- American Women’s History
- Women’s Culture
- Women’s Information
- Feminization of the Internet
- Life’s Work
- Blogging as Women’s History
- Women’s Legacies
- Mother Earth and the State of the Planet
- Genealogy and Personal History
- The Creation of Meaning
- Tools and Toys
- Demography and Cohort Personality
- Peace and Social Justice Movements
So I am fashioning a site and a project called the Women’s Legacy Project.
Can a project last for decades? That is my intention for this one. It is not about my legacy, I have this site and my memoir for that. This project is beyond blogdom. It derives from and extends beyond:
- the meetup group I have coordinated for three years
- the network of women writers and travelers of a certain age I have met and grown to trust as friends over the last seven years or so
- the wisdom I gained as I cared for my mother as she passed away in her home at age 92 and then watched as my brother, who began showing signs of dementia around the time of her death, and from which he died within a few short years, mishandled everything for her
- my knowledge and awareness of cultural processes that I see unfolding, developing, and filling new niches around me at an ever-escalating pace
- my desire to share information with those who might find it useful
You will be able to see something, that will undoubtedly change often for a while, within a few days at womenslegacyproject.com. I build sites live, because I will never launch if I do not do it live. It is one way to conquer perfectionism.
Congratulations, Nancy! This sounds like a worthwhile project. I’ll be watching and cheering you on.
Of course you will Carol! I know I can count on you.
I love this idea on so many levels and cannot wait to watch it all unfold — live! Heading their now so I have a benchmark :)!!!
Or…heading “there” now….