Selected Works

Letters between Tolkien and a college student who wants to sing him her songs
Graduate student, mentor, Hebridean lobster: an unusual meeting.
e.g. Fiction, History, Magazine Articles, etc. goes here
Very brief description goes here
A chapbook that explores monsters of self and society, some beautiful, all dangerous.
A collection of poetry and art that reflects "a rapacious affection for life" (David Biespiel)
"Lucky is the community that has someone with the skill and sensitivity of a Sue Parman to record its passing voices."
–George Spindler

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The imagined life

London from a spider's point of view

Short story writer
Tentative blogger

As an anthropologist I worked for years in the Scottish Outer Hebrides, now called the Western Isles, and am the author of “Scottish Crofters” and numerous research articles (and a few short stories, essays, poems, and plays) related to this experience--a good chunk of my heart continues to dwell there. I’ve written about Europe, sleep and dreams, evolution of the brain, the biology and culture of salt, how a gorilla would interpret Beowulf, California from the Native American point of view, death rituals in Sulawesi, and the titles of travel books. I’m a writer who conceives of herself combining the journalistic detail of John McPhee with a dash of Umberto Eco.

I imagine this web site to be a bit like Montaigne's retreat: a tower of one's own to collage with life fragments; to be playful with the life one has lived.

A Scottish version of Montaigne's Tower

An academic and literary life