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Friday, January 13, 2012

The Mango Season

I finally finished Mango season. The last part was an orgy of drama. It was awesome. I really enjoyed it. It was really interesting to ride on the coat tails of the Indian protagonist and see India through her eyes. The author grew up in Hyderabad. I think at least. At least she lived there. And I have lived there, so I recognized a lot of the places and things she was talking about. I of course do not know how completely accurate to reality the book was, but it was very interesting. It was a lot about marriage and family traditions and politics. Some of it I knew, some of it I didn't. It is interesting to compare Amulya Malladi's perspective with that of Jhumpa Lahiri's. Amulya writes more from the Indian perspective while Jhumpa writes more from the perspective of Indians living abroad. You do not really get the sense of how important the traditions are with Lahiri. I mean you do, but it is different. I don't want to sound like I am criticizing Lahiri, because I am not at all. Just the difference in focus of writing is so interesting.

I am not exactly sure how to wrap this all up into research though. I have read around sixteen books and I have another bookshelf of books to go through, but at this point I do not really see them going anywhere. I mean, I need to read to really get a feel for the landscape, but doing even a decent survey of Indian literature in English would take a few years and probably ten thousand dollars in books. It just is not practical for a single semester and an undergraduate. So I do not know quite how to bring it all together.

I am going to start looking into critical literature. I guess in addition to all the other things I need to look into this week. Although really I do not know if it is worth talking about at this point. I feel like what I really need to focus on is just hammering down the basic idea of what I want to do my project on. Then it will probably be a lot easier to figure everything else out and put it into place.

I am a little frustrated with the way the field study class is going. I know it is just the beginning of the semester, but I feel like there is so much to do and I do not exactly know what is going on. In my English classes I have already read two novels, covered about ten major literary theorists, and starting work on two major essays. Two weeks  into the semester and we are just getting our actual advisor teacher person. I feel like there are so many massive problems I need to overcome and everyone is talking about how much work it is and how serious you need to be and then we aren't really doing anything. I am not sure what to do about where/who I am staying with. I need to finalize what I am going to be doing my project about. I do not really understand what I am looking for with sources. We haven't talked about methodologies or any of that. I literally have zero idea about who to approach for my course contract things. I mean, I will probably end up working with Professor Eastley, (although I am concerned about how young he looks, not that he doesn't know his stuff, but I feel like my young professors always are more opinionated than old professors, and I am not one to back down about my opinions. I am concerned about working with someone who expects me to view things their way just because they are the authority figure, when I refuse, I absolutely refuse to do that in an academic setting) but the other one, I have no idea. I know it is just the beginning of the semester. I am sure it will all work out, but I am kind of stressing out over the whole sort of dangling in space thing. I did not anticipate this part of the individual field study. I guess I kind of expected things to be more formulaic, to fall more into place. I was expecting the field study class to be the calm center of this chaos, a thrice weekly foundation that everything would come back to so I could get my bearings, but it really hasn't been at all. Anyhow, I am just going on now. I know it is just the beginning of the semester and everyone in the field studies program knows what is going on and what needs to happen and when. They will be able to help me know what to do and everything is going to work out. There is no reason to stress about anything, the semester is just beginning. I just do not like this feeling right now.

1 comment:

  1. Hi Rem! This is Sarah. How is the class coming now? Is it getting better as far as helping out with your project? Feel free to talk to me if you're still feeling frustrated, or need to have more information of what is going on. I'd love to help!