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Reading, writing, teaching, publishing

October 12, 2011

As a not so new-ly minted ABD (All-But-Dissertation) of almost 6 months (probably just  under months if I choose to exclude the summer), the gear seems to be shifting up rather than down. In the past, if it used to be juggling the heavy load of seminar readings with semester-end (or mid-semester) papers and projects (or weekly postings), on to of one’s duties as graduate assistant or instructor, now one has to read at an even higher plane and speed (with unsurpassed paranoia), think about one’s teaching and publication portfolio, full-length projects where you can no longer say “I would have done so-and-so but the limits of time for this semester prevented me from doing so” and probably other extra-curricular academic activities (extra-mural ones not yet included) that is supposed to be part of that professional training. And course, there’s also writing that full-length dissertation and the accompanying research.

Now, I need to think as to how all the different collaborative groups I am involved in can help enrich my work and vice versa, while probably taking the lead in some of these groups. I need to get grants to finance some aspects of research that will evolve into many permutations of objects. I have to figure how to make seemingly a broadscope of interests (or a lifetime of interests, as some have informed me), can actually be constituents of a rosary of connected interests that will telescope into one main thesis. Of course, I’ve decided to pick up learning an ancient language for fun, while ignoring the fact I have not been attending a foreign language for academic purpose class I was supposedly auditing for some weeks now.

I certainly need to find better ways of organizing my so many documents for so many things. Maybe I will invest in a file management system that will keep track of all the latest developments in all the fields I have my replicated foot in (though I probably will then get myself lost in a different sort of maze) and also to keep tabs of the growing number of documents I have for the different notes I have taken for the very varied readings I will be doing (though I still suck at proper note-taking; not even studying and having to write for my preliminary exams has made me an any better note-taker).

At any rate, beginning very soon, I will be posting my progress on this blog and that other blog, not just in my actual dissertation but in all that I do (working groups, conferences, interesting discussions (which boils down to me needing to take notes properly) and every other intellectual project. Oh, and my trial-by-error approach to pedagogy on how to be a better university teacher.

Now, back to completing my job as a paid minion.

PS: I must say that I am rather excited by the mass mobilization of social movements that has taken place since January. Sure, nothing major or really revolutionary has happened. But it speaks well to the fact that postfordist people are not all necessarily an apathetic bunch. But desperation do play a big role. Whether at the individual or social level, it’s when one feels threatened, challenged or miserable in one way or another that one is spurred to any form of action that one hopes will either heal oneself or heal the society one lives in.

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