Friday, 17 September 2010

7 Quick Takes (57)

1. I am tired.
This week has been exhausting. I wound up having to do the first presentation of the year in my Friday class. This meant that I had 200+ pages of Locke and Berkeley to read (and thoroughly, not skimmed) by Tuesday so I could talk to the prof. This meant that I had to do my Tuesday and Wednesday readings late the night before that class, and trying to marathon-read four chapters of Foucault's The Order of Things in one night is doable but tiring. Add to this TA responsibilities, transit, and the ordeal of day-to-day living, and somehow the week has gone by quickly and left me almost void of energy.

2. TAing has been going well. I do not mind at all the time I spend preparing for class. I like class prep, actually, and I like almost everything to do with being a TA. Many of the students are still hesitant to speak, so I did far more speaking than I would have liked this last week, but I still think that TAing is the best part of my week.

3. I visited the Museum of Anthropology again today. This may become a bi-weekly occurance. I was going to go to a lecture by one of the professors, but I wound up being so tired that I just went home after going to the MoA. I would really liked to have gone, but I just couldn't face it. Further, after a busy week and then a visit to the MoA, my head was (is) full.

4. I don't suppose any of you have read The Order of Things? It is supposedly Foucault's most difficult work. I still don't understanding the chapter "Man and His Doubles," but I personally found "The Human Sciences" liberating. It reminded me a lot of Frye, actually; quite diagrammatic, sweeping in scope, ambitious. If you feel like you're mentally robust and are interested in academia, I suggest you attack The Order of Things. I can't say you'll like it very much, especially if you're scientifically-inclined. I suppose that's stereotyping; certainly Foucault is not anti-science, but people who are touchy about science might think him so. He challenges our currect ideas about academic departments and projects, however, for which reason I am pleased with The Order of Things and many other won't be.
If you are familiar with Foucault's later work, concerning power dynamics, you might be surprised to know that The Order of Things has nothing to do with power.

5. I attended a church. I don't know what to think of it. It seemed... uninteresting. There was nothing about it that gave it much sticking power for me. The one interesting thing was that they gave out chocolate hedgehogs to anyone who had been there for the first time. I therefore got a chocolate hedgehog. Yay! I might attend a different church this Sunday, see what it's like. However, there is a program at the one I went to last week this coming Wednesday night which I intend to attend. I will let you know next Friday how that goes.

6. I had a Pedagogy Workshop yesterday. This was helpful; I now have better teaching strategies. This should be part of a previous entry, I know, but I'm running out of stuff.

7. You know what's annoying? It's annoying when people make things difficult on buses. The buses here are often quite full, so we need to be space-efficient. That's not easy when there's some guy standing in the middle of the bus talking to people seated next to him. In front of him the aisle is getting more and more packed with people, but he won't move down and he won't let anyone past him. So there's all this space open at the back two thirds of the bus, which no one can get at because he's standing there, talking to these people. Can he not tell that he's blocking the aisle?
Note to self: my worst time for grumpiness is on the bus. I must try to guard against grumpiness while on the bus.

You know where to go: Conversion Diary, host of this fine carnival.


Cait said...

I get quite grumpy on buses as well.

I'm really glad that you're liking TAing :)

You might have to start drinking coffee to keep up with the amount of reading, TAing, and energy levels.

yolanda said...

marathon reading foucault. sounds like torture (which is the name of the first part of discipline and punish and the only foucault i've ever marathon read, or read at all, actually.)

geomama1 said...

I'm fascinated by the chocolate hedgehog. Is there some deep religious significance to hedgehogs? A sign of hospitality that we're unfamiliar with in America?

Christian H said...

To my knowledge, there is no significance to the chocolate hedgehog.

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