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Showing posts with label dissertation. Show all posts
Showing posts with label dissertation. Show all posts

Wednesday, 6 April 2011

BEDA late than never! HAHAHAHA.

I crack myself up.

So, I've been enjoying five days of BEDA (Blog Every Day in April) posts, mainly from people who I enjoy watching on the Youtube community, such as Kristina Horner, Hayley G Hoover, and Kayley Hyde among others. I tried so hard to be a successful Youtuber, a few years ago, and became incredibly disheartened when my most popular video was removed, due to copyright violation. I had made a video about my favourite French Language songs, and had a really good response in the comments, with hundreds of recommendations, and people telling me that I have shown them new songs that they now love. I didn't realise that promoting songs constituted copyright violation, so it was a huge blow when my video got taken down.

I still feel depressed when I watch videos made by prominent members of the 'Youtube community', because I feel like that's something that I want so much to be a part of, from which I am mostly excluded. I watch the videos nonetheless, because like so many others, watching them makes me feel a little bit like I am a part of these people's lives.

Of course, I have enough of my own internet friends to keep me going. I have my own internet community, where I have made some of the best friends I could ever wish for. I spend so much of my time thinking about my friends, and writing to them, that I sometimes take them for granted. I realised this last night, as I perused another internet forum, this time one about teaching. Everyone on that forum seemed to be bigoted, closed-minded, and conservative. It really upset me, how so mahy of them seemed to be there simply to practise their sarcastic teacher remarks on each other. I retreated to my usual forum, and felt the warm glow of a community who understand and accept one another.Here are some of my beautiful friends, when we met for the first time, last summer. So much has happened since then, and I can't believe we have only been friends for such a short time. I am a very lucky lady indeed. I have learned so much from these wonderful people, and I have become a nicer person for it. I am still so jealous of Vic's clothes, Annis' pink hair, Rowan and Claire's enthusiasm for academia, and Ruby's sense of humour!

A couple of years ago, if you'd told me that I spend my time on an internet forum, chatting to people I'd met online, I'd probably have told you that "I'm not that kind of person". I cringe at my naive outlook now, as I've probably spent more time interacting with my internet friends than with my 'real life' friends. I have put 'real life' in inverted commas, because I despair at the thought that your internet life isn't your 'real life', and that somehow every interaction you have on the internet is invalidated by the fact that it isn't face to face. Almost all contact that humans have, aside from face-to-face conversation is mediated by some form of digital device. This includes telephones, and in some ways, even letters, if they are printed from a computer. So in what way are our 'real life' friends any different from our internet ones? I've met most of my friends from the internet, so are they now 'real life' friends too? I certainly enjoy meeting them, but I don't think that they are any more 'real' now that I have. I e-mail and text my 'real life' friends just as much as I see them, so are they 'virtual' now?

There is a huge misconception, (one that I shared, before I had really experienced an online community for myself), that there is a hierarchy of human interaction. This is probably because of the novely and relative infancy of technological communication and digital media. I want to break this misconception down. The internet has facilitated my friendship with people all over the world. I have now met people with whom I can be myself, and with whom I CHOOSE to spend my time. We often can't choose the people with whom we spend our time physically, for example at school and work, we are forced to spend time with people with whom we share no commonality apart from our geographical location. The internet allows communication and relationship building with people we actually care about! I am not intending to reverse the hierarchy of human interaction, by asserting that internet friendships are somehow more valid than those which begin face to face, because similarly, I have plenty of friends whom I first met in person, and love to pieces. I just want to break down people's prejudice against the way I form some of my frienships.

So, faithful few readers, tell me about your friendships. Do you have more internet, or meatspace friends? How do you tend to communicate?

I need to go and do some dissertation writing now. If only the words flowed so freely there, as they do here!

Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Pissertation.

Ohoho, I am such a punner.

So, my dissertation has got to an odd stage. I rattled off 2400 words in just over an evening, and over the last three or four days, have added about 600-700 more words. I am just over half way towards the minimum word count. I sent my 2400-word version to the boyfriend of one of my closest friends. Her boyfriend is in the first year of his PhD, and he wanted to give it a once over, out of kindness and interest.

I just got his feedback back (back back. Just thought that sentence needed even more backs), and I am just awestruck. Each little nugget of feedback is like a chunk of gold! I know that it is worth an awful lot, but I have no idea how to make it into something useful. It's a shit analogy, but it kind of works in a way. He has given me lots of ideas for other people to read, and given me a heap of suggestions of ways to develop my argument. Any normal person would be delighted at this level of feedback and encouragement. I just don't know what to do with it! I feel like my argument is going nowhere, and I worry that I will be unable to salvage it. I can't change my title as it is too late, but I don't feel like I am addressing the titular themes at all...

Dan's mum asked me what my "opinion" on Electronic Literature was. Six months ago, I might have said it was "Innovative", "collaborative", that it "opens doors to new territory and modes of communication, yet unexplored"... However, when she asked me the question, the night before last, I had no idea what to say. Admittedly, it was a very open-ended question indeed, but really, I think my lack of coherent approach to her query was that I don't even know what to think anymore. It isn't as though the advent of the internet suddenly sparked cries of "Oh! Finally literature can be truly interactive and collaborative! We were trapped by books before! There was no way to express a sentiment through temporality or spatiality!" That wouldn't be true at all. My research for my dissertation, particularly in recent weeks, has shown me, if nothing else, that the tropes of electronic literature go way back to before computer technology existed. Bob Brown conceptualised the "Reading Machine" in 1930, and sought to revolutionise the way that literary works were perceived, as well as the way in which they were written. B. S. Johnson ruptured the idea of the linear narrative in the 'book technology' long before randomization and coding on a computer was used to create any artistic work. Cinema was used as an artistic and literary outlet for a century... I just don't know what I am doing anymore.

I am in the library, and this counts as serious procrastination. Back to work with me.

Sunday, 27 March 2011

"Vacation"... (ha ha ha)

Salut chums,

I packed my life into a cupboard and a box room on Saturday, and moved my sweet self (as well as a pile of books, and a suitcase full of clothes) to Dan's parents' house. I hate moving. I hate how I have to make choices about which of my items I will get to see for the next month, I hate how I have to dismantle all of my picture displays, I hate how I always break at least one of my nails really far down, and it hurts like a SHIT. It puts me in a really bad mood, to move all of my things, and pack them away. I cannot wait until I install myself somewhere at least semi-permanent.

On the other hand, after eight weeks at university, staring at the same four walls, I do become slightly stir crazy. I need constant changes of scenery, which is probably because I lived between two houses from the age of nine until I moved to university. I cannot stay for the whole day inside the house, otherwise I feel like a slob. I have never understood "pyjama days", but many of my friends swear by them as food for the soul.

The change-over between university, and "home" is also irritating in that takes away an entire day. The packing, the moving, the unpacking, and the subsequent EXHAUSTION means that there is no chance of pulling off any productivity on that day. That said, over the last two days, I have added over 600 words to my dissertation, which is something of an achievement since I have had no real direction for it, and no feedback from my supervisor. I have hit a brick wall at the moment, and feel like there isn't much that I can contribute to it until my supervisor has got back to me with some advice as to how I should proceed. I feel like I am writing myself in circles.

On a more positive note, I have rediscovered cross stitch, and have been cross stitching feminist slogans. I will post pictures when I have finished some projects to my satisfaction. The good weather, and the copious amounts of blossom everywhere has cheered me immensely, and I cannot wait until the end of exams, so that I can start to enjoy all of the things that the outside world has to offer me!
A photo I took of blossoms near college.