Thursday, February 24, 2005

a different world

Well academia is certainly a different kind of world. In some ways things are moving VERY slowly - the paperwork is frustrating and is taking time to work out. So I'm still not even officially enrolled as a PhD student even though I am an employee at Monash! If the difficulty of this process is to deter would be travelers from venturing this way, then I'm sure it would do the job well.

So the last week or so I have been doing preliminary work on a chapter for a 'Handbook of Research on New Literacies' that Ilana has been asked to write. If things go well I will probably coauthor the chapter with her. It has been interesting looking through tonnes of old journals and getting a sense of some areas in the field. There is so much I would like to delve into and that in someways I must resist. The sense one gets of developing ideas and trends in particular research communities or within certain discourses is interesting. This has certainly been the case in reviewing plenty of issues of 'Computers and Composition' (I stopped in the late 80s).

This has also been a valuable process in terms of my own work. I am beginning (only beginning mind you) to get some inklings of issues that might provide some steam for the PhD. Of course I know the area that I'm looking at, and I've written a proposal for my enrollment - but I'm talking about the heavily theoretical stuff that really gets the mind going - the stuff that links everything together and makes the work something significant.

I popped into ex-school today and spent a few hours wondering around chatting to students and colleagues. I miss this place, but it was funny going back - almost like my first day again - a delightful nervy feeling driving back in. Didn't get much of a chance to chat with KB, CJ or CP (!!!) but would have liked to - I was getting roped in from all angles. I did ask for some CRT (emergency or relief teaching) here and there (got home later to find that they want me next Tuesday already - sorry CP!) I did get my old favorites/bookmarks folder off the school server too!

Anyway, I'm at a VATE Conference tomorrow - helping out on the desk - my community service for the week! But I'm actually more looking forward to the train ride in - just sitting and looking out the window with ipod.

Austen is so cute.


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