Friday, September 9, 2011

Why I am here, and What this is

This semester I have been reading. Not that this is unusual for a masters/PhD student…but I have read an unusually large number of pages, and it will only grow. The beginning of a discipline that will be necessary if I am to complete this academic journey over the next several years. This year is my thesis year. My rough idea is to look at transnational perceptions of beauty, how they vary by culture and generation, where they intersect and diverge, what role globalization plays in creating crossroads of perceptions. I want to focus on Uganda and the United States. Why? Because I lived in Uganda for several months in college, so it is dear to my heart and a place of family and friendship, a large piece of what I consider to be my multi-cultural-ness…if one can be bi or tri cultural, like being bilingual, then I am a mix of American first, Ugandan second, and French third, with experiences in various other European countries contributing to the puzzle. I am perhaps most at home in America, but I have found that as my sense of at-home-ness increases within other cultures, my ethnocentrism and peace in my native culture is fading.
In this blog, I will be reflecting on things I am reading. Writing a thesis is intimidating. There are days when I look ahead and think there is no way I can do this. I wonder how anyone can do this. But anyone can blog, right? This is my reminder to take it day by day, idea by idea. It is a place for me to record thoughts, and for you to comment (if you so desire), so when it comes time to collect them into a thesis paper, I have already laid a foundation. This is my place, where grammar and theoretical accurateness doesn’t necessarily matter. It is a place of contradiction, I am sure…but I hope as I struggle with these readings and grapple with my experiences and thoughts that some lines of thought will emerge, and that from these lines my thesis and dissertation will be born.
Thanks for reading…but if you don’t, that’s ok. This is ultimately for me. It’s me encouraging myself to think and to engage…me chronicling my progress so in the end I can look back and see the distance I have traveled and revel in my accomplishment all the more because I can see the path that brought me here (wherever “here” may be in the next several years). That’s all I’ve got to say for now…time to read and to respond.

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