It Got Quiet

But really these things happen, and it is better late than never to pick up the proverbial ball and continue to roll it forward, collecting more and more things like a sick game of We Love Katamari. What I want to propose to you is a reformatting of whatever it was I had tried to accomplish here. For one, it just is not working out. Also, I would really like to have a simple and straightforward record of what I have been working on with different courses. Maybe have some truncated versions of graded essays, some ideas about notes and texts being read, you name it. I realize that the whole publishing something that is going up for a grade has some issues, but I think putting it out after it has been handed in and graded should present no problems for me.
So let's sit down, figure out where we stand right now. I am currently a sophomore in my second semester at Mary Washington, pursuing a double major in Anthropology and History. Both majors require fairly hefty reading loads, but you come across some very interesting stuff! My real interest that adds the icing layer to this academic cake is China. Frankly, it is my academic end all, be all. The majority of my projects should be focusing on China in one way or another. At the end of my senior year I am looking at getting the whole double major thing down and most importantly a solid set of Chinese language skills. This has presented the greatest set of hurdles for me thus far. The best way to acquire language is immersion, but one must have the available time to get himself over to the active field. All in due time of course, more about that later.
This semester I cast my net fairly wide in terms of a diverse class load. I have my Chinese 102 course with a language instructor from Beijing, two history classes (Research methods and Asian Civ II), Human Geography, Urban Theory and Ethnography, and finally an English course about Culture and Imperialism with its core text being Edward Said's work by the same title taught by Snehal Shingavi. I also do a drum lesson once a week, which is a great way to work the mind in some other way than critical analysis.
Some of the courses may need some further explanation to get a sense of what their individual purpose is, but in some way each class can in certain ways relate to all of the other classes. The research methods course provides students with an opportunity to design a project and write like a historian. It's an introductory course but allows you to experience the process of digging through primary documents. I am doing my project on the Opium War, which ties into Chinese 102- gave the initial boost of interest- and Asian Civ II. The anthropology course, Urban theory and Ethnography, is meant to fulfill a field research requirement for the Anthropology major. The class, taught by Prof. James, asks core questions about how anthropology functions in the Urban environment, what Urban is, how it relates to suburbia, and every question in between. While the course allows for non-majors, eh I have found that some of the core courses to the major, gives you a better framework for all of the readings. I am specifically thinking of the co-requisite classes Theories of Culture and Ethnography. The Ethno class is particularly helpful since the Urban theory class asks for you to run a field research class, which if you have no experience in designing a project it can be a rather daunting task, not to say it is completely un-daunting for those who have put their toes in the water.
All of this has gone too long for one post, maybe but maybe not! Either way, let's see where all this takes us, hopefully you'll be seeing some notes, reading suggestions, research updates for history, and rants, rants galore I tell you!

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