Here is a link to my self-evaluation: http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/book/standing-wall/self-evaluation
As always, it has been a pleasure, and I cannot wait to work with you all again!
This is a reflection on my third English paper for Anne, which took the form of a comic book and was never fully completed. I will be attaching scans of the pieces that had been completed SOON and using this space to outline where the comic will continue to go.
I chose to write a comic book for several reasons. The first reason was that I am interested in experimenting with forms of academic work that diverge from conventional assignments, such as essays and exams. In doing so, I hope to challenge the notion that these conventional assignments are the most adequate methods of measuring student growth and learning inside the classroom. By expanding our understanding of what a “paper” looks like, we can better serve the needs and strengths of diverse learning styles.
This is the post that I had started after last week’s class and spoke about last Monday!
Bear with me as I seem to go in circles….
I was thinking about this after class- why is our first inclination upon recognizing the failures of language to give up on? Why are we so ready to claim that connection is impossible, simply because language does not always meet our needs of expression? I realized that the very rhetoric itself we employ to talk about these things is extraordinarily polarizing… this brought me back for a moment to a sense of hopelessness about the state of language and its connective potential; before I reminded myself that acknowledging that language can fail is not a reason to give up trying to connect or communicate- it is a call to be more attentive to the ways in which we attempt/do not attempt those connections; the words we do/or do not choose to utter. It is committing to the labor involved in creating and maintaining fulfilling connections …
Of course, I realize I have a particular stake in protecting language; a substantial part of my education the only thing I ever felt good at was “reading” language… which is why I spent most of my time at Bryn Mawr under the assumption that the only thing I could ever be was an English Major… being attentive to words and language is a critical tool in what I do on a daily basis.
“It is as though the word itself were an island, born of the meeting of two great rivers of language…” (69)
“…the Bengali language was an angry flood…” (79)
“river of words” (83)
“…her words have come flooding back to me in a torrent.” (134)
(Translated by Dr. Josephine Davis)
Ah! How beautiful is Kabul encircled by her arid mountains
And Rose, of the trails of thorns she envies
Her gusts of powdered soil, slightly sting my eyes
But I love her, for knowing and loving are born of this same dust
My song exhalts her dazzling tulips
I struggled to motivate myself to write the problem analysis paper for our education class. This didn’t seem to be for lack of ideas/ problems to analyze, but rather, essay writing itself didn’t feel like the most productive mode for me to express my ideas. When I met with Jody, we determined that instead of writing about a problem, I would address an immediate issue within our 360; in doing so I would be attempting to work oriented toward problem solving and not problem analysis. The “problem” I identified was in a lack of Serendip dialogue. This has been a personal issue for me as well, as I have not been utilizing Serendip in the way that I would like to use it. So in the place of a formal essay and in an effort to “feed our Serendip ecosystem” I have begun responding to our classes problem analysis papers. I will be post links to these comments here so that they are easy to find if you are interested in reading or responding. I have not finished responding, so there are only a few links currently below, but I will update as soon as I post!
Here are the responses I have so far:
Based on our conversation today in Jody’s class about the concern to create something long lasting (in reference to the “the tears” in Chase article and the example of religious camps/having a religious experience that does not extend beyond the camp & cannot be carried over) … I’m sensing a need for the story slam to carry beyond a single semester and I’m wondering if we can actually initiate a group on campus which is dedicating to hosting story slams/ open mic nights on campus that can be flexible in addressing campus wide issues and creating spaces for critical conversation to be present. When I originally envisioned our “final” event I actually envisioned several story slams over the course of a month as a way of hopefully initiating a more long-lasting conversation on campus. I know that in the past, the artclub has initiated events like this but my understanding is that those events were tied to particular students who have now graduated and the drive to host/plan similar events has somewhat left with those students. I am thinking that maybe having a group whose actual sole focus is creating these spaces might be a way of keeping the conversation alive; and perhaps could be a way in which we put forth a continuation of this 360.
I’ve been here before.
There is a sense of excitement that accompanies encountering the familiar, paralleled by discontentment at being unable to articulate the vague and seemingly random connection I am feeling...
I felt it even as we drove to our destination, passing the rooftops of buildings in Manayunk. Manayunk, which according to Wikipedia, literally translates from the Lenape language as, “place to drink.” It was their word for River. I take note of the tall sign that marks a movie theatre. It is also the sign I look for to indicate the entrance to a small outlet containing a liquor store.
“Place to drink” was indeed my experience with Manayunk this past summer, though I recognize that the Lenape Indians and I most likely have different interpretations of the word “drink.”
I’ve been here before.
We step out of the vans and the sense lingers. Anticipation holds a sense of remaining unfulfilled… Is that what this unease is, being unable to place a finger on how you know a place or why you know it?
What’s at the top of a magic ladder, anyway? (a continuation of this post: http://serendip.brynmawr.edu/exchange/eco-literacy-2014/private/colonizing-museum-exhibit).
Having this question rise to the forefront of my thoughts all weekend reminded me of a question asked by Holden Caulfield in the Catcher in the Rye. He asks a man driving a taxi: "You know those ducks in that lagoon right near Central Park South… By any chance, do you happen to know where they go, the ducks, when it gets all frozen over?” It is a strange question, and seems to have an obvious answer. The ducks fly south for the winter. But the reader knows that Holden isn’t really asking about ducks at all. He is asking where “it” all ends. “It” supposedly meaning life…
What are we supposed to gain by living our lives the way we do?
I wanted to post the poem that Le Guin references in case anyone had any interest in reading it! I copied it from this site: http://www.luminarium.org/sevenlit/marvell/coy.htm
To his Coy Mistress
by Andrew Marvell