Tuesday, June 12, 2007

reading is sexy

woot! totally on a blogging roll here!

i thought the easiest way to discuss my academics atm would be, as usual, with a photo. so here's most of what i'm reading/about to read/have read:

at the end of our directed reading session last week the prof asked "so, do you feel that you're learning enough?"

i'll start from the bottom of the stack. this is what i've been reading for fun.

the arrival, shaun tan. VTA brought this one, bless her, cos it's not available in north america for another six months or something. tan is mostly a picturebook illustrator, and has a number of really beautiful books. this new one is a word less graphic novel about migration. it just won the NSW premier's book of the year prize, and there was a bit a bit of a hoo-ha. check out his website for some images. highly recommended.

then the complete hitchhiker's guide to the galaxy, which i got from a garage sale. i'm up to the third book, which is where you start wonder if the increasingly bad writing is worth the increasingly rare moments of comic genius.

then a book my housemate lent me, which i haven't started yet. if you've seen better than chocolate, you remember the woman who owns the bookshop? this is by that actor.

i've been going through another virginia woolf stage. i so enjoy the letters between her and vita, but the diary left me a bit cold and also confused. she doesn't like darkies and has a long rant about how mental imbeciles should be killed at birth. but that was just after her own nervous breakdown, so maybe there's a degree of distancing there. . . a very interesting portrait of the first world war, though, and good literary gossip. it's also interesting to read her reactions to the beginning of her literary career.

canada: a portrait in letters is fabulous. it's an edited collection of letters from the last two hundred years of canadian history, and such a good read. a very readable introduction to the history, which i'm still trying to get my brain around. so i have another book edited by the same woman, which i'm looking forward to. it's about pioneering canadian women.

then a book about the israel/palestine conflict, cos i don't understand what's happening there and am now friends with a number of israeli jews and other ppl politically invested in the situation. drinking the sea at gaza was recommended to me by one of them.

the next two were for my victorian class last week - you all must read fun home! i set the wildean chapter to compliment our oscar wilde focus. it brought up lots of good questions for our discussion. see alison bechdel's blog for more information. i'm enjoying this class a lot. we set ourselves masses of reading, then meet once a fortnight in a coffee shop, three students and one lecturer, and talk and talk and talk. very challenging and good fun.

the chunk of library books are for my major paper. i'm rehauling my women's studies paper from last semester. some of these books were interesting and useful, some not so much. it's been a while since i've been really immersed in this sort of abstract, wordy theory, and it took a while to get back into it.

then there's some of the books for my carribean lit course. i just read the two kincaid texts, which were fascinating but depressing. i'll start the other two soon. this class is not so good. we're reading great texts and watching good films, but the prof doesn't take control of the discussion adequately so we tend to ramble off topic and not really get into the guts of the issue. which is a pity, cos they're interesting issues.

that's the lot, i think. i'm also embroiled in ghastly 17th century poetry, but the norton anthology would overbalance the stack.

my academics at the moment does include some writing, but little. now is breathing in.

3 comments:

Anonymous said...

wow!

xg

aunty kant said...

whew. tough crowd.

tine said...

christ ... my brain hurt just from reading the post ABOUT your reading ...

and yes, reading is tres sexy. rrrowr.

friends with heaps of israeli jews, eh??? do tell (but perhaps in email form). i am totally sad, but still maintain that i do not have a 'jewish fetish'. just a deep-seated and abiding admiration for judaism. ANYWAY. jordy is going to israel in a few weeks. at least i *think* she is; she's always off somewhere, and israel is always a destination 'cept she always ends up having to cancel that part of the trip because (in her words) "anytime i plan i trip over there, they start killing each other again" (last time she tried to go, the israel-lebanon conflict erupted). all part of her phd-ing.

virginia didn't like 'darkies'???! i don't know that i can deal with that...

and FRANCES from "better than choc" wrote a book! re: prev comment, i just re-watched "btc" and am totally in love with it all over again (and NOT identifying with frances' romantic ineptness at all, OH NO). you must tell me what her book is like.

tell me about your courses this semester, again in email, but when you get around to it, god knows i take my damn sweet time...