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A Lady Wrote the Best Letter in the Editorials in Ages!!! - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
cbertsch
cbertsch
A Lady Wrote the Best Letter in the Editorials in Ages!!!
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_luaineach From: _luaineach Date: February 15th, 2007 07:00 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

with a professor

Er, it occurs to me this might be taken as in someway relating to *you* (as a professor) but I meant it to differentiate from non-professor-taught history classes of the home school sort (the likes of which I am always putting myself through, in history and otherwise). The latter being, obviously, greatly lacking in 'question asking' opportunities.

Just so there is no confusion. :)
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: February 15th, 2007 08:09 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

Yes, I suppose it could be taken that way. For my part, I took it as part of an ideological agenda to which you subscribe with cheery consistency, one which also manifests itself in your opposition to public schooling and your willingness to question the means by which knowledge and the opportunity to impart it on the taxpayer's dime -- or a fraction of the taxpayer's dime, since public-private hybrids are the order of the day from elementary schools to universities -- are legitimated. I seriously doubt whether you believe that "history classes of the home school sort" are lacking in anything, vis-a-vis the sort taught by professors, other than the imprimatur of the state and the NGOs to which its power is circuitiously delegated. When you ask for the perspective of a "professor," you are asking for a perspective that is, in your eyes, granted a preferential treatment which it may not merit in an absolute sense and which it certainly does not merit in a relative, economic sense. Since I'm not a history professor, however, and have no more claim to institutional legitimacy on historical matters than home-schoolers do, I didn't take your reference to "professor" personally. It was clear to me that you were imagining speaking with someone else.
_luaineach From: _luaineach Date: February 16th, 2007 01:21 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

Oh, no, I didn't mean all that although I suppose I could have, although my agenda with respect to schooling is a bit more than idealogical. I meant my studies in history (which have been pretty gruelling these past two years since I have my babysitter's dual majors in History and Religion to track myself with and spur myself with, keeping some degree of pace with her) are self-directed as opposed to other[professor]-directed, so if the Statue of Liberty *did* have have some connection with illegal immigration I certainly might not know it because I jump about quite bit (there's quite a lot of history out there, once you get going!!).

While I suspected the answer was "nothing", I did not assume so and I meant the comment/question sincerely. :)
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: February 16th, 2007 01:47 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

I should make it clear that I'm personally in favor of challenging the institutional legitimation of knowledge, so long as that challenging doesn't turn into the conviction that anything legitimated by institutions is not to be trusted.

I'm curious to hear what you've been reading in your historical studies. Given your interests, I can imagine that many of the recent texts used in college courses might seem uninspiring. Personally, I still enjoy the Big Picture classics from thirty, forty, fifty years ago, even if I do have to correct for some of their more egregiously biased and/or dated assumptions.
_luaineach From: _luaineach Date: February 16th, 2007 03:08 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

Given your interests, I can imagine that many of the recent texts used in college courses might seem uninspiring.

Oh yes, I tend to get side tracked, as you can imagine. I don't follow her courses, per se, but I tend to use her progress in one or two classes as a standard, adjusted down for my time frames, (although it's usually in a "what?!?! you've covered 100 years in the last month?!?! Gah! I just spent two weeks reading about cloth dying practices in 1848!!" sort of way!) and pepper her with opinions. And whenever she has a paper due in whichever class of hers I'm using as a baseline, I set myself the same task though it might be on a completely different era and country entirely, etc.

I'm a currently reading a book you might have read: "The Gold Standard and the Logic of Naturalism" which I shot on to somewhat on accident off of "New Spirits: Americans in the Gilded Age, 1865-1905", which I am also currently reading. I'm mostly focused this year (as in 2007 so far) on the US 1850-1920ish.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: February 16th, 2007 06:31 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

Walter Benn Michaels. That's an artfully put together work of literary criticism, a fine example of the so-called "New Historicism," which is identified with my alma mater and Kim's Department of English, where Michaels was teaching when he wrote it. Frederic Jameson has an interesting critique of the "slipperiness" of Michaels's argument in his Postmodernism; or, the Cultural Logic of Late Capitalism. Jameson is a 60s-style Marxist, one from whom I learned a great deal, even though I'm far less willing to present myself as engagé.
_luaineach From: _luaineach Date: February 16th, 2007 02:49 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)

Re: And see....

artfully put together ... "slipperiness" of

:) Oh yes, this is the feel I have. Quite a few leaps of theory, in my opinion, but a not unenjoyable read by any means. And makes a nice break from fact reading.
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