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Last Visit 2012-01-13 06:50:30 |Start Date 2007-08-09 12:32:13 |Comments 410 |Entries 169 |Images 39 |Videos 9 |

Category: school

07/24/09 06:32 - ID#49369

thesis and such

to begin, I am in the last 5 week countdown of my thesis completion. needless to say i am a little stressed...although it could be worse. i am trying to take a different attitude with the whole thing cause my lack of work over the last five or so months is a good indicator that whatever it was i have been doing wasn't working.

in other news
felly and i aren't leaving buffalo. we decided that we simply aren't ready to move yet. financially speaking, we don't have enough saved to be comfortable in making the leap and neither of us had found jobs when we made this decision. Emotionally speaking we just aren't ready and honestly, i think neither of us are sure that westchester/nyc is where we would go when we do decide to move. i think we certainly will be moving out of buffalo in 6-9 months, but not september, that's for sure.

we are, however, still moving out of our current place cause we told our landlords that we were and our downstairs neighbor already has her sights on our apt. im a little nervous about moving because we have it pretty good here, but i am on the look out for a pet friendly apt with a second floor balcony that doesn't have a bug problem and... oh yeah, good heat and hot water. i hate being cold. at first i thought we could move a little more north, but the truth is, i like down here in ye olde elmwood village. i could even do allentown or depending on the area, a couple blocks to the east or west of elmwood. maybe i am too picky. probably.

oh and

BATTLE AT BUFFALO
SATURDAY JULY 25 - - TOMORROW
7:oo ISH $5 cash at the door gets you hours of fun and excitement
910 Main Street above Hyatts Art Store just south of Allen
come one come all bring your friends

peace out.
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Category: school

04/09/09 02:22 - ID#48334

Abstract

Ok so as many of you know, I am writing my thesis. I think I have finally come up with a worthy and comprehensive abstract, but I was hoping for some feedback from you all if you are feeling so generous. Not generous in the 'go easy on me" kinda way, but generous as in, honest and sincere feedback. So yeah, here goes....


Chaotic whiteness is a road map, a tool box, offering ways of being that allow for the possibility of re-membering, re-imagining, and un-mastering whiteness in the ongoing projects that make up critical race theory and whiteness studies. By trespassing on the boundaries that have been fabricated in and among various academic disciplines, I will navigate through women's studies, African American studies, literary criticism and various other theoretical paradigms in order to expose and explode the ways in which the fabrication and maintenance of whiteness haunts both black and white bodies. Finally, I will consider the necessities of articulating and performing a whiteness that must not be bound by what whiteness is supposed to be or have access to, while simultaneously taking seriously the ongoing potential for appropriating, commodifying and romanticizing the knowledges, imaginations, memories and interiorities of people of color.
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Category: school

11/13/08 06:55 - ID#46678

Vent

I am having one of those breakdown moments.
It's the end of the semester...like, really.

I just got home and checked my student email and was overloaded with all this shit.

Deadlines about when to register for next semester.
I don't even know what the hell I am doing next semester. Do I sign up for thesis guidance? How many credits do I take? Do I get financial aid? Who is going to be my second adviser?

THEN
I got an email from the library telling me that two of the books I am using for one of my research papers were RECALLED. What a bunch of bullshit. Someone else needs the books so they get them?? What the fuck. They missed out. I have them because I need them...I don't just take out shit tons of books for the fun of it. Why is it that because they, the late bird, want the book I have to return it early? You'd think that maybe at least my option to renew would be taken away. I might be able to handle that, but no, I gotta give them back on Monday...three weeks before my paper is due. Maybe once I return them I can recall them and get them back.

AND THEN
another email from the library...I supposedly have a book that was due today. But I swear to whoever that I returned that shit. I take books very seriously. I respect them and keep track of them and godamit I returned that shit. And, I have no proof. They don't give receipts or anything that says you returned your books. You put them on the desk and walk out. So I have no proof and therefore will either have to pay for the damn book that is floating around somewhere in that giant library or have my library privileges revoked, which ultimately is out of the question.

For those students out there...you surely understand. It seems like everything that can go wrong usually does when you have 4, 20 page research papers to write. Like I don't have enough shit on my plate right now I have to worry about all this other shit. Ug. I am sooooo mad.
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Category: school

10/15/08 01:04 - ID#46126

Experiment

Ok, I'm going to try something out here. This is a response paper (two pages, double spaced) for my class, Afrotopias. It is in response to the book
Punctuation: Art, Politics, and Play by Jennifer DeVere Brody

This is a pretty good example of how I write "academically". I think that this might work because its not really based solely on the book and I think can be understood without having read the book. Let's see if I'm right :)

Oh, a quick note: When I say "queer quotation marks" I am talking about the function of quotation marks to question a straight forward meaning or objectivity of a word and find alternative or multiple meanings within that word/idea.


The connections between Jennifer DeVere Brody's book and other texts and articles we have discussed this semester are many. Brody speaks of the performance of punctuation, of memories that have appeared to have disappeared, of community and art, and of repetitions, silences and improvisation. However, something that we have not (explicitly) covered this semester are notions of citizenship and nation, which Brody addresses via the hyphen.
    
Last semester I wrote a paper arguing that George W. Bush used the rhetoric of "patriotism" to fabricate a nationalist "American" identity after 9/11 (note queer quotations). Similarly, Brody shows the ways in which post-9/11 America was constructed as a unified, non-hyphenated body of citizens who stripped themselves (and each other) of their allegiances to other nations. But what is perhaps more interesting and important is Brody's use of "The Race for One" and/as "The Race for None" and how this logic was/is located in a linear, seemingly progressive line of temporal evolution. To consider the implications that (most) white Americans have already forgotten(?) their hyphenated European identities while (some/many?) people of color have not, serves to reinforce the notion that white people and whiteness is more "evolved" than black people and blackness. Furthermore, this "lag" in the linear progression of time serves to separate and therefore hinder the ideal (white) America that means to create a "race of one" that ultimately is a "race of none" (read: white).
    
Brody also argues that the hyphen serves as a "space of friction," (87) a moving performance that "always act(s)" (85). I would like to consider the implications of this notion through Theodore Roosevelt's argument that, "Americanism is a matter of the spirit and of the soul. Our allegiance must be purely to the United States. We must unsparingly condemn any man who holds any other allegiance" (Brody, 88). What interests me in Roosevelt's statement is the naturalized/naturalizing connection that Roosevelt makes between one's spirit and soul and one's physical/geographic location. To be sure, Roosevelt not only assumes that love for one land necessarily requires the "forgetting" of another, but also that America/ns have always already insisted/required/forced "outsiders" to remain just that. I am reminded here of the article last class that pointed out that enslaved black women's bodies were used as experiments for "science" because they were simultaneously viewed as different yet similar to white women's bodies. Although America has continuously insisted on the "differences" of people of color, the moment their sameness is viewed as useful, they are condemned for claiming such differences. Also, to argue that Roosevelt, like George W. Bush, cannot conceive of a diasporic identity that reaches across time and space, history and borders of all kinds, is only the tip of the iceberg. This kind of "friction" is, as Brody argues, "impossible,"(85) yet powerful.
    
To conclude, as Brody argues, it is not enough to argue that the American ideal of unity, or "the race of one," is void of racial distinction in favor of an "American" identity, but rather that this ideal is based on, grounded in, and perpetuated through a notion that whiteness and white America is a "race of none". Far too often, as could/can clearly be seen when speaking of "race" in the upcoming presidential election, as well as the primary, it was clear that speakers meant black. Whiteness continues to be cast as neutral, normal, and even natural and hence, lacking racial classification. Therefore, the American vision of a non-hyphenated, unified "one" is always already the "race of none": whiteness. Interestingly enough, the performance of whiteness might actually show its face here, as those who assimilate to white norms, standards and values are closer (is it ever fully achieved?) to the American ideal than those who maintain (openly) their hyphens, their (physical/spiritual) moving between (artificial/fabricated) borders. Finally, Brody posits the question, "Is this shifting space actually liberatory?" (107). Is the use of the hyphen serving only to reinforce these artificial boundaries and borders that have been erected for the sole purpose of segregation, or should we be moving toward a "unity"(queer) that dissolves these borders and seeks to un-cover/dis-cover the "me" in "you" and vice versa? Are we at a space that allows for this type of radical thinking/acting and what implications would it have on the politics of community and solidarity?


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Category: school

08/29/08 01:58 - ID#45499

post

well, its back again. its amazing how something so simple as sitting in a classroom can light a fire under my ass everytime. my mind is already going into overdrive...and sometimes its very frustrating because the truth be told, i don't think in real world terms when i get going like this. i am a highly theoretical person and despite my generally negative attitude toward stuck up academics who can't talk like real human beings, i am equally at fault. i have been doing a lot of thinking about this major issue must be included into my thesis...somehow.

anyways, this is basically a warning post. i have already been doing a little commenting here and there and might i just say to not take them as attacks, just thought provokers or critiques or what have you. friendly intelligent conversation if you will. also, you all know how i love to procrastinate :)
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Category: school

06/12/08 07:31 - ID#44630

Estupido

Grr. can anyone please tell me why all people wanting to get their PhD must speak at least two, maybe three languages? Maybe, just maybe I am wrong on this...but how many people show "proficiency" on a language exam and then *poof* magically forget how to speak anything beyond, "hola, como esta?" within a week?? This to me is like math. I haven't taken a godam math class since my sophmore year and I rejoiced knowing that I would never have to do it again. The same for my sad and pathetic attempt at German for two semesters. Now don't get me wrong, I would love to be able to speak Spanish. It to me is the most useful in my line of interests, but shouldn't I be focusing on my dissertation? Shouldn't I be past all this standarized test BS?!?! Shouldn't people within the academic world be equally as frustrated and annoyed by this as me? Maybe I am overreacting, but I SUCK at foreign languages just as much as I suck at math. If one were to take all my math, science and foreign language grades off my transcript it would be impeccable. Maybe me scowering through the already limited pool of Women's Studies PhD's for no langauge requirement is pathetic, I don't know. But grr. Grrr.

I feel better.
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Category: school

02/20/08 12:02 - ID#43400

Procrastination....

I have been thinking a lot about school...this school in particular. UB for those who don't know where I go...

I guess I can't help but feel like I am on a treadmill to nowhere. I sit in class and listen to people talk about Foucoult and academic debt and blah blah blah, and I can't help but what wonder what the fuck they are talking about. Granted, I can follow along, I know the lingo, I can talk the talk, but I get sick of it pretty quick. There is no activism coming from this dept. Outside of getting our work done, writing papers and thesis and whatnot, how does anyone in grad school have time to give a shit about anyone but themselves? Isn't higher education just another machine to assembly line out people with legitimate degrees in order to look good for other people? I was speaking about this with a fellow student who is a black female immigrant from Africa. She said that she felt that getting her education is the only way for her to be heard, to get ahead, to be respected in the world. I agree with this in some ways, but aren't we just playing into the system? Who the hell do I think I am with my fancy degree that says I am smarter than other people who don't have one? Gross. Even "higher" education has hierarchical implications. Aren't we all just little rats in tubes trying to get to the coveted finish line?

Don't get me wrong. I love school. I love learning. But I am not here to get a degree, and I think most people are. Get in, get out, get on with your life. But can't we learn everywhere, don't we? I get so sick of things like "good" schools, ivy league bullshit and academic credibility. I am no more credible that any other schmuch out there. It grosses me out. Really. We sit in our comfortable little classrooms talking abour rage, gender, class, inequality, etc etc, and we aren't doing a damn thing about it. Is academic feminism an oxymoron? I think so.

Oh yes. And on a side note...I need to make it quite clear that my rambling are no more than that. I am never ever trying to present all sides of a perspective. My mind changes on a daily basis. And here is another complaint...when people criticize an author about what s/he missed, what was left out, underdeveloped, blah blah. How the hell do we expect one single person to ever get it all right? I know it is an excercise in one's ability to critique, to be analytical and all that jazz, but seriously. Come on people. People are starving, are poor, are dying, are getting murdered for wearing the wrong clothes, saying the wrong thing, for no reason at all and we are worried about this petty shit?

I am full of it today. :) Peace out.
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Category: school

02/18/08 03:38 - ID#43383

Spot Coffee

Ok, so me and this friend of mine have to do a joint presentation on a book. for those of you who care, it is Octavia Butler's "Parable of the Sower". And we made plans to meet today to go over our thoughts and stuff...and I had it in my little head that she would (preferably) come to my place cause it is bigger and I can smoke without climbing three flights of stairs. Either that or we would go to her place. Fine. I could deal with that too.
But...when she finally called me, she was like, oh, lets me at Spot. Two things: First of all, why the hell do people like going to public places where it is loud and uncomfortable and distracting and costs money, when you could easily be at home, for free. (This is a privacy and social phobia issue I have as well). Second...I realized not only are we going to Spot, she wants to go to Spot on Delaware, one I have never been to before. Now granted, I should take this as an opportunity to expand my horizons, expand my Buffalo, blah blah. But I don't want to. I know I sound like a spoiled two year old right now. I guess this is what happens when one has expectations that were completely and totally existing only in the reality of my head. I am not upset really, don't take my tone to be anything other than fascination with my own idiosincracies. I am a wee bit crazy and it comes out at the strangest of times.
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Category: school

01/19/08 11:35 - ID#42950

Idea...Help?

Hello friends...I know I have been neglecting you all, and now I have come to ask yet another favor. I am taking an ethnographic methods class (ie. qualitative research) and I have to eventually write a 20 page paper based on interviews of a select group that I choose... I have not cleared this with my Prof yet, but I was considering using you all for this little mini study. I think that online communities are all the rage :) and this would be the perfect size to do a small scale, localized study of such a group. Of course you would be completely anonomous...I guess I have to go through some board of blahdeeblah in order to get my research approved, so it will all be on the up and up....so you get this gist? I would of couse be wanting interviews...anywhere from an hour or more that would be recorded...and I would buy you coffee or lunch for your troubles. Again, this is not a sure thing yet, but if anyone would be willing to participate, please let me know so I can have an idea of whether or not this is feasable.
Thanks!
<3
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Category: school

11/11/07 01:05 - ID#42078

oops

Something happened to me this weekend. My mind rebelled against school. Or my body, or both. I didn't do anywork at all compared to my normal hours and hours of reading and writng. On Friday I watched a Project Runway marathon for way to many hours. Yesterday I went to Niagara Falls with my cousin and her boyfriend. Today I feeling anxious, knowing that I didn't do the work I should have done for tomorrow's classes. Everytime I pick up a book I can't concentrate. I know that this is all created...I think I decided on Thursday night that I wouldn't be doing any work this weekend and I am sitting in that decision right now. There is some strange feeling of liberation however...since school started I have been dedicated. always doing all the readings, all the work, spending my weekends and free time immersed in school work, and now this. I can't say if this is a good thing or a bad thing. Next week Felly and I are attempting a trip to New Paltz...I have basically 2 weeks until hell descends upon me...hell being final papers due...3 20 pages papers in a matter of 4 days. I should be preparing for this. Getting my research together, working on outlines, blahdee blah. I can't quite come to grips with the fact that the first semester is almost over. This is a constant problem for me...recognizing that reality is right now, not some far off place that I can't point to.

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