My research was on Edith Wharton, Virginia Woolf, and their textual and physical relationships to the space around them. It was really interesting and obviously I enjoyed it but your research could be about anything. So we’re going to look at the blog I kept, but mostly I wanted to talk about the experience of research
- public-private nature of the internet
- lack of performance in academic space
- finding a non authoritative audience
- re-writing the blog experience from personal-public to academic-public
- bringing in elements to your research that are unexpected (visual elements, links, popular culture)
- granting yourself the privilege of “infinite” space
The main point of the academic research I did actually wasn’t that granting space allows authority. But that was a main part of the research process. I could go to the library everyday. If someone bothered me I could say I was working—because I was working.
And so while a lot of people use the HHG to thesis, I think it’s important to consider the summer as a different kind of experience even more broadly. It isn’t just that there is more time and room for research it’s also that there’s more time and room for you. I had friends working on papers with professors and those papers might get published and they would get to add that to their resume but they were jealous of my self directed reading.
The blog really helped because:
- it was a portable flexible accessible research space
- I could go on tangent, I could still post
- the form of a blog entry was especially interesting b/c it meant I could easily archive material either in posted or draft form
- I could also link the articles together easily
- I could link sources around on the web (Virginia Woolf Online for example)