Friday, December 26, 2008

Pocatello Part IV: One Semester Down...

...hopefully only four more to go (that is, if things go according to plan, which, if the past year or so is any indication, won't happen).

After suffering from a mild case of the impostor syndrome, I passed all three of my classes (two A's and an A-) and am enjoying the time off (turned in my last paper December 16 at 5:00, you know, in case you were wondering). I'm hopeful that I won't feel like such a fraud now that I've got a semester under my belt, and that my shorter commute will encourage me to stay on top of my work. (Although I seriously doubt I'll be able to brush off years of procrastination in one semester, I'm going to try.)

This semester, I think, has also helped me nail down my primary area of interest--literary theory and criticism--with secondary interests in Mormon literature and criticism and poetry and poetics. Since I'm not really passionate about any single literary era, the work of any single author, or the field of rhetoric and composition (at least not enough that I want to invest a degree or a career in them), I really want to focus on theory and criticism, especially on their history, the role of the critic, and the relevance of theory to the world outside of academia. I'm also extremely interested in the development and the potential of Mormon arts and letters and think that a focus on theory can help me as I participate in this cultural venue, both as an artist and as a critic (although, in my mind, the critic can be as much of an artist as those that work within what we consider the realm of the creative arts--but that's a subject for another post, another day).

And so, that's where I presently stand academically: trying to decide what makes my passion for reading and writing and lit theory and criticism, and thus my role as a critic, relevant and useful.

And, if you're lucky, I might just take you along for the ride!