Sunday, October 15, 2006

Best/Funniest Advice I've Gotten as a Graduate Student

Sorry about the delay in posting, folks. Between classwork as student and teacher, volunteer stuff, and "my own work," I've been hopping.

I really have two bits of advice received to share. Each came from a current professor, in somewhat casual conversation. (To the extent that conversation can be casual with a person you work for and/or are assessed by.)

"The danger of the academy is not that it might inspire you to become a caricature of an academic, but rather that it encourages you to become a caricature of yourself."

"It seems that you are experiencing all the neuroses that we expect of graduate students. Good. That means you're doing well. If you were emotionally healthy at this stage of your education, I'd worry about you."

This is kind of conflicting advice for me, but each one made me laugh.

Have I said yet that I really like my professors this semester?


Chris said...

Haha... I think I've said something like the second one to you a few times, too. You can't be sane and successful in graduate school. The two states are mutually incompatible.

Anonymous said...

Excuse me, but I don't see how they're incompatible... Unless you're positive you were never, ever neurotic. Or a healthy caricature.

HeoCwaeth said...

Chris, you have. Everybody knew about the neuroses except for me.

Lis, quite the opposite. I know that I'm naturally neurotic, and greater neurosis would make me a caricature of myself. So, if I try to avoid becoming a caricature of myself, while accepting the greater neurosis ... I must fail at one of the tasks.

Anonymous said...

Heh, sorry if that came across as a little blunt, I'd had too many beers blogging. Following your construct, you could try new neuroses, or other ways to caricature yourself, such as, say, creating a whole new personality with which to blog...

I dunno. I'm a humble (!) undergrad and I have trouble with constructions other than US-Anglo patriarchy. That one I have no trouble identifying for the purposes of derision.

On another subject, did you know the current Pope is head of what was formerly the Holy Office of the Inquisition? As part Catholic and part snotty nosed Protestant (long story) I found that curious.

Anyways, as my doctor told me, genius is inextricably linked with madness. Which tells you a lot about doctors and diagnoses in our conformist culture.