Thursday, October 27, 2005

Had a 4am moment of clarity this morning. Last night before class there was a meeting to dicuss the new thesis requirements for the MFA Program. Though I'm not taking the seminar until next fall, I suddenly freaked out over the critical paper portion again, wondering what the hell I could write a paper about that wouldn't bore the hell out of me..long sustained scholarship and concentration not being my strong suit...

I started thinking about my education up to this point. As an undergrad, my coursework centered largely around 19th and 20th Century American Literature. I had a lot of drama and theater history classes in line with my minor, and my senior sem focused on Paradise Lost (not by choice), some Shakespeare, some survey courses in British Lit in general. For my MA, in addition to the various period requirements --medieval, renaissance, enlightenment, victorian, modern--I took a number of electives in women's literature in particular, mostly American (actually as an undergrad as well.) Now, here at Columbia, my craft coursework has tended toward the twentieth century's more innovative writing by and large, (Karen Volkman's radical poetics class, hybrid genres, new media poetry), and my lit classes have thus far fallen into more recent American stuff. I've always had a strong interest in the early 20th century and modernist women writers--Mina Loy, Anais Nin, Dorothy Parker, HD, Millay. And there are others I've never given due attention to like Marianne Moore, Elizabeth Bishop, and Gertrude Stein. So it occured to me this morning that perhaps I should find a focus there, something in that era. I did some research couple of years ago into some of the French women surrealists--might be a way to go. Or maybe something on Loy.

2 comments:

Christine said...

Man, I am totally doing my Ph.D on the female surrealists -- you can't take that from me, you can't!

lenora carrington

wickedpen said...

LOL...we could be dueling critics...

(I think the world of surrealism scholarship is certainly safe from me..)