I think I feel like blogging again. My last post was about a year and a half ago. What have I been doing in that time? I have been working on my PhD in history. I found I was too busy, and had too little energy for writing. Also my eyes hurt.
I just passed my comprehensive exams. To give you a sense of the scope, this involved reading 200 books over the last year, and then being examined on them with 3 written and 1 oral exam. It was a grueling process that involved regular 60-70 hour weeks. The last day I took off was Christmas (and I felt guilty about it). I can liken it to training for a marathon. Then it was over. Now I feel very strange. I'm absolutely exhausted, and feel a bit at loose ends. I've heard about the post-comps slump. I think that so much of my time and energy and self has been wrapped up in this process, that now I don't quite know what to do with myself.
I have to start preparing a research plan. But I feel a bit lost. I've never done anything of this scope before.
What are my plans for this blog? I figure I can use this blog to help me think through some of the issues, concerns, fears and thrills involved in researching my thesis. It will probably also still contain arts, culture and political commentary, and my usual musings on various topics. Probably commentary on academia as well. Many things in my life have changed since I began this blog back in 2005. (2005! I can hardly believe it's been so long!) My perspective has changed. I've become less sure about some things, more sure about others. The more I've learned the more I've become convinced of my own ignorance. It's been an encouraging, and yet humbling 6 years (6 years!) I feel old and young, wise and foolish. I hope some of you join me on the next stage in my journey.