Monday, September 12, 2011

This Semester...

...is the first semester during which I have no institutional affiliation as either a student or professor since I started my college studies in the mid-1990s. True, I had a year between my Master's and PhD studies, but even then I spent that time taking French and German courses to improve my language skills. I'm not unemployed, however. But I do have to figure out how to balance working 40 hours a week while completing several commitments (publications and conferences, such as the upcoming CSCP meeting) that I took on over the summer under the premise that I would be working at the University of Ottawa.

Just in case you were curious, I do have teaching for the Winter Semester, in the Department of Visual Arts, reprising my "Art Theories" course, although I will be changing up a lot of the material.

Finally, I have been reading Kevin B. Anderson's Marx at the Margins, which ought to be the handbook if you're reconsidering Marx's writings on nationalism, ethnicity, and non-western societies (yes, I pretty much cribbed that from the subtitle), as well as his works on the American Civil War or Ireland. There's a passage from Marx's ethnological notebooks (as cited by Anderson) that is just waiting for Zizek to turn it into a post-Marxist slogan. Marx writes:
the seemingly supreme independent existence of the state itself is only an illusion, since the state in all its forms [is] only an excresence [sic] of society.

3 comments:

Scu said...

I didn't hear that Ottawa didn't give you any teaching for this semester! Good luck. Trying to do academic work and having a day job is pretty tough.

Devin Z. Shaw said...

Don't forget the part where I have to dedicate lots of time to putting together applications for professorial work elsewhere.

Eric said...

I've written a little review of Anderson's book you might find useful: http://recordingsurface.blogsome.com/2011/07/22/marx-at-the-margins/. I actually like it more than my criticisms might indicate.