Honestly, I’m still a little weirded out by this whole “Folks Teaching Tiny Cat Pants” in class, but I’ve decided to buck up and be flattered by it instead of self-conscious.
I am, however, not going to pass up the chance to imagine the looks on your faces when you see that I see you seeing me.
Are you guys allowed to dance, at least? Can I set up a cross-nation dance between you and the folks at Milligan? Is it wrong to still tease the Milligan folks? I love you, Milligan folks! I still feel bad for freaking out on you.
See, La Sierra, it could be worse. Rather than being friendly towards you, I could have been all suspicious about you and now worried that there’s a whole class of people who think I’m weird and yucky. Should I send the Milligan folks baked goods? Should I just let it go? I don’t know.
Oh, shit! Baked goods. I’ve got to get a care package off to Team Tiny Cat Pants running the Baltimore marathon.
I’m glad you post about these electronic field trips, actually. Teaching blogs in class is hawt right now, something I’ve thought about trying out myself… and I like to see how other teachers roll with this first.
I find it fascinating, too, really. I mean, clearly, Tiny Cat Pants is a text and I am an author and why the fuck shouldn’t people, if they want, turn their attention to it with regards to the specificity of it being a text?
I do here the things writers do and people who study writers and writing are not off the mark to look at what blog writers write and how they do it.
Hell, I’d love to read their thoughts on it.
BUT it’s also weird for me in ways I can’t quite wrap my head around I have sat on the side of the people writing about people writing, but I have never been the person writing and being written about. And I’m not sure how I feel about that.
And there’s a level of audience awareness with blogging that you don’t get with other forms of writing. I mean, one of the reasons I love Invisible Cities is that I’m reading along and hit the city called Thecla and that’s not even how I spell my middle name. Calvino certainly didn’t know me. But I see my own name there on those pages and I feel the gap between me and that book slam shut.
And I wonder what it’s like for blog scholars (if we might call the folks at Milligan or at La Sierra that for just a second) to be reading this as a text, as something they have a kind of distance from (though clearly part of their scholarly work is to find ways of bridging the distance between the text and them), only to find that their reading of the blog is taken by me as a form of participation.
I mean, literary theorists have toyed around with the idea that reading the text changes the text, but haven’t we always meant in some hoity-toity literary theory way? But now, when you study blogs, being a literary critic becomes a little like being an anthropologist, with all the problems that go along with being an anthropologist.
Now that I know you’re here, of course it’s going to be a little different. So, how do you study me? Do you hope to fade into the background and hope that I forget that you’re here and relax more into being myself? Do you participate? And, if so, doesn’t that change the dynamic?
Clearly, I don’t know the answers to this, but I love, love, love that these are the kinds of questions we get to ask about literature now. Wow.
Welcome to Schroedinger’s Blog.
Watch out for cat poop!
just think of the new words they’re learning. Let’s cuss more, B.
Well, hell, yes, Jim!
Ha, you know, I hate to admit it but I think “let’s cuss more, B.” would work on me as a pick-up line.
Yeah, and creative cussing, like “pusilanimous wastrel with monkeypox of the cranium”.
Let’s cuss more, B.
Did it work?
Well, I don’t know how these courses are doing it, but I’ve previously thought of doing a blog unit more in the way of teaching composition – your blog as a text, sure, but as a model text that one could examine, see how it’s put together. I tend to preach that writing is an extension of thinking, and thinking is a constantly evolving practice, something worth doing all the time with all matter of subjects. I imagine this blog is a good example of how you can just be going about your business, watching the news or True Blood, and also be analyzing and constructing arguments and responding to arguments just because that’s how you engage with the world, not just with school.
In that respect, the sort of interacting with and changing the text that you describe sounds perfectly comfortable to me – it’s the touchy-feely-revisey way we run our composition department. ; )
But I suppose I’ll lurk around and see what these guys are up to before I draw any conclusions.
Helen, I’m all yours!
Tanglethis, the more I think about this, the more excited I am, so I do hope that we hear from the professors about what their approach is. Though who knows? You don’t come to the end of Ulysses only to find Molly Bloom turning to you, arms outstreatched, and I don’t know if professors are prepared for a text that does that.
But I was always more a lit crit than a comp person. I’m not that clear on the current pedagogy. Hell, until recently, I wasn’t even sure what hegemony meant.
Recline in my arms upon the divan, whilst we contrive exotic imprecations anew.
New words they’re learning? It’s a university, Jim, not an elementary school…. heh.