Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Revision and Edit Time!

I'd set out to not go to bed last night until it was all finished. I only did one 'all-nighter' in college, so at about 2am this morning I went to bed with just one more idea to flesh out. My eyes were blurry and I couldn't see the computer screen well. At least I tried to go to bed. I lay there for two hours feeling giddy about the whole thing. I'm pretty excited to know I am capable of working out some ideas in an extended way like this. I felt pretty much like an idiot all through my undergrad. I remember sitting in my senior seminars wondering what the heck the discussion was about. It took me almost five years to decide to attempt graduate school. I'm just a slow learner that's all.

I wrote my final paragraph, or at least I found the last page this morning. I have a lot more work to do in terms of re-writing and line edits. But I am so much more at ease now knowing that there is no need and no point in reading and developing the essay any further. I kept referring to it as an "essay." It is now 95 single spaced pages. I didn't know what to call it so I keep referring to it as an essay. I'm not officially submitting it as a thesis. That would mean I'd have to pay for 12 credits when I only need 3 more to graduate. In fact the advising of this thing is still up in the air somewhat. I started writing this in earnest last Spring about this time right after Casper was born and have continued with no supervision. That is largely my own fault since I live in Michigan and not British Columbia. I don't know if I would have handled supervision very well anyway. This has been a very personal experience. Eight years to finish a master's degree? Well, it better be really important to me! And I'll add that I felt funny/shy pointing out the considerable length to some people today. Heck this isn't pride pride, this is joyful pride. It has been a privileged journey. Who gets to sit around and read and write at their leisure like this? I am very aware of how the freedom to do this in this way was a gift and sacrifice for Susanna. I don't know who will ever read all these words, but the thrust of the writing is how we might be better at sharing ourselves. So the internet does provide us with the advantage of self-publishing. Below is another bit from the introduction I re-wrote today. Tomorrow I head out with my friend Andy for a couple days of trout fishing. Let the summer begin.

As I invite here an interdisciplinary conversation about the nature of music as poiesis, I am also practicing an extended act of poiesis. Erazim Kohak believes that poiesis is for the night and science, or techne, is for the day. Philosophia is accomplished in the in between at dusk.[1] While I appreciate the elegance of his positioning of philosophy, his definition of poiesis is too associated with the mysterion; it is too apophatic. I would prefer instead to put poiesis at dusk in the in between what is revealed and what is hidden, between the cataphatic and the apophatic. Poiesis is often associated with the notion of culture-making because its Greek origins invoke a kind of making, the drawing together of connections. I believe ‘interdisciplinary’ is another way of talking about the kind of ‘poetic’ creatures we can become, creatures who can make the connections and feel the resonances between things that may have not been associated before. We do not create ex nihilo like God, but in his image we are destined to be creators and we create by putting together the bits and pieces of the cosmos that he has given to us as his good gifts. Poiesis requires of us an ekstasis, a facing outward from ourselves to see and identify those connections. The question for a Christian practice of culture-making is if and to what extent we share ourselves through poiesis.

[1] Erazim Kohak. The Embers and The Stars: A Philosophical Inquiry Into the Moral Sense of Nature (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1984)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That's great news, Josh. Good work.