I’ve been rather fortunate in my experience with professors. One or two have very obviously influenced my work (my thesis supervisor this year commented that I write something like my former thesis supervisor, which is complimentary, and hopefully somewhat true). It’s been strange to realise, in my “Archive and the Everyday” class this term that I was (apparently) subtly but strongly influenced by the eco-critic/theory/poet prof in my undergrad department. Because archiving is partly about paying attention to one’s everyday environment, a number of the theories which this prof set in his environmental writing, literary theory, and contemporary poetics classes have tended to show up in my readings this term. He must have taught them well, too, because there’s a lot there I find myself not only remembering, but also being able to engage with in a nuanced way. I gave my first presentation on de Certeau’s “Walking in the City” (which we read in literary theory in fourth year), and that same day found myself enthusiastically referencing Canadian eco-critic Don McKay’s theories on attentiveness. I’m keeping my archive journal in the same format as a project this prof set in literary theory as well (based on Deleuze and Guattari’s “rhizome”), and my final project sprung out of a conversation we had around Levinas two years ago (which I’ve since been interested in, and now have a chance to pursue).
All very neat, and a little strange I never noticed the extent to which I responded to these classes before. I’m returning home over the reading week. Perhaps I’ll stop by and say “thank you” while I’m there.
14 February 2010 ~ Hamilton