Tuesday, October 25, 2005


Day 58
25 October 2005

I registered for classes yesterday. I was initially very excited about this, for two reasons:

1. As a graduate student, I get to register before pretty much everybody else, except the other grad students. At this point, I'm not really concerned about the classes I want filling up before I can register - there's not an enormous demand for second-year Polish or Anglo-Saxon Literature - but it just gives me a smug, self-satisfied kind of feeling to know that I'M FIRST IN LINE, ha ha ha ha ha!!

2. I'm very excited about taking Anglo-Saxon Literature again. Old English is such a vivid, poetic language, and I love the challenge of translation. What is the author saying on a literal level? What does he want the audience to understand by saying it that way? What is the best way of saying that in Present-Day English, preserving as much of the original meaning and color as possible, but making it intelligible to the modern reader?

So, imagine my surprise when I found that 625 (Readings in Old English) had been scheduled for the same time as the British Romanticism course. There aren't very many graduate courses offered in a given semester; you would think they'd be able to avoid scheduling them on top of each other, especially when they're both in the same emphasis (English). I am VERY BITTER about this!

I talked to the professor, and it turns out the problem lies in the fact that the Linguistics secretary scheduled OE, and the English secretary scheduled Romanticism. Which brings me to another point: it irritates me that Old English is treated like the ugly stepchild of the English department. When Linguistics split from the English department a few years ago, it was fairly clear who should get custody of which courses. Milton? English. Syntax? Linguistics. And so on. In the case of Old English, however, Lang and Lit were granted dual custody. The introductory course is in the Linguistics department, but the Lit course is in English. Good luck finding it in the Graduate catalog, though - this semester I've seen several versions of the course schedule that didn't list it at all, even though it's being taught next semester. If one of my professors hadn't brought it to my attention a couple of years ago, I never would have known it existed. [Dr. Oaks, if you somehow stumble onto this blog, thanks again.] Gee, I wonder why so few people sign up for it?

No comments: