elenahpowell

overwhelmed & under qualified

In Edinburgh, Interesting things, Rambling on June 10, 2013 at 10:08 pm

Well…I bought a ticket for the art & anthropology summer school thing – although by the time I did five day tickets had sold out so I have a three day one (today, Wednesday & Thursday). I know very little about either art or anthropology (although more about art), so kinda…a scary thing to do really.

I’ve never felt so hugely under qualified though! I came because it sounded interesting and the fieldwork bit sounded even more interesting and Tim Ingold writes nice books (that’s Thursday…), somehow didn’t really expect to be sat around with a lot of PhD students (and Drs come to that) listening to all sorts of philosophical intelligent sounding discussions. One day I won’t be the youngest on a course (I hope)… No amount of reading could possible hope to compete with the years – possibly even decades – these people have on me, but it’s kind of a privilege really to be able to sit in on that (I can’t hope to contribute much really, perhaps another day when I might know a bit, but given that I don’t think I have the…authority – not the word I want – to say things in a group my own age it’s doubtful…). Perhaps, I’ll just listen and understand it properly later I think. Talking isn’t my thing, but observing people is so actually looking forward to Wednesday’s workshop.

I’ve got a lot of notes anyway, and even if a lot of it is completely over my head it’s interesting and engaging and I’ll get there eventually. Just a lot slower than everyone else… Though some of the points raised in the talk this morning were relevant, especially about terminology (read: art bollocks) and it’s inevitability as well the way it excludes, alienates. Interesting. Tad overwhelmed with terminology by now, there’s odd overlaps between art and anthropology and finding terminologies – language – that fit both is surprisingly hard, or so it seems. Not so keen on art bollocks (but I know I talk it fairly often, but it’s a kind of need to talk to so what I’m doing sounds legitimate/valid/actually sort of art, one day I’ll give up the bollocks).

Got more books out of the library (surprise surprise), gonna have to return some soon, pretty sure I’m getting near the limit. And actually need to read some! I got a little short one on fieldwork which should (hopefully) be useful. Never really thought of observing/writing/collecting/walking as fieldwork before, but I guess that’s what I do. I’ll find a fancy word for it I’m sure. And the new Tim Ingold book (did I mention I was excited about that?!), debating whether it’s too sad/weird/creepy to ask him to sign my copy the Lines book. I like signed books…

And completely irrelevantly to all that – I’ve moved up the hierarchy in the shop, I’m being taught how to change the till over/bank everything so I can be left in charge (eek!) of volunteers for the day. I’ve been there a couple of months most afternoons a week and I’m no longer the newest one…kinda fun though.

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