Summer Employment Opportunity: Writing Camp Instructor

**Deadline Extended until June 29th, 2015**

Creative Writing Summer Camp: Instructor

Carleton University

Dates: Full-time, August 10 – 28 + paid training

Rate of Pay: $11.00 – $13.00 /hr

Under the supervision of the camp director, creative writing camp instructors facilitate and administer camp activities, including writing exercises and games, for children aged 8-15 over a period of three weeks. Instructors must also attend training sessions and preparation meetings.


  • Applicants should have some experience with various genres of creative writing, including poetry, non-fiction, and fiction. Consideration will also be given to applicants with experience in comics/graphic novels and/or oral storytelling.
  • Previous experience working in summer camps and/or teaching and supervising youth are considered assets.
  • Applicants must be prepared to supply a Police Record check.
  • Applicants must not have any prior commitments that would prevent them from participating in all required training and camp activities.
  • Applicants must have standard first aid and CPR certification before the first day of camp.

*Preference for this position will be given to students attending Carleton University and writers who have published one or more creative works (in the case of storytellers, preference will be given to storytellers who have been paid to perform).

Terms of Reference

  • Instructors will deliver lessons 2-4 times per week. Lesson plans and materials will be provided, though instructors are encouraged to experiment with the lesson plans in consultation with the camp director.
  • Instructors will attend every day of camp and act as counsellors. Instructors are expected to help campers during the exercises as required, as well as provide supervisory support during other camp activities.
  • Instructors may be required to participate in other camp activities during the week. These activities will not require preparation.
  • Instructors must attend wrap-up celebrations at the end of the summer.

Submit cover letter and resume to by June 29, 2015.


Live Gone and Prosper

IMG_2837by Lucas Drerup

Let me give everyone a piece of unsolicited advice. Finish your degree, pack your bag, and go teach English for a year. It doesn’t matter where you go. It doesn’t matter if you want to be a teacher. It doesn’t really how much money you’re going to earn. It doesn’t even matter if you end up hating the whole experience (you won’t). In my eyes, there is no single more valuable, accessible, and amazing experience available to any of us. The majority of my experience is in Taiwan, and most of my comments center around East Asia as that’s what I’m most familiar with. It’s probably best to assume that I don’t know what I’m talking about, so do your own research. I’m just writing this more to encourage people to get out there and try something new and awesome.

Why go teach, you ask?

You are guaranteed a job. Bam! Article finished. But really, a Master’s degree in English will make you one of the most qualified applicants for almost any ESL teaching job out there, especially in Asia. Do you know anybody in Canada with a humanities degree that can say they have a guaranteed job? You’re not going to go make seventy grand a year, but you’re not going to do this for a career either (you think). Don’t do it for the money. It will ruin the experience for you because you’ll pinch pennies. Ball out, yo.

You are going to make some money. Taiwan, South Korea, Japan, Hong Kong, and China all offer very lucrative local salaries that allow you to pay some loans, live well, and travel a lot if you want. Places like Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam, and Cambodia also offer Westerners jobs, but the money isn’t nearly as good. You’ll still be the best-paid guy or girl on the block, but when everyone else on the block makes $30 a week, it’s not that hard to do. As I said, don’t do it for the money alone. Make your loan payments, go out for dinner a few times a week, and take three vacations a year.

You are going to travel. Drive a motorcycle on the highest navigable road in the world in northern Kashmir. Take a gander at Deer Cave in Borneo as millions of bats pour out of a giant cave mouth for nearly an hour. Hire a local fisherman to take you to deserted islands in the Philippines. Eat a 5-star French meal for $25 in Laos. Drink beer perched on top of a 1200-year-old temple in Cambodia. Watch people go number two on the biggest street in Shanghai. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. If you’ve ever had any interest in travelling, teaching English in Asia is the best way to do it.

IMG_0193You’re going to teach. You might even like it. I taught kindergarten, elementary school, and high school. Most of us have some experience teaching here at the university, but teaching here is like, you know, work and stuff. Trying to teach English to a dozen 5-year old Taiwanese kids is a whole different kettle of fish. If you like kids, you’ll never have more fun and get paid at the same time. I made $50 before lunch every day for reading stories, rolling around on the ground, dancing, playing games, and generally acting the goat. It’s super high energy, but it’s awesome. Teaching older students is also pretty fun, but the older they get, the more class begins to resemble work.

Best of all, you’re going to be out of school. You’re going to gain real experience, finish with a real reference, get paid real money for doing a real job, and travel. You’re going to get really good at using chopsticks. You’re going to end up hating rice. You’re going to make friends for life, learn how to swear in a foreign language, and see more temples than you ever wanted to. You’re probably going to miss home a lot. You’re going to feel more alone and alienated than you ever have in your life on some days. On others you’ll feel like you’re a part of something unimaginably cool. You’re going to learn how to drive a scooter and discover that perhaps some stereotypes about some drivers may have a basis in reality. You’re going to put on a swimsuit and run around in a typhoon (watch out for falling power lines and flying branches). You’re going to have hundreds of little kids who scream your name every time they see you, who run to you and hug you and tell you how much they love you five days a week. Some days you will want to throttle each and every one of them, but most of the time you’ll love them back. You’re going to get an opportunity to redefine yourself, to shed as much or as little of the person school has turned you into as you want.

So, be gone. Get lost. School, work, and the real world will all be waiting for you in a year or two. The ease with which we can go teach abroad is an opportunity unique to our generation, and as the generation of kids learning English in other countries grows up and teaches their kids themselves, it may never again be as easy as it is right now.

10 things I plan on doing after I hand in my final paper


by Sabrina Marques

  1. Make Real Soup. I don’t know if I’ve mentioned this before, but I really enjoy soup. People are making the case for Tea to be a hobby and I feel like I could rally behind a soup club. However, the problem is all the soup I seem to be having is instant. Instant and mass produced. I want to cook a real soup, with vegetables and chicken and be warm and and happy.
  2. Watch Television. There was a time in my life when I knew the title every single episode of “Friends” ever made. No matter how stressed I got during the year I never missed my shows they were on while I ate breakfast. My MA has taken Television from me and I fully intend on getting it back the second my last paper is printed out. I might watch something on my phone as I bus to school.
  3. Trim a Tree. Okay, this one is a bit of a stretch, I don’t plan on trimming a tree or getting a real tree for that matter. But I do plan on gathering all the library books I used for my final papers and replicating Lana’s beautiful book tree in the lounge.
  4. See my dogs.
  5. Shop. Finals season seems to correspond with the sale season and, while I haven’t left my apartment in a month, I have gotten fifty emails trying to get me me to spend money on lovely things. So I will set aside a few ours to look at those boots cut into my Queer Theory paper.
  6. Run. I have a strict write X amount of pages before I can go for a run policy and I have not been able to follow through this season. So when I hand in my last paper, I’m signing up for the marathon to make up for my lack of traction.
  7. Skate. I’m new to Ottawa but canal-skating seems to be a thing that people do here. It’s on postcards and I’d like to say that when I lived in Ottawa I spend my Sundays on the canal.
  8. Learn to Skate. I have never skated before in my life, so I need to learn before I venture out onto the water. Maybe I can find a groupon.
  9. Write Greeting Cards. Will I be writing Holiday Cards this Holiday? No. I’m going to write everyone in the MA Program a Birthday Card. I’ll be writing them these dates Feb 17, March 5, May 18, June 4, June 17, August 12, August 25, Sept 12, Oct 10, Nov 2, Nov 17, Dec 29. I left your names off to preserve some semblance of anonymity. And, if I’ve messed up your date, it’s probably because you told me the wrong day.
  10. Let’s face it, the second my final paper finds it’s way into the English Department mail box, I’m sleeping. Maybe, I’ll glance at the list again. Maybe…in February.

Happy Holidays!

The Future Past: The Creative Writing Open House and Showcase


by Ingrid Reiche

As a graduate student in English I was happily surprised, inspired and somewhat nostalgic after I attended the department’s Creative Writing Open House and Showcase on November 26th. I will admit it has been a while since I found myself in an English department after completing my B.A. in 2008. Upon my return to the field I was admittedly looking forward to two things: the first was pursuing my own research interests; the second was being back among those who appreciate literature and its composition. Unfortunately, due to my first goal, my course work allows me little time in classes where I read creative literature. As a matter of fact I will only read four novels during my year-long Collaborative Masters program in English and the Digital Humanities at Carleton. But I found some reprieve from my life amongst theory and all the end-of-term deadlines that are upon me when I decided to attend this Open House.

There were over two-dozen pieces read and performed and I believe four hybrid installations from three undergraduate classes: intro to fiction, creative non-fiction and literary hybrids here at Carleton. I found myself longing for that past moment in my life where I too counted myself amongst this crowd. To hear so many undergraduates put a voice to the words they penned (or typed) – perhaps in angst, perhaps in haste and perhaps with pleasure – made me look back but also forward.

Once upon a time in my undergraduate degree I found myself reading more books than I thought humanly possible and discussing them with both pleasure and fury. And then there came a time when I decided to start writing (okay, I had been scribbling in notebooks since high-school) but it was time to compose my first ‘novel’. I had not taken any of the classes in creative writing, but somehow I convinced two professors at the University of Guelph to supervise my Honours’ thesis as a creative writing project. Then I turned out about 100 pages of a first draft to my novel in a semester, which still remains an unpublished but complete manuscript that needs some work. I have read once or twice at poetry readings, but I would say all the students from these courses far surpassed my performances. I do not read well, but they did. Every one of them stood in front of that crowd with seeming ease (even if they were scared underneath it all) and for that I applaud them. This is the reason I studied English in the first place, one of the reasons I’m back and it reminded of what it is I really want to do (dare I say it) – WRITE!

Thank you all for reminding me. Aside from the personal introduction this is perhaps a two-part story. The first is a brief review of some of the pieces that caught my attention. The other is an anti-cautionary tale to those students who want to pursue writing and perhaps what I would do different if I could go back in time to 10 years ago.

There were some really great works that caught my attention that night, unfortunately I cannot mention all of them, so here are a few that I really enjoyed. The second of the readings was by Fraser Tripp who performed a great piece about hanging out with a drag queen in a parkade while reporting as a student and tread the path of publicly talking about gender – for which he deserves accolades. Not just for being honest about a personal subject but for presenting an exceptional well written and well read piece that discussed how drag queens are sometimes seen in a negative light by gay male culture and expressing how this impacted his personal story in a positive manner.

Two other pieces that particularly caught my attention were part of the literary hybrids. The first was the opener at the event Clarissa Fortin, who played the guitar and had part of a podcast in the hydrids section that was about traveling through small towns in Ontario covering various events for a radio station. I would actually like to hear the rest of that podcast or know where to find it. Another piece that performed exceptionally well as a hybrid was by Jenny Greenberg who had jazz music and the background noise of a bar playing as she recited a piece about developing tendonitis while being a jazz musician. Her timing was impeccable and though she forewarned the audience that if she messed up something the whole piece would be thrown off, she kept up with the audio track in every single instance.

The piece that was the most fascinating to me personally was an installation by Noah Lefevre that included objects of a fictional author named Samuel Morgan who died at the age of 27 on his desk, apparently from an overdose of sleeping pills and alcohol while working on the third book in a trilogy known as the Afterworld Trilogy. The installation included a desk, numerous papers and notebooks, a typewriter with a page in it and empty bottles of what one would assume to be alcohol. Why is this my favorite? I don’t know, perhaps it sums up something about the “lifestyle” of so many famous artists. There is the story of Jim Carroll, the New York poet and musician from the 1970s who hung around with the Velvet Underground and Andy Warhol, who did reportedly die at his desk though at the age of 60. And then there is the infamous 27club (Jim Morrison, Janice Joplin, Jimmy Hendrix, Kurt Cobain, etc.), all artists who died at 27. For some morbid reason it fascinated me.

The cautionary tale (which no one should listen to and I wish I hadn’t) is: writing won’t pay your bills. And it won’t. When I finished my undergrad I was told by both of my supervisors (who are also successful authors), “It is great that you want to write, but how are you going to make money?” I mean despite having success as writers both are professors at a university and assured me writing alone would not pay the bills. So maybe writing won’t pay all your bills. Or will it? It paid some of mine, as a content writer and doing a few other jobs that I cannot mention here. But I did have to work doing other things to make ends meet (movie theatres, factories, landscaping, cleaning, office work) as I attempted to finish and polish my book. But my humble advice is try to make it, be a starving artist, enjoy life and youth, it goes by fast and life only gets harder in my opinion. Other pursuits will get in the way, goals change, etc. etc.

Graduate school might buy you some time, but unless you pursue a MFA you won’t be doing creative writing (I can assure you of that – this Masters #2 for me). But it might let you hang around an English department or help build other interests and a career in a related field –teaching, etc. etc… Don’t get me wrong, academia is really the only place I feel at home and I love learning, reading, writing and yes, theory – mostly because it irks me to the point that I actually say something.

Reflections on Working as a TA


by Zachary Robinson

I’m not sure about my cohort, but surely the most wholly “new” thing I’ve been faced with in my grad experience thus far is the fabled TA assignment. Of course we’ve always been expected to conduct ourselves with a certain level of professionalism throughout our academic lives. However, concretizing that notion of “profession” was, for me at least, a fairly nerve wracking experience. So, I’ve decided to accumulate the little knowledge I have into a few brief points (I want to look at the most important things to me). I’m taking this theme as my post in order to 1) provide some handy, digestible tips for prospective or struggling TA’s and 2) to process what has been learned as my first semester as an employee of the university comes to a close. God knows, I’m not ready for the New Year.

1. Put your own work first. A running trend you might find as you skim through this list is that some of the things I’ll propose will seem incredibly obvious. Believe me, I know. But they’re also things that are easy to forget. Do not subordinate your work to your marking. The pressure of the pay roll will compel you to finish commenting on your students’ papers before you start that paper you’ve been putting off for ages. Don’t do that. That’s a bad decision. Finish your personal assignments. Seek out avenues of assistance. You’re not alone in this. Which leads me to my second point:

2. Talk to the professor you’re stationed under. In this specific situation, they act as your co-worker. Your feelings about work are important and should be voiced. More often than not, if you feel an undue amount of pressure, something will be able to be worked out. It’s also probably useful to keep up a good rapport with your union. However, this is a slippery idea, and it’s important not to fall into a reciprocal cycle of laziness/stress.

3. Be responsible. This is a job. Again, duh. But I’ve found it’s easy to think of the class you’re TAing for in the same way as the classes you are enrolled in. Constantly remind yourself that what you’re doing is work. And, as such, it must be treated as work. You are responsible for things beyond your own personal success. Your academic world is oscillating, the working world is coming into view.

That’s it! Not much, but I’ve found these considerations helpful throughout the past few months. I wish the best of luck to future TAs!

Happy Holidays!

Where to Read at Carleton

by Rabia Singh

There are a few places in the world that are more readerly than others. It is a very subjective matter, the corner in which you sit down with the book (or e-book or laptop). The book chooses the spot for this particular reader just like the wand chooses the wizard (Mr. Potter). Since this winter will be the third that this reader will spend on Carleton campus, she has found some spots that suit her disposition.

The obvious one – The Library

library 1 library 2

More specifically, this particular window on the third floor which is fifth or sixth from the wall. It has a beautiful view in every season, a conveniently close plug in point for chargers and is located on a silent floor. This marks the spot for all the dense theory that is hard to grapple with yet essential to understand. When the sentences get too long I break them down in chunks and digest each one as I look at the tree, the road and the canal. Take some food along as well if the sentences don’t provide all the nourishment.

Wordsworth’s summer palace- The Canal

canal 1 canal 2

If you keep walking along the canal from the Stacie Building towards Loeb you will find paths that have been worn into the grass. If you follow these paths down to the canal you will find yourself here. I usually sit on a rock and bring a snack. I read poetry here. The Romantics, Elliot, Neruda, Walcott have all been here with me. Along with bugs, alas!

The Picnic Spot- Canal Part II

canal 3 canal 4

This is the more conventional part of the reading spots along the Canal. It is a little removed from the centre though so the crowd isn’t thick here. The wind is usually strong and makes the pages flutter. I bring my novels here, especially during the summer. The readings are long but so are the days, the sun shines on your back (and/or face). Along with fellow readers I have taken Marquez, Chaucer, and even an anthology or two.

The Landscape Painting- Canal Part IIIcanal 5

This part is behind Dunton Tower and is the water body you see from the library window. Cyclists, joggers, dog walkers all pass you by as you sit on your bench. It’s especially pretty on a warm autumn day. I bring short reads here. Two to three page articles to be read for the class, short stories, or pieces I mean to read in short bites like Ash Wednesday, The Waste Land or even Shakespearean play- tragedies, not the comedies.

Getting Drunk On Books- Mike’s Place

Mikes Place

Yes, the noisy, crowded, tiny Mike’s Place. I only take the books I mean to absolutely relish here. A drink, a book and the noise is no longer bothersome; it’s a nice background to the beautiful narrative. The genre doesn’t matter here as long as it is something that drowns out the crowd. Read till you don’t hear the noise, and then take the bus home.

Res sweet res-Lennox and Addington House

Res 2 Res 3

There are many advantages of living on residence, not the least of which is the views. Though I no longer enjoy the benefits of res-life, it is reading next to the corridor or the study-room windows that I miss the most. Cold sunny days were especially stunning in the glass exterior rooms that were toasty despite the plunging temperatures.

OffCampus Reading: The Commissionaire’s Park Commissaires Park

This is the park that nestles against the Dow’s lake and is a short walk from the campus. It is especially beautiful during the Tulip festival and if you can find a quiet spot near a tree after your walk, you may spend the entire day reading there as tourists walk by with their clicking cameras. I read the books that are a part of my research here. The essay doesn’t practically write itself(I wish!) but trudging through gnarly ideas that don’t make any sense yet becomes a lot more pleasant. Beware the tourist that wants a picture taken, look especially busy and troubled if you sense the possibility of a picture taking request. I go near the end of the festival, when the craze has worn off. The benches near the lake are also prime reading spots, I find them a tad too uncomfortable.

Most of these are summer spots, I know, but there are spots I don’t know of yet. It shall be my project this winter to find more readerly places around campus. There is a lot of reading ahead so more spots will be needed and more spots shall be found. I did not want to include writerly places; those are more dark and anxious spaces when deadlines are two weeks away.

Res 1

10 Things to Do in Ottawa Besides Schoolwork

by Chelsea Ghrohs

As a graduate student, most of your time is spent between attending classes and reading. Add in marking assignments for your TA position and working on research papers, it seems that graduate students don’t really have much free time. However, on the rare occasion that you have free time, there are a lot of fun activities to do in Ottawa. The key, I’ve found, is to do things that are at least mildly intellectually stimulating to trick yourself into thinking that you are somehow contributing to your graduate schoolwork; this prevents any guilt you may feel from taking a break. Admittedly, not all items on this list meet this “pretending to do work” requirement. The following are a few fun things to do in Ottawa when you just need a break from graduate school:

  1. The National Art Gallery of Canada


The National Gallery has a wide variety of artwork, including Indigenous art and art from The Group of Seven. My favourite thing to do here is walk through the Contemporary Art section and pretend to understand the art when I really have no idea what is going on. Plus, it’s free admission on Thursday evenings, 5-8pm. There’s also a really great bookstore here, which is great if you love shopping as much as I do.

  1. Canadian War Museum

Warning: The Canadian War Museum took me all day, so don’t go here if you have a lot of homework that actually needs to get done. The War Museum takes you chronologically through various wars Canada has been part of with the main focus being on World War I and World War II. The museum has a lot of really impressive pieces of history including a piece of the Berlin Wall. Plus, you will be learning about Canadian history, so you can pretend that this is somehow related to schoolwork. There is also free admission on Thursdays, from 4 to 8pm.

  1. Used Book Stores

This is my favourite “pretending I’m being productive” activity. I convince myself that I definitely need more books to aid in my studies (I don’t), and I’m saving money by buying used books (I’m not). My favourite stores so far have been both Black Squirrel Books locations, which are both located on Bank Street. Book Bazaar on Bank Street is also good, particularly for rare books, although it is a bit pricier.

  1. ByWard MarketFood

There’s a lot of food in the ByWard Market, and who doesn’t enjoy eating their feelings? I know I sure do. Apparently there are over 100 restaurants here, although according to my dad during his visit to Ottawa, “there is nowhere to eat.” There’s also an actual market where you can buy vegetables and fruit – just kidding, grad students don’t eat fruit & veggies. ByWard is also home to BeaverTails, which is the greatest food item ever invented, aside from poutine. I also found this great selling point from the ByWard website: “The Market is a great place to people-watch. During warm days, pull up a chair at an outdoor café and watch the world walk by.” What a place!

  1. Gatineau Park


Okay, this technically isn’t in Ottawa. But sometimes it’s nice to get outside of the city and enjoy some nature! And by “enjoy some nature” I mean take selfies with maybe some trees in the background to send as Snapchats to your friends. This will show how outdoorsy and superior you are to them. There are also trails to hike and exercise and whatever, but who cares about that? Downside: There is no WiFi here.

  1. Mayfair Theatre

Watching movies is kind of related to English, right? Films, books, same difference. Not only does the Mayfair play a lot of independent films, it also has participation nights every Saturday. Regular participation movies include The Rocky Horror Picture Show and, the best worst movie ever, The Room. I haven’t actually gone yet because I have yet to convince anyone to go see The Room with me. This is my very obvious hint that I want someone to go with me.

  1. Mike’s Place

Mike’s Place is the graduate student pub on campus. When drinking, just be sure to talk about things mildly related to whatever research you’re doing at the time, that way you can say you are “collaborating” when you are actually just getting drunk with friends. Just don’t get on the employees’ bad side or else they will forget your food orders and refuse to give you the WiFi password…

  1. Shop your stress away

Retail therapy is a real thing, trust me. TAs get paid twice a month, so that’s an excuse to shop, right? Rideau Centre is a great location for shopping; it’s close to the ByWard Market and Parliament and there’s a lot of stores. There’s also Bayshore Shopping Centre, which has some stores not found in Rideau (why is there only one H&M in this city?). Plus, it’s right near an Ikea, and who doesn’t love a trip to Ikea? $1 breakfast, anyone?

  1. Stroll around your neighborhood looking for new cat friendsCat

This one may actually only apply to me. Whenever I’m tired of doing homework (which is often), I go for a walk around my neighbourhood and see if any of the neighbourhood cats want to hang out with me. I have, on many occasions, had the unfortunate experience of meeting a standoffish black and white cat that would rather go stand in the middle of the street than be pet by me. Don’t play with this cat; it’s rude and doesn’t deserve your affection. Other than that, cats are a good substitute for when all your friends are busy actually doing their work.

  1. Stay in your apartment and send Snapchats

This activity works best if you send pictures of stacks of books you need to read. Crop out your face so your friends don’t see the tears streaming down your face as you think of all the homework you have to do. Kidding! You don’t need to crop out your face to hide your sadness; just draw over it!

My Grad School Playlist

 by Emily Howe

beats-headphone-780x520With the end of term looming around the corner, I thought I’d give everyone some insight into my favourite songs to listen to in order to combat every different mood that grad school has presented me with. I hope that everyone can use at least one of these in order to keep afloat during the rough part of the semester. So here we go:

  1. Backseat Freestyle – Kendrick Lamar: This one is my top choice and my go to when Impostor Syndrome has me down. Martin had a dream, Kendrick has a dream, and I too have a dream: to make it through this year with as few meltdowns as possible. This song will boost your mood no matter what, Taylor Swift swears by it, need i say more? (Just kidding, I do not endorse any advice given by Taylor Swift for obvious reasons).
  2. (Sittin On) The Dock of the Bay – Otis Redding: I find there’s nothing more cathartic than listening to Otis sing about wasting time in Frisco when you are putting off writing the many pages you need to complete before you can enjoy Christmas break.
  3. Don’t Stop Me Now – Queen: This song accomplishes two things: it encourages me to keep working away when I really just want to have a nap and pretend responsibilities do not exist, and it also reminds me how much fun my life will be when I am actually finished my assignments for the term. While I may not be able to comfortably say that I’m “having a good time” while I’m writing, I can still take pleasure in Mr. Mercury’s dulcet tones while I work.
  4. ***Flawless (Ft. Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche) – Beyoncé: For when you inevitably hit the wall in the middle of the night, you think that you’ll never complete the paper, you should probably just give up, and call it a day. BUT NO! Beyoncé is here to remind you that you are a fierce diva and you should follow your ambitions and passions. She is also there to remind you that even though you will not have slept tomorrow, you will walk into school looking ***flawless.
  5. Weight of Living, Pt. II – Bastille: This song comes on at the moment when you are deeply questioning the choices that have led you into academia. Not only does is soothe your fears by reminding you that you are going to make it through, but it’s also just a lovely serenade from a British man, and let’s be real that’s never a bad thing.
  6. Sweatpants – Childish Gambino: This one is for when you feel like you are actually slaying at this whole grad school thing. You aced your seminar, wrote the single best thesis of your whole academic career, or just succeeded by waking up in time for your 8:30 class. It’s the ultimate self-confidence boosting song and as Childish reminds you, “don’t be mad ’cause I’m doing me better than you doing you.”
  7. The Diamond Church Street Choir – The Gaslight Anthem: Aside from being one of my favourite feel good songs, this song takes a minute to remind you that you took chances by going into grad school but you are trying your hardest out here, and that is an accomplishment in itself.
  8. Dirty Paws – Of Monsters and Men: Whenever I start feeling lonely from within my fortress of books, I play this song because it reminds me of my best friend. Also it’s some weird metaphor about animals coming together to take down an evil queen. I’m not sure what that has to do with anything, but I like to think that my cohort and I have bonded over our #gradschoolproblems and so that’s the evil queen we’re defeating, or whatever.
  9. Bulls In Brooklyn – The Academy Is…: This one is for when I need to block out the haters. It’s a really good reminder that we’re all here for a reason and we need to get through this as a cohort or we might not make it out with our sanity.
  10. I Am A God – Kanye West: This last choice might be a bit controversial, but I promise I have good reasons for including Yeezus on my playlist. First and foremost because I think we should all aspire to one day be “chillin, tryna stack these millions” (a girl can dream right?). Most importantly though, at this time of year, when it’s easy to get down on ourselves, I think it’s extremely important to remember to love ourselves as much as Kanye loves Kanye.

Research Talk: Andrew Wallace on “The Fact of Rome”

Prof. Andrew Wallace will be giving a Research Talk on “The Fact of Rome” on Friday, December 5th, at 3pm in the Gordon Wood Lounge.

This talk explores a series of expressions of ancient Rome’s nearness and availability to those who lived in its wake in Medieval and early modern England. In writers ranging from Medieval monks, such as Gildas and Bede, to Edmund Spenser, Sir Thomas Browne, and John Milton, encounters with the fact of Rome are interpretable as encounters with the self made strange and as meditations on the order of the ordinary.


Nuruddin Farah