lunadelcorvo: (Where is all this stuff written?)
You may, if you've been here a while recall my ranting about the pitfalls of sloppily applied theory in the post-modern academia. (If not, it's here, and I posted another on the Sokal Hoax (which I can't locate ATM.)

Essentially, the Sokal Hoax refers to an article, written by a legit academic and submitted to a peer-reviewed, post modern, academic journal. The published it, and it drew all manner of praise, whereupon the author spring the gag - it was all gibberish, intended to specifically poke fun at the jargon-laden, pretention that is (all too often), PoMo academia. It made a big kerfluffle, and everyone was aghast, and nothing really changed. (There's even a post modern generator, if you'd like to craft your own meaningless theoretical garble:

But now, in response to the trend in theology towards an almost post-modern jargon-fest, typically aimed at harmonizing science and religion, a scholar has perpetrated his own 'Sokal-style' hoax. He cooked up a long blob if impenetrable gibberish, submitted it to a few Very Serious Theology conferences, and despite having offered up essentially word soup, was happily accepted. Read the whole account, together with his entry, here:
lunadelcorvo: (Medieval Scholar)
Just got my official notice of classes for fall, and I picked up an extra for this coming semester, which is always a boon to the pocketbook!

So, for Spring I'm teaching (freshman) Theories of Religion and Development of Christianity (wherein I more or less throw the whole kit and kaboodle right under the bus!)

In Fall, it will be (freshman) Utopia/Dystopia and Development of Christianity, and (junior) Self, Place & Culture.

And for my own courses, I'm taking another foundation course, Comm Theory, along with an advanced topics course called "The Movie is the Message," dealing with social and cultural messages in film. I suspect I can do all sorts of interesting things with that! The theory should be...interesting. I have my misgivings about rampant theory-using generally (as I discussed a while back here), but I still tend to be far more conversant in theoretical areas than the "social sciences" aspects of communication as a discipline. However, the prof is as purely social science oriented as you can get, which should add some spice to the conversation.

Combine that with the tendency of Comm to kidnap theory from other disciplines without ever owning up to it, and my own tendency to recognize from whence the ideas have come ("Hey, wait a sec! That's Sartre's intersubjectivity!" or "That's Foucault's perpetual spirals pf power and pleasure!" statements have so far been met with rather blank stares...), ought to make for a really interesting semester....

Tally ho! Off to write my syllabi!



Things I need to remember:
• Asking for help is not, as it turns out, fatal.
• Laughing is easier than pulling your hair out, and doesn't have the unfortunate side effect of making you look like a plague victim.
• Even the biggest tasks can be defeated if taken a bit at a time.
• I can write a paper the night before it's due, but the results are not all they could be.
• Be thorough, but focused.
• Trust yourself.
• Honesty, always.

Historians are the Cassandras of the Humanities



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