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Preparing for grad school

Hi, all. I just finished up my BFA in dramatic writing--playwriting, specifically--at NYU. I'm entering NYU's MA program in English and American literature in the fall. (Don't worry--I have a scholarship--I'm not paying anything.) My undergrad advisors knew nothing about English, so this community played a huge role in helping me apply without making a complete ass of myself.

So, what materials do you folks think would be good for a non-English major preparing for graduate English study to read over the summer? Remember, I've had no formal training in the novel or poetry--only drama. Recently, I read Peter Barry's Beginning Theory, a survey of literary theory. But I face a steep learning curve, in terms of both literature and criticism. Any suggestions? I've got to get a serious head start. Thanks!

By the way, for anyone who's doing the CUNY Language for Reading program this summer, so am I--in French.

And so it begins....

Providence mayor wants to tax college students


PROVIDENCE, R.I. – The mayor of Providence wants to slap a $150-per-semester tax on the 25,000 full-time students at Brown University and three other private colleges in the city, saying they use resources and should help ease the burden on struggling taxpayers...

I really hope this doesn't become a trend nationwide.
I hope this proposal's shot down since we have several members attending Brown now and in the near future.

Mortgages on a stipend

Since jgiraldo's post brought up this subject in a way--- how likely do you think it is that I can get approved for a mortgage with only two stipends as income.  My partner and I will have a  combined income of a measly 27k, but guaranteed for 5 years must mean something.

Not like any of you can really answer this for sure-- I'll have to apply for one ofcourse, but I've been worried about it.  We're thinking of buying a house (yay!).
If any of you are going to be in Southern California within the next two weeks, the UC Riverside English Dept. is sponsoring a talk entitled, "The Queer Space of China" by David Eng, professor of English at the University of Pennsylvania. The program is free to the public. The date and time are listed above, and here's the link to the rest of the information:


Also, here's the link to Eng's bio on the Penn English site:


I'm probably attending this, so let me know if any of you may be, too.

X-posted in a few places

Apr. 27th, 2009

The latest article about how our model of graduate education is broken:


I'd love to hear some thoughts about this. Even though the author loses me a bit when he starts in on his suggestions, I found this a usefully provocative read--especially because, for once, it doesn't blame or castigate people who have chosen to do graduate work.

Also, let me admit that when I read the sentence, "A colleague recently boasted to me that his best student was doing his dissertation on how the medieval theologian Duns Scotus used citations," my first thought was, "Whoa, what a cool topic!"

Hope everyone is having a good Monday!

The process in other disciplines

Saw a link on applyingtograd today to this, a report on grad school and the grad school admissions process written by a computer science professor:


It's designed, naturally, for computer scientists and is applicable also to other scientists, mathematicians, and engineers, but seeing as I don't feel like grading papers, I read the whole thing anyway and found it fascinating. There's some general advice in here that applies to us English folk, too, but more than that, this was the best explanation I've seen of how graduate programs in the hard sciences work, which is something I knew far less about prior to reading this. Thought I'd pass it along for anyone else who wants to procrastinate....
Hey, to the other people who got offered the NYU Masters...did you tell them you weren't accepting it? I completely forgot about it and don't have the paper anywhere either. I'm assuming it doesn't matter, but do I need to tell them I won't be going? I notified everyone else, but somehow totally spaced this one.

RIP Eve Kosofsky Sedgwick

I just found out she passed away yesterday. What a loss.

CUNY Update!

So I finally got in touch with the department at CUNY.

First they told me my status was "pending," which could mean either they hadn't made a decision on me or I was waitlisted.

They then transferred me over to someone else who confirmed that I was, in fact, waitlisted! Yay! Apparently I should've gotten an email about this two weeks ago.

I think it's a good sign that I find this amusing. :)


Hey folks!
Anyone else attending the conference in New Orleans this week? If so, let's organize a WGIer event. We can grab dinner or bar hop a bit. I grew up there and know the city well, so come hang out with a (transplanted) local. Feel free to PM me or comment in this thread if you'd like to meet up.

X-posted in EnglishObsessed and Literary_Theory