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A111 Journal - February 2021

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Edited by Christopher Douce, Saturday, 6 Mar 2021, 10:11

21 Feb 21

This is really the first note that I’ve made in February? Unfortunately, it is. This month has been more than busy in my day job. 

I’ve gone from being a couple of weeks ahead to being a couple of weeks behind. 

I need to get my focus back again.

Towards the beginning of the week I received my TMA 3 feedback, which I was really pleased about. My tutor had read my short story really carefully, and provided some really helpful comments about how my writing may be improved. One thing I have learnt is this: don’t try to be too clever, since sometimes it just doesn’t work. In my story I sacrificed readability to deliberately create some descriptions that were ambiguous. When one has a really limited word count to play with, it’s important not to mess about.

Over the last two days I’ve been reading chapter 5, questioning tradition, which is about philosophy, and chapter 6, remembering and forgetting in Ireland, which is about history.

I’ve learnt that Socrates didn’t actually write anything, and it was instead his pupil Plato who wrote the dialogues in which he is featured. In the dialogues I’ve read, Socrates does have a habit of coming across as being really annoying, what with all his questioning!

I’ve noted down this section from the module materials: “one benefit of reading Plato is that his writings are designed to courage a kind of critical reflection, inviting us to think through the arguments for ourselves and come to our own view”. 

Some really interesting bits have been the dialogue about the nature of courage, and the difference between knowledge and opinion (and how this relates to philosophy).

In chapter 6 I’ve learnt about the notion of cultural nationalism, and have read an excerpt of speech about rediscovering the Irish language.

It’s now time to head over to the module website and start to make some notes. If I have time, I’ll also have a good look at TMA 4, which I have printed out.

28 Feb 21

I’m gradually catching up. I did a bit of reading today and yesterday.

I finished reading chapter 6, remembering and forgetting in Ireland, and chapter 7, Christianity and its material culture, and started chapter 8, the revival of the gothic tradition.

I found the chapter about Christianity, which highlighted topics of pilgrimage, cathedrals and the reformation interesting. This said, religious studies is not really a subject that I feel I can personally get really excited about.

Out of all the chapters that I have been reading in this section of the module, I have realised that I have enjoyed the architecture chapter the most. It’s a subject that I quite like even though I haven’t really thought about it in a great amount of detail before.

I have two things on my ‘todo’ list today: a quick sprint through the various online activities for these modules (if I have the time), and a look at the next TMA.

In October, I wrote 7 updates to my A111 journal. In November, I wrote 16 entries. For this month, I’ve only written 2. A final reflection: I need to up my pace of study if I’m going to keep on track.

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