Books on Books on Books on Books

Emily Bernstein
January 26, 2017

I haven’t blogged in some time because school started and I didn’t want to bore you all (read: my family) with all the intricacies of syllabus week and my nerding over my literature courses.

But alas, all I really have to do here is nerd about my literature courses.

My school week began at 7:30am on Monday so that I could get dressed and walk to my 9am class on time. Said class is Human Rights Law (a law class completely focused on the European Convention of Human Rights and the European Convention of Human Rights Act of 2003 that Ireland instated in order to properly ensure that everyone’s human rights are being respected). Our lecturer, while funny and nice, speaks very quickly about Irish politics and such. It’s going to be tough, but this is why we go to school! …Right?

The second class I had was Study of a Major Author, and the author we are studying is (drumroll please) ShakespeareI’m very excited about it. Not only is the professor very passionate about Shakespeare and every piece of art that he’s affected since he started writing, but she also assigned plays that I love: King Lear, Twelfth Night (which I’ve read and performed in, so I think I’m set on this one), and Henry IV part 1.

I’m also taking State of the Union: American Literature since 1930. I know, I know… Taking American Lit in Ireland? But this professor is assigning mainly literature written by mixed race authors which is an interesting aspect of American Literature that we don’t always study in the US. Beyond this, I think it will be interesting to take this class while here (plus it satisfies a credit back home, so why not?).

My favorite lecturer at least (not class because I don’t have one yet) is my Irish Literature since 1930 professor. She was so engaging and we are studying amazing texts. Waiting for Godot is one of them (and she pronounced it correctly), and we are also studying poets and novelists that we skip over in the US because we mainly focus on British authors. It’s going to be a tough and demanding class but I can’t wait.

Last, and certainly not least, is my British Literature since 1945 class. Again, we’re studying great texts (have you noticed a pattern yet?), and the lecturer is funny, if not a little quiet. Though not as engaging as my Irish Lit professor, this professor is definitely going to teach me a lot. We’re reading a lot of poetry (yay!), and plays (like Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead), and two novels. I’m excited.

Can you tell I like all my classes? They are all going to be hard, I’m going to have to be reading about three books a week for all of my classes, I’m going to have to read the Irish Constitution and the ECHR Act of 2003, but I am really looking forward to learning everything I can while I’m here.

Having gone through syllabus week, and survived, I realize how blessed I am to have the education that I do. I have read at least one thing on every literature course syllabus. Not that I won’t be keeping up with the reading, but it lifts a little bit of the pressure off of me.

This post is called books on books on books on books because I think that is what my life is going to be like for the next few months. While I’m definitely going to travel and have lots of fun, I’m probably always going to be carrying around a book – just call me Rory Gilmore (even though I’m not her biggest fan).

Still, I’m nerding out because I get to read all of this amazing literature while living in a place where amazing writers have lived and traveled and written about. Catch me squealing like an excited tween over here in my room. 

But then catch me crying when, during finals and midterms, I have five papers all due within four days of each other. 

Outside of school, I’ve been spending time with my friends (Kim, Kaitlin, Guy, and Ian – get used to these names), and sleeping a lot. Kim, Kaitlin, and I went food shopping today and navigated the bus system all by our adult selves. It rained today after two days of being crazy windy. Ireland is great and I’m doing well.

Hi Mom!

Quote of the week: “Hold for short time.” -Daniel, a German Erasmus student (probably only funny in the moment but still). 

1 Comment

  1. I MEAN… THESE SYLLABI!! Can I go back to school?? Please always nerd out about your reading and assignments. I love hearing about them. And you’re reading some GREAT Shakespeare plays. Henry IV part 1 picks up where one of my all-time favorites (Richard II) leaves off and has one of Shakespeare’s greatest clowns. Sounds like you have some amazing professors (do they call them professors there…? At LAMDA they were always referred to as tutors…) and you’re in for a demanding but enriching semester. See? I can be a nerd too! Love you!!

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