Well, botheration. I’ve done the math, checked my reading speed, and rechecked the math… and it appears I’m going to have to fudge somewhat on the reading for this semester’s Ecofeminism Comps essay — and next semester’s work as well. That’s a pity, because I would have loved to give proper consideration to all the wonderful books I selected to cover my topic. I guess it’s par for the course, though, at least in this program and perhaps in all doctoral programs.
But anyway: I have 16 weeks to review 30+ books and write a comprehensive essay on them which demonstrates my breadth of knowledge and understanding. Reiterating for clarity, the “Area of Emphasis” for this semester is: “Feminist and Ecofeminist Philosophies and Activism,” and the three subsections are (Re)Embodiment, the Feminine Divine, and Interrelatedness. That works out to just over ten books per subsection. The essay must consist of an Introduction and a Conclusion, with the review of the three sections — all adding up to four big chunks of text to write. I have lumped the beginning and end together, since I’ll probably write them during the same time frame, while the info is fresh in my head.
So: four chunks of time — because even though there’s no reading in the last time chunk, I will leave it as large as the other three for any necessary “slop time,” as in a day taken off due to some emergency. This means in a roughly four-month semester, each subsection can take no more than one month. So if I give myself three weeks for reading and one week for writing on each subsection, that works out to… about ten books read a week. If I give myself one day a week off so I don’t burn out (which is a personal requirement), that ends up being just under two books a day. While I do read fast, I’m not that good — not unless it’s what I call my “brain-candy” fiction novels. These books I’ve got emphatically are not brain candy; they’re textbooks chock full of rich, delicious, exciting, provocative information.
So… bummer on not having enough time. I’d hoped to be able to really explore these books, but that turns out not to be the case. I’ll just have to pick three or four of the most fascinating books to read carefully, then quickly flip through the rest and just skim. I’ll try to write interesting blogs on the books I do end up reading, and I may post the book list and/or bits and pieces of the essay subsections if folks think it’d be interesting to know what books I recommend on these particular subjects… but past that I’m shifting into “speed reader/writer” mode for this semester. Hope it’s interesting for you all anyway! :)