Friday, November 18, 2005
English Majors Get No Respect
From Toothpaste for Dinner
Although I can't speak for all the English Majors out there, I can honestly say that I found grad school far more alcohol driven than the undergrad years. I think this is because when you decide you want to attend grad school, and in English you tend to figure it out fairly early, you almost always have to commit to an Honours undergraduate program. That's a lot of work, but one is usually still filled with a naive enthusiasm for English and the importance of the humanities to society. It doesn't take long for this feeling to fall away once grad school begins, in part because you see so many social science, science, business law and medical students getting way better funding and being written up in alumni mags and campus newspapers. They make the money, after all, and even some social sciences are borderline in that respect. One will also inevitably butt heads with one or more idiotic, self-important, pompous profs in the first semester of coursework, after which one will come close to complete nervous breakdown, post nasty comments about them on ratemyprofessors.com and begin to question the purpose of getting this stupid effing degree in the first place if one's colleaugues will potentially be just as assoholic. Hence pub nights, potluck nights, mixers -- whatever -- and 3 am pizza on the streets of Kingston in February when it's -30 and noone wants to go home yet. Aww -- sing it with me, Archie Bunker: "Those were the days."
Oh, and yeah, one eventually does get over the MA negativity. Or you just forget it and decide you're ready to commit yourself to 5 more years of grad school because it'll be different during the PhD. Yeah. Or not so much.