Thursday, May 24, 2007

Semi-Clarification

Thinking about the last post, I suppose it is best to clarify what I mean when I say I am not an academic and why I'm not enjoying my studies at this point.

I happen to enjoy teaching. I am energized by teaching, most of the time. However, I would rather be a writer who teaches than a teacher who writes. Writing was always interesting to me, before I thought about anything scientific or technical. I love words.

At the moment, I feel more like a form-filer than a student or teacher. I want to do things and be active. I hate waiting, as do most people, for paperwork to move up the proper channel, back for corrections, and then right back up the channel. By the time the process repeats, I'm sick of it. Yet, it's all part of academia.

Don't get me wrong, I understand why we have Institutional Review Board (IRB) meetings. I understand research subjects were abused in the United States and Europe — and sometimes still are. Yet, I see myself more as a reporter and analyst than I do a "real" academic. I watch people and record what I see. I interpret based on my own experiences, too. Granted, this approach is increasingly accepted in social studies / ethnographic works.

My goal is to improve the world, which I think I can do best via my words.

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