Welcome to this week’s #JNGReads blog post! In this post, I can’t help but reiterate a number of ideas I’ve already talked about here already…but the quote I found was just too perfect to resist, and once again I have a sort of thesis that indicates exactly why I started this blog to begin with!
I wouldn’t necessarily call myself a rebel, by any standards. I mean, last summer I dyed a pink streak into my hair, but that’s pretty much the extent of my life’s rebellions. A little lame, I know. What some of you might find surprising, though, is that starting this very blog was an act of rebellion of sorts, especially after coming out of an English MA program at a relatively rigid academic institution.
Let’s begin with my quote selection for this weekend, and then things will become a bit clearer:
“I felt passionate about the subjects I wrote about, but there were conventions and rules to follow…” – Reading Lolita in Tehran, Azar Nafisi
Once again, Azar Nafisi has perfectly summed up my entire experience of my Master’s degree: I had such hopes, such love for literature, so many lofty ideas, and yet, I was forced to fit them all inside a bubble, into a set of objectives and aims. I was often not interested in doing that, and I had minor moments of rebellion, when I would vehemently disagree with a professor’s opinion in a seminar (and prove my own point with textual examples, of course) or when I would gush and gush about characters, particularly one Mr. Rochester, as if they were real, alive and breathing beside me. Would I say that I got into trouble for these moments of overwhelming emotion? Not exactly…but I was sometimes used as an example of what NOT to do in an academic career…because naturally, an academic should never feel anything about literature under any circumstances. *Insert eye roll here.*
So basically, long story short, and as you all already know from reading some of the other pages on this blog, I completed my MA, got my shining white diploma, and started this dear ol’ blog to talk about literature how I wanted and with as much darn passion and emotion as I believe is necessary and appropriate. And let me tell you, I feel that A LOT of emotion and feeling is necessary and appropriate when discussing novels, or poetry, or works of theatre. Sure, rules are all well and good…sometimes. But, why would I want to follow rules when talking about a piece of culture that was born out of some author’s feelings and passions? I’m sure Jane Austen didn’t feel entirely neutral when she wrote about Elizabeth and Darcy; I’m certain that Shakespeare wasn’t devoid of passion when he wrote Romeo’s passionate speeches to Juliet; and I am 100% positive that Charlotte Brontë felt a lot of things about the love story of her Jane and Rochester…a lot of things that I have no doubt she would’ve wanted me to feel as well, and to rant and rave about as loudly as I can.
So welcome again all you dear followers to this blog that is full of and ruled by emotions and feeling. Thank you for joining me on this ride, and for helping me break some rules that I was never particularly fond of to begin with!
Girl with a (Very Big) Green Heart