The second-to-last pre-QT day has passed. It’s a good sign that I find myself going over things again, somewhat uncertain of how I should spend the rest of the time. That I am doing so seems to be an indication that I am fairly well covered, already. Thankfully, none of the examiners is a historian. As such, we are likely to get less badly criticized for failing to mention this or that theory or historian. As with the theory section, it is argumentation that is crucial.
Since a big part of the test is rhetoric, the wisest course seems to be to choose the questions to which you can give the most elegant answer – rather than the ones you know most about. That is why I am studying everything in reasonable detail – with a focus on times, countries, and questions that interest me – rather than preparing specific topics in hopes that they will appear.
Seeing Claire again this morning was really good. The return of friends to Oxford is the best thing about classes resuming.
A quick appeal to fellow students
Regarding the gathering of MPhil students on Thursday, after the QT: neither me, Alex, or Kai have a real stereo. If someone could lend us something with enough power to provide music for the party, we would be grateful. We have lots of music, but are distinctly lacking in watts.
- iPod the Fourth arrived today; may it outlast its predecessors. I appreciate that it is actually possible to update two iPods at once, using my iBook. Even with the 20GB version available again, I suspect I will use the 1GB Shuffle frequently. The big advantages of the Shuffle are its size and simplicity: an excellent second iPod.
- Today also brought the results of the interviewing section of the qualitative methods exam: which I passed, with nice things said about my work.
- The clock tower near out flat tolls 156 times a day. I quite like the sound and experience of it; it makes me feel more in control of where I am, in relation to all temporal events.