General 4th week update

Gate near Holywell Street

Amidst Oxford’s volatile spring weather, most of today was spent reading about the Middle East during the periods of 1945-56, 56-89, and 89-present respectively. With four weeks left in my first academic year – and only two weeks left before the research design paper is due – I am feeling an odd combination of the rush of impending deadlines and the calmness of impending summer. Of course, there remain the serious matters of finding employment, and securing a place to live after September.

Within the program, people seem to have hit a definite stride. Thesis anxieties aside, there is a real sense within the group that we understand the Oxford dynamic and are able to deal with it. Having the thesis as an excuse to do not quite as much reading as we might have in previous terms may also have something to do with that.

Since tomorrow is the big seminar day, and I am meant to serve as respondent to Kate Stinson’s presentation about how regional powers in the Middle East may have manipulated international actors, I should get back to my books and the doing of laundry.

PS. What do fellow Oxford bloggers think about 8:00pm on Wednesday the 31st of May for a third gathering?

Author: Milan

In the spring of 2005, I graduated from the University of British Columbia with a degree in International Relations and a general focus in the area of environmental politics. In the fall of 2005, I began reading for an M.Phil in IR at Wadham College, Oxford. Outside school, I am very interested in photography, writing, and the outdoors. I am writing this blog to keep in touch with friends and family around the world, provide a more personal view of graduate student life in Oxford, and pass on some lessons I've learned here.

11 thoughts on “General 4th week update”

  1. Third note to self:

    Either find out how to fix commenting on the template of Mica’s blog, or replace it with a similar but standards-compliant alternative.

  2. Post-its, man, post-its!

    I think the 31st should be alright for a bloggers meeting. Maybe not the Turf again, since it’s always ridiculously crowded, and finals’ll have started to finish by then?

  3. Three Goats Heads on St Michael St? – rarely full when I’ve known it. The Mitre (usually has space) – not recommending as pubs but as spaces.

    The Turl (Turl St), The Chequers?

  4. A,

    We got into this argument for the first gathering. Since nobody could agree, we ended up with The Turf by default. I am reasonably happy with anywhere less smoky than the King’s Arms.

  5. It shifts between bright/beautiful/sunny, overcast, and dramatic thunderstorm. Often several times a day.

  6. It’s more the finals finishing than general Turf crowdedness: as a general rule, if you’re not a finalist, or with a finalist, the Turf is probably best avoided in the aftermath of finals. The Bear might be an alternative – at the bottom of Alfred Street, just off the High Street?

  7. Rob,

    The Bear it is, then. I will put up a more obvious announcement somewhat closer to the date.

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