Boot camp day 2


in Daily updates, PhD thesis, Writing

I spent much of today’s boot camp doing research online about Canadian university divestment campaigns and trying to contact people who have been involved.

Even though all the campaigns have happened since 2012, there’s a lot that has clearly already disappeared from the internet, though some of the websites established by campaigns remain in the Wayback Machine. There also seem to be some campaigns that never progressed beyond a petition on which a single person could set up in a few minutes. Helpfully the site lets you try to contact the person who set up the petition, but I don’t think I have gotten any responses so far from any campaigns that don’t offer more substantive evidence like a Facebook page or a media report.

I had hoped it would be possible to interview a fairly large number of people from each campaign, both to help develop a detailed timeline and to get into my core research questions about the effect the experience had on people. That may yet prove true for some campaigns – especially large ones that happened fairly recently – but my hopes of being able to get in touch with one or two people from each campaign and then easily reach a large group of others seem unlikely at this point to be fulfilled.

The early mornings of the dissertation boot camp have been a bit disruptive, especially alongside rather disrupted sleep. A friend of mine who I worry about often has been incommunicado for an unusual length of time, to which my brain naturally responds with a lot of directionless worry and speculation. There’s also another situation where I thought two friends were being treated badly by a third person, but it seems that despite being essentially vetoed my effort to encourage a change of behaviour has just left all three of them upset with me.

On the plus side, it seems like we have found someone to take over the room from our housemate who is moving out.

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