29 December 2010

A Renewal of Vows

It's been nearly five months since my last published entry.  Since that time I've become a "dissertator", seen a few of my best friends in the world who I'd lost track of, come to understand the nature of the universe, and  adjusted my Netflix membership plan.

As such, I feel a renewed responsibility to account for the world around us (that's right, I can explain it to you... just keep reading).  So it is, I will re-purpose Roman Numeral J as an outlet for not only (though still) an anachronistic chronology of my own life, but also a regular, reliable commentary on the culture and society which impacts said chronology.  Therefore, it is my intention to write substantive, complex, confusing, and constructive criticism and commentary on any (random) collections of cultural artifacts.

My goal, then, is to write on a variety of topics (unfinished entries over the last five months include "Did The Secret cause the Recession?" and "Bitter Salt" {an article about Angelina Jolie's summer blockbuster}.  I'll do this at least once a week for as long as this blog continues.  Which means, the purpose and regularity of this blog will be changing.  I'm never quite sure what it will be about, but it will now be about something (again?).

I think what is most compelling me to this change is something I've noticed during my last year and a half of academic work, namely the idea of the proprietarianship of academic ideas.  At my preliminary exam defense, it was suggested to me that I'd naively misunderstood the thinking of an intellectual hero of mine.  I disagreed, but more so, I was offended by the proprietary way a thinker was being talked about.  Furthermore, in discussing various projects I've been working on over the last couple years I've been told alternately that what I was doing had already been done (or was being done) or that someone else wished they'd done what I was planning to do... it gets me to questioning what the point of all this work is exactly.  So, Roman Numeral J will serve, henceforth as a sort of open source theory.  I welcome all contributors, comments, dialogue.  Let's get to work.