Tag Archives: bates classes

Short Term is here!

Hey all. It’s that time of year again… Short Term! 

After completing my thesis, I still had three papers to work on before I could head home for spring break. The first was for my Latin American history class. The course focused specifically on Latin American independence, and in the final paper we were asked to discuss whether independence brought about significant change to Latin America, or whether there was a more gradual shift from colonial rule to national sovereignty. I concluded that when we talk about change we have to talk about what type of change and for whom. Things changed really differently for the indigenous population in comparison with the elite Creole population, so I tried to center my arguments on the nuanced evolution of change in Latin America during the independence period.

Okay, I just read that back and it sounds a little boring. I swear it’s a readable paper and makes sense. As a history nerd, I think I have a tendency to delve a bit too deeply into a paper like this. If you’re still with me, I promise to keep the other paper descriptions short!

 For my Spanish final paper, I wrote a comparative essay on two short stories that we read in class. Because the course emphasized race, afro-spirituality and Catholicism in the Caribbean, I decided to write my paper on the construction and development of character identity in these stories and on how those characters represented the larger picture of the development of national identity in the Caribbean (in Cuba, specifically).

I also focused on identity in my final English paper. In this assignment, I looked to two short stories by Sherman Alexie and Junot Díaz to compare how identity was formed, molded and manipulated through narrative voice.

Anyway, you probably didn’t need to hear the long rambling descriptive explanations of my final papers, but I hope it interested some of you. As you can see from the varying topics I wrote about, each Bates class provides you with an opportunity to focus in on and tackle some really cool, unique and interesting material. 

Anyway, after finishing up the papers, I headed down to Florida for a fun week in the sun with some friends and in just a few short days, Short Term begins. I am taking a class titled “Gender and Tobacco.” I’ll have more information as soon as I take my first class. It’s a Women and Gender Studies (WGS) course and I’m really looking forward to it!

Until next time… 

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Senior Year Begins…

Hey all. Settling in to senior year has been a bit more hectic than expected but here is the long-overdue update…

I’m enrolled in four courses: Nations and Nationalism, International Politics, Technology in U.S. History, and a Spanish class on Cervantes. I’m taking the two politics courses more out of interest than necessity. I’ve fulfilled the majority of my requirements for my major and minor, and decided to take advantage of the chance to learn more about politics; a subject that’s always appealed to me, but that I’ve never been able to study extensively.

My favorite class so far has been Technology in U.S. History. It is an interdisciplinary course cross-listed with history and women and gender studies. So far we’ve focused on the the history of the word ‘technology’ and its early association with the Industrial Revolution. We’ve also discussed the differences between social construction and technological determinism, looking at how humans shape technology and how technology shapes society. Focusing on the role of gender in technological advancement has made the class even more thought-provoking.

Outside of academics, there has been plenty keeping me busy. Intramural soccer, working on the first issue of the Bates Student (including recruiting new writers), attending the Activities Fair, the Volunteer Fair, and the first weekly Village Club Series (VCS) free concert (Nick Motil) of the semester.

Life’s been busy, but it’s great to be back on campus. More to come soon! Until next time…

I couldn’t find a video of Nick Motil performing at Bates, but here is one from a recording a few years ago:

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Back on Campus…

Hey all. I am back on campus after a nice long winter break and have already been pretty busy. I have four new classes (China and its Culture, Colonial North America, Native American History, and American Writers since 1900) and all are interesting in their own ways. Taking 3 history courses and 1 english course means a lot of reading and after a couple days of classes I can already tell that I need to manage my time well or I will be behind on my work before I know it. 

In addition to my four new classes (and all the work that comes with those classes) I joined an IM ice hockey team, skated on the puddle with my roommate Matt, had a staff writers meeting for the school paper and had my first Jazz Band rehearsal of the semester.

My schedule is busy but it is great to be back on campus. Now I should really start doing some of that reading. Until next time…

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Trying new things…

Hey all. Just checking in after a busy week. School has been going really well the last couple of weeks but as always… it has been busy busy busy. This week I have papers due in my Latin American History class (on export economies and U.S. foreign policy in the region) and in my Wartime Dissent in Modern America class (on wartime objectors during the Vietnam and Korean Wars). I am definitely looking forward to a nice week off break for Thanksgiving next week before returning to Bates to focus on the end of the semester exams, assignments, and papers. 

This past week I had a small part in a one act play directed by my friend Drew. Although I only had 11 lines (but who’s counting?) I was still pretty nervous before going on stage. I had lots of friends and other people I knew in the crowd and was worried I might mess up some of my lines. Luckily I made no mistakes and my completely unbiased supporters said that I did a great job.

I never thought when I came to Bates that I would act in a play but that’s one of the great things about this college. If you put yourself out there, there are a ton of opportunities to try new things and get involved in programs, clubs, and activities you never imagined you would be interested in. Until next time…

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