“Don’t compare, don’t despair…”

“Reading Contemporary Ethnography” is the title of my favorite class this semester and my favorite part of the week. On Thursday afternoons I always have this sense of making it through, since I have three classes on Thursday, and this is the last one. We’ve read all these crazy, gigantic books (Market Day in Provence, A Season in Mecca, and Travels with Tooy), but there’s only 4 people in the class, one of which is the professor’s husband! and it is such a great mix of conversation and critical thought. Yesterday our professor shared her photos from her field work in Tamil Nadu, India; she is such a breath of fresh air in this rigorous academic environment, not that she isn’t brilliant heself, but she takes every opportunity to encourage each of us to study what we love, and even tells us not to worry too much over little papers and things.

“I didn’t do well in everything in life, but life always finds a way,” she told us yesterday in her thick French accent. And then in her boisterous style, she told us all, “I always say, don’t compare, don’t despair, just keep going with what you love!”

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