Monday, July 23, 2007

Oh. . .My Hypocrisy!

I haven't written for just about a week or so. Sadly, I've felt down and somewhat uninspired. A combination of post-wedding decompression, finding the drafting reaching the level of drudgery and feeling a little disappointed by the project side of things probably has something to do with it.

Hopefully a new book I picked up at Borders will help. It's Inventing Human Rights: A History by Lynn Hunt. Its hypothesis, that human rights comes from both a rational argument and emotional sentiment really grabs me, in a way that touches on what Alex Epstein talked about the other day in his blog entry, Not Wilde About It.

The way this book talks about the rise of the novel (which, by the way, is a book that just came in the mail today, too!) and its hypothesis really feels like it gets at the organic creation individualism, universalism and human rights, or in other words, the story of these concepts. . .rather than just telling a sequence of events. The consilience of these two books really excites me!

While on that topic, I think I'm starting to understand my perfectionism when it comes to the bachelors project. My brain works in narrative, in stories (even though I've got some kind of prejudice against historical fiction). A lot of the research that I've done on utopianism and social theory feels just like that, a listing of a sequence of events and ideas. . .but it doesn't necessarily feel like the telling of a story.

At least, it hasn't to my intuition until somewhat recently when I've been doing some major Wikipedia research into the Enlightenment, Romanticism, the KKK, American History, the change from classical liberalism to New Deal liberalism, ethics and the list goes on and on. Honestly, I'm a little scared about how much work will go into citing sources that aren't from Wikipedia once I finish this damn project.

But yeah, I feel like once I can mush all this disparate information into a story, a narrative, I can really get into it more. I can only imagine the prolific insanity that will come after. . .neither can I wait!


Dawn said...

Ah, Wikipedia. I'm a little scared to do too much research there--I trust it for some things and not for others. Part of the problem stems from reading entries on subject areas I do know a lot about and finding problems (and fixing them, but one only has so much time). Sounds like you're researching everything under the sun though--that's a huge amount of work! Good luck.

The_Lex said...

The frustrating part is that I should have been doing this kind of research at the start of the project! As I said in an entry a couple days ago, if it takes me this long to do this project, how am I going to do freelance writing later?

Then again, I guess I console myself with the knowledge that utopianism is a pretty esoteric topic.