Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Shit. Shit shit shit.

I'm working on my article, as I have been, bit by bit, and finally decide to google a term that appears and I think I know but really, am just assuming I know.

Shit. There are whole fucking pages about this term and this time and it is clearly a contemporary culture allusion/parody ---- an allusion that none of the criticism on this author has bothered to cite before. Thanks, lit people who only study literature from a strict literary standpoint! There's a whole flock of historians who could add more depth to our understanding of this literary text if we'd only read other disciplines' works! Mother. Fucker.

I don't know if this means the lit critics knew all this and just didn't think it was interesting enough to write an article spelling out all the allusions here, or if this is important new ground that should be brought up. Crap. I have to think about this a lot. Not only is this not the article I wanted to write, but it means what I was trying to conclude at the end of my article might be wrong. Crap. And that person who I just wrote a paragraph disagreeing with is wrong in terms of which genre of pop culture the text is alluding to, but in the general picture, more right. Crap crap crap.

And yes, this is a big aspect of the story. As in, if you knew the allusion it is clear that we are supposed to take the death of a major character as funny. Not tragic as everyone has read it.

Sigh. Re-tooling? Scrapping and restarting? Writing the article that needs to be written in light of this discovery but is not at all my article draft here? Pretending I never saw it? Argh.

Let that be a lesson to you --- never Google. Only search and read the big critics you already know you are supposed to read. And don't ever admit your historical ignorance and try to research to rectify the situation.


nicoleandmaggie said...

My discipline has made a profession of stealing ideas from other social sciences and renaming them as if we'd come up with them ourselves. Some people have big careers doing exactly this. After all, it isn't real research until someone in my discipline has done it.

Don't think of it as a setback, but as the potential for future papers. Don't think of that as stealing, but as introducing new ideas into your discipline, and adding necessary rigor and your disciplinary framework to work in those other not-your disciplines.

Sisyphus said...

But I don't want to argue what I just found! I want to argue something that is largely tangential to this new information, but, where it does overlap, is wrong!

It really is a case of scrap or ignore. Grumble.

P said...

I agree with nicoleandmaggie. Also, I don't think this is a setback, but rather just something to note. As in, just make some sort of note -- do not consider this grounds for retooling your argument. I'm not one for a lot of foot- or endnotes, but in this case, I'm tempted to suggest you relegate your finding -- if acknowledge you must -- to some sort of savvy academic aside. If the reader/s feel like you're not doing the point justice by discussing it further, he or she will let you know. And it won't really impact the merit of the article-in-itself.

I've left out huge details (an oxymoron, I know), and it ends up not mattering nearly as much as the 'gist' of whatever it is I'm saying.

Shit. Shit and Shit, though, is right. The Internets are evil.