Hello. Yes, it’s me: Amanda, the Resident Undergraduate[™]. I’m not entirely sure how I ended up a part of this amazing team of archaeologists (+one Assyriologist!) who will be writing for “What’s Up, Archaeology” (“WUA”) over the course of the next three months. I do, however, distinctly remember sending a shot-in-the-dark response to Sara Head’s (@archyfantasies) call for participants on Twitter—and, to my surprise, receiving a very welcoming response. Regardless, here we are: me, having sent this first post out into the blogosphere, and you, reading it.
Much of my time this semester will be spent on coursework ranging from my second semester of Middle Egyptian to a highly theoretical/philosophy-based graduate seminar, but I’ll also be working in Manuscripts for the John Hay Library (it will be my third semester as a student worker there), pursuing my own academic interests beyond just course assignments, (hopefully) beginning to learn how to navigate the labyrinths of academic bureaucracy, trying to learn how to make art, and inevitably becoming the lead in WUA’s very own cliché queer coming of age story.
I’ll likely be writing primarily about things like these, since the idea here is to offer an impression of life as an archaeologist (or, in my case, as an archaeology student), but you can be sure that there will also be moments of spontaneous diversion based on things I encounter or generally what goes on in life. For example: my roommate adopted a cat earlier this week, and for one of my courses, on the same day, I re-read Derrida’s The Animal that Therefore I Am. We discussed it for the majority of our 2.5-hour seminar (which is taught by the brilliant Dr. Eva Mol). After class, I went home for a few hours, and it was just me and the cat—if you are familiar with the piece, you can probably imagine that those few hours certainly generated at least a blog post worth of thoughts. Alternatively, perhaps I’ll end up writing more about doing academic things with very little academic experience: on Monday of this week, for example, I presented at a paper session, where I discussed a long-term research project of mine that’s very near and dear to my heart. There was certainly also a blog post somewhere in there about the process of preparing that talk.
Wherever this project may take me, I’m very grateful to be a part of it! I’ve already been enjoying my fellow bloggers’ posts, and I look forward to an exciting few months of working out what, exactly, is “up” in archaeology!
You can find me on twitter here, or follow my posts on this blog for updates!