"we knew that the feminist notion of history, continuity and tradition, was a way to remember what we could no longer afford to forget about the patterns of being a black woman."
My thesis topic was born over 5 years ago and I wanted to share the most important things I have learned on this journey. Looking back now its hard to imagine that one bright idea in the middle of class, would turn into a half of a decade's worth of research, sweat, and tears. A 10 page seminar paper has turned into 60 pages of quotes and original thoughts. 18 revisions so far and more lie ahead of me before my final deposit date.
Some of my methods have failed but some have worked wonderfully. My advisor also helped to shape the work, reading my thoughts and guiding me to a more cohesive framework. I am confident that the work is original and will lead to more research at the PhD level.
It is important to try to investigate different topics through literature. If the idea seems preposterous, then that is precisely the notion you should be following. If it doesn't make you say "this might sound crazy but" then it's not worth writing.
Write everything down. Whenever you have a thought about your research WRITE IT DOWN! Those short scribblings will lead to sentences which will lead to paragraphs which will lead to pages!
Be prepared to fight for your idea because the battles will come. Take solace in the fact that with every debate over your work, your own comprehension of your topic will sharpen until it can roll off your tongue easily.
Most importantly, don't give up. Don't ever give up. Your work is important and the world needs it. Believe in your work and in yourself!
As part of healing myself, I have to be real with myself as well. I have to be able face a situation and it’s reality. It is quite easy to fool yourself and even easier to lie to yourself. And I have done a lot of both. Whether it was from self-preservation or from fear, I have shielded myself from pain but increased my heartache.
I have made great strides in this area but there is still a lingering problem I have to solve. To walk away without a resolution would be the easiest way to handle it, but as I said, I’m trying to do things differently in my life.
I have to push past the fear. I managed to do that this weekend when I sent my personal statement to my advisor. After countless revisions riddled with self-doubt, I finally decided to get the advice of the most important person in this equation. That was not the only piece of this PhD process that has been giving me trepidation, so I have decided to give myself an assignment.
Everyday, every single day, I am going to do something that I am afraid of. Whether its writing or applying, everyday for the rest of the year, I am going to accomplish something that I have been scared to do. Everyday I fight the urge to smoke cigarettes and everyday I win. Hopefully this same strength will lead me to be able to face the biggest thing that I’m afraid of in my personal life.
I truly empathize with Virginia Woolf's sentiment that a woman needs a "room of her own". I took two weeks at the end of the year to complete my masters thesis and I did it by being shut up in my bedroom alone. Leaving the house only to forage for food, I spent the time surrounded by books, essays, and notepads.
The idea had been born almost 3 years ago and it lived in my head the entire time. I read at least 20 books of supporting evidence, incorporated essays of literature criticism that I had collected over the year, and had my own train scribbles from my brief moments of clarity during my commute. Each time I explained my idea, it mutated, gained clarity, and transformed itself within my brain cells.
The time had come to release it but I found that it was stubborn. That beautiful thought that I had spent so many years perfecting, now did not want to give up it's place as the most beautiful thing in my intellectual life. It did not want to stop consuming me, and it feared that if my obsession ended then it would cease to exist and lose its lifeforce.
It was a battle. One that I'm not sure I won. When I pressed send, I felt a great release in my psyche. Although I know I will need to make a lot of revisions and I have to add a lot more material, my wonderful observations are finally on paper. And they live stronger now. I think midway through, this is what made it easier. The more I wrote, the more she grew and she began to like it.
“Your Favorite Blogger’s, Favorite DJ”:
DJ Diva is an internet DJ who works with websites, bloggers, and individuals to create tailored mixtapes for exclusive and particular needs. An avid clubhead, DJ Diva has been spinning Old School, R&B and HipHop music in bars, lounges and various parties since 2000. Starting in 2007, she became the first female DJ to create a regular weekly R&B podcast on the internet entitled the “Monday Mixtape”. Themixtress.com, her website, contains over 300 mixtapes which receive continual hits. Her specialty is Old School music from the 80’s and 90’s, and she also explores other genres of music, yet her insight for future classics is uncontested! She was professionally trained in 2008 at the renowned Scratch Academy, where she earned the respect of her instructors and her peers for her unique ear and playlist arrangement.
What makes her an expert in the assembly of exceptionally specialized mixtapes? One listener said it best:
“When you tailor a mix, you do it with emotion. You make the listener feel each song of the mix and you do it with grace and expertise. Whatever mix I pick up to hear, the title and the song choices will transport me to that picture you are creating. You are an artist, but it's like you paint with song placement.”
DJ Diva has become a favorite DJ of, and has worked with, many of your favorite Bloggers such as Afrobella, DearZette, Inkcognegro, The Soul Reservoir, The Black Tech Report, Tee Erika Patterson, Music Looks Like This, and the Kitchen Rebel.
When Jimi Izreal wrote his book “The Denzel Principle”, he hired DJ Diva to produce 2 mixtapes for social media promotion. These mixtapes were record breaking and distinctive due to the banging jams and Jimi’s provocative spoken excerpts, laid over relevant and enjoyable instrumental beats. This was also the first time an author had worked with a DJ for such a distinctive venture.
DJ Diva has also done personalized mixtapes for award winning and well known websites such as:DearZette.com: Website Re-launch – Neo Soul Groove Mix 2011
SoulBounce.com: DJ Diva was made their first female mixologist in 2010
CentricTV.com: Art of Seduction in 2010
Afrobella.com: Caress Girls’ Nite Out Exclusive Mix in 2010
The Soul Reservoir: Best of 2010 R&B Mix
DJ Diva is the First Lady of the MPC (Music Podcast Consortium), which is the elite group of music podcasters across the net and spanning the globe. She was instrumental in the conception and one of the founding members of the Cupid’s Hunt Project in 2008. The Cupid’s Hunt Project is a Valentine’s Day gift of music from members of the MPC and others. DJ Diva has added a special themed mixtape to the project each year, as well as promoted others who have participated by using specialized drops throughout the mixes to promote recognition of the mission.
For the last two years she has participated in the BART, which is best known as the Best Albums Roundtable, where podcasters, bloggers, and music producers discuss the best music issued throughout the year, and talk about what may be arriving in the near future. With her exceptional canniness, DJ Diva has now been acclaimed as the “Miss Cleo” of R&B, because of her psychic ability to predict trends and outcomes in R&B and urban music.
DJ Diva continues to pay homage to the music from the past with her mixes and she also keeps her ear to the ground for those hit singles that will last all through time. If you would like to engage DJ Diva for a project, please email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- City College of New YorkEnglish Literature
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