Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Happiness-filled on a Cold Day in Belgie

I finally found the perfect Turkish blog .... perfect for me anyway.

Erkan is a graduate student of the Anthropology Department at Rice University and he is writing his dissertation thesis on MEDIATING THE EUROPEAN UNION (EU): MAKING THE EU NEWS IN TURKEY. Erkan is planning to gradually begin an ethnographic study on the role of Turkish journalists both as the receivers and the producers of the European Union (EU) discourses in Turkey.

I thought I had died and gone to heaven when I read that his intention was to blend his field life with news on Turkish and EU relations, making his blog a delicious mix of news and daily life. You can find his blog here: Erkan's field diary and I've added it to my links list.

I was reading a little more on his site this morning and noticed a comment from Lorenz, quoting Cicilie Fagerlid's explanation on why she began blogging her anthropological fieldwork in Paris:
After I started I have noticed that blogging sharpens the attention, just like taking a lot of photos (and probably painting) does; One starts to see motifs everywhere, and then one has to reflect on how to make the motif into a story so other people can understand what you want to tell them. Cicilie Fagerlid It's so true.

My excitement?
Back in early 2000, I was a university student and although a BA in Literature was the degree I came out with, I discovered Anthropology towards the end of my studies and fell in love with this discipline that (to me) seemed to incorporate a mixture of all I loved best in life ... people telling their stories, with an immersion in different lives and cultures. I was fortunate enough to have Professor Douglas Holmes for my political anthro papers, and to be exposed to his research which focused on the social and cultural dynamics of advanced European integration. He has been concerned with how integration has provoked the re-emergence of extreme right-wing political movements across Europe. He was a thought-provoking inspiring lecturer who challenged his students about the historical past and the future possibilities of European integration. You can read a sample chapter of his book here: Integral Europe

And so it is ... perhaps now you can understand a little more on why finding someone studying the EU from a Turkish perspective might make me happiness-filled.


Dobermann said...

I have to admit that those two blogs you mentioned were interesting.

I think I currently have great place to work in "studying-wise". I'm working in government branch where I see lot of cases concerning foreign citizens. Also the good co-workers are inspirational: two politics graduates from two different universities and two social-politics graduates.

Even though I'm still to go to university, I think I have learned so much just on coffee breaks at work. I'm also currently reading about Us and EU relations and how they have changed after 9/11 and Irak. It's mind blowing.. I got there from reading about international terrorism from WWII to modern day.. ..I still have that topic "in progress", but so much new has come my way..

woman wandering said...

I'm glad you found the anthro blogs interesting ... I still haven't worked out how I want to use this blog but perhaps we learn as we go.

Your job sounds interesting, I'm a little envious as I suspect your coffee breaks are just as useful as studying. Politics was another subject that my anthropology lecturer touched on, making me think I would have loved studying it too.

Gert is deeply involved in politics in Belgium, so sometimes I have to pinch myself, just to be sure that I am awake and living just down the road from all that EU stuff. I should add a link to Prof Holmes book to this blog, although I feel guilty as I noticed some people get notified whenever I post, and I edit a lot ... has a sample of it anyway.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe this! Douglas Holmes is a friend of Rice Anthro. And one of the first books my professors recommended was his 'Integral Europe'. His book is one of the key works I use for my own theoretical orientation!
And dobermann, your coffee break reminded me an article co-written by Douglas Holmes and George Marcus about the workings of the Fed. And they argue anecdotes, which are accepted trivial in social scientific discourse, might have an unexpected role in forming of para-ethnographies.......

Erkan said...

Oopss that anonymous is me, Erkan!

woman wandering said...

I'm glad you knew what I was talking of when I mentioned Integral Europe - no one ever does so I hesitate to talk of it. Douglas married a New Zealander and was home with her until the Americans lured him back to their universities. I felt kind of privileged to be sharing time with him at Otago University. He was really inspiring.

Dobermann said...

I'm trying to stay as observer.. It's sometimes hard to just listen "Average Joes" conversation since I seem to have access to more information (my job) and I also have couple friends working in EU..

I try to avoid politics if possible. My reasoning: I like to interact with people, not politicians and parties. People are more interesting, politics are more like a big water moving. It's more interesting when watching from a distance and being able to see the big picture..