Writing my dissertation proposal was exciting for me. Completing it and turning it in were serious accomplishments in my semester. After completing my film article and setting that aside, I was *finally* able to focus on the BIG PICTURE of the dissertation rather than worrying about this source or that source or this article or that bibliography. Of course, the proposal needed to talk about many of those itty bitty things, too, but at least I finally saw structure to the dissertation rather than some HUGE, amorphous blob of stress-induced writing.
My dissertation proposal has sketches of chapters (Hallelujah!), a tentative table of contents (minus the pg numbers, of course), and a massive bibliography that I've been honing for about two years while writing seminar papers on this same topic. It also has an abstract and justifications for why I'm writing on certain texts and excluding others. It was actually a very interesting document to create. Looking at the big picture has already helped me. I added two chapters that I wasn't even expecting (but now am really excited about), while scratching another one that wouldn't have worked out with the argument I'm proposing. I also combined two others.
When my advisor handed it back to me (luckily it was done before he resigns on July 1st--don't even get me started on that subject...), I was surprised at how little he actually wanted me to change. The abstract needs to be revised to fit within the graduate school's guidelines because mine is too long and not focused enough. Also, my introductory chapter needs to encompass a broader survey of my topic rather than jumping so quickly into my argument. But, other than that, it seems that everything is a go. Green light, KB!
My first chapter after the intro will be on Jane Eyre. I am excited about diving in to JE again. LOVE it.
In other news...I bought our 10-year high school reunion tickets this week. I'm actually getting pumped for it. I need to go shopping for some cute dresses. Does anyone know what is in style right now? I have had my head buried in books too long to have any idea. But I know who all the hot literary critics are right now. Does that count for anything at a reunion?