Thursday, April 19, 2012

Once Upon a Time, a Princess Studied in an Ivory Tower

Photo credit: RC Designer on
This first paragraph of this article by Katy Waldman sums up a frequent fantasy of mine: 
In my alternate life, I am applying to grad school. Not so much to individual programs as to a singular gleaming citadel called Grad School that perches above the workaday world, winking at passersby. It has a library and dining halls and courtyards filled with colored leaves. Unless those leaves are surfboards or cross-country skiers. I’m not picky about location.
The rest of the article doesn't really hit home for me but it brings me back around at the end:
Going to graduate school is no longer a way of opting out of the endless search for a better job, the best job, any job. It’s become an element of—a strategy to be deployed in—that search. The escape I dreamed of is only an illusion. Airy academia will not save me from the grind of being an adult. Rather than magic citadels where you can weather the recession and mute its related stresses, Grad School is now part of a larger calculation—one in which love of learning defers to crummy real-world concerns, just like in the rest of post-college life. 
If this dream is gone then what is left for we pseudo-intellectuals to fantasize about in the fleeting moments between worrying about pre-school admissions and paying the mortgage?

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