Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Thesis writing and MA auditing

Well, it looks like all the dramas of moving are over, except for initiating some kind of complaint process with our bad cleaners.

I'm trying at the moment to write my thesis in some kind of earnest. If you recall my basic premise: to test for the presence of 9 specific criteria that will help cast Chrysostom in a pro-Nicene camp for his hermeneutical method, then what I am currently doing is working criteria by criteria, browsing through my extensive notes on the Homilies, and writing a section on each criterion. I find a number of key passages, quote them in translation (my own), cite the greek in a footnote, and then talk about what Chrysostom is doing and how the criterion is in operation. This should form the bulk of my 30,000 words. Once I finish this, I need to do some work in section 2, which is introducing the criteria and my rationale for them, along with some non-Chrysostom illustration (perhaps) of them. And then I need to step back to section 1, which is introductory material, to cover Eunomius and a few other things.

So, considerable work to be done. I still have some other secondary literature I need to read, as well.

At the same time I am auditing some MA subjects, which graciously my college permits research students to do at no extra cost. This week and next I'm sitting in and enjoying (so far), "American Protestantism" with Robert Lindar. American history in general, and religious history at all, is really a hole in my understanding of world history, and this is certainly filling in some gaps, as well as a very non-related area to most of my studies. I'm also down to do Galatians with Philip Kern, which should be excellent. The only downside of this is that it's chewing up 18hours of my week, so I'm not as focused and productive elsewhere as I could be.

So these two commitments have put some other things on hold. Once these 3 weeks are up I hope to find a bit more time to allocate for the McGuffey, Orberg, and Gregory side-projects. Ideally, I'll finish up the thesis ahead of the end of the year, and if I don't immediately fall into a job, I'll be able to get the Gregory reader completed quickly.

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