Fall Semester 2023 Study

I have a short little update on the fall semester.

I’m sitting here in the Student Commons on the second floor in White Hall as I write this post, waiting for my next class to start in a half hour. APG 200, or Language & Culture to be more specific. After being late for another class because no campus in the entirety of New England ever has nearly enough commuter parking as they should. Especially for morning classes. I will likely never know why, considering how much these universities charge for tuition, boarding and fees… and having massive campuses with hundreds of acres. It’s not like they don’t have the room or the funds for more parking.

There’s my rant for the start of the semester. Don’t even get me started on how hot and humid the start of the semester has been this year. 

But I digress. 

So, in order to (hopefully) not take more than five semesters to complete this undergraduate degree of mine, I’ve decided to take a minimum of 4 classes each semester. Which given the credit system at URI comes out to either 12 or 13 credits per semester. Which is fine considering the workload of upper level courses, especially Anthropology & History courses which are heavy on lectures, readings and copious amounts of weekly writing assignments. I do have 2 General Education requirements to fulfill while I study here, since the Art & Math course I took at CCRI didn’t transfer to meet that. URI is weird about their core curriculum.

My current line up of courses for the fall of 2023:

GRK 101 Ancient Greek 1

MTH 106 Mathematics of Social Choice & Finance (thankfully asynchronistic & online)

APG 200 Language & Culture

APG 414 Culture & Cognition

I forgot how esoteric Anthropology courses at university can be. Which is why from now on, my concentration will be archaeology & ancient history moving forward. As the cultural courses are more about social justice warrior training than anything else, unfortunately. That is not why I’m here, and if I wanted to study that, I would have majored in it. I have very little interest in modern cultures, unless they are closely related to more ancient ones. Rooted firmly outside the United States and “American” culture. If social justice is anyone else’s interest and you plan to go to URI, I recommend the cultural anthropology track in the Anthropology major or the Sociology major.

Modern societies & cultures to me feel…. exhausting. Disheartening. Draining. Unsettling. Disconnected.

I could continue but I think most get the general drift. 

My interests lie more in understanding the past, and preserving dying folkways, dead or dying languages and revitalizing the old pre-christian ways. But that is my choice, it’s fine if others disagree or don’t appreciate that. Sadly, unlike the UK and most of Europe, the United States doesn’t separate socio-cultural anthropology from archaeology into different majors. Which is odd, because they are actually two different sets of theories and methodologies, even if they have a lot of similarities.

Anywho, onward!

So, for those who are not currently matriculated at URI or are interested in going to URI soon, I’ll give a short description of each course from the URI course catalog.

GRK 101, Ancient Greek 1: Grammar and syntax of Attic Greek, reading & writing practice. (by Attic Greek, they really do mean the Ancient Greek dialect of Athens from around 5th century – and yes, transliteration is a big part of the coursework. Speaking it is less of an emphasis.)

MTH 106, Mathematics of Social Choice & Finance: Voting methods, apportionment problems, and mathematics of everyday finance. Emphasis on development of reasoning ability as well as manipulative techniques with numbers.

APG 200 Language & Culture: Cross-listed as (APG), LIN 200. Introduction to anthropological approaches to the study of language. Focuses on cross-cultural language diversity, taking into account how geography, history, colonization, gender, racial, ethnic identities shape linguistic and cultural practices.

APG 414 Culture & Cognition: Explores relationship between human society, human culture and human thought through an examination of biocultural aspects of human cognition and their implications for the understanding of culture. Pre: APG 200 or APG 201 or APG 202 or APG 203. (Pre, refers to having taken at least one of the required lower level APG courses 200 through 203 before taking higher level APG courses.)

It already feels like a bit much, now that I also have a part time campus job in the hydroponics farms, but so far I’m finding ways to keep up. Thankfully, I chose to work only 3 days a week or roughly 12-15 hours, keeping two days a week and weekends for coursework, study, hobbies, and rest. Mostly for mental health, preventing burnout, and for my sanity! For now, my focus is on acclimating to my new job, practicing my hobbies and creating content around them & my studies, and passing my classes. Hopefully, while sustainably managing mental health and physical wellbeing.

On that note, may the odds ever be in your favor, and may the fall semester be a good one!

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