Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Wednesday afternoons

Reading for my PhD is most difficult on Wednesday afternoons, because we have our weekly seminars on Wednesday mornings, and they are usually mentally exhausting. That may be why I started the blog on a Wednesday afternoon - it is a way to postpone reading.
For our seminar this morning, we read the introduction to A Modern History of the Islamic World by Reinhard Schulze. The most interesting point of the discussion was when we talked about language as representational vis-a-vis language as constitutive. If one takes language as representational, facts can exist while if one takes language as constitutive, they do not exist independently of theoretical schema. For Schulze, facts exist outside of discourse, which is something that I am no longer comfortable working theoretically with. I have thought about this a lot, and I see myself as moving towards anti-foundationalism, which is where I want to locate myself and my PhD. I shall probably keep writing about it here as I keep reading further.