Wednesday, January 11, 2012

I'm really not good at updating.

As usual, I spent most of Christmas worrying about the things I had to do for the next term. Difficult books to read and all that, whereas all I wanted to read was fiction. And I did read some books, The Thornbirds and Wild Seed, both of which I recommend. For those of you who don't already know what the first one is about, suffice it to know that it's an old-fashioned epic drama of the kind that can't go wrong. The second is a somewhat more curious book, about immortality and what it does to morality. I have read some other books as well, but nothing worth commenting on just yet. If I don't get overwhelmed with university in the next couple of days I will try to write a bit about some other books as well.

Good stuff.

My classes haven't actually started, but since I have a very good supervisor for my master's thesis, I'm actually starting to work on it now and not in the fall, when I'm supposed to start. I'm planning to go spend the fall in the Ukraine with a friend of mine, so naturally it would be a good idea to get the work started already at this early stage. This means I'm reading far heavier books than those previously mentioned, like Christopher Lyon's Definiteness and Michael Flier's Aspects of Nominal Determination in Old Church Slavic. Naturally, it's quite frightening. I haven't written anything beyond 25 pages so far during my time as a student, and now I am going to write my master's thesis on long form and short form adjectives and participles in Old Church Slavonic. I'm also annotating a new saint vitae from Codex Suprasliensis for the corpus that I get my data from, Житие и страдание святого мученика Конона Исаврийского.

That's in addition to my classes, which are Variants of Russian, Russian written culture - origins and history up until the 18th century, and a double class on ancient Greek! I hope all of this won't be too overwhelming. I have a goal of reading 35 books this year and on keeping up learning Ukrainian very slowly. Writing this out I feel the need for a second glass of wine, and perhaps a whiskey (cheap, of course, I am but a student).

Today I got myself a second desk! I'm very thrilled about it, because ever since I got my first desk (and I was very happy about having a desk at last after having lived in tiny apartments in Oslo), the entire surface has always been covered by my huge keyboard, my ergonomic mouse, my laptop and my extra monitor. So I end up studying on the sofa. And falling asleep. In our new apartment, my office is so big I can have two desks, a cupboard, a bookshelf and still fit in a guest bed when someone comes to visit (something that never happens, but it may). Fabulous, isn't it? The best part is that I can avoid the awful assigned seats at University for master students, that you have to apply for and go to four times a week if you don't want to lose them. You find them in small rooms with bad ventilation and you sit at half a meter's distance from the next person. And you can't eat, drink, play music and all that. How can people study in that kind of environment?

Much better.


  1. I've been reading your OCS log on HTLAL, keep up the good work! Like you I flick between my university work and fiction, which has a nice balance to it. How do you not get confused between Ukrainian, OCS, Greek etc?

  2. Hi there! The only thing that can be a bit confusing is Ukrainian and Russian (and Swedish/Norwegian). When I've done lots of Ukrainian, I start pronouncing Russian и as ы, since that's how it is in Ukrainian, and I tend to make things more Ukrainian in general. When I'm speaking Ukrainian, it's all horribly Russian anyway, so no language is actually winning ;) I'll have to see if Greek somehow starts tripping up my OCS knowledge when we get into declinations and those kinds of things!