Monday, March 22, 2010

Maen Bwrw Glaw

Back in New Haven, where the weather is appropriately wet and dreary for New England.

Two weeks is a long time to be away from school in the middle of a semester, but I somehow still can't believe that spring break's already over. Maybe it's due to the fact that academics were quite far from my mind for most of break. It could also be the taste of mouthwateringly gooey, fresh-baked Ghirardelli brownies that continues to linger 1,488 miles away. In any case, hopefully I can snap back into school mode before my exams later this week.

The day began innocently enough. During Korean class, we studied the history of the Korean diaspora in the United States, Japan, Brazil, and Germany.

The trouble began this afternoon in Psychology. Jeremy Wolfe, professor at a certain rival institution in Cambridge, presented a guest lecture titled "Freud and Fairy Tales," during which he systematically traumatized the audience by shedding light on the hidden sexual undertones of traditional folk tales. Hansel and Gretel, according to Professor Wolfe, is an oral stage tale in which the candy house embodies oral stage issues, and the witch represents "orality gone nuts." Jack and the Beanstalk, on the other hand, is apparently an early Oedipal stage tale, replete with phallic symbolism, while Snow White is an "anal fairy tale in the woods."

Then I get to Portuguese, where I thought I'd be safe from the Germanic world of the Brothers Grimm and their disturbing tales. Much to my despair, however, Professora Marta decided that translating well-known fairy tales would be an excellent way to practice the imperfeito. As a result, not only did I have to struggle with a new verb tense, I also was haunted throughout the class by thoughts of asexual dwarfs, accentuated femininity, and the pleasure-seeking id.

Food for thought from the New York Times:
Big Win for Obama, but at What Cost?
(David E. Sanger)
« The House’s passage of health care legislation late Sunday night assures that whatever the ultimate cost, President Obama will go down in history as one of the handful of presidents who found a way to reshape the nation’s social welfare system.

But there is no doubt that in the course of this debate, Mr. Obama has lost something — and lost it for good. Gone is the promise on which he rode to victory less than a year and a half ago — the promise of a “postpartisan” Washington in which rationality and calm discourse replaced partisan bickering. »