I’m Writing This To Say…

I have not written since November, but I have plenty to say.
This quarter I’m taking a class on modern Middle Eastern history, and it has given me a whole new perspective on events from the past few decades that continue to play out today.
Most notably is the Arab-Israeli conflict in Palestine, an issue that has been in the periphery of my consciousness since I was a child. I have faint memories of young angry Palestinian faces, checkered scarves, and images of stone throwing on the television.
I always assumed Israel was the good guy. I read about them in the Bible; they were God’s chosen people.

Well, my perspective has shifted dramatically, although I could argue I never really had a perspective up to this point. I hope to write in depth about this issue soon as a means of sorting it out in my head (I never really believe anything until I write it out).

By the end of this quarter (next week) I will have read roughly 4500 pages of text over the past ten weeks. I am taking a European Lit course in which I have read Don Quixote, Joseph Andrews, Pride and Prejudice, Madame Bovary, War and Peace, The Plague, and a 1980 novel from nobel prize-winning french author J.M.G. Le Clezio, Desert (a book I might also write about at length).
I also read John Milton’s epic poem Paradise Lost, in all its glory (and ancient English spelling).
By next monday I will have written a 10-12 page paper on Tolstoy’s gender-ideals in War and Peace (8 pages done so far) and a 10-12 page paper on duality and balance in Paradise Lost (have…not…started…)
I also have a 6 page paper due friday for my history class on a small book called Palestinian Walks.

Oh, and I have four tests between now and monday as well.
And I might be teaching English abroad sometime in the next year.
And I applied for an internship at Sub Pop Records.

So hopefully this post serves as a justification for my lack of blogg-ness in the past few months. Even though I think there are only two people that check this blog, I write for myself mostly.

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1 Comment

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One response to “I’m Writing This To Say…

  1. Scott continues his fearless quest into Uncomfortable Territory. I think that in most cases there are no bad guys, just good guys behaving badly. The conflict seems intractible as long as there is such mutual hatred. The Israelis were easy to champion when they were returning to their ancient land and were disinclined to be "pushed into the sea" by the Arab nations that thought it would be a quick job, but Israel has become the aggressor now. Most Palestinians only wish to live where they have lived and worked and buried their dead for thousands of years, and are understandably touchy about being pushed around. Blame Britain and France for wresting the region from the Ottomans, who at least had imposed some order there (largely a result of the Islamic tenet of tolerance), creating a mess of indefensible borders and then leaving. Add to the pot the conviction of many Christians that whatever Israel does is right because God promised them their land. We built our own nation this way — but most of our first nations Americans had the decency to die off from the diseases we brought them, and the rest have mostly drifted away into quiet self-destruction. Israel has been less lucky making their unwanted neighbors disappear. In any case, the lie of manifest destiny is a dangerous tool. It is still true, no matter who holds the pink slip, that we shall reap as we sew. God said that.

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