Monday, April 12, 2010


My class is small now, as it usually is this time in the semester. There are 13 students actively attending class, and one who lost her fiance a month before the wedding whom I have not seen for a while. She says she will be back to class on Weds. For some reason, she has lots of legal business to transact with her would-be in laws. Perhaps they had bought a home or something. In any case, there will be a lot to do to help her try to catch up. She refuses to take a W or an Incomplete because she has been accepted to the University for next semester, on the condition that she completes all the classes she is taking now suitably.
But I have been speaking with each of the students about his or her research topic, and I am especially pleased that I helped one of them to choose just the right book and film for him. This student is from Russia. He is an excellent, exceedingly bright student, who wants to transfer to the philosophy department at the university next year.
Given his interests and nationality, I recommended Stanislaus Lem's novel, Solaris, and Tarkovsky's film of the same title. I knew he would find them congenial, and he does. He is really quite taken with the novel especially, but had never heard of Lem before I mentioned the book. Since it is such a philosophical work (actually, both the movie and the book are), I thought he would like them. Perhaps this is the best suggestion I've ever made to a student of a topic to research.


Lou said...

Good for you, Robbi!

Robbi said...

It's quite satisfying!

theblowingbranches said...

I just stumbled upon your blog and found this post interesting. I was curious about what class you teach. I've been adjunct in English depts at community colleges and it sounds so familiar. I miss the classroom. I am not teaching right now due to budget cuts. ;(

By the way, I love your headstand. I am also an Iyengar yoga student. Oh the wonders of Headstand! Patty

theblowingbranches said...

What class do you teach? Sounds so familiar. I teach English part time.

Love your headstand...oh the wonders of the world viewed from upside down. ;)Patty

theblowingbranches said...

I like this post. Do you teach English? Me too. ;) Oh the joys of student research paper topics.

I love your headstand picture. It's great to find kindred spirits.


Robbi said...

Hi Patti! Welcome to my world.
I have been teaching English at Irvine Valley College since about 2000. I have a PhD in Comparative Literature and an MFA, as well as an MA in English that I picked up along the way. I've been teaching since 1980.
I teach whatever I can, but only at one place because I have to care for my elderly parents.
Right now I am teaching a rhetoric and argumentation class.
Where do you teach?
I do Iyengar yoga, and have written a series of poems (which you will find in the blog if you poke around) about each of the 15 poses in Mr. Iyengar's Emotional Stability sequence. I am looking for an artist familiar with yoga who can do fluid black line water color drawings of the asanas so non-yogis can visualize them.
Know anyone?