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let it be

there. I've done my dissertation "make up day" but I still feel like I'm getting nowhere. Probably what I should do next is stop writing for a day and pick up How to Write and The Making of Americans and leaf through my own annotations to find out just what it is about them I had decided to say, for I have somewhat forgotten. right now all I have is the bare thread of metonymy connecting Levinas to Stein, and although I was trained in undergrad how to forge discursive bonds where there are only suggestions of terminological affinity, it's been some time since I've written something that wasn't already fairly clear to me in my head.

in other words, I can't just make this part up. I'm actually going to have to construct some sort of method of inquiry for myself. used to be this consisted of reading till nightfall and then scribbling things down in my bedside notebook before falling asleep. which makes me think I should pick up one of these two books now except that I'd really like to go for a walk instead.

the fear: I am going to pick up one book and all the notes I made are going to say the opposite of what I've been saying in the dissertation.

this is unlikely, as I've been conducting investigations in approximately the same areas and directions in everything I've read since leaving high school. thus the narrative of my own philosophical evolution is written in the margins of all the books I own, which can be quite convenient when you are coming back to something a couple of years later and are hoping what you said then is still significant now. so far I haven't been terribly disappointed but it always requires some adjustment to what context I was writing in then as opposed to now. but generally there is something upon which to seize. I just don't want to be disappointed, you know? What if this whole Stein strategy has been a big red herring?

well then I guess I will go through my dissertation with my text editor, replacing all occurences of "Stein" with "some" or "others" or "elsewhere" or something.

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