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The Balancing Path

University, the land of opportunity. You finally crested the hill of qualifications, applications, decisions, and dilemmas; it’s time to choose your own path. You breathe a sigh of relief and gaze out at the horizon ahead; its shifting colours and flashes of light are indistinct, but promising. As September arrives and the leaves start to …

Rhizome Thinking

One of the joys of university is learning how to think differently. In this blog, I’d like to offer Study is a Rhizomeas as a rich conceptual metaphor for thinking about studying.  Conceptual metaphors are useful for understanding abstract concepts. They were investigated by Lakoff and Johnson in Metaphors We Live By and today are …

Thinking about the future when time has lost all shape and predictability

English degrees don’t outline a select career path. We’ve all heard the jokes with that central gist, that the only thing to do with an English degree is to become a teacher (no shade implied; I have nothing but respect for the profession!). Of course, there are plenty of other jobs available to us too. …

Being Kind To Yourself – Coping With Normality In Changing Times

‘Coping with normality’ seems like an odd phrase, but it is one that is needed in these unprecedented times as tasks which seemed simple pre-2020 now seem like a challenge. Everybody knows that 2020 was a year like no other, and going into 2021 I do believe that we need to be kinder to ourselves …

Confessions of an escapism artist – handling escapism while social distancing

At times like these, the urge to escape from the world is greater than ever. This may be through TV, books, games, music… anything that might help someone mentally escape from the reality. And with modern technology, it is all too easy to achieve. You may not even recognise that you are doing it. It’s …

Beyond the Books: What Has University Taught Me?

Besides (hopefully) gaining an English degree, going to University has taught me so much. From theatre practitioners, the Irish Literary Revival and the works of Alexander Pope, to key poetic techniques and the acquisition of children’s language, my degree’s breadth has equipped me with vital analytical and critical skills. Yet my University education certainly went …

Mental Health Awareness in the English Department

Becky Cameron is known for sending out emails. In fact, any English student’s emails are most definitely 60% Becky Cameron, which I say with the utmost fondness – especially after the day she organised on the 12th of March 2020. I always find myself a little sceptical of Mental Health Awareness week. It sometimes feels …

Taking Refuge in Literature

As we turned inward during lockdown, we may have felt more compelled than ever to turn to books to find refuge during these trying times. We turn to devour endless pages with imaginary places of fantasy to a world buzzing with life. A reality of social life which, to us, felt fictional and so far …

The Friendly Introvert

On a large campus, it is very easy to get swallowed up by the crowd. However, part of the university experience is getting out there and meeting new people. Not only is making connections important in making the campus feel more like a home, it is also an important skill to develop for your budding …

Bittersweet Symphony – my ode to being a final year English student

It seemed that as soon as I arrived back to University after Christmas, all fresh-faced and bushy tailed, the prospect of (gulp) graduating and (gulp) leaving Nottingham, hit me like a tonne of bricks (or should I say books?). I have become so accustomed to my routine as an English student at Nottingham. Weekdays are …