Literary Leading Ladies

In the spirit of International Women’s Day (March 8) and British Mother’s Day (March 18) I felt like compiling a list of women that continue to impress and inspire me. There are many real-life examples (love you, Mum!) I could mention, but the women I’m writing about today are just as present in my life – usually just a quick grab away, they’re always on my bookshelf. Continue reading “Literary Leading Ladies”

Bachelor Basics: Introduction to Linguistics

When I started my Bachelor’s degree in 2008, I had absolutely no idea what to expect. Sure, I had read all the leaflets and info pages, been on the tour around the buildings and even saw a student advisor, but I was still clueless. When you don’t know anyone in your field of study, wrapping your head around your classes and the syllabus expectations can be daunting, and my experience was no different. Continue reading “Bachelor Basics: Introduction to Linguistics”

‘Tis the season…for corny movies!

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As it gets colder, darker and windier, people’s urge to stay inside wrapped up in a blanket and/or a heartwarming story is reliably met by Hollywood every Christmas season. While the ensuing sap-fest might be simply too much to bear for many, I always enjoy it. Yes, I’ll admit it – I’m one of those people who get excited for Christmas season as soon as the carved pumpkins disappear from the stores. Instead of ranting about commercialism, I’ve decided to embrace it at least to some extent, and fluffy movies are a big part of my Christmas anticipation.  Continue reading “‘Tis the season…for corny movies!”

Inspirational Classics: Jane Eyre

I distinctly remember the moment a certain Zurich literature professor made the following claim to a full classroom: “You are not here because you love to read. You shouldn’t be here because you love to read.” Said professor then went on a rant about how a literature student’s job is to pick apart a text’s symbolism and theorize it into oblivion.
Well, my reason for studying literature is exactly that: I love to read. I love the process of treading through the first few pages, unsure of what lies ahead, and then of growing fonder of the story in my mind with every page I turn. I consider myself lucky that I haven’t lost the ability to lose myself in a book, to read without dissecting, and if that makes me a bad literature student, I really couldn’t care less! 😀 Comfortingly enough, there’s at least one literary genius on our curriculum who agrees: None other than Oscar Wilde once claimed that it is “better to take pleasure in a rose than to put its root under a microscope.” Continue reading “Inspirational Classics: Jane Eyre”

Cupcake Day

Image courtesy of DixieBelleCupcakeCafe (Flickr)

As we all know, there’s another fabulous FAVA Cake Day coming up at the English department in less than a week. Like most people reading this (or so I assume!), I too have all-too-fond memories of the Kafistübli tables covered in sweet delicacies, not to mention of eating them in class (sneakily or openly, depending on the lecturer’s lenience) afterwards because I spent the entire break debating which yummy slice to pick! Continue reading “Cupcake Day”

The Expat Experience: Double Dutch

Two weeks after sitting my last Bachelor exam in Zurich, I moved to the Netherlands with my husband. As everyone who has ever moved house or changed universities – or even simply switched to a new shampoo brand – knows, fresh starts can be both daunting and exhilarating, and moving abroad is essentially the same, just on a much bigger scale.

A change of seasons later, I am still in the process of readjusting. It’s a little like the settling-in period after you’ve bought a fabulous new sofa, but don’t quite know which corner is the comfiest for you yet. Continue reading “The Expat Experience: Double Dutch”