As one o'clock fast approaches, I find I haven't the energy to write much. Fortunately, I haven't a whole lot to say tonight, having spent the vast majority of the day teaching and discussing essay topics with my students. Pleasingly, several of my students have decided to write essays about Disgrace and, from what I have seen of their writing thus far, they have quite a few interesting things to say about the novel. And I say this after having read more than one hundred critical essays on the book. There's no better feeling for a teacher than to experience the joy of being taught by one's students, so I am in uncommonly good spirits this evening.
That said, I did not read any additional criticism today. Since I just checked the MLA bibliography and found (mercifully only) a few additional essays, I should be able to finish reading all the criticism I have been able to locate within the next few days. Obviously, Disgrace has spawned a prolific critical cottage industry and articles will continue appearing as I move forward in my studies. Still, in addition to having read every bit of scholarship on Disgrace available in the university libraries within 50 miles of my home, I have gotten ahold of every bit of critical writing available to me via InterLibrary loan, internet searching, and electronic database scouring, so there really isn't much more I can read. A recent email discussion with some colleagues in South Africa suggests several articles exist that have not yet made their way into the databases to which I have access, but that, too, is out of my control. Ergo, having exhausted my supply of critical reading, I will be starting the pre-writing phase of the Disgrace chapter soon. Mind you, I am not complaining. If anything, I am looking forward to the change of pace. I'm sure I will begin hating the writing process soon enough but, for now, I welcome the novelty of penning another chapter. Seriously, I have read so much criticism and I have spent so much time reviewing the interpretations of others that I feel somewhat estranged from Coetzee's text and my original conception of the chapter-to-be. It'll be nice to get back to fleshing out my own reading of the novel, especially now that I have been informed by such a wide variety of interpretations.
That said, today's "work" is yet another bedtime reading of Brink's The Rights of Desire.
For tomorrow: Read another essay.