10 November 2009

Battling with my Dentist

This past weekend was spent battling with my dentist. In fact, I have been battling my dentist for about two weeks now. And I think I am almost done with it.

See, the thing is, when one writes a dissertation, one needs to battle with the dentist. According to my adviser, I need to convince my dentist that my topic is important. Now what does this exactly mean?

The thing is, most academics get lost in their own bubble. They have been doing their research for a long time, that for them, they could easily think that what they do research on is so important for the world. Same thing for graduate students. If a PhD candidate like me is reading and writing stuff about one thing and just one thing for every day for a couple of years, then one can easily contrive in one's head that what one is doing is important. One can easily be in a situation where it is very hard to think outside of the bubble.

Now my adviser told me that in order to avoid this predicament, one needs to convince one's dentist that what one is doing is indeed important and not just trivial. The thing is, dentists are intelligent beings, but they are also naive when it comes to one's research. So dentists can understand what one manipulates in one's study since they are intelligent beings, but they are naive as to why we do it. Thus, my adviser told me to convince my dentist that my work is important, and if I can do this, then that means I fully understand inside and out what my research is and why I am doing it.

So yeah, I have been battling with my dentist. And I think I am done with it. Yay!

(Six-Armed God, from my Sackler and Freer Collection Series)

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