I thoroughly enjoyed the ProfTalks that were given yesterday, not just because they were informative about writing and research, but also because I always find it interesting to see the different ways that people connect with English. The teachers that talked to us were from different fields, Warnick being concerned with rhetoric and writing, and Rosko concerned with poetry and creative writing, and I thought it was really interesting to see the kind of overlap that can be done with English studies. English can be applied in so many ways, with the general aspects of it being underlying themes, which was what Rosko was outlining on the board, showing a sort of progression of the education of a writer, showing how theory, and practice, and even a creative writing concentration are all tools that help form a basis for a strong knowledge of English. Rosko is a poet, who practices writing all the time, and understands that all we learn about theory, literature, and writing come together in each respective field, regardless of what it is. She asked us what we all thought went into good writing, which was an interesting exercise because we for the most part usually just read something and go, “Wow, that was really good writing”. Actually talking about aspects of writing, like the evocation of emotion and authority of the writing, style, intention, etc. made one think more concisely about what does go into good writing, and even how the inclusion of more of these aspects could go into one’s own writing. Warnick and his research comes less from a creative writing standpoint but more of the practice side of English, with the writing of Wikipedia articles and being interested in the way that people and students write.
Both teachers help to convey the message that writing and the use of English studies can take a lot of different forms, and can be applicable to basically anything that interests you, which is what we are learning with the writing of our research papers. I chose to write about a book, and with that book and research relating to it I was able to talk about philosophical ideas, and speculate about what an author who lived 100s of years ago was thinking. English and the study of it can be applied in a variety of different ways, and we can see that it is not just restricted to just teaching, which is what most people assume about English.