Writing in the middle

The Thesis Whisperer

This post is from Calvin Ho from UCLA – TBC

Screen Shot 2014-11-09 at 10.46.57 amAcademics don’t often talk about how they write. By how, I mean the nitty-gritty how. Sure, you may set up your laptop in a coffee shop and open up a Word document, but how do you go from blank page to finished thesis?

One strategy is to write blog posts. Many academics are wary of blogging because they’re concerned about letting ideas out there before they’re fully baked. In my experience, you don’t even need to have a blog to reap the benefits of writing blog posts! In this post I’ll take you through the steps of writing one particular post, explain why I didn’t finish it, and tell you why I it wasn’t a waste of time.

One of my main research goals for this semester is to write a solid draft of my thesis proposal, something that is…

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The “Gente-fication” of Boyle Heights: Decolonizing Cultural Work in Contested Urban Space


The “Gente-fication” of Boyle Heights: Decolonizing Cultural Work in Contested Urban Space

by Magali Miranda
Maga is an Eastside native, born and raised where Boyle Heights borders/embraces unincorporates East L.A. She is a first-generation Xicana with roots in DF and Michoacan. She is currently appropriating knowledge at UC Santa Cruz where she is studying Community Studies and Feminist Studies.

Gente-fication (n): Contraction from the word “gente” (Spanish for “people”) + gentrification = gentefication.Michelada-drinking, college-going, newly-minted professional Latinos moving back home to over-priced transitional neighborhoods, who move back ‘home’ only to find a new crop of (non-Latino) upwardly mobile gentrifiers, thus inducing an identity crisis.

Example: All this gentefication is getting out of control… my ma ain’t gonna be able to stay here.
Example: Am I part of the gentification problem because I like trendy carbs and cocktails?

(Adaptated from an entry on Urbandictionary.com)

I was freshly out of high…

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For God, For country, For college, Forever: A Few Thoughts on #ObamasHigherEdPlan


Twas a big day in higher education news yesterday. Barack Obama gave a major speech on college affordability. He laid out several proposals to push down college costs, student loan burdens, and foster higher education innovation. The internet went NUTS! Not really unless you follow all the world’s higher education nerds, as I do. But, it is nuts for a crowd that still encourages panty hose at conferences.

I figured most of the smart people with bigger platforms and higher profiles would cover most of the bases in response to Obama’s plan. And most did. See here, here, and here.

I only have a few things to throw out there.

First, keep in mind that I tend towards structure, organizational analysis and historical context. From that perspective, this kind of intervention was really inevitable. Some have mentioned that this plan would represent a significant reconfiguration of the…

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