The workshop is fast approaching, and I'm feeling less than prepared. The civil rights movement is such a large and all encompassing type of topic - I feel like I know more than average, but just enough to know how little I actually know about this sweeping social movement.
The reading I'm doing at the moment is reminding me of how little I know. But it is also reminding me of how much I enjoy learning - making connections in my head between the ideas I have read, feeling that openness in my brain as I begin to see some issue...
I have been thinking more about how I am processing this information as well, and being more deliberate about taking notes. Not quite to the level that I'm doing for the Oxford class, since I won't be asked to write a paper, but enough to encourage more careful reading.
I read Laurie Beth Green's Battling the Plantation Mentality: Memphis and the Black Freedom Struggle as my first reading on Memphis itself. I'm glad I read this before the selections in the course reader, because I could use her work as a cross reference. In the past, I would not have been as careful to make direct cross references in my notes. I was often content to not understand references, not remember where I had read something before, or put ideas together in my head and hope I remembered them. As I've learned over the years, the act of writing helps cement things in my memory. And having written notes means I only need to have an idea once. These seem like basic points, and simplistic annotating, but I can see in my own brain at this point how these basic strategies have helped so far.