Wednesday, July 30, 2008

I passed my defense and I will obtain my PhD. However, there were so many mechanical mistakes in the thesis itself even after two other people had looked at it that they gave me 12 months to correct it in. This is rather a hard wake-up call as to whether I really want to continue in scholarship. At this point in time, I am very seriously considering a career change back to the IT industry whence I came. I have, in my own eyes, failed in my attempt and no sugar coating will help make it any better than what it is. I turned in a very flawed piece of work and I deserved what I received in return. I have always said that writing was my weakest area and I never tried to cover up the fact. Now, it has seriously bitten me and I do not think that I will be able to make it better in the future. There are far better scholars than myself in my own department who will be able to do justice to Early Irish literature and I will commend it to them to do so. I will finish what I started and obtain my ultimate prize but I will go no farther.

Some have already accused me of having my ego bruised and that I am running away from it. While I am sure that this is a part of what is occurring, my thesis was flawed at such a basic level that most of the defense was my external examiner going point by point through the problems. When this happens, there comes a time when one must face the fact that, no matter how good your arguments may be, the execution was so poor that it does not rise to the level of the thing you are attempting to achieve.

I started this with such hope that I could achieve what I wished. As the saying goes, however, if I cannot be an example to others, I serve as a warning to them. A scholar's life is not for everyone and I think, after this experience, certainly not for me.

posted by Chris  #4:49 AM | 0 comments |