Step Right Up!

Making one's way around a university campus is a daunting task for the newcomer. Navigating at first requires a map. The map names every building and also defines walking paths. By staying on the path one is relatively sure of arriving at the desired destination.

This is a part of the Mapping Brandeis project for theater/performance theory, English 151 at Brandeis University. It's all about iteration. Those moments when you are certain you have done this before and wonder if you are forever doomed to travel the same path over and over.  Take heart!

You can change the path from within -- take a look inside my site.  Traveling the same campus paths repeatedly, I am performing my role as student to convey the layers of thought evolving over the semester.


Brandeis Archives

The process of immersing into a world of study has many components. As a graduate student returning after a long pause from academia I find some of the strictures of student life confining. I examine my own actions on campus as I take on unfamiliar responsibilities.

I anticipated a number of changes in my daily activity as a result of university enrollment.
Surprising to me, the most persistent, ongoing issues have to do with how to effectively navigate the campus while transporting all the everyday gear I seem to require as a student. On closer examination the struggle with bags becomes a metaphor for the changing habits, choices and requirements that come with taking on this performance. 

Studying performance is heightening my awareness of my habitual behavior, or "habitus" as described by sociologist
Pierre Bourdieu in The Logic of Practice (p. 56). Examining actions which are second nature, internalized and embodied without thought, is creating transformative moments of learning and critical awareness far beyond my expectations.

The physical campus is an important character in my consideration of performance as an aspect of student life.

Here are some questions about campus accessibility I have thought of since becoming a graduate student. Please select any one of them to see my entire site performance.

Walking paths - do you stick to the paths or leave them behind?

How many people with limited mobility do you see on campus?

How do campus structural changes reflect patterns of student use?