Monday, February 3, 2014

Getting Started...Time to Read, Right?

So, just exactly where does a 
                     "homeschooling anthrozoology grad student"

Perhaps sharpening some pencils. This might sound silly, but I am not kidding.

As an undergrad, in anticipation of the start of each new term, I did enjoy the little preparatory steps of obtaining my books, notebooks, and writing implements, and then neatly organizing them in my school bag:

Sort of like the way I once color coded, anally-retentively folded, and carefully organized my firstborn child's onesies while waiting to pop her out.

Like school, once things got started, the sense of slight control and resulting enjoyment found in the little details fell by the wayside. There was a lot of shit to deal with, and by the time my third child rolled around, the onesies were lucky to find there way back into the dresser.

That same firstborn, my daughter Monica, now 28 years old and thoroughly potty trained, has played a significant supporting role in my better-late-than-never formal education. She has (sometimes reluctantly, but fair enough) served as a role model and easily accessible consultant. She was well equipped, having attended the University of Chicago as an (anthropology) undergrad, and she is a straight-up smarty-pants:

Monica has taken her studies where my anecdotal experience once could never travel, into the realm of animal personhood, pet animal acquisition, commodification of animals, and other cool academic perspectives on the human-nonhuman animal bond. In fact I just now called her to confirm her areas of focus before sharing them here. Luckily she is generally very patient with me...and she works for me, as an associate dog behavioral trainer (our day job, folks--homeschooling isn't cheap):


So, I invited Monica to be my (our?--Are you there other people? It's me, Margaret!) 
                                               first classmate!

She can serve as a sort of TA, actually. She has already made some good suggestions for our first reading materials, including Donna Harraway's Companion Animal Manifesto, which we both own copies of. I have a lot of books that address some of the topics of interest. Rather than tediously creating a bibliography, I will share a look at some of my books the lazy homeschooler way:

Got any suggestions? Please feel free to add them in the comments section, below, 
because it IS time to start reading...right?

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