Re-shaping the thesis 02

Defining terms used in the thesis
Defining terms used in the thesis

Gesture Movement made by a physical or biological entity

Line Mark that traces a gesture

Energy Force exerted by interactions between physical and biological systems

Environment System of physical and biological energies known through hard data sets and human expressions of connection to it

Community People who share knowledge of an environment

Environment encompassing the Antarctic continent, Southern Ocean and subantarctic islands

Word Physical manifestation of a mental construct arising originally from human gesture made in response to energy perceived as it flows within environments

Take care!

‘If we turn our regard for nature more and more into clever philosophical word games, if we begin to think that we are intellectually creating nature rather than physically participating in it, we are in danger of losing sight of the real wolves being shot by real bullets from real aeroplanes, of real trees being clearcut, of real streams being polluted by real factories.’
Bryant (1995)

From the Dedication preceding Hayden Grinling Washington’s thesis, The Wilderness Knot, University of Western Sydney 2006

On Wed, 26 Aug 2009 17:47:11 +1000 Simon Pockley responds to some questions:

1. Field of View (Frame) and the Problem.

This will hold the Lit. Review, including readings of my interviews with Antarctic researchers that convinced me that human gesture and line can be used in animation to connect humanity with the reality of global changes that are signaled by the Antarctic environment. (HYPOTHESIS)

Be careful of merging too many things. At the outset you have anchored your project in a personal story (that’s good). This story should lead into the area you are working in and allow you to succinctly (expanded in the Lit. Review) arrive at the problem you are addressing.

It might be better to present the Literature Review (shoulders you stand on) as a distinct section with a more intense/expanded justification of that fact that this is a serious area of study and that you are well aware of the work that has preceded your own.

To set the scene and demonstrate my general understanding of the fields within which Antarctic Animation is located, I will briefly write about how scientists and artists have described the
Environment and Climate Change. I will focus mainly on Antarctic arts and science.

I will chuck out what does not relate to the hypothesis.

Reviews of texts will be kept that explain how similar or different they are, in content or method, from what I proposed to contribute to the field of Antarctic arts.

If you’ve described the works in the Lit review section then it will be enough to refer to this section when you come to write about how you went about making your own work (methodology) and, at the end, when you write about the impact of your work.

3. Significance

I cannot see how to build this into a whole chapter. I can’t see how it fits with any of my existing chapter headings. Perhaps you don’t mean this to be a chapter?

Yeah! I agree that it would be hard to write a whole section on
significance without it turning into a rant. But somewhere near the start you need to have at least a paragraph on why the gestural dimension is important and what it might add to understanding.

Thinking about this now, I can see this (discussion of gestural dimension with examples) becoming a part of your Lit. review. You could go as far as identifying it as a form of epistemology (way of
knowing) with an attendant body of theory – but you might not want to go there. But it’s worth a look….

You suggested that this bucket include responses to the animations (arranged within a taxonomy as discussed on Sunday). But it seems inappropriate to discuss these here before explaining what was made, and how it was made. Should this go into Methods, or as an independent chapter between Methods and Findings?

I agree…

4. Methods

My understanding is that this will include Foundation Work and New Work. Right?

Yes but the focus is how you went about doing it rather than what you did. Keep what you did for the findings.

5. Findings

I understand that this will include be equivalent to the purpose of Discussing and Concluding.

Maybe you could include a detailed description of the work you’ve made (for the doctorate) in the findings. Then move to the responses.

If in doubt, follow your instincts.