The Flâneur Returns

Reflections on a Creative Writing Sabbatical

After an extended sabbatical from penning my thoughts onto these virtual pages, I have finally returned for a new and exciting phase in the AUP journey. First things first, as I muse over the content of this blog post, I begin to feel the catharsis that creative writing brings. I had almost forgotten the purity of expression and creativity involved in documenting a photo journal, having been locked away in academic prison for a very long time.

Don’t get me wrong, academia is a wonderful way to locate, explore and develop your inner Self through synthesising your thoughts on a given subject matter. However, the very specific form of expression that is required of a budding scholar is not quite, shall we say, free. While one’s research must be expressly “original”, it is not required (or encouraged) to be emphatic or, heaven forbid, emotional. As such, one can very quickly find themselves being shaped into a mould that is at once (masochistically) pleasing, yet highly restrictive. And the lesson is: well, fellow WordPressers, if you are currently embarking on or thinking of pursuing the academic route, take the opportunity to compliment your professional writing career with a more democratic form of self expression. Trust me, It will serve you and your soul well.

So, did I survive being held up in a bitter-sweet holding cell for almost five years, I hear you ask? Yes, I did. I was served my release papers on the 18th of December 2015, and I haven’t looked back since. What a voyage it has been. My research has brought me to places I am privileged to have encountered, both geographically and emotionally, and for this I am indebted to the blood, sweat and tears that stain the 300+ pages of my PhD.

c1455bade690c606876f6e7bd7c6ae1dAnd so I find myself back on the cobbles of Irish towns and cities, documenting the very artefacts that have so viscerally consumed me for the better half of my 20s. I am whole-heartedly looking forward to reuniting with my inner flâneur and taking to the streets of Dublin and beyond to see what surprises lie waiting around each corner. Below are a few snapshots of the timelessly beautiful Palladian mansion at Castletown House, Celbridge. Andrea Palladio, one of my favourite architects, embodies the genius of geometry and the golden mean, and breathes life into Goethe’s belief that architecture is frozen music. Castletown is a sight & site to behold.

Until next time,

Your editor,

J

 

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