PHASE ONE: Beginning

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Gus on his first birthday (I had to include a visual, too cute not to post)

Blog Post 1

Hi all, my name is Natalia, I am an English and Professional Writing major. I switched my major from Visual Arts and Art History, as I prefer to keep art as a hobby rather than a full-time career. I was a dancer for 10 years studying both ballet and contemporary dance forms. I have now moved on to horseback riding which I greatly enjoy (even though it’s draining my wallet). I pride myself in being extremely self-sufficient and am stubborn at times to accept help when needed. I have the most adorable dachshund named Gus who has still retained his puppy face at 1.5 years old.

I am intrigued by the structure of the course and I am interested in seeing how everything will unfold. This course is definitely an anomaly, however, the new experience of creating/writing/editing podcasts and blog posts will be a fun new challenge. I am somewhat nervous to begin work on an assignment I have never done before -podcasts-, but I am confident that Stephanie will be prepared to lead us through this new territory.

Thus far, I have used the strategies of using multiple scholarly search engines rather than just one; broadening my search terms in order to have many more entries; narrowing searches so as to have one single entry; going to the York University library; and using the bibliography from other works in order to find new works that focus on the same arguments. In future, I need to create a hypothesis for myself, as well as ask specific questions before my searches, in order to find texts that match or oppose my argument. A good place to start for future searches would be to use various search engines, as well as search engines that are available through the York library website. To help further my research I can also use the OED to understand any written works.

Overall, I am hopeful and ready to begin this new and exciting course.

-Natalia

Blog Post 2: A Matter of Opinion

The “opinion” appears to have a more complicated definition than I initially thought. I was always told that an opinion is not fact. However, after Wednesday’s lecture, that no longer appears to be absolutely true. An opinion can be based on fact or knowledge, but a matter of opinion is not a fact -it cannot be proven to be right or wrong.

Is it possible to state that all knowledge is just a matter of opinion? The answer is “perhaps” or “it depends.” This is because all knowledge is discovered by humans one way or another. In that case, as per the examples, one person might describe ice as extremely cold, while another person might describe ice to be burning. As such, all knowledge can be criticized in this way. Even an article in a newspaper of real-life events or historical events described by someone’s journals from the 1800s are from that one person’s perspective. Therefore, all knowledge can be considered a matter of opinion.

On the other hand, concrete facts such as sun producing heat or light are absolute facts. How much heat or light the sun produces are a matter of opinion. Even a thermometer is based on how one or a group of people decided to measure heat. Consequently, knowledge can be considered a matter of opinion. It all depends on what is being said and how it is being said. In turn, this relates to how I will go about my research. All articles and journals are written by someone with a bias. What I need to do is analyze my research critically to separate the matter of opinion from the facts.

-Natalia