- Subject area
- International Relations, Politics and History
For my research project, I have been reading a contemporary Slovenian philosopher, Slavoj Zizek, and making the argument that Zizek's work concerns something he never talks or writes about. This has involved thinking hard about questions of epistemology (what it is to know something). Slavoj Zizek does not talk or write about the Russian Anarchist Mikhail Bakunin, but at the margins of Zizek's work, a concern with Bakunin can be detected.
The work I do now branches from the work that got me interested in philosophy to begin with over ten years ago, but I now find myself challenging the very assumptions that I used to hold.
I came straight into my PhD from doing two master’s degrees at the University of Warwick. To fund my studies, I am in receipt of a fully-funded scholarship from Loughborough. I also supplement my income by teaching seminars in the department of Politics and International Studies.
Whilst studying a PhD at Loughborough, I find that the campus is beautiful, and it is a very stimulating place to work. There are always seminars, talks and other events happening across the University, and these are very well promoted. At undergraduate and master's level, a student is working within a curriculum framework provided for them by academic staff. Whilst the amount of independent study an undergraduate or master’s student does is always very beneficial, they are always studying in preparation for someone else's exam. At PhD level, both the exam and the curriculum are almost totally conceived by the student. This strongly differentiates it from any other type of studying.
An average day for me now means I wake up, go for a run, have breakfast and then watch a movie or TV show until lunchtime. Then, I spend approximately four to five hours writing in the afternoon. After dinner, I read quietly. I tend to do a lot of my work in trendy cafes, because the library is too quiet.
In five years' time, I anticipate having the opportunity to teach my own philosophy course on a German philosopher called Martin Heidegger. I also intend to train as a psychoanalytic therapist and write a series of non-fiction books.
If you are considering a PhD at Loughborough, trust in the reason that you have succeeded academically before. A PhD will be hard, but your strongest card to play is almost certainly the one you hold in your hand already. Do not keep it up your sleeve. Rather, continually explore the limits of your potential by learning to be vulnerable and learning not to be afraid of looking silly. Looking silly will be the time when you learn the most, so run full pelt into it, rather than pretending towards knowledge or wisdom you may not have.