The problem with keeping a blog is that there's so much to write about. And choosing between topics can become so overwhelming that one just doesn't write at all. And then there's the fact that if I'm not at the computer, thinking with the keyboard, so to speak, I'm probably not going to write anything out at all. I've been figuring out recently that I really do write primarily to clarify my own thoughts. And so, suppose I have some really interesting idea about the relationship between the dream-world neoplatonism of the symbolists and the French reaction against naturalism...well, it's most likely that I'll have thought about it to my heart's content while attending lecture, or in between class, or on the fifty-minute tram ride back to my apartment. At that point, why write it down? It's become rather boring, and there are plenty of new things to read and think about. Writing would be (or so it seems in that state) superfluous, almost a waste of time.
There's another problem too. One that usually interferes with my intentions to write a "series", such as my so-far two part discussion of the development of European nationalism. Unless one writes out all the parts very quickly, one will almost inevitably read, hear, or think of something that complicates the predicted thesis. Such as Turkey. Or the Middle East in general. Now I really, really, really want to talk about Arab Spring in relation to the birth of nationalism, but I have to reluctantly admit that currently I know very little about the area's historical background. You know, Ottoman Empire, but not much more. So I'll have to confine myself to making oblique references suggesting connections and/or differences between what's going on there and what happened in the mid-1800s in eastern Europe.
On the other hand, I'm encouraged to start up that series again by the fact that all of my suppositions about the development of nationalism in France and England were 100% supported by the most recent lecture I attended. So I feel as though I'm somewhere near the right track, at least.
Now though, I'd rather give a few travel updates for those of my relatives who are actually probably a lot more interested in what I'm doing than in questions of the nature of the nation-state. And then perhaps finally answer Joseph's question at Ironical Coincidings--something I've been putting off along with the rest of my blogging for a few days. (Yay for long and boring IR readings! --Not Irving Renaissance...international relations.)