Thursday, May 28, 2015

academic depression

I think maybe going into academia is the worst thing a depressive person can do. You start reading all of this stuff and eventually you're bound to hit upon something that somehow perfectly describes the precise nuances of the shittyness that you feel inside. In the beginning a moment of rejoicing occurs, as with the discovery of a kindred spirit. Look at this, never have I ever thought this terribleness could so eloquently be put into words. A hundred revelations later, you start feeling like the ability to accurately pinpoint the coordinates of your disabilities is not really much of an ability at all. A thousand revelations later the revelations start feeling burdensome as the final revelation of the uselessness of revelations occurs. And yet it is not final. A stream of infinite revelations follow that do nothing but underline your existential impotence. You realize in the latest hour the greatest of chasms exists between your ability to diagnose and your ability to act. Not only that, but whatever had been left of your ability to act is now buried under the burden of the infinite ramifications of your diagnosis of existence. One that has now, through sheer volume, acquired unwavering legitimacy. Analysis-paralysis is what David Foster Wallace called it. Buried under a mountain of valid interpretations of facts, the acquiring of which ultimately proves to be the most crippling fact of your existence. Because life just likes to work in this very funny way. So then maybe it's better to sing a song instead. The fatality of academia is that it offers no catharsis. There are only instances of confirmation that breed hunger for more confirmation. Then you add up these small moments, layered one on top of another, and build yourself a monolith of justifiable impotence.

That's the life.

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