Anybody want to hear about what used to be Yugoslavia?

The world of academia never ceases to amaze me. No, not just because when you walk down the hallway at one o’clock on Friday afternoon all the doors are closed because no one shows up on Friday. Uh. It’s Friday. No one goes to school on Friday.

(Except the TAs. I’m kind of surprised we don’t have sections on Christmas.)

No, the fact that everybody is obsessively interested in some tiny little corner of minute detail that is the MOST IMPORTANT THING IN THE WORLD AND YOU KNOW IT’S THE MOST IMPORTANT THING RIGHT RIGHT HERE I’LL TELL YOU WHY LET ME SHOW YOU THIS BOOK.

I mean, don’t get me wrong. I do it too. Push me hard enough and I can tell you why what you ate for breakfast was influenced by the Second Vatican Council and also probably impacted post-conciliar interfaith dialogue.

(Have you read John O’Malley’s What Happened at Vatican II? Because you totally should.)

But it really made me laugh this afternoon. I was on JSTOR looking through articles for one of my papers. I tend to find the articles on my laptop and then e-mail them to myself to print on another computer.

I imagine that this is how the “e-mail citation” link is most often used- people e-mailing themselves copies of an article.

But the “e-mail citation” link is set up just like any normal webpage sharing. So it asks you to input your name, and your friend’s name, and their e-mail address, and include a personal message.

Yeah. Your “friend”. Um. Guys? It’s JSTOR. I mean, maybe if you were talking something sexy like Humanities Full Text or Academic Search Complete…I’m kidding.

I don’t know that there is a friend in existence who wants to log into her e-mail and find a 70-page article about some guy who wrote about this one guy who did something in this one place five hundred years ago. Maybe. We’re not sure. The evidence is inconclusive.

And what would the personal message be? “Hey- just thought you might be interested in this article about some obscure rite of Christianity in the Balkans. We still on for coffee?”

So, needless to say, none of my friends received article reviews about Judeo-Christian relations in the Balkans from me this afternoon.

Although if you want to know more about it, just let me know! It’s totally interesting, and I have some great books on the subject!

(Oh. Damn it.)


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