When My Professor Told Me Not to Read Too Much YA Books


Comparative Literature
Session #1

It’s my first time to be taught by Ms. Panda. I had no idea whatsoever the kind of teacher she is, her methods and the way she handles a class. Well, I was a little intimidated to be honest. I see her as this great English teacher and I know for a fact that she’s very intelligent. She’s really young yet had already earned her doctorate degree.

I did some reading the night before the class. Comparative lit, as I understood from my reading is like World Literature. I also found out that there are actual courses and degrees of this topic alone. Already I felt the enormity of this subject. I will not pretend to know more than I do.

So in class, there are only six of us which makes us a tutorial class. There are two new students, and the rest are old classmates. The moment we formed a circle, Dr. Panda did not waste any time in doing her job. She discussed topics, essays, and future readings, as well as the requirements needed for the class.

Not having yet been her student, she thought I was one of the new ones. She asked if they had already gone through Literary Criticism, as it was sort of a prerequisite for Comparative Lit because we needed to readily know the different lenses. She further discussed that we would be solely using Post Colonialism as lens in the different literature we will be discussing.

I felt so small not knowing all these great writers from countries that have experienced being colonized. Philippines is also a colonized country but Dr. panda said that we would refrain from discussing Philippine literature as she would like to give way for Advance Philippine Lit.

She asked us, amidst our busy schedules, if we still find time to read. I excitedly answered that I have more or less read 30 books this year alone, and then I realized they were all Young Adult fiction and not canon. FML.

“Huwag na ‘yan…!” she said. (Don’t bother with that…)

Ouch. There, someone finally said it in my face. I have been telling myself to read more classics instead of feeding my addiction to YA. But I just kept putting it off, “Lemme just finish this one series…” and the next thing I know, I have moved on to another series and another one… and it is endless!

I have no regrets though, but I am ashamed of my lack of self-control, which happens a lot. Why do I keep on doing this to myself?

This saying is a bit conflicting.

I normally don’t write about too personal things, but let this be a reminder to myself to at least practice balance and restraint.

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