Following on from my post about my plans to move to England, I think it is time I expand on the reasons why I am studying English and why I want to continue it going forward.
As with so many things, I can’t put a single reason that led to the decision being made as no single answer exists. While the love of writing and the English language had been part of me for as long as I can remember, the decision to study it after school (and indeed at a Postgraduate level) was a little more complex than being an ‘innate decision’ that had been pre-determined by Fate.
In addition to highlighting the handful of English teachers who played a significant role in influencing not only the way I write as a university student but also the way I see and appreciate English more generally, I think it would be an ideal time for me to introduce you more fully to the writers/poets that strike a particular chord with me. As interesting as these writers are to me, I cannot discount the influence of the quirky, dynamism of my English teachers (particularly in the latter part of my academic career) that brought the language alive for me.
The Profound Effect of English Teachers
I’ve had many fantastic English teachers throughout my school and early university career. That said, there have been some extraordinary individuals that have played a significant role in influencing my understanding of English and my love of the Literature. Without these people, I seriously doubt whether I would be the person I am today.
From a teacher who kept a harmless, pet snake in the classroom for a majority of my high school career to a lecturer that could quote excerpts from so many books, plays, and poems that it borders on disturbing, the perspectives these individuals exposed me to have undoubtedly shaped how I view reality.
My Top Writer
While there are many, many poets, playwrights, and authors that are deserving of this title, my answer would have to be John Keats. I’m not entirely sure what it is about his work that I find so captivating but I do. Considering he died in his early-20s and was relatively unknown during his lifetime, made his work all the more interesting for me.
A lot of his work creates an emotional connection with me that very few texts have done to me, the poem that I love the most of his has got to be Ode to a Nightingale in the last year or so of his life. Even in what was such a dark, miserable period of his life the imagery he creates in that poem takes my breath away each time I read it.
In fact, I think it was after I first read some of his work that the decision to continue English to a university level had been firmly planted in my brain. The influence that my English teachers had over me, too, played a powerful role in the decision to study English.
I cannot express how grateful I am for the influences that my teachers have on me as a writer and in opening the doors I needed in order to continue doing what I love doing.