IFP alumna Adhishree Adulkar, who hails from Pune in India , is currently completing her BA in Comparative Literature at Queen Mary. As part of Queen Mary’s Study Abroad Programme she had the opportunity to spend the first semester of her second year at the University of Toronto in Canada, one of many top ranked universities around the globe which are possible Study Abroad destinations for Queen Mary students. Here she reflects on her experience.
The melting pot culture of Toronto can be experienced to its fullest at the University of Toronto. The university of Toronto provides a world class quality of academics. With its exceptional faculty, the experience of learning is highly stimulating. What I found most interesting, especially in relation to my course, was how the modules pushed conventional boundaries. An example of this, was a module called ‘Canons and Canonicity’ that I studied during my time there. Being a student of Comparative Literature, I have always been used to thinking of Literature within the boundaries of texts, such as, novels, short stories, poems. But in that particular module, we looked at how these boundaries can be pushed and how canon formation in art, sculpture, music, pop culture, can be studied alongside literature, how there can be a distinct spillover between the two, and the symbiotic relationship of how the two influence each other.
While it is undeniable that the experience of a foreign country and a new university is enriching, it can also be intimidating and difficult at first. Nevertheless, I do earnestly believe that the benefits outweigh the initial discomfort. The university of Toronto also has an exceptional student union body that conducts a variety of activities that one can get involved in. During my time there, I was involved in writing and directing a modernised adaptation of Pirandello’s play ‘Six Characters in Search of an Author’, which was an opportunity that I greatly appreciate.
The experience of studying abroad therefore, has made me more confident. It has also taught me to be able to think more deeply about some elements of my modules. And lastly, it has also given me exciting stories and memories surviving the extreme Canadian cold!
You can find out more about the varied opportunities offered by the Study Abroad Programme at Queen Mary here.