Bottleneck: a point of hindrance or slowing down

The opening weeks of this summer were pleasing and smooth. The campus was quiet and the weather was friendly. Everyday our team imported numerous new entries into our database, and beyond this we discussed readings, made new maps, and finished works days earlier than the due date. Following this momentum I started my individual project, performances of the Second Viennese School in Paris through the first half of 20s century. As expected, at the beginning everything was going fast. I collected the majority of all data in the first two weeks through simple mechanical search on Le Figaro: typing in “Schoenberg” in the search bar, looking through the results, copying the information, and done. At that point I thought, I could finish this map in 2 weeks! Apparently, that was not the case. From Week 4 I started slowing down, and the “holes” on my spreadsheet, those incomplete information, were still unfilled. it was frustrating, seeing a project with little progress. Most importantly I realized the sources I had in hand were citing each other, yet none of them provided the missing information that I need.



“Me in Research” by Stella Li


Therefore I started seeking an exit to get out of the circle. There should be a source that does not point back to where I came from but some place new. Eventually I got this book from Professor Epstein, Michel Duchesneau’s L’avant-garde musicale et see sociétés à Paris de 1871 à 1939, which not only contains a comprehensive catalogue of performances by major new music societies but also points to a couple of promising sources worth checking out. I am still in process of skimming through this book, since it is not the quickest task. But I have decided to give myself some time and to be patient, while “distracting” myself with some other business. I have been playing with ArcGIS and its apps, and thinking of how my final product should be like: how would the map look like; what argument, if there is any, I should make; what kind of story I may tell; why it is even necessary to use maps to tell this story… I consider these “distractions” from data entry worth doing, since they help me orientate my research and pay attention to specific details that I may have missed during data collection. I am still on my way constructing a determined plan of my final product, but I am looking forward to seeing what I could come up with.