Thursday, 6 February 2014

Day 28: Library resources

What went well? 

  1. Set up an appointment to see a subject specialist librarian next week for guidance on tools that will help with my research paper (I need to be able to track down every occurrence of the word "mindfulness" in books & journal articles, how often it's occurred, how it's been used, in what subject areas, etc. It is wonderful to be living in the digital age). They have so many librarians here!! (did I mention that Penn is well-resourced?!?!)
  2. Got a free ticket to see the Penn Glee Club show next Friday night, generously funded by Stouffer (again!!).
  3. Had lunch with a friend and started talking about Spring Break. We're going to start making plans on Monday for a road trip, probably along the East coast...hopefully it'll happen!
  4. Went to a Duckworth lab meeting and Dr Duckworth was really friendly and welcoming.
What did I learn? 
  • Don't judge a course by its syllabus.
  • At the same time, interest in a subject is enough to keep me sticking with it...#grit
  • Some initial findings relating to the history of the word mindfulness:
    • The word “mindful” has been around in the English language since the late 1300s, but its use only started to relate to Buddhism in the late 1800s.
    • Early uses of mindfulness often included ideas of memory, intention, awareness.
    • I got 4616 hits searching "mindfulness" on the PsycInfo database. Here's the trend for the publications:
      • I suspect that 99% of these publications will have used "mindfulness" in the sense of "Buddhist mindfulness meditation", or at least referred to Buddhist roots. So far, only the very earliest article in 1916 used mindfulness in the sense of "urges mindfulness of the distinction between the ideal of maximum scientific accuracy and practical usefulness".

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