• Ali Nikolai Sadik-Ogli posted an update 3 weeks, 4 days ago

    Hi, all,

    My blog address is

    Here is the introduction I posted for entry # 1:

    Hello everybody,

    You can call me by my middle name, Nikolai. I live in San Francisco.
    I am writing this introductory blog entry with great excitement and nervousness at the beginning of a long and entirely new kind of journey. For the last several years, I have been working as a paralegal, and it’s been a relief to find out that there is a fair amount of overlap between the two professions.

    More importantly, this change in direction represents a kind of return to the beginning of my academic career in the humanities. I studied Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana University – Bloomington. My first language of concentration in the department was Mongolian, with an emphasis on historical linguistics. I then switched to studying my Finnish heritage, with a special emphasis on art history. More specifically, I conducted primary research into the little-studied area of early twentieth century European avant-garde influences, especially from Futurism and Dada, in Finnish art, literature, music, film, design, and dance.

    The publically-funded libraries and archives in Finland are well-organized, and I remember the excitement of reading artist’s original letters and personal papers, like programs from events with hand-written notations, or hunting for the earliest newspaper clippings to mention a particularly important, foreign artist. Remembering these experiences helped me to finally decide to move away from active litigation and strive towards working again in a cultural and historical setting.

    On the side, I am still primarily interested in music, art history, and film. Fortunately, I am able to pursue these interests as a contributor to the Finnish on-line cultural journal, Mustekala (“Octopus”). My latest piece for them concerns an art collective in St. Petersburg, Russia, and if that sounds interesting, you can read about it here:

    Nevertheless, my internet experience remains limited so that I am most nervous about the completely virtual nature of the program. Though I have taken some on-line courses before, none of them have been this extensive, with different classes and websites, or lasted this long. I already feel like my head is spinning from all the new accounts I have set up with passwords, the many websites involved, and monitoring a number of different communications channels. It will require a lot of discipline and organization to keep up at this pace for the duration.

    Good luck to everyone!