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INSANITY IN OUR LECTURE HALLS

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Insanity, as defined by Oxford Advanced Leaner's Dictionary is Madness: a state of having a serious mental illness, being mentally deranged or imbalanced; or Lunacy: a crazy or stupid behavior that could be dangerous. In this context, Insanity could be defined as an uncouth and uncultured display of senseless folly by uncivilized fellow(s), making unnecessary, worthless and empty joke(s) to distract other people attending to the matters that matter in their lives.

This display of senseless folly has become a norm in our lecture halls, at night (night classes), precisely, when many students are busy reading their textbooks, written notebooks, manuals, and other useful materials at their disposal. The madcap mini-drama being displayed by some uncouth students who have not come to read but to disturb and distract other serious students comes in different ways and styles: from the mew of a cat, bark of a dog, boo of a cow, roar of a lion, to needless announcement, juddering of iron seats, uncouth yawning and calling of friends at loudest voice e.t.c., which is always followed by mass rebuff or laughter.

Though the mini-drama livens up the brain when it gets tired of assimilation, or jerks one awake while dozing- freeing one from the grips of sleep. Had it been such acts are only exhibited once or twice every night, it wouldn't even be an issue to discuss, but it has gone beyond that, the lecture/reading halls has been turned to Circus Theatres, where folly is now being displayed at an high-demeanor. My witnessing of the folly display was nothing to write home aboutthat very evening, I had gone to 250LT to have an intimate romance with the materials of a course (Western Arts II), in order not to 'romance with fire', 'gamble not to fumble and then crumble', as the lecturer-in-charge would say!

Western Arts II is a simple and interesting course, only that its note is voluminous. One has to read about the rebirth of Arts and the revival of the civilization of the Greco-Romans (Greeks & Romans), which took place in the 14th -6th century; read about the periods and the notable artists that evolved- Early Renaissance, notable artist- Dutch Jan Van Eyck; High Renaissance, notable artists- Leonardo Da Vinci, MichelAngelo Buonarroti, Raphael Sanzio, Titiano Vecellio, Donattello, e.t.c.; and the Late Renaissance (Mannerism), notable artists- Polidoro Da Caravaggio, Giovani Battista Di Jacopo (Rosso Fiorentino), Jacopo Dantonio, Baccio Bandinelli, Niccolo Tribolo, Qiulio Romano, e.t.c. And know the comparison of some periods in Art historical context- the Romanticism & Impressionism, Baroque & Rococo, Mannerism & Modernism, Classicism & Neoclassicism, Realism & Idealism, Expressionism & Impressionism/Post-Impressionism, and also master the biography and at least ten (10) works of the notable artists during those periods. Works- name/title of each work, year of production, dimension, and style used in its production, location and sub-information about it must be known to conviction.

A detailed research on Leonardo Da Vinci's 'MONALISA' (Lisa Gherardini De Giocondo) and his perfection of 'Sfumato' in its painting must be made. One must also know who 'Polidoro di Caravaggio' was, in other to know what 'Caravaggesque light' means; the differences between Tintoretto and Leonardo Da Vinci's 'LAST SUPPER'; the differences between MichelAngelo, Donatello and Bernini's 'DAVID'; study and able to make a good analysis on the 'Contrapposto' pose and other arts terminologies.

Thus, total concentration devoid of any distraction is needed when reading the notes and materials of the course. I opted to read in '250 Lecture Theatre' because of its quietness and the seriousness of the students' in-there, but to my disappointment the hall had already been filled to the brim, hardly could one see a place to sit and read. Library was not the alternative for I wasn't with my library I.D card and besides, the heat in the library I cannot cope with, 30 minutes in-there, I'll collapse. I left for 1200 Lecture Theatre; the hall was peaceful and perfect silence maintained until it was disrupted by sets of students, all in the name of 'April Fool'the noise then went on and on which forced me out of the hall.

I then headed to 1000 Lecture Theatre (FAG), hoping I would have sweet-sail in reading, but alas, I was wrong; I had been hearing the giggling and grinning of students inside the hall from afar. Stepping into the already filled up hall, I overheard a lady announcing from the podium, the missing of her Calculator, Ruler, and 'GINGIN' sweet which she bought to nibble while reading. 'Iwe yi sumi oooo' (I'm tired of reading), a guy uncouthly yawned and said! 'Maa lo hostel e na, lo sun' (go sleep in your hostel), many replied! 'Tunde, oya jaa lo si hosteli ria ooo' (Tunde, let's go to our hostel), a guy screamed, in his local dialect! 'Were, omo oko' (Madman, village boy), others taunted! Everyone busted into laughter, followed with talks from differing angles and corners.

Later, after there was quietness in the hall, a guy walked him, briskly, wearing a red mask with a stick in his hand; he said 'Hello', 'Awayu', everyone replied (this writer inclusive). We laughed again! The guy busted into laughter, removed the mask and then ran out of the hall, hurriedly. The drama goes on and on. The 45 minutes I used in the hall was fun though, with the entertaining comedy skits, but I never achieved my aim for going there; I gained nothing! 1000LT is the nosiest hall I've ever read in, I must confess!

This is the funny but disturbing and sad reality of the happenings in our lectures halls. I then begin to wonder, the joy those involve in the madcap dramas derives from it, leaving their comfort zones (various hostel) to disturb others reading while they also ought to be at a corner, reading and solving equations. Isn't even that insanity?

Oluwatomilola Boyinde, TOMI'NIGERIA, P.R.O, Union of Campus Journalists, & All-Nigeria United Nations Students & Youth Association, LAUTECH. [email protected], @TomiNigeria, 08032434218, 2AF2EB9D

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Articles by Oluwatomilola Boyinde