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My charge for this paper was completely open-ended. I was told I could "write about anything I liked, as much as I wanted, in any format I pleased". While liberating, this unaccustomed freedom also caused me considerable anxiety. I am used to following a certain rhetorical structure: writing a set number of pages on a particular topic in a preordained style. In a very minor way, the nervousness generated by the openness of my mandate for this article resembled what occurs anytime the bases fordoi:10.1353/anq.2002.0035 fatcat:xdlhehz5drfpjorb6c23jrxzp4