I passed my dissertation defense! Since April, IU has required that all doctoral defenses be conducted online via teleconferencing software. The stipulation actually made my defense more convenient, as my committee and I were spread across four time zones and teleconferencing made it much easier to coordinate our schedules.
I spent hours upon hours prepping my presentation for the defense. The defense experience itself was nerve-wracking but constructive- my committee members asked sharp questions, which led me to reconsider the selection of some of the critical theories I used to describe aspects of Hong Kong theatre in general and my case studies in particular. Initially I was very nervous, but the question-and-answer part of the defense took on more of a conversational tone as it progressed, which relaxed me. The committee eventually kicked me out of the Zoom room for a minute, and they called me “Doctor” when I was invited back in! Passed with minor revisions!
From now on, you can call me Dr. Emerson.