This by way of a promissory note to responding to Sarah's comment yesterday. I actually had two separate responses of ideas. I forgot one. The other is about flipping and the general phenomenon of figure-ground reversals. I hadn't really thought about this phenomenon in the context of graduate studies, but I actually had one experience with it on the phone yesterday with a writer who--in the same phone call--told me about how her work was good and done for a purpose that she saw that was entirely unrelated to her professors, and she also told me how her work was done only to please her professors (she doesn't get a lot of support).
Anyway figure-ground reversals: seeing the same image in two different ways. I'll try to remember the other comment, too.
Happy New Years!