I saw this article circulating on Facebook (below is the link). At first the title caught my eye but after reading the article I thought that the message was undermined by some very problematic statements. I know that the article is intending to be provocative and critical about the adjunct crisis, however, it is classist and racist with its references to the outsourcing of work to India. As an immigrant and an adjunct professor I feel that it would be more productive to build solidarity with workers around the globe rather than taking an elitist stand with statements like “I can’t see an Indian instructor teaching Renaissance literature to American college students via Skype.” In a capitalist system, we (all of us who dependent on our labor to survive) are all disposable and replaceable.
“Emily Van Duyne, an adjunct professor in New Jersey, told me she finds it uncomfortable to teach her students about issues like the American Civil Rights Movement when she feels unable to change her own unjust working conditions. “It feels very strange asking students to hone their critical thinking skills about an oppressive culture and the ways you can respond effectively, when you are teaching out of a broken system,” she told me.”
Click here for the entire article.
The thing about being a third generation immigrant refugee in one country and then moving to another country and being a first generation immigrant there all over again is that you have no delusions about belonging…you fight for everyone else’s cause, because you don’t know how else to live, but you know full well when the time comes for someone to stand next to you, even a union brother, you will be left standing there alone.
It’s that time of the year again when I am faced with the decision of going or not going to the big academic conference in my field. Do I want to dish out $1500-$2000 (which constitutes for me almost a month’s salary) for a conference where I’ll be shamed and made to feel like a loser because I still don’t have a tenure track job or do I stay home and let go of the opportunity to connect with potential employers, mentors, colleagues and old friends? I’m frankly so tired of this game and part of me really wants to stay home but I know that staying home is one more step in accepting and reifying my dead-end trajectory in academia– It’s putting one more nail in the coffin.
I haven’t blogged for a while because I’m actually happy at my new job! I quit my old job at FRRU* after getting an offer from a different university that’s much closer to where I live. Although I’m still adjuncting for the moment, my current situation is a thousand times better… I have my own office!!! I don’t have to pay for parking! I get paid more per class! I have an official title (Assistant Adjunct Professor) and the possibility to become Associate Adjunct Professor and even a Full Adjunct Professor! My name, picture, bio and research interests are listed on the department website!!! I am invited to attend all faculty meetings! My department held a welcome lunch for me the first week of the quarter! I am teaching classes that I enjoy! My commute is 5min! My tenured and tenure track colleagues respect and appreciate me- They actually ask for my input on things! I get all the little perks that the regular faculty get such as access to the gym for a small fee and yoga classes for a reduced fee! I’ve already met and had dinner & lunch with the Dean! However, even with all this, I still need a livable wage. So this is only a temporary situation for me until I find full-time employment that’s suitable and appropriate for me. I am still actively looking for a full-time job, inside and outside of academia. But, for the moment, I’m happy! *Filthy Rich Religious University (pseudonym)
This is a very cogent article!
Professors on food stamps: The shocking true story of academia in 2014
Forget minimum wage, some adjunct professors say they’re making 50 cents an hour. Wait till you read these stories