Tuesday, August 28, 2007

'Cause You Are Damned if You Do, Damned if You Don't

I meant to link to this piece yesterday, but I've been tied up in beginning-of-term bullshit. (Today's low-point: having to attend a half-hour talk about who I should contact in my school's IT department if, e.g., I'd like my students to do podcasts as assignments. I really could have used that half-hour.) Anyway, here's a historian's take on being an adjunct. There's a lot of familiar themes here, including an honest account of how in your first couple of years of grad school it seems inevitable that you'll land in a good job.

But what caught my eye was this:
I paid too little attention to the research side of my vita. Because publications tended to count less than did good teaching evaluations when I went after short-term appointments, I began to treat my scholarship as a luxury rather than as a career necessity.

I can't imagine a better way to put the catch-22 you face as an adjunct. To get short-term job security, you need to do work that makes long-term job security less likely.

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