Thursday, January 17, 2008

Would Anyone Tell Me If I Was Getting Stupider?

So you know how on courtroom dramas or whatever, when the defendant's case looks pretty shaky, and he's sitting around with his lawyers after the jury's started the deliberating, he always asks the main lawyer, "What do you think my chances are?" And the lawyer always says, "The longer they're out, the better your chances are."

Now, what do you think the odds are the same reasoning applies to waiting for calls about fly-backs?

No, that makes absolutely no fucking sense at all. The wiki says no one's been contacted yet, and the chances can't be getting better for all the people who had APA interviews for a department.

Relatedly, the increasingly desperate waiting is apparently making me stupider.

72 comments:

Anonymous said...

PGS,

No, what you say makes a sense to me (and allows there to be a little bit more hope). Two good possibilities stand (although together do not exhaust the possibilities): 1) that the reason for the stalling is a candidate (or candidates) who is ahead of you on the list has bailed on them and they are going back to the drawing board (and this candidate did not post on the wiki). 2) They have not made up their minds yet and you still have a chance (although this does not indicate that things are mounting in your favor).

Bottom line: contact a person on the committee and ask them what is up.

Anonymous said...

I suck: I had almost 10 APAs and no flyouts (and more than half are listed on the wiki). I must have really bad breath or something.

Pseudonymous Grad Student said...

Anon. 12:40 --

"Bottom line: contact a person on the committee and ask them what is up."

Hm. This strategy might be good for some people, but wait-and-see is a little more my style. . . .

Anonymous said...

Still no news from many departments that I'm interested in. Can departments really be that slow? I've looked up the academic calendars and I've been counting the days since classes have resumed. Could they really not squeeze in a stupid meeting in two fucking weeks? I guess it's unlikely that all of the departments that I haven't heard from have scheduled meetings for tomorrow.

I feel like it's been too long -- but not long enough to start pestering departments about what the hell is up.

Now, if you'll excuse me, I have to go check the wiki. Again.

A prof who interviewed at APA said...

Here’s how we are doing it:

We just got around to meeting this week and we made a list of 9 finalists and ranked them 1-9. We interview five of them at APA.

We’ve broken these finalists into 3 groups of 3.

The first three will be contacted in the next 5 days for fly outs; if we like what we see, we’ll make an offer. If it doesn’t work out, we’ll go to the next batch of candidates. I’m not sure if we would contact the last group of three.

If we don’t get the candidate we want- we’ll just keep the position open and recruit for all three positions next year.

The extra classes can be taught be an emeritus who would love to come back and teach half time and that way we don’t need to go thru the hassle of hiring an adjunct for one year.

Anonymous said...

This may (or may not) be helpful PGS.

I received an email from a search committee member indicating that they couldn't continue their search until a sufficient amount of data had been collected by the university's equal opportunity office.

Since the university scheduled APA interviews and - as I imagine - a good number of people may not have had an APA interview with this school, I wonder how many forms they will receive.

Inquiring mind said...

Anyone hear anything about Swarthmore College? It was an odd ad, but I'd hoped to hear something by now?

Who's got the inside scoop?

Anonymous said...

One word:

Deans.

The greatest time-sinks known to (wo)man.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps, I was brash in my interviews, but I asked each of the SCs what their decision time table looked like. Only one of the five SCs told me to expect a decision by now, two at the end of January, and two not until March. No one seemed offended by the question and I know when I can expect to hear 'something' from them. I doubt any reasonable SC would be offended by a short email asking about their time table (as long as it was just one email).

Anonymous said...

I agree 2:34,

It is not risky in any way. In fact, it may be a way of jogging their memory about just how much they love you.

BTW, if you one does this and finds out that they've already contacted their flyout candidates, don't hesitate to update the wiki! Its all about information.

Anonymous said...

The person interested in Swarthmore does a bold thing: ask and see if anyone has any information that is not being shared on the wiki.

I wish I had an answer for that person.

But I also have my bold question: does anyone know what is happening with Iowa State??

Anonymous said...

As a SC member, I think I can assure you that no SC would mind an inquiry as to your status. They might even let you know what the hold up is (e.g., Deans, someone's on vacation, committee in disagreement, letting people know in waves, securing funding for travel, you're no longer being considered, you're an alternate for a fly-out but didn't make the first cut, etc.).

From personal experience and friends' experiences I know that a lot of (good) action still takes place at the end of January and throughout February and often into March. And most of the good postdocs won't get settled until most of job activity has died down. No need for despair yet!

Anonymous said...

I just heard that I've been shortlisted at a place I gave up on weeks ago -- so there's still hope. It's not a fly-out yet (actually, I'm not sure what it means, since it isn't a fly-out yet -- are they just toying with me?), but it still made my day.

Pseudonymous Grad Student said...

Anon. 3:17 --

Hey, good news is good news--even if you're not really sure what it means.

Anonymous said...

Iowa State starts school next week. I'm hopin' they haven't met yet.

I though "philosopher who interviewed at apa" was thoroughly disappointed in all the candidates at the APA. Not enough, I guess.

Anonymous said...

I have received AA forms from schools weeks after wiki showed a spurt of calls for APA interviews. Like hell if I'm going to waste my time on that.

Anonymous said...

Just a word of advice about contacting SCs: do your best to have some practical reason for contacting them, such as a pending trip or scheduling concern, or (later) an offer in hand.

Don't fret it too much, though. The odds at this point of your contact making a difference are very slim (so long as you don't come off as pushy or rude).

But remember that romancing an SC is like romancing a (wo)man - it's a turn-on to show want but a turn-off to show need.

Anonymous said...

Along the same lines, I wonder what people think of departments' web pages listing -- or not listing -- who their on-campus finalists are? I for one like to know who they selected, and I don't see "confidentiality" being a significant factor at this stage (at least not for junior hires). It's frustrating when the wiki says they've scheduled on-camous interviews but their web sites don't list em...

Anonymous said...

Hey 3:17,

More details friend. Do you mean that you received information about being short-listed after it had been listed on the wiki for a couple of weeks? Or did you give up on them a few weeks ago because you hadn't heard of anything?

Anonymous said...

Anon 4:00,

Confidentiality does matter for junior hires. Some of us are seeking to move from one TT position to another. And some of us have colleagues who would not be happpy if we belonged to the first group. For those that don't yet have tenure, having colleagues find out that we are looking elsewhere can be a bad thing. I had an encounter of this sort last year, and wish to avoid it in the future.

will philosophize for food said...

"Would Anyone Tell Me If I Was Getting Stupider?"

Ha! A Faith No More allusion! Awesome!

Anonymous said...

I called Iowa State yesterday and the department secretary told me that their search committee (I was seeking info about the ethics position, but I assume this might also apply to the epistemology position) had just met on Tuesday and would be inviting 3 candidates to campus this coming Friday or Monday. Hope that helps Anon 2:56.

Anonymous said...

Dear Anon 6:11,

Seek and ye shall find!
Thank you. I was wondering what was up at Iowa State.
Thanks for contacting them directly (I was too chicken) and thanks for sharing the info.
I hope you're a finalist....
Anon 2:56

Anonymous said...

How's this for weird? The job wiki indicates that one of the positions I've interviewed for has invited people for fly-outs. I was not among them. Today I get a letter from one of the members of the search committee, informing me that they are preceding with the selection process and asking me to fill out an affirmative action form. What am I supposed to think of this when I know that I am not among the fly-outs?

In other news, I contacted the positions I interviewed with over the weekend and still have not heard back from any of them. One of the positions still gives no information as to whether they've invited people for fly-outs (though they do indicate that they've invited candidates for another position they were hiring for). It seems unlikely that committees for different positions would meet so far apart, so I'm assuming that those invited for flyouts for the other positions just don't know about the job wiki or haven't updated the job wiki. Please folks, remember to update the wiki! I still fail to understand why either a) it is so difficult for SC's to respond briefly to an email stating that they've invited candidates to campus and that should things not work out you might be considered in the future, or b) explaining that the committee hasn't met or that there are funding disputes, etc.

juniorperson said...

Anon 4:00 said:

"Confidentiality does matter for junior hires. Some of us are seeking to move from one TT position to another. And some of us have colleagues who would not be happpy if we belonged to the first group. For those that don't yet have tenure, having colleagues find out that we are looking elsewhere can be a bad thing."

This is spot-on. If anyone doubts this, go back a few weeks on this blog to look at the vitriol hurled around by one particular tenured faculty member (posting under his own name) at anyone who suggested looking for another job pre-tenure might not be the most evil thing in the world.

Anonymous said...

Interesting 8:25 -- anyone have a link to that earlier discussion?

I can understand wanting to protect yourself from crazy senior colleagues at your present job, but it still seems unrealistic to expect that your search for another job is going to remain a secret once you've become a finalist and are actually interviewing on-campus somewhere else. (The academy is a small place and everybody talks. I suspect lots of candidates who go this route end up thinking that they've kept it quiet when really they haven't.) In fact, I think it's pretty common at the final stage for the chair of the place that's interviewing you to contact the chair of the place you're at in order to get more information about what you're like as a colleague (if you didn't include a letter from someone at your home institution). You could probably request that they *not* do that, but then you'll need a pretty good explanation why not, and some alternative person at your home institution for them to talk to.

PhilosophyProf said...

Re: motivation, demoralization, etc., note that there are a lot of people waiting in line, so to speak -- people who were on the market last year but who did not get a tt job, people who were on the market the year before but did not get a tt job, etc., and who probably have more teaching/research under their belt (by way of a visiting position). In the sciences nobody would expect to get a tt job straight out of the phd, as the post-doc is standard fare, and this is becoming more and more the case in the humanities. There are a few exceptions in the case of phds from fancy schools, but not many, or at least not many who land tt jobs as places that would be considered desirable.

monkey said...

anon 6:48 wrote:

"One of the positions still gives no information as to whether they've invited people for fly-outs (though they do indicate that they've invited candidates for another position they were hiring for). It seems unlikely that committees for different positions would meet so far apart"

I do not know how unlikely it is, but I know of one case in which there was a week lag time between the first and second committee meetings (for two separate searches).

Anonymous said...

Last year, I was on the market, and my home department was hiring. When one of my co-workers found out that I was interviewing elsewhere (at friend of his in a department where I was interviewing called him), he told me that I should not take part in our department's hiring--because it was dishonest for me to 'pretend' to care who we hired when I was 'doing everything possible to get out of here'. The conversation went downhill from there, with him eventually telling me that I needed psychiatric help for not seeing the dishonesty and duplicity he was pointing out.

Unfortunately, I'm still here, and have to see him several times a week.

Anonymous said...

I don't mind tt faculty leaving, and it sounds like your colleague was a little too aggresive, but I think he has a point. I wouldn't want you to be on an SC either.

Asstro said...

Just to pick up on an earlier thread in this discussion:

My current employer was the last to contact me for a fly out, which they did in late February. This was their first round of fly outs. Things got a bit hairy when they contacted me because I was already entertaining offers from other places. I had to delay the other schools while the whole process played out, which I felt very uncomfortable doing.

All this to say: very much of this timeline can depend on the SC and the dean. It took my employer a long time to get their act together. Hold out faith. There's still plenty of time for schools to make first contact.

juniorperson said...

Lots of vitriol thrown here (tho' just by one tenured person) at junior people who are considering moving:

https://www.blogger.com/comment.g?blogID=1944513327283802005&postID=5838260210376756171

By the sounds of it, he could be anon. 7.16's colleague! ;)

For the record, I have moved on from two TT jobs, and I'm now on my third in a department I love and can't see moving from ever.

I am *extraordinarily* lucky.

Anonymous said...

Inquiring (and idle) minds want to know...

Let's say that I am 3rd or 4th in a post-APA ranking for a particular TT job. The SC has contacted their 1 and 2 for flyouts and have subsequently made an offer to one of these candidates. The person that is offered turns them down. Question: is it typical for the SG to make an offer to the other original short-list candidate or is it more typical for them to do one more flyout or two more flyouts?

In addition, how typical is it for an SG to 'not like' either candidate 1 & 2? What are the factors that go in to an SG 'not liking' their neither their 1 or 2 candidate? Is it typical for an SG to be denied in their pick by the Dean?

Anonymous said...

Can anyone give more details on the Fort Lewis State job? I noticed on the wiki that although they conducted APA interviews that someone posted that they were contacted for a phone interview on Jan. 13th. That seems strange to me.

juniorperson said...

Anon. 9.49:

In my experience, the offer would typically go to the second candidate, provided, of course, that the department liked her after her fly-out and would be happy to hire her. Otherwise, they'd go to another fly-out.

I don't think it's usual for Deans to nix department's preferred candidates.

I have no idea how typical it is for SC's not to like fly-out candidates, although my hunch is that it's rare.

Hope this helps!

Anonymous said...

It's still early. And yes PGS, as you'll see when you settle into your fresh new job in the fall it can take about two weeks to get a meeting scheduled and conducted in a mid-large sized dept. There will be disagreements, etc. Meetings may end without reaching any conclusion. Then there is the question of how many candidates the dept can fly in (2, 3 or rarely 4 per position). This is a matter for the dean. That takes time to settle.

stumped said...

what the hell are you supposed to talk to the dean about on a campus interview?

Anonymous said...

Anon 9:49,

It's all anecdotal, but for what's it worth...

I know of a candidate who was the top choice of the SC at a SLAC whose candidacy was vetoed by the Dean. So the offer went to the SC's second choice.

I also know of a candidate who was the 4th choice on a list of finalists, who was flown out after the first 3 were all deemed "unacceptable" after their campus interviews. He received the offer and accepted the job. This was at another SLAC. Interestingly enough, the first fly out for that job was "the ultimate insider," an alumna of the institution who was ABD from a leiterrific department, while my friend was neither of those things.

A prof who interviewed at APA said...

Time on a SC can be a funny thing.

If the right candidate comes along ; things can happen very fast ; I’ve seen a job offer made within 24 hrs after a candidate flies home – all it takes is a phone call to the Dean and an email to the provost.

On the other hand, if the candidates are not quite what you are hoping for – searches can drag out for sometime – and unless the candidates call for an update, we really don’t make an effort to give them an update on the search. – that’s just the way it is – and no, it doesn’t effect our recruiting.

Deans rarely nix a search, unless it is a very controversial hire.

Anonymous said...

RE: Fort Lewis... Yes, they conducted second interviews over the phone and are "making a decision" soon. However, I don't know if this decision is about fly-outs or the actual hire. I think it would be really weird to hire someone without bringing them to campus.

Anonymous said...

Since others are asking, I'll give it a shot: has anyone heard from St. Cloud State University about the open position?

Anonymous said...

FWIW, I recall that Fort Lewis does conduct their interviews of finalists by phone, hiring without a fly-out. That a be-a-utiful part of the world!

Anonymous said...

Fort Lewis only sent one faculty member to the APA. The school is seriously underfunded, as is the case with most state liberal arts schools, and they would only provide the money to fly one department member to the APA and will only provide money for two flyouts. She interviewed 20 people at the APA to maximize the opportunity, but that meant limiting it down from 20 to 2 based on the opinion of one person.

What she told me is that she was probably going to need help from the other department members to do some of the limiting, and they would do that via phone interviews. Then the next stage would move to the two campus interviews. I think the number she said for phone interviews was six, but I'm not 100% sure.

What I wasn't clear on was whether the people getting the phone interviews are the only ones who are being considered to move on to the two campus interview slots or if instead they might have wanted to get more information on certain people but were willing to rely on her judgment for others and then wanted to make decisions that might still include people who didn't get phone interviews. I suspect the former is far more likely, but I wouldn't rule out the latter. Since I didn't get a phone interview, I can only hope for the second. But I don't have a lot of hope.

Prof. J. said...

To 9:49
I think it's fairly unusual (but I wouldn't have said 'rare') for a SC to invite two, make an offer to #1, and then decide not to offer the job to #2 when #1 turns them down. This is largely because the campus interview is unlikely to have a large impact.

On Deans rejecting a candidate:
I think that's very rare. But a dean could nix a list on various grounds (esp. affirmative action).


Prof who Interviewed at the APA:

If the right candidate comes along ; things can happen very fast ; I’ve seen a job offer made within 24 hrs after a candidate flies home – all it takes is a phone call to the Dean and an email to the provost.

One year we finished our last APA interview, and we all looked at each other, and my colleague asked, "Should we grab him before he gets to the elevator and offer him the job?" We couldn't do that, of course (dept. has to vote, dean has to approve), but the decision was all but made at that point. (And the guy is indeed now my colleague.)

Prof. J. said...

Stumped,
what the hell are you supposed to talk to the dean about on a campus interview?

A good topic is: how is the philosophy department seen by the administration?
Of course, it would be embarrassing to ask this question to the dean at Rutgers. But it's generally a reasonable question and has the additional virtue of being a question you'd actually like to know the answer to.

Female Department Chair said...

Response to "Stumped": Don't worry too much about talking to the dean. In my experience, most deans like to do all the talking! You can ask a few questions about how the dean sees the situation of humanities within the university, or how philosophy compares to some of the other humanities departments... Deans may tell you information about possible sources of travel or research money. Some deans fancy themselves as broad intellectuals and might try talking to you about your work, but in general these questions are easily fielded. The basic goal is just to see if you appear to be a sensible person and not a total weirdo. You can also ask questions about the city or about cultural life, about whether the university's state funding source is solid or whether they are trying to establish outreach to the community... whatever interests you.

Anonymous said...

trust me, none of you wants to go to fort lewis, it's professional suicide.

Anonymous said...

can you please elaborate re fort lewis and professional suicide?

juniorperson said...

"If the right candidate comes along ; things can happen very fast ; I’ve seen a job offer made within 24 hrs after a candidate flies home – all it takes is a phone call to the Dean and an email to the provost."

I can beat this! I *received* a job offer 2/3 of the way through an on-campus interview!

tenured philosophy girl said...

Tee-hee-hee - I know nothing about Fort Lewis College and had never heard of it until this morning. I looked it up after the last comments because ... well, I am procrastinating big time this week. This is from their philosophy department's home page statement:

"Most importantly, philosophy will carve a mark on your liberal education. Fort Lewis is the leading liberal arts college. We're like a specialty shop for philosophy. So why go to a large university when you have the specialists here."

This is hilarious. I hope whoever wrote this has trouble sleeping at night. Someone needs a lesson in definite descriptions, truth-in-advertising, and punctuation. And what exactly is it to 'carve a mark on your liberal education'? Is that like when my dog peed on my teaching notes the other day?

Anyone feeling bad about not being called back by this place should go read the rest of the statement, which is almost as funny as the part I pasted here. (For instance, if you go there you will apparently be trained in how to "understand conclusions" - but not premises, I guess.)

By the way, in other matters, no one cares what you ask the dean. Just sit there and don't be manifestly intolerable or crazy.

Anonymous said...

To be fair to Fort Lewis' philosophy department, they didn't write that miserable statement quoted by tenured philosophy girl. The person who interviewed me at the APA was mortified to find it online a week before the interviews. The person said that someone in HR wrote it, and that's definitely not how they see themselves at FLC.

Anonymous said...

Every University has a screwed up administration, from what I can tell. And I wouldn't look down my nose at Fort Lewis. First, it's in one of the most beautiful places in the country (Durango, CO); for those philosophers who love the outdoors it doesn't get much better than this. The university was started for Native American students, and still has one of the highest percentage of any school, so you get to give back to a group who deserves it. But, yeah, if your goal is a job at Rutgers, Princeton, or whatever, this isn't the way to go (but you know that already!). Still, there's a philosophical question a lot of us have to face: What do you want more out of life: the instant respect of the profession at large or a beautiful place to spend you days? (I wonder how many places there are where you can find both?)

juniorperson said...

Durango and Southwest Colorado is the best place to attend college. Our open space lends itself to open minds."

Oh, yes indeed!

In fairness, though, the account of the curriculum (which I assume was written by one of the philosophy faculty) was completely different in style and tone than the above-quoted nonsense, and was perfectly normal.

On the subject of professional suicide, I know of one low-ranked
R1 department with a graduate program that over the course of almost 20 years failed to retain any junior faculty, with some choosing to leave the profession rather than stay there. Now *that's* grim...

tenured philosophy girl said...

Thank goodness the Fort Lewis text wasn't written by a department member, and my sympathy and apologies to the poor interviewing faculty member from there, if she's reading. All the same ... too bad that if we are going to have a college designed to serve Native American students - a most worthy goal - that we couldn't succeed in making it so that it's run by non-idiots with basic grammatical skills.

Anonymous said...

I'd rather be at a university run by dumb idealists than sharp "realists," running the university of the business model...

Anyone who doesn't feel the appeal of "wide open spaces" won't dig Fort Lewis, though.

Anonymous said...

"I'd rather be at a university run by dumb idealists than sharp "realists," running the university of the business model"

This twice about that.

DearCarnap/DearQuine said...

"The university was started for Native American students, and still has one of the highest percentage of any school, so you get to give back to a group who deserves it."


Ahhh, I love to give back to Native Americans. It would also be exciting to give back to blacks (should i teach at Morehouse to do that?), women (perhaps Wellesley?), and the hearing impaired (Gallaudet?). It warms my hear to give back. I'm sure they can't wait for me to arrive!!!!!

Mr. Zero said...

DearCarnap/Quine,

Would you mind elaborating on your comment? I'm not sure what you mean, but there's a pretty natural reading according to which you're kind of a racist. I don't want to just assume you're a racist, or anything, but it's hard to see how your comment is not racism.

A person could do a lot worse than spending his/her career teaching at a school like Fort Lewis, Morehouse, Howard, or whatever. So, what's the problem?

Anonymous said...

I take it that Quine/Carnap meant to suggest that it was arrogant to think that a non-native American could have anything to "give back" to a Native American. But that's ignorant too.

Anonymous said...

"A person could do a lot worse than spending his/her career teaching at a school like Fort Lewis"

I doubt it

dearcarnapdearfrege said...

Mr. Zero,

I was being facetious. I think you should direct your need for explanation to the passage quoted. Good day.

Anonymous said...

How about this: The careerists can have all the jobs at Rutgers, Princeton, NYU, etc., if they'll just leave us nature-lovers the jobs they think they're too good for anyway!

Anonymous said...

Mr Zero:

I think you missed the punchline: it was "I'm sure they can't wait for me to arrive!!!!!"

I think the line about "giving back" is the vaguely racist one--it implies that one is doing charity work when one teaches minorities for pay.

Anonymous said...

I'm wondering how many people talking down about Fort Lewis would prefer adjuncting at two institutions, each half-time and neither offering health insurance, each paying maybe $2000 per course. Because that's going to be the alternative to some who interviewed at Fort Lewis but didn't get a campus interview if they don't end up with anything in the February market. I know someone who is adjuncting in two positions like that because he gave up on the job market after trying for five years and not getting any interviews. He would have been happy to land a job like Fort Lewis.

Mr. Zero said...

Obviously, there are a lot of levels at work here. And it's important to avoid the condescending Finding Forrester racism.

But I'll say this. Mrs. Zero adjuncts at two schools. One is a local CC with a lot of poor people and minorities. The other is a lily-white private school. The CC is by far the more rewarding, and the students there are actually better. They try harder and there's less academic dishonesty. The students at the CC are far more likely to recognize the value of an education.

Sorry for being a bonehead.

Anonymous said...

Anon 10:34 is obviously wrong: "Giving back" -- ntoice the word "back" -- implies paying off a debt one has incurred (which means acknowledging that one does owe such a debt), not giving something out of some grand sense of largesse.

Anonymous said...

Maybe it doesn't make much sense to complain about careerism on a blog dedicated to helping people with their academic careers, but I'd still suggest that a career that isn't *careerist* will be more fulfilling than a career that is. All some of us want is to be able to support our families by teaching, thinking, and publishing, and the snobbishness displayed by some of those here is depressing, as is the fact that the market (with all its obvious irrationalities) encourages these folks think they've earned that snobishness.

Anonymous said...

Anon 5:00,

Maybe you forgot that the United States fucked the Native Americans sideways over the course of 150 years. (Before that, of course, England and Spain doing it). I don't think "back" is the problem.

Anonymous said...

Right, it must be the giving that's the problem. I suppose you think we should continue taking instead of giving back?

Anonymous said...

Anon 6:20,

Here's what happened. A bunch of people were shitting on Fort Lewis. Somebody says, well, it was started as a college for native americans. Teaching there wouldn't be so bad; you'd be giving something back.

Then somebody else says, oh, man, you can't say "giving back"--that's implies that there is a debt. Seems to me to be suggesting that there's no debt, so you can't give back.

Then I else say, It's not obvious that there's no debt. Read Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee. there's something like a debt in there someplace.

Then you say, "I suppose you think we should continue taking instead of giving back?" This seems incoherent, given what I took to be the thread of the earlier conversation. I admit it, I could be brain damaged, I but I intended to express something along the lines of, you can give back, because we did a lot of taking. What did you mean to express?

Anonymous said...

9:36: I was responding to the comment that it's not the "back" that's problematic in the expression "giving back". That suggests that there's something inappropriate about saying that we should give back to Native Americans but not because it's giving back. The only other option I can think of is that the giving itself is somehow supposed to be problematic.

I don't know if that comment was yours, but it doesn't appear in your narrative. So maybe you're taking me to be responding to you when I'm not.

Anonymous said...

12:12,

I don't know what's happening.