Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Another modest proposal

About that job listing: Rosemary Feal, executive director of the Modern Language Association, calls it “pure exploitation.” What she proposes: “Double the salary and limit the working hours to 25 per week or pay pro rata for the additional hours necessary to do the job.”

I have another proposal: ban departments that engage in such exploitation from listing jobs (any jobs) in the MLA Job Information List and from interviewing at the MLA convention. If the MLA can establish an Academic Workforce Data Center, and if The Chronicle of Higher Education can establish a salary database, it is certainly possible to make use of such data (and other data) in the interest of, as they say, best practices.

The person who now holds the position advertised in the now-infamous listing has significant accomplishments: a research fellowship, a teaching award, eight articles published or to appear, a book to appear. Perhaps he’s moving on to better things. But academia is not.

A related post
Modest proposals to improve academia

[The now-infamous listing does not appear in the JIL.]

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