Yeah… I’m mostly okay. We have all we need and can go out to a local grocery store if needs be. We’re all working from home, and mostly not getting on each other’s nerves! I’m pretty much the only one who doesn’t have to do meetings (although I am posting videos for lectures for my classes).
I’m still stressed about future employment, and I suspect this situation will make things worse in academia for humanities jobs. I feel mostly responsible for this state of affairs for myself, but angry at the larger situation which have no control over. There are probably things I could have done to make myself more marketable, but even if I had done so, there are so few job postings for tenure track that only the top tier candidates can get a look, and so that’s going to be largely people from elite schools, because you want that on your faculty to attract students.
Often true, I’d agree, but not so much at smaller “teaching” schools. Doing some publishing, and also showing that you’re highly enthusiastic and capable in the classroom, can go a long way. Indeed, such places often skip over the supposedly wonderful candidates you described, both because they doubt they can land them, and because even if they can, such applicants often move “up” a few years later.
None of which is to say that the humanities job market is anything other than a despairing pile of shit.
Yeah, us too! At least we’re all worried together?
This is what I really need to be focusing on, I agree. I think I have a decently strong teaching portfolio at this point, but am always looking to improve what I’m doing.
It’s getting the book deal that I need to deal with, honestly. And I keep putting it off, cause it seems so massive, given the direction I’d like to go with it.
And we wonder why our country is in such a crisis… We’ve been pushing STEM (and rightly so), but it’s often to the detriment of other fields of knowledge, in part because there are so many people willing to buy into the notion that they are diametrically opposed rather than complimentary. It doesn’t help that so many public colleges and universities are so hell-bent on looking more like corporations and in focusing on jobs rather than education… Instead of it being understood that knowing the past and being able to critically assess it is of vital importance, even if it does not seemingly translate directly into a career path the same way other fields do, we now have to “prove” that history can get you a job, because that’s all that matters… and if we can’t prove that, well, let’s just cut your budget, since you’re obviously not showing bottom line value!
ugh. Now I’m less okay!
But then I saw a birb outside my window, so I’m better!
And a lizard in our house!!! which cat cornered, had, dropped… and now it’s hiding in a closet, as we did not get it out the door.
Shoot, I already HAVE a tenured position at a community college and I couldn’t even get an interview last time I threw my hat in the ring for a tenure-track position at a state university. Competition is wicked fierce.
That was a lucky win for me as well, the only reason I was even able to get in the faculty pool as an adjunct was because another faculty member was going out on maternity leave and I was available at the right time. Then it took a number of years teaching part-time before the tenure-track position opened up. I think the main reason they picked me for the full-time TT position was that I was able to teach a wider variety of subjects than the other candidates. Working up to job security in academia is a slog in the best of times.
My job can be done remotely so I’m getting paid, I’m able to isolate pretty well, and I’m at low risk. I worry about some of my family, and the way the country is handling this thing overall, but I can mostly tune that out since it’s outside my control.
What’s hard for me is the lack of face to face interaction. I live alone. I can feel myself sliding toward depression. It’s getting harder to get out of bed in the morning. I can’t always work up the enthusiasm to go out and exercise or even watch TV.
I’m 1700 miles from my family and living with an immunocompromised partner. Going out for groceries means I might bring back the virus that kills her. And we’re definitely in the wrong country for this pandemic. And, one of our cats passed away from an otherwise routine surgery - without warning - this week.
And I can’t really “step away” from anything because I need to moderate here.
So, I’m not ok, but I’m still in a far better situation than many, many others. Which, while not offering any form of solace, at least offers perspective.
Thank you @Mindysan33 for creating a place for us all to vent.