This edition of Shoptalk asks: Can you guess which of the following was overheard at ASA 2023 and which was overheard at MLA 2024?
Tag: Higher Education
Is the college admissions essay (CAE) a useful tool for understanding ongoing transformations in literature, academia, and publishing?
Universities have disinvested from their presses just as much as their humanities departments and libraries. Will working together stop it?
Changing myself and my classroom might help me renew my one-year contract, but it cannot prepare me to demand an alternative.
“I’m very skeptical about the ability of people in positions of power and privilege—including intellectuals—to name truths about the world.”
Faculty and students can—and must—govern their own institutions, so that universities maintain their vital power.
When did we all become so empowered, passionate, and self-enterprising?
"Maybe that’s one thing the pandemic has allowed—for us to be a bit more honest about our struggles."
The world’s humanists might just be the new MVPs in the struggle for the future of critical thinking.
If you want to support readers, the best hope will always be helping do away with economic compulsion and the division of labor.
“Somehow, we are so present, and yet not even there. That surreal juxtaposition really pissed me off and fascinated me.”
“Campaigns matter in part because of who meets whom, about the social networks that are shaped by that campaign as well as shaping it.”
“It’s not about the land underneath campuses. It’s land at a distance, that can be sold or managed to raise funds for endowments.”
“You can have really intense intimacy over distance, sometimes only because distance is there.”
“Individual Americans thought they were the only ones who could not afford to send their kids to college.”
“You fall short and then you wonder, 'what could I do differently next time that gets us a little bit closer?' I love that process.”
Some wager that the end is not inevitable: that universities can reassert their centrality to the American liberal democratic project.
Institutions separate complainers from one another and from their own support networks. But what if we complained as a collective?
A “regional” humanities abandons academia’s tepid globalism, and confronts local oppressions like prisons, schools, housing, and the police.
“At a certain point, it seemed like all my students were depressed… This was depressing.”