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 How to Fix the Adjunct Crisis

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RR Phantom

RR Phantom

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PostSubject: How to Fix the Adjunct Crisis   Sun Jul 01, 2018 6:26 pm

Four views from the tenure track

"Why won’t anyone say the obvious: no one should work as an adjunct." That Facebook post by Claire B. Potter created a little firestorm last fall, which Potter, a professor of history at the New School, fueled with an essay on Inside Higher Ed: "Why Adjuncts Should Quit Complaining and Just Quit." Her argument: "If people refused this labor and did something else with their Ph.D.s — which, according to studies done by professional associations is more than viable — institutions would be forced to adjust their hiring practices."

The backlash was fierce: "Anyone who holds some asinine fantasy about the ‘logic’ of the market solving the adjunctification of the academy needs to shut up," wrote one commenter. "You do terrible damage to our society."

One adjunct posted on Facebook. "Why don’t some of the tenured people quit?"

Marc Bousquet had a different suggestion. An associate professor of film and media studies at Emory University who has written widely about academic labor, Bousquet said on Facebook that, as "active players in superexploitation," tenured faculty should do "the heavy lifting in rebuilding the profession."

With his call to action in mind, we asked four tenured and tenure-track scholars to recommend strategies academics in their position could use to effect change.
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