Monday, June 6, 2011

Chronicle of Higher Education

A few days after Isaac Sweeney was kind enough to interview me for one of his Chronicle blogs On Hiring (The Two-Year Track), Ms. Mentor wrote:

"But it took nearly 40 years before anyone wrote a novel told consistently from the perspective of an adjunct: Alex Kudera's Fight for Your Long Day (2010)."

Thank you for noting the originality of the idea and for including an adjunct's perspective in an article that would have to be heavily weighted with the voices of the tenured or those fortunate to earn their living from writing, not teaching.

(I did notice that the two of the 11 finalists I've read are both told from the perspective of tenured professors, but I like both books quite a bit. In fact, I often speak of The Human Stain as my favorite by Philip Roth, a writer I do not always endorse, and Don Delillo's White Noise is one I've taught many times.)

PS--As a side note, Steve Himmer, also of Atticus Books, posted this quotation from the Isaac Sweeney interview:


To me, the most significant American stories have almost always been stories of alienation; the alienation could be emotional, social, psychological, or economic and is typically a combination of these. The university is central to the information economy and employs millions of workers across the country and more throughout the world. The fantastic irony of the marginalized teacher caught in the middle of the educational economy is too much to ignore; it is a rather fantastic elephant in the room that the place of greatest alienation in the university could be right behind the classroom lectern, where a contract worker without health benefits is the only adult most freshmen will have significant communication with.

Thanks, Isaac, Steve, Ms. Mentor, and everyone else who has recently linked and shared these Chronicle notes.

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