Advertisement

Wrestling with Career: An Autoethnographic Tale of a Cracked Academic Self

  • Barbara M. Grant
Chapter
Part of the Palgrave Critical University Studies book series (PCU)

Abstract

In her chapter, Barbara explores the idea of ‘academic career’ to trouble its ascendance as a commonsense way for describing our academic lives, especially its now insidiously dominant form, which is more in the ilk of ‘careerism’. By tracing out various broken and tangled lines within her own story of working in one university for nearly 40 years, and her ongoing ambivalences about applying for promotion to professor, Barbara confronts some of the difficult ethical issues endemic to academic life. Composed as a series of writing experiments – memories, litanies, recalled conversations – Barbara seeks to show how an ordinary academic life is rich with possibilities for resistance to the registers of neoliberalism that shape and inform the contemporary university and those of us who dwell there.

Keywords

Academic career Academic life Careerism Promotion Writing experiments 

Notes

Acknowledgments

Thanks for incisive feedback on early drafts from my School’s doctoral writers group (Daniel, Lisa and Vanessa), and from valued academic colleagues (Fran, Niki and Viv). Thanks, too, to colleagues who, when asked, agreed to the inclusion of their tiny stories.

Bibliography

  1. Butler, Judith. “Giving an Account of Oneself,” Diacritics 31 (1991): 22–40.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Morrissey, John. “Regimes of Performance: Practices of the Normalised Self in the Neoliberal University,” British Journal of Sociology of Education 36 (2015): 614–634.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Stengers, Isabelle, Vinciane Despret, and Collective. Women Who Make a Fuss: The Unfaithful Daughters of Virginia Woolf. Minneapolis: Univocal, 2014/2011.Google Scholar
  4. Woolf, Virginia. A Room of One’s Own and Three Guineas. London: Collins Classic, 2014.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of AucklandAucklandNew Zealand

Personalised recommendations