Academic Komsomol

This piece was written by the kind of academic I am ashamed to share a profession with. The holier-than-thou earnestness is so Soviet in tone that it feels like I’m at a 1983 meeting of a Komsomol cell. What a disgrace. 


9 thoughts on “Academic Komsomol”

  1. I thought that Trump’s victory would make these people realize how irrelevant their preening is…but I guess no.


  2. Odd, I didn’t have the same reaction. As I read it, here is someone who is soft-selling a forthcoming book. Now, my wife had a dictatorial adjunct in college, a former Marine, who would like the door at start time for the class, forbidding anyone to arrive late for any reason, and would snatch coffee cups from students and toss them into the trash, pound desktops, etc., and otherwise behave like a petty ruler of a third world country. There are such people in academia.


    1. I would respond very well to order and discipline because there are clear rules and they have a justification. (I also love marching in formation to military tunes, so I’m not very mainstream in this.)

      The scary part about the virtuous fanatics is that you can never anticipate what would set them off. There is never anything you can do to ensure they won’t attack you. There will always be something betraying your essential sinfulness.


      1. you can never anticipate what would set them off

        Oh, god, yes. It’s almost stochastic and depends on the first few comments, which way they go. There’s a definite mob mentality to the comment sections.


        1. I know I said it before, but it bugs me beyond belief that such people see the enemy not in the state legislatures that strip our funding but in good, well-meaning colleagues who maybe said something not entirely sensitive or rubbed their sensibilities the wrong way somehow.


  3. What is especially shameful about the linked article is that it is written by a full professor, and he is attacking a contingent faculty member (a visiting lecturer). I think that playing the privilege game is certainly appropriate here, and I am angry that this professor responded in this way to someone who has not been fortunate enough to find a tenure-track position or at least a permanent instructor position.

    Remember Jesse Stommel?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I was taught by my mentors that your solidarity always lies with your colleagues. We need to avoid rubbishing each other out for trivial transgressions. That’s what I was taught, at least.


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