Comedy Job Posting 

People, you got to read this job announcement for a position at a school in Illinois. Extensive discussion is at the link. Please read because the job posting is a thing of beauty. You can deliver it at comedy clubs without changing a word and you’ll slaughter:

University of Illinois-Chicago. 
Visiting Lecturer-German Basic Language Program Director for AY 2017-2018.

The Director will coordinate 14 sections in the blended basic German language sequence (first through fourth semester), supervise and train about 10 teaching assistantsteach three advanced language and culture courses, and participate in departmental events, such as the High School Day.

Qualifications: Candidates must be ABD (PhD preferred), have a strong teaching record, and have a background in Second Language Acquisition or a related field. Native or near-native competency in German is required. Preference will be given to candidates with experience in language program direction, materials development, and computer-mediated learning.

Currently this is a 67% position for $28.000 and benefits are prorated.

Starting date for the TA orientation is August 21, 2017. Classes start August 28, 2017.


23 thoughts on “Comedy Job Posting ”

  1. They either don’t want to fill the position at all and so make it ridiculous or assume their are poor schlubs out there who will jump at it. Probably the latter and they’re probably right.


  2. That seems absurd.
    I’m sure Rebecca Schuman would roast it if she were still dissecting job postings. I saw her book several months ago but I didn’t get a chance to read it.


      1. Just a little clarification. There are 3 people who sign as Alex on this blog. One is a physicist, one a physician, and one other, I’m not sure what he does. So this particular Alex is not the pro Trump one. This is the anti Trump Alex.


        1. I’m the anti-Trump physicist.

          And my post was intended to poke fun at my colleagues who encourage students to go to grad school.


  3. Maybe they just want to shut down their German program and impossible job listings is a way to do that?

    Shutting down foreign language teaching is a very clear metaphor for the purposeful narrowing of horizons that seems part and parcel of the millenial mindset – cut out input that might be unsettling.

    The fact that it coincides with the worst instincts of republicans (who don’t value education for education’s sake – the only real purpose of education) is an unlucky coincidence.


    1. “Shutting down foreign language teaching is a very clear metaphor for the purposeful narrowing of horizons that seems part and parcel of the millenial mindset ”

      Clearly it is millenials who are making these university/state funding decisions. Sounds about right.


      1. They couldn’t be doing this if there wasn’t demand for it (as Clarissa often says). Do you see millenials fighting for more openness and tenure lines at universities or more restrictions?
        A foreign culture is the exact opposite of a safe space…


        1. Clearly there’s demand for german education. It’s right there in the post if you’d bothered to read. The hapless job candidate is going to be managing 14 sections, 10 TAs, and teach several advanced language courses at the same time.

          That’s your demand for studying german right there. Coming from the students.

          So your novel thesis is that the ‘millenials’ are enrolling in german language classes, but simultaneously opposing any hiring in that department?


          1. “So your novel thesis is that the ‘millenials’ are enrolling in german language classes, but simultaneously opposing any hiring in that department?”

            I express myself badly. The millenials general dislike of open dialogue and clamor for safe spaces and the like is one aspect of the US’s current intellectual contraction and republican fuckheads ravaging tenure track (or at least professional) positions is another. It’s all related. I’m a big systems kind of person.

            But the republican fuckheads couldn’t get away with it without the overall contraction (which is bipartisan and multi-polar intellectually) which millenials also aid and abet through their renonwned difficulties in confronting uncomfortable information.

            You can’t fix a systemic problem by small modifications in one place or in car terms , you can’t fix a busted motor by putting more air in the tires.


            1. The faculty members themselves are eagerly helping this process. Instead of getting off their asses and rethinking their outlandish life strategy, they prefer to destroy the whole field of knowledge to avoid doing any work.


              1. “The faculty members themselves are eagerly helping this proces”

                Yep. It’s systemic. I should probably lay off the millenials a little, but they’re such a tempting topic (and since I’ve had to start dealing with the Polish version…. I’m a little quick on the trigger).

                Liked by 1 person

        2. Undergrads: ‘Here’s my commitment to learning German in the only way it matters to you: my tuition check.’
          University: ‘Fuck you, no professors for you.’
          Cliff: ‘It’s the millenials, you know. Safe space meow chow blah blah’

          It’s like you have this unshakable narrative in your mind and will bend reality to satisfy it. Which is why on some topics it really seems like millenials ate your homework.


        3. At my university, tenure-track hiring seems to have become largely disconnected from undergraduate enrollments. Several large and very successful undergraduate programs, including some in Business and STEM areas, are staffed almost entirely by non-tenure track lecturers. The lecturer jobs here are generally decent – full-time, benefit eligible, good (though not extravagant) salaries relative to the cost of living, 3 year contracts, and infinitely renewable. No one has announced an official policy, but the trend seems to be that tenure track lines are only being replaced in departments that have large and relatively prestigious graduate programs. Departments that only have undergraduate majors and/or small graduate programs seem to have their retiring/leaving faculty lines replaced by full-time lecturer lines or not replaced at all. The small graduate programs are trending even smaller because no one wants to study in a graduate program with no faculty and I expect most will eventually be cut. I’m sure it’s already possible for an undergraduate to make it through a full four years without having a single tenured professor as an instructor and in 10 years that will probably be the norm here.


  4. There’s a saying in the UK when presented with an unreasonably long list of tasks by one’s boss, “Would you like me to stick a broom handle up my arse and sweep the floor while I’m doing all that?” That would be my response to such an advert.

    Liked by 1 person

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