Tuesday, June 24, 2008

"Just as if ..."

Unemployment compensation for the unemployed? Indiana Supreme Court says OK. (What next? Healthcare for the sick?) Chicago COCAL has been a leader in this area; the (PDF) Berry, Stewart, & Worthen document is (somewhat surprisingly) linked in the story.

"[S]ending detectives to the homes of trustees is ... long overdue". Oh yeah.

"Legal Win for Indiana Faculty Who Aren’t Renewed"; Andy Guess; IHE; June 23, 2008.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Now Without Italian Autonomixt Marxists

Bousquet's "Academic Labor Bookshelf" mentions your humble narrator. Also, if I guess rightly, this publications list by one Wayne Ross. But mostly, as its title suggests, it's a list of good old-fashioned offline books. I'd like to spend about a month alone in this guy's office.

Instant Update. This post on cataloging research appeared today in FACE Talk. Is this an end-of-academic-year thing or what?

I Just Tune It Out. Recent posts at On The Tenure Track, University Diaries, and Burnt Out Adjunct on the pernicious effects of new media on literacy. Is it ironic that BOA is itself badly marred by widgets making loading slow?

A Plague On Both Your Houses. "The Crossroads Of American Educational Politics" (at edwise): if you enjoy reading about the neverending debates about how (never whether) to push people around as much as I do, don't miss this thrilling episode of The Clueless Rich.

Who Guards The Guardians? A review of The Students Are Watching, by samjshah.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

A Voice Cries Out

Here's some righteous outrage about incomptence and log-rolling in the testing-and-publishing racket, at The Chancellor's New Clothes. This appears to be part of some ongoing vendetta against McGraw-Hill by the joint authors ("A Voice in the Wilderness" and "Learners Inherit the Earth"). Good. Including the link to this anti-testing piece in The Nation was also very commendable.

Also spotted today: a favorable review for a remediation program, by Margaret UD Soltan (blogging at IHE). The basement of the tower is mentioned.

"Reading Between the Lines"; Stephen Metcalf; January 28, 2002.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Freshman Typo ("Lead" For "Led") Posted By Writing Teacher

Gregory Zobel interviews Joe Berry and Marc Bousquet. Didn't I just link to posts about those very same guys at that very same blog earlier this week? Yes, I did, wiseguy.

You might as well just go ahead and add Adjunct Advice to your own blogroll. I'll be doggoned if I'm gonna go on publicly admitting that Zobel's much better at this than I am.

They Call Me Mister Whore!

A review of HTUW appeared a couple days ago in Narratives. Do you have to deny your humanity to succeed in academics? Of course not. But it sure helps.

Then there's Disciplined Minds (here's my review [2002]): for some reason I haven't seen any discussion of this one lately; that's a shame. Heck, I haven't even seen the book itself lately ... I "lent out" my copy and we all know what that means ...

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Dream Machines

Bousquet's most recent post plugs COCAL VIII and is cross-posted here at the Chronicle's offshoot e-zine Brainstorm, where it's generated some interesting comments (having very little to do with the post itself ... but interesting just the same).

Well and good. Bousquet links (at his own page, but, weirdly, not in Brainstorm) to a short academic-labor bibliography by his co-brainstormer Mark Bauerlein. Who links in his turn to ... well, here my troubles begin. As of now, the article in question is here, and a fine piece is is too. But the Chronicle un-posts its stories after some few weeks and hides 'em behind a subscription wall. And this is too much of a concession to timeliness for my taste. I get ticked off when people post links to stories that require me even to "sign in" to something, never mind pay ... so I'm ethically bound not to post such pseudo-links myself (or, of course, to stop being ticked off ... but that's unlikely).

The really disgusting thing (also linked by Bauerlein) is this enormous list of Chronicle pieces on "Tenure and Labor Relations in Academe". Could somebody with some influence please tell these clods what the web is for? Surely they're not selling any subscriptions by limiting access to what ought to be their own best advertisement.

"THE STATE OF LITERARY THEORY: Why Today's Publishing World Is Reprising the Past"; Jeffrey J. Williams; June 13, 2008 (hey, that's tomorrow).

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The Tipping Point

This piece today at Oregon COCAL leads to info about The Last Professors: The Corporate University and the Fate of the Humanities, by Frank Donoghue. Might be worth looking into. I'm about done on the day, though.

No, wait. Lesko v. AFT. Now I'm done.

"The Last Professors"; Scott Jaschik, June 11, 2008; IHE.

Monday, June 9, 2008

WPA = "Writing Program Administration"

Gary Zobel has recently posted quotes from How the University Works and Reclaiming the Ivory Tower in his Adjunct Advice blog (the authors of these books—both still unread by me—are, as I hinted in my second post, leading figures in the contingent-academic-labor movement). Also there's an interview with Craig Smith of AFT's FACE Talk. What the devil any of it has to do with Bedford/St.Martin's is unclear.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Tiny Montgomery Says Hello

Breaking news: the following was posted to adj-l today. K. Hoeller provided the press coverage shortly thereafter. Hey. I didn't even know SEIU was involved in this struggle. Fabulous.

With pride and with slight change to the text, I am copying here two paragraphs from an email that just arrived:

Yesterday evening, with part-time faculty members Alan Stover and Terilee Edwards-Hewitt monitoring the counting of the last remaining ballots, the Maryland Department of Labor, Licensing, and Regulation announced the final tally for our election. By a margin of more than three-to-one, Maryland's Montgomery College adjunct faculty overwhelmingly voted to unite together with SEIU.

A round of applause broke out in the room as officials from the labor board read off the 250th vote for SEIU, marking a clear victory for adjuncts. As the vote count continued to climb past 300... then 350... and all the way to 365, instructors who had turned out to watch the vote count began hugging and congratulating one another. When all the ballots were counted, the final results was 365 YES votes to 105 no votes.

Deepest thanks to Alan, Terilee, and everyone at MC who worked toward this goal, and for everyone in Maryland and across North America who speaks truth to power on issues of fairness in adjunct employment. This is a first and mighty step forward for adjunct professors at Montgomery College.

Rebecca M. Trussell

"Montgomery College part-time faculty agrees to unionize"; Wednesday, June 4, 2008.

I Pity The Poor Billionaire

"The Value of a Textbook", Monday in IHE, is typical "capitalism is doing everybody a big fat favor by ripping us off; bend over and take it like a man" asssume-everybody-is-a-moron boilerplate uselessness ... but wait! There are some interesting comments, including one by Grover Furr referring to this thread from last year wherein he explains why textbooks should be free (there are other good comments there, too). All of which gives me a quasi-plausible excuse to link to this ancient letter to the editor by me (shrink the window). Oh, gee.

Here's a related post from my math-ed blog.

Arms Extended In Prayer

In this piece in McSweeney's, Oronte Churm announced his column in IHE. He's decloaked in this interview.
"On Apophasis"; 12/22/06.