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Anxious gatekeeping

Analogous to nervous cluelessness is something we might call “anxious gatekeeping.”   This is desire to police the borders of poetry, or of...

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

So Where Is This Going... ??

So where is this sequence of posts headed? I have to think about where I am headed professionally. I've reached a certain level in my field and in my department, overcoming my depression of the early 2000s. In order to continue to move forward, I have to continue my own intellectual Bildung, even though that, in and of itself, brings no external rewards. So I will finish and publish the second book on Lorca.

I want to teach a course for the MFA program, a workshop on the translation of poetry. I can start efforts to make this happen in the Spring. I need to increase my internal presence in my university, something which doesn't happen because of my frequent absence. I won't be absent as much from now on, because my daughter is graduating from High School and I won't be going to visit her in St. Louis any more after summer of 2013.

I need to earn better money. To do this I need an outside offer or a promotion to DP, and/or an administrative post. I feel my low salary is a function of not being able to promote myself better within the university, to prove my worth. I have to be less passive. I was in my personal life, since I decided I had to get divorced in order to stand up for myself.

I once associated my low status in the department as a function of my dissent from Kansas mediocrity. Now that my status is higher, I have to complete the process of separating myself from that legacy. Paradoxically, I am the member of the department who is most involved in keeping alive the legacy of having a research-oriented department. Thus I have to pay some lip service to the scholars who published a lot, even though they were a bit mediocre to my mind. The "over achievers." I can publish as much as those guys, but I want to be recognized as publishing good quality work as well.

2 comments:

profacero said...

Step 1. Kansas ain't freakin' mediocre no matter how it may feel to you. Thinking things are mediocre is part of the negativity you are against. Of course, I am not in favor of calling great what isn't but I think it really helps to start doing the pround dance for every small thing that isn't mediocre.

Step 2. Can you ask for a salary equity adjustment without having an offer? I did not use to realize this was done but it has come to my attention that in fact people do it, sometimes successfully.

Jonathan said...

I have asked for raises every single year. I think I will use the magic phrase "salary equity adjustment" to see whether that works better.