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academic labor



  • Can the UC Strike Remake Higher Education?

    The strike is driven by the crises in both academic labor and housing costs, which make poverty wages for graduate student workers far less tolerable than they used to be. Historian James Vernon is one faculty member cancelling his classes in solidarity. 



  • What's at Stake in the UC Grad Strike

    by Jay Caspian Kang

    While public support for unions has grown in recent years, it's not clear if the public understands that the working class is now likely to be involved in knowledge work. The strike by University of California graduate workers hopes to change that. 



  • The Cultural Workers Go On Strike

    A "black turtleneck uprising" of museum workers and adjunct professors tells us that brain work has become gig work, challenging cherished myths about education, opportunity and meritocracy. 



  • On Going Back Off the Tenure Track

    by Sarah Handley-Cousins

    "I had watched my historian friends pack up their families, leave the towns where they’d earned their PhDs, and move to take jobs, but it became slowly and devastatingly clear my situation was different."



  • Faculty Need Labor Organizing, Not Shared Governance

    by Eva Cherniavsky

    "Beyond the walls of the academy, where the default vision of the college professor is (still) that of an over-educated, privileged elite reveling in the outrageous luxury of career-long job security, no one at all is much concerned with the erosion of faculty power. Yet they should be."



  • Putting the Tenure Debate in Historical Perspective

    by Adam Sitze

    Academic tenure has much in common with the historial practice of lifetime appointments for judges. Why are academics reluctant to embrace the comparison? 



  • The Decline of Tenure is the Greatest Threat to Higher Education

    by Marc Stein

    While states like Texas threaten tenure politically, in California the instititution is under attack by austerity and attrition; either way, higher education itself is threatened by the abandonment of employment security. 



  • When Professors Close Ranks

    by Claire Bond Potter

    If administrations can't be counted on to support student victims of sexual harassment, faculty need to be prepared to defend students and help them defend themselves by whatever means necessary. 



  • Notes from a Grad School Survivor

    by Kellen Heniford

    This week's revelations of sexual harassment and institutional complicity at Harvard are striking a chord with women academics because they're not surprising. The author discusses her own experiences and the power dynamics stacked against students and survivors.



  • Columbia Has Lost Its Way

    The university's negotiations with its graduate student workers' union show an institution organized around the values of a corporation. 



  • Strange Beasts of Columbia

    by Eduardo Vergara Torres

    "According to the administration, the typical Columbia student worker must be an eyeless, toothless, infertile male creature bred on the cold shores of New England, who is about to inherit a fortune amassed by generations of well-educated ancestors."