exposing the academic?

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This is a space for me to share my thoughts and work in progress as I explore the phenomenology of academic life, of my academic life.

Initially I want to share the development of a journal article.  This article will be an autoethnography of my decline into what Barbara Jago has called ‘institutional depression’, of the intertwining of a personal crisis with the intensification of academic labour, and the corporatisation of academic life.

I am aware of the many dangers inherent in such a project.  The danger of exposing myself in such a fashion breaches the assumed code that as academics we should maintain a clear distinction between our personal and academic selves.  I am aware of the danger of revealing my unheroic struggle with depression and how this could impact me professionally.  I am aware also of the danger that my labour could be expropriated by those wishing to use my words (which are the public expression of my heartfelt endeavours – never ‘just’ words).

The sharing will be in different forms – full draft text that is developed for publication, journeys through relevant literatures, reflections on the process of writing.

My hope is that this will be a better format for sharing my academic work than the closed world of academic publishing.  It is a form of continuous publishing.  So, I welcome your observations, suggestions, help, humour and experiences.

I also hope to use this space to develop and then conduct research on mental health and academic life.

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2 thoughts on “exposing the academic?”

  1. Wow. What a powerful start to an important project. I’ll need some time to reflect on this and lend some thoughts to it but it is an articulate and emotional opening. If it is meant to strike chords, then they are already resonating!

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