Saturday, January 19, 2013
Mid career writing blues
When you are untenured, perhaps a doctoral student, on the tenure track, or a non-tenure track lecturer, you might assume that anyone who gets tenure has it easy, and has it made.
And while there is some truth (a great deal really) that tenure makes our lives more stable and less anxiety ridden, there are many pitfalls for mid-career faculty.
Mid-career professionals no longer "must" publish to survive. Without this external push there are often no clear models for how to construct identities as scholars. Also, there is often a great deal of guilt that comes with the territory: "who am I to feel bad, I have tenure!"
The task of the mid-career professor is to discover who you wish to become as a professor, and what this vision means to you. You have the burden of choice and freedom; one of the key existential struggles of humans liberated from "want."
Try to do some writing, perhaps in your academic journal, on what kind of scholar you wish to be. What do you want to do with your career- it is yours.