November 12, 2004

Who Gets the Academic Job?—Academe’s

Who Gets the Academic Job?—Academe’s Version of “You Make the Call”

Perhaps, dear reader, you recall those old television commercials that required viewers to pretend they were referees, and make calls to close plays in sporting events. As far as we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” are concerned, those were pure television magic; we haven’t any idea why they still aren’t on the air.

In fact, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly,” consider them so indescribably sublime that we have decided to offer our own version of them. Naturally, though, we have offered a twist.

Without any further ado, then, we are proud as peacocks to present:

Who Gets the Academic Job?—The University Version of “You Make the Call”:

Imagine, dear reader, that you are the chairman of the comparative literature department at a prestigious American university. (Excuse us: You are the chairperson; “chairman” is so phallocratic.) Anyway, as the chairperson of comp lit, you are casting the deciding vote on the candidate for a tenure-track gig in your department.

Your department has already covered all of the rudimentary subjects that a good comp lit program should: Comic books, film theory, Deleuze, etc. Accordingly, you hope to choose the applicant who will make the best addition to your department.

The following, then, are potted summaries of the applicants’ resumés. After perusing them, dear reader, you, the chairperson of comparative literature, must decide whom to hire.

Candidate the First: Janet Stancil

Ms. Stancil received her Ph.D. in comparative literature from the University of California at Berkeley. Her dissertation, titled “Pork and Mindy: Judaica and the Early Work of Robin Williams,” offered an Althusserian take on the oeuvre of the hirsute comedian. She has published one article, entitled “Mon-tell: Toward a Queer Hermeneutics of Montel Williams,” which appeared in the journal Uninterestingly Radical Comparative Literature Professor.

Candidate the Second: Philip Largent

Mr. Largent received his Ph.D. in comparative literature from Columbia University, where he wrote a dissertation titled “Waxing Poetic: Madame Toussaint and the Other.” Most of his scholarly work has pertained to the crucial topic of wax modeling; in 2003, he gave a talk at the controversial “Wax Models and Comparative Literature” conference, which three people attended.

Candidate the Third: Jose de Jesus

Mr. de Jesus received his Ph.D. in comparative literature from New Mexico State University. His dissertation, “Queer Aztlan: The Poetics of Chicano/a Resistance,” was highly touted by both of the faculty members of New Mexico State’s comp lit department. Although he has never published a scholarly article, Mr. de Jesus does write regularly for Latin Dog Fancy.

So, dear reader, those are the statistics. Who gets the academic job? You make the call.

In order to vote, simply click the “Contact Us” link found at the top right-hand corner of your computer screen, and send us your pick.

Posted at November 12, 2004 12:01 AM | TrackBack