#Alt-Academy, a part of the MediaCommons project, is seeking essays and articles on the role of social identity, such as race, gender, class, and sexuality, in alternative academic (alt-ac) careers, labor, and life paths. Alternative academic careers encompass positions within and around the academy that fall outside the traditional tenure track structure. A majority of people working in academia, many of whom have significant academic training, are now laboring in contingent and/or alt-ac positions. However, it is important to examine how working in alternative academic careers may be inflected with different meanings and experiences for people from different social groups. We invite scholars to reflect on how larger sociopolitical dynamics of privilege and power shape the expansion of—and the discussion surrounding—alternative academic careers.
Examples of essay topics could include:
- The denial of tenure to women/people of color and the growing alt-ac labor force
- The “Mommy” track, academic parenting, and the demands of care labor within non-tenure track positions
- “Coming out” as an alt-ac worker/Queering the academy
- Gender Studies/Ethnic Studies programs, contingent labor, curriculum design, and the alt-ac
- Negotiating authority as a woman/person of color in an alt-ac position
- The role of class background in graduate school, the job search, the academy, and alt-ac positions
- Political factors of choosing to work in an alt-ac or post-ac career
- Radical pedagogies through alt-ac work
- Public intellectual labor, critiquing academia, academic freedoms, and alt-ac or post-ac positions
- Administrative labor/duties/positions and the role of alt-ac careers in providing services to under-served and under-represented students and faculty
- Negotiating racism, sexism, and sexual harassment as a contingent or non-tenure track academic laborer
- Alt-ac positions, the faculty governance body of institutions, and addressing diversity/inclusion/social power issues in higher education
If you would like to contribute a piece on one of these topics, or another relevant topic, we welcome your submission! Please send a 300-500 word abstract or pitch, your C.V./résumé, and an optional short writing sample to firstname.lastname@example.org by April 5th, 2014. We expect to begin publishing articles to the website in late summer. Authors are welcome to republish their original work to other locations after it has been published with us. We will also consider previously published articles/blogs (to which the author owns the rights) that are relevant or have been revised to fit the theme of this essay cluster.