Amanda Ann Klein, an associate professor of film studies at East Carolina University, writes:
A few months ago, after a failed attempt to get a job at a university that might actually pay me a salary commensurate with my rank and experience, I came to the realization that the stress and late nights, the self doubt and loathing, were now unnecessary. I am not going to get a better-paying job and my current employers, no matter how many books I publish, how many students I mentor, or how many committees I serve on, are not going to give me any more money. Or at least not much money. Initially this realization made me despondent. If no one is paying me more money to produce more work, and very few people read the peer-reviewed articles or monographs I’m trying to crank out, then what happens? What happens when a professor no longer has any incentive to work at the breakneck pace at which she has been encouraged to work since she first embarked upon that great and arduous journey towards a career in academia?
Nothing happens. And, dear reader, it is glorious.
The post from which this is excerpted, about how academia makes some feel that “If we’re not always working (and I mean always working) then we don’t exist,” will, I’m sure, resonate with many readers. It is at Klein’s blog, Judgmental Observer. Thoughts about work-life balance in the philosophy profession are welcome.